Harrison: Buzzing with Evolution

The July/August issue of INDUSTRY magazine features Harrison development and real estate.


Creating “modern urbanism” communities where factories and warehouses once stood is a hallmark of a development firm whose latest endeavor is attracting new life to Harrison

When completed, the seven-building mixed-use development rising adjacent to the PATH Station in Harrison will feature six buildings of 2,250 luxury residences and 80,000 square feet of retail space, and already features an Element Hotel with a retail concourse on a 27-acre site. Developed by Ironstate Development and The Pegasus Group, Harrison Station’s estimated total cost is $750 million.

Harrison, in Hudson County along the Passaic River, gained national recognition when visiting President William Howard Taft declared it a “Beehive of Industry,” a motto that stuck. Ironstate recognized the town’s assets, including a new soccer arena (home to Major League Soccer’s Red Bulls) and a vibrant multicultural community. What the town lacked was a modern, enticing residential/lifestyle component that would appeal to today’s urban tastes.

Ironstate’s ambitious development is based on the principles of New Urbanism, which combines residential units, retail, a hotel, pedestrian-friendly thoroughfares, and a progressive yet historically respectful design. The Harrison Station site had long been home to industry and warehouses. As directed by the community’s Waterfront Redevelopment Plan, the project provides a modern transit-oriented development that emphasizes environmental responsibility and community connectivity. Minno & Wasko Architects and Planners, based in Lambertville, was hired to provide the desired structural aesthetic for the residential aspects, and has completed other successful residential, commercial, mixed-use, and hotel projects, including the Bungalow Hotel and Le Club Avenue restaurant in Long Branch and 100 Marketplace in Bernards Township.


The WSJ celebrates Harrison

Picture1A recent article by Kathleen Lucadamo in The Wall Street Journal visits Harrision and says, “Once known for industry, the town fell on hard times but new apartment complexes are rising.”

Of interest from the piece …

Ron Lupone thought he would never leave Manhattan, but the lower rents in New Jersey lured him there. The town of Harrison is where he finally ended up this spring.

“I could get a big apartment with a lot of amenities for under $2,000 a month in Harrison,” said Mr. Lupone, 44 years old. He signed a two-year lease at the Harrison Station rental complex in April. “I feel like I’m living like an adult with a doorman.”

From Harrison to the World Trade Center, for example, takes just 20 minutes on the PATH line. And riders are getting a new $256 million station; construction is already under way on the replacement.

“It’s gone from a town few knew about to one on the radar screen as a nice viable community to live in that is close to New York City,” said Michael Barry, president of Ironstate Holdings.



Ironstate Holdings and the Pegasus Group own the Element Harrison-Newark, a 138-room Starwood Hotel on Somerset Street that opened two years ago. They are also developing Harrison Station, which will encompass 2,250 units and retail space in seven buildings. Two buildings are already up and occupied.

Water’s Edge, which has 141 rental apartments, opened in September 2014 and was fully leased within a year, according to a spokesman for BNE Real Estate Group, the building’s developer.

The price range for residential property, including condos, single- and multifamily homes, is $120,000 to $622,000, according to listings for May on the real estate website Trulia.

Read the full article HERE. 

Harrison Building BOOM!

Rose Duger at NJ.com reports on the state of development in Harrison and Kearny.

For newlyweds Noorin Hamid and Zain Naqvi, convenience was key when choosing their first apartment.

Photo:  Reena Rose Sibayan | The Jersey Journal

Photo: Reena Rose Sibayan | The Jersey Journal

Married in January, the Monmouth County couple moved a month later to Water’s Edge, a new 141-unit apartment complex in Harrison. The combination of new construction and proximity to the Harrison PATH station sealed the deal for the couple, who work in Manhattan.

“We both work in the city, so Water’s Edge made sense for us,” said Hamid. “The shorter commute gives us more time together and we both love the layout of the apartment. It’s a good size for two people and it feels very comfortable, so overall, it is a good living situation for us.”

Apparently, others agree. Water’s Edge, which was constructed by Livingston-based BNE Real Estate Group and opened in September, is already 85 percent occupied, as of late March. Monthly rents for the studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments start at $1,600.

“Harrison is undergoing a tremendous renaissance and we are thrilled to be a part of it,” said Jonathan Schwartz, senior vice president of BNE Real Estate Group. “Water’s Edge reflects our commitment to creating innovative, well-thought out residences in strategic locations near mass transportation that meet the needs of today’s sophisticated renter.”

