LONG BRANCH: The redevelopment of Lower Broadway is a complicated process, but city officials say they are working with a developer to help move the project forward.
“The folks that bought the note are moving ahead, they acquired the land, they have paid the taxes,” Long Branch Business Administrator Howard Woolley said. “We’re working with them on design and on their qualifications to move forward with development.”
Woolley said the city wants to make sure the developer, Diversified Realty Advisors (DRA) is able to handle to massive redevelopment effort. He said DRA is getting put through a “stringent” process before the are given redevelopment designation.
Diversified Realty Advisors (DRA), LLC is planning on building approximately 800 units of different types of multifamily housing and 80,000 square feet of retail space for the area of Broadway from Second Avenue to Liberty Street. DRA's web site states that plans include building an urban grocer and pharmacy in the 10-acre parcel.
Long Branch Mayor Adam Schneider has said the litigation concerning the original owners of the property, Broadway Arts Center, LLC, has been resolved and that DRA has paid $412,000 in back taxes.
He said one of the first steps for DRA will be to remove several underground tanks from the area. They must also see which current business owners wish to remain in the area and determine which unoccupied buildings will be demolished.
DRA will likely redevelop the area in phases and begin with the sections that need the least amount of environmental cleanup.