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NJHMFA Marks Groundbreaking for Historic New Jersey Bell Building Restoration in Newark
Home > Media Room > HMFA in the News > News 2018 > NJHMFA Marks Groundbreaking for Historic New Jersey Bell Building Restoration in Newark
For Immediate Release: Contact:
April 24, 2018 Tammori Petty
Lisa Ryan
(609) 292-6055
 

NJHMFA Marks Groundbreaking for Historic New Jersey Bell Building Restoration in Newark

Development to Include Mixed-Income Apartments, Retail and Office Space
 
Newark, NJ – New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA) executive staff, city officials and representatives of 540 Broad Street Owners LLC recently celebrated the groundbreaking of 540 Broad Street, which will transform the historic New Jersey Bell building into a mixed-use, mixed-income development that includes affordable and market-rate apartments, retail and office space.
 
The 20-story Art Deco building, built in 1929 by the New Jersey Bell Telephone Company, is known for its majestic lobby and brick and sandstone exterior. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2005.
 
“We at the NJHMFA are so very proud to provide significant funding for this project, which will contribute to Newark’s new era of prosperity,” said Lt. Governor Sheila Y. Oliver, commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs and chair of the NJHFMA board. “By blending affordable and market-rate rental housing, this transformative project will make the city’s growing economic vitality accessible to people of diverse income levels.”
 
The restoration will provide 263 apartments, 20 percent of which will be affordable for families earning between 40 and 50 percent of area median income.
 
Apartments, including studios and one- to three-bedroom units, will be located on floors six through 20, with the lower floors consisting of over 80,000 square feet of office, retail and other non-residential uses. The building has been home to the regional offices of Verizon, which will continue to occupy the 4th floor.
 
Apartments will include central air, as well as a dishwasher and washer/dryer. Building amenities will include a state-of-the-art fitness center, game room, bicycle storage, and a 24/7 doorman.
 
"540 Broad Street is an advantageous partnership between public and private entities that will enhance Newark's ongoing revitalization by creating jobs, boosting the economy, and providing much-needed affordable housing and market-rate units," said NJHMFA Executive Director Charles A. Richman. "The adaptive reuse of the New Jersey Bell building, with a mix of housing, retail and office space, not only preserves a strategically-placed historic building, but helps anchor the downtown neighborhood, giving residents walkable access to shopping, transportation, dining and other amenities.”
 
NJHMFA provided the approximately $119 million development with $15 million through its Conduit Bond program and also awarded 4% Low Income Housing Tax Credits, which are expected to generate $6.5 million in private equity. The development also received over $3 million in federal Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credits as well as a tax abatement from the City of Newark.
 
540 Broad Street Owners LLC is a joint venture whose principal members are L+M Development Partners, Prudential Financial Inc. and Goldman Sachs Urban Investment Group. The project is the principal members’ latest downtown Newark investment in partnership with Citi Community Capital. In 2017, the partnership re-opened the historic Hahne & Co. building at 609 Broad Street with financing assistance from NJHMFA. The landmark former department store was transformed into a mixed-use development including market rate and affordable apartments, an arts and cultural center operated by Rutgers University-Newark, a Whole Foods Market, and a Marcus Samuelsson restaurant, Marcus B&P.
 
NJHMFA is an affiliate of the DCA and has been a leader in the creation and rehabilitation of nearly 100,000 affordable housing units across the state. For more information on NJHMFA and its programs, visit www.njhousing.gov.