 Another project nearing completion, Harrison Station, is located adjacent to the PATH station. The third phase of the mixed use development will include 329 residences and 8,700 square feet of retail. Two earlier phases included an Element Hotel, which opened in August, along with 275 rental units and 12,184 square feet of retail space that opened in 2011. Construction should be completed by October, according to George Cahn, president of Cahn Communications and a spokesman for Ironstate Holdings and The Pegasus Group, the two firms building the project.

Also in Harrison, construction of Vermella Harrison is nearly complete, with the first 100 apartments slated for occupancy by the end of the summer, according to Lisa Kaplan, director of marketing for Carlstadt-based Russo Development. Located adjacent to Red Bull Arena and the Harrison PATH station, the complex will feature 402 rental units, as well as 15,000 square feet of retail space.


Jersey Sure! No longer is Newark’s shadow, Harrison embraces big-time development

Via Adam Bonislawski/New York Post

According to Mayor James Fife, Harrison, NJ, once held the state record for the most liquor licenses issued in a square mile. Today Harrison seems to be gunning for the title in a new category — building permits.

There’s a construction boom underway in this town, tucked into a bend of the Passaic River across from Newark.

Roughly 8,000 new residential units are slated to come to market in Harrison over the next decade, Fife says — this in a city with a population of just under 14,000. Add to that the opening four years ago of Red Bull Arena here — a 25,000-capacity stadium that serves as the home of Major League Soccer’s New York Red Bulls — plus a planned $256 million modernization of the Harrison PATH station, and you have a town on the make.

And what else accounts for its soaring appeal? As the old real estate saw would have it, location, location, location.

Elaine Lau, with daughter Violet, moved with her husband, Jonathan Proman, to the new Harrison Station complex, which will ultimately have 2,250 residences. Photo: Jennifer Brown for the New York Post

Elaine Lau, with daughter Violet, moved with her husband, Jonathan Proman, to the new Harrison Station complex, which will ultimately have 2,250 residences. Photo: Jennifer Brown for the New York Post

“Location is first and foremost,” says Michael Barry, president of Ironstate Development, which, with The Pegasus Group, is currently constructing their multi-phase, mixed-use Harrison Station development next to the Harrison PATH station.

Thus far, the partners have completed a 275-unit rental building — with studios from $1,460, one-bedrooms from $1,820, two-bedrooms from $2,155 — and are currently putting up a 329-unit rental building scheduled to open next year. They also last month opened a 138-room Element by Westin hotel as part of the project. When completed, the Harrison Station complex will comprise seven buildings, 2,250 residences and 80,000 square feet of retail space.

“Harrison is located on the PATH train, and that gives you direct access to Jersey City, New York City and Newark,” Barry says. “So essentially from the [town’s] redevelopment area, you’re less than five minutes into Newark, about a 10- to 12-minute ride into Jersey City, and about a 20-minute ride into New York City.”


Engineer Carl Lordi (inset) moved into a brand-new one-bedroom rental at Water’s Edge, a 141-unit building that opened last month. Amenities at the waterfront project include a two-level outdoor terrace with lounge seating and a firepit. Photo: http://www.simplyathos.com; Michael Sofronski

Engineer Carl Lordi (inset) moved into a brand-new one-bedroom rental at Water’s Edge, a 141-unit building that opened last month. Amenities at the waterfront project include a two-level outdoor terrace with lounge seating and a firepit. Photo: http://www.simplyathos.com; Michael Sofronski

“I think Harrison years ago recognized the very valuable asset they have in the PATH train, and like any other town they wanted to see the town blossom and grow — and so they designated a very large area around the train and what is now Red Bull Stadium a redevelopment area,” says Jonathan Schwartz, executive vice president of developer BNE. The firm completed a 176-unit condo project, River Park at Harrison, in 2007, and last month opened a 141-unit rental building, Water’s Edge, with studios from $1,495, one-bedrooms from $1,795 and two-bedrooms from $2,205.

Carl Lordi, a stationary engineer at Newark’s Penn Station, moved to a one-bedroom in the development shortly after it opened after watching it rise throughout the previous months.


Growth in West Hudson includes new Harrison Path station


When the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey gave the green light to a $256 million project to build a new Harrison PATH station last year, the announcement shone a spotlight on other redevelopment efforts in the region.

Those projects, also spurred by a strengthening economy, are chugging ahead in anticipation of the station’s projected 2017 opening.

Within Harrison’s 250-acre redevelopment zone, an eco-wise hotel will open next year and plans are under way for additional residential and commercial space. The recent economic upswing has also triggered movement on several long-awaited residential and retail projects in East Newark and Kearny.
George Cahn, president of Cahn Communications, which represents several of the Harrison developers, said Harrison’s appeal to developers lies in its convenient location with ready access to the PATH and local highways.

As proof, he pointed to the recent groundbreaking for Element Harrison, a 138-room Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc. hotel on Somerset Street. The seven-story LEED-certified structure, a joint venture between Ironstate Development and thePegasus Groupslated for completion in summer 2014, is the second phase of construction for Harrison Station, a mixed-use development.

Harrison Station’s first phase, which features 275 luxury rental units and 12,814 square feet of retail space, opened in 2011 and is fully leased. Businesses already located at Harrison Station include Five Guys Burgers and Fries and GNC; they will be joined by restaurant Sakura Japan next month, according to Cahn.

Groundbreaking for Harrison Station’s third phase, which will include a four-story structure with 329 rental residences and 8,675 square feet of retail space, will be held this summer, he added.

Elsewhere in West Hudson, an upscale 60-unit apartment complex on Passaic Avenue and President Street that has been under construction for more than a year is nearing completion and advertising for tenants, while in Kearny, Russo Development is slated to appear before the Kearny Planning Board in May to request modifications to its plan to construct rental units on Bergen Avenue east of Schuyler Avenue. The developer is seeking to construct townhouse-style units rather than the apartments in the original proposal, according to Mayor Al Santos.

Across town, a long-stalled project to redevelop a vacant factory that once manufactured aluminum baseball bats on Passaic Avenue may also finally inch ahead, Santos said. A new owner who purchased the site last year is seeking to demolish buildings that were seriously damaged there in a fire more than 25 years ago.

“We’re hoping that the buildings will be demolished this spring,” Santos said. “We’ve met with the owner a couple of times and his ideas for the property center around retail.”

Read More At NJ.COM >>>

Next Stop: Harrison

The little ethnic enclave a stone’s throw from Newark is becoming Jersey’s latest hotbed for urban redevelopment. The March issue of New Jersey Monthly wonders if Harrison is the next Hoboken ….

Will Harrison become the new Hoboken? Mayor Raymond McDonough would like to think so. Seventeen years ago, two years after taking office, he initiated a redevelopment plan to transform the Hudson County town’s blighted industrial section into a gentrified neighborhood of condos, rental apartments and hotels, all coalescing around a renovated PATH station.

“I started this project years ago to lower taxes,” says McDonough, 64, reflecting on the burden residents had to bear after the mile-square town’s once-bustling factories shut down several decades ago. The idea came to him in the late 1990s, after an elderly woman broke down in tears in his office because she could not afford to pay her taxes. McDonough found a quick solution for the woman but realized Harrison itself needed a long-term plan.

He started investigating what could be done about the town’s vacant industrial sites. With help from allies in Town Hall, he formulated a redevelopment vision that would come to include tax incentives for developers and enticements, like new residences and shops, for young professionals. “If things pick up in Harrison,” McDonough says. “We’ll be able to help more people.”

Read full article >>>



HARRISON, NJ – PATH train commuters and residents of Harrison and the fully-leased Harrison Station rental building now have a new option for gourmet meals, groceries and convenience store items. Pronto Gourmet opened on Aug. 12th and is already a hit with patrons.

The 3,000 square-foot store is on the ground level of Harrison Station, the new mixed-use development located adjacent to the Harrison PATH Station which also features Five Guys Burgers & Fries, GNC and Park Avenue Cleaners. Pro-Cuts salon and Sakura Japan restaurant have also leased space at the development.

“People love it here so far,” said Pronto Gourmet owner Sam Awad. “We’ve had a lot of people come in just to check us out. They say this is something they’ve been waiting for. They want us here and we’re just as happy to be here in Harrison.”

Mr. Awad, who owns two similar businesses in Newark, chose Harrison Station because of its tremendous location. The foot traffic generated by PATH commuters and residents of the building boost his customer base. The other high-quality businesses around him also help draw more people to the area.

“We see the transformation in this area already,” Mr. Awad said. “We have good neighbors and that really helps to attract people. The area keeps growing. With more buildings coming soon, we look forward to growing along with the neighborhood.”

Pronto Gourmet offers high-end deli meats and cheeses, grocery staples, freshly-made sandwiches and a wide variety of prepared foods. A hot buffet features dishes such as meatloaf, roasted chicken, vegetables and pastas.  Outdoor seating will be added in the near future and a delivery service for Harrison Station residents will also soon be available. At the request of many customers, Pronto Gourmet will also begin carrying a selection of Indian and Asian grocery staples shortly.

Pronto Gourmet is open 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week and has 12 employees running the store. Mr. Awad said there may be more job opportunities if business goes well and he would be looking to hire Harrison residents.

Harrison Station is the first of several residential buildings being built as part of a plan to reenergize the former industrial town of Harrison.Ironstate Development (www.ironstate.net) and The Pegasus Group(www.thepegasusgroup.com) jointly developed the 275-unit luxury rental building with 12,814 square feet of retail space as the first phase of a plan that will ultimately bring 2,600 luxury residences, 80,000 square feet of retail space and an Element Hotel to a 27-acre site adjacent to the Harrison PATH station.

The development is part of an even larger revitalization effort in Harrison. A 25,000-seat stadium for the New York Red Bulls professional soccer team opened two years ago, a four story parking deck has been completed and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey announced in April that it will spend more than a quarter-billion dollars to upgrade the 76-year-old PATH station.

For more information on Harrison Station, visit www.HarrisonSTN.com. For more information on leasing retail space at the development, contact Michele Wilk at 732-528-8509.

Harrison Eats: Five Guys

Finally! A reason for Harrisonians to visit the new Harrison Station complex: a restaurant. That is, a Five Guys restaurant. Yes, a burger chain. Besides the Burger King that opened up on Harrison Avenue a couple of years ago, the only place Harrisonians could go for fast food was Wendy’s. If you wanted anything else besides pizza and Chinese food, you had to leave town. With the Harrison Station part of town deep in renovations and construction, a new place to eat is a perfect boost to get people interested.  Continue reading at Daily Harrison >>>

701 Frank E Rodgers Blvd S , Harrison, NJ 07029 (harrison PATH station)


Harrison Leaders Form Community Development Association



By Kelly Stratton, Contributing Writer

NEW JERSEY—Residential and commercial real estate developers in Harrison have joined forces to create the Harrison Community Development Association, a coalition whose mission is to work cooperatively with town officials and the local community to promote and drive the transformation of the city into a dynamic mixed-use, transit-oriented destination.

The Harrison Community Development Association comprises the Town of Harrison, Advance Realty, BNE Real Estate Group, Heller Industrial Parks, Ironstate Development, The Pegasus Group, Roseland Property Company and Russo Development.

Master planned to complement the existing character of Harrison, the new developments underway or planned will transform the town’s 250-acre redevelopment area over the next 10 years. The comprehensive redevelopment effort will deliver new residential opportunities and hundreds of thousands of sq. ft. of retail and commercial space, as well as public spaces.

Harrison’s redevelopment area encompasses 32 percent of the town’s 1.2 sq. miles and is located along the Passaic River. At its centerpiece sits The Port Authority Trans-Hudson (PATH) rapid transit station. In April, the Port Authority of NY and NJ announced its plan to invest $256 million to completely redevelop and modernize the PATH station, which serves more than 7,000 commuters each weekday.

Significant projects that have already been completed include the Red Bull Arena, which opened in March 2010; a 165-room Hampton Inn hotel; the first phase of Ironstate Development and The Pegasus Group’s Harrison Station mixed-use residential and retail development; a new 1,440-space parking structure; a Complete Street road network and a waterfront walkway.

Future planned development includes commercial and residential projects, a hotel, public open space and community facilities and additional parking structures.

Major projects include additional phases of Harrison Station; Heller Urban Renewal’s Harrison Station, a mixed-used community; Advance Realty’s Riverbend District; Roseland Property Company and BNE Real Estate Group’s River Park at Harrison; Element by Westin, a $38 million hotel; and Russo Development’s mixed-used development.

To date, there have been more than $286 million of public funds expended or committed to the redevelopment effort in Harrison, as well as more than $650 million of private investment expended or committed in the short term.

The Daily News’ “The best of New York real estate” features Harrison Station

Our picks for the best hotel, pool, rental value, luxury condo and more



By JASON SHEFTELL/ New York Daily News

Real estate is all about the “WOW.” We see a lot of it. Sometimes 10 to 20 buildings and apartments per week. We don’t write about all of them. We pick the best. One thing you learn quickly is that every property has a soul. A place where that buyer or renter thinks to themselves, “I want to live here.” When that happens, it’s thrilling, like getting a crush on someone. You kind of have to see it again, or just stay there, in that place, and think, “how can I make this happen?” Here’s a list and look at some of the things that made us say “wow” this past year, and wonder, “what do we have to do to live right here?”


Harrison, N.J.: Ironstate, the developers, know a good thing when they see it. Great transportation to Manhattan on the PATH, a soccer stadium, and a multiphase rental rollout that includes a Starwood hotel, and voila, a strong rental climate drawing young people from New Jersey and the city.

Learn more about Harrison Station at www.harrisonstn.com