KRE turns its focus to next phase of high-profile Journal Squared project


Jonathan Kushner, president of Kushner Real Estate Group — Photo by Jeffrey Vock for Real Estate NJ

By Joshua Burd – Kushner Real Estate Group is set to begin construction on the second of three residential towers at its Journal Squared project in Jersey City, following the success of a first phase that has leased nearly all of its 538 apartments in less than a year.

Set to rise 71 stories, the second luxury tower will be the tallest of the three and is slated for completion by spring 2021, KRE Group President Jonathan Kushner said. It will deliver 704 new units to the now fast-growing Journal Square neighborhood, along with some 60,000 square feet of new amenity space that will be open to all residents of the complex.

It is another milestone for a project that has brought new attention to Jersey City’s onetime commercial epicenter, anchored by the Journal Square PATH station, and KRE Group, which saw the area’s potential more than a decade ago when it began to assemble the site.

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Coming Soon to Jersey City 70C

70 Columbus in downtown JC

Steve Strunsky at reports on the dramatic growth of development in JC. With nearly 30,000 units on the way, Steve identifies the Top 10 projects coming to a neighborhood near you.

Jersey City’s remarkable transformation from an industrial railhead to a gleaming metropolis dates back decades, with ups and downs reflecting the broader economic fortunes of New York and the nation.  But the city’s current growth spurt is extraordinary even by Jersey City’s own booming standards.

Residential development is particularly strong, with 42 projects of at least 100 units each now in the works, totaling nearly 15,000 condominium and rental units over the next five years, and another 13,400 units projected within 10 years after that, according to the Jersey City Division of Planning. Those are in addition to more than 4,500 recently completed units, planners say.


What’s happening in Journal Square?

-9bdac1d7dc5c0086This week’s edition of NJ BIZ features a Joshua Burd report on The KRE Group and National Real Estate Advisors‘ new development “Journal Squared”.

The first of three residential towers that will rise above Jersey City’s historic Journal Square neighborhood is on track to be complete by the end of this year, its developers said.

The project, known as Journal Squared, is being developed by The KRE Group and National Real Estate Advisors and is aimed at fueling the revival of the onetime commercial hub of the city. Plans ultimately call for 1,838 rental units, 36,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space and a pedestrian-friendly, public plaza alongside the busy Journal Square PATH station.

The first building will be a 52-story, 538-unit tower, according to a news release. The other two towers will be 60 and 70 stories, respectively.


Ironstate Development & Kushner Real Estate Group Top NJ Developers List

2015-06-03_11-19-51Ironstate Development Company and Kushner Real Estate Group top The Real Deal’s list of top New Jersey developers.

BY C. J. Hughes

Hudson County, which includes urban areas like Jersey City, Hoboken and Weehawken, is radiating cool these days, with its hip restaurants, arts scene and proximity to New York City. That vibe, along with rents often around 50 percent of Manhattan’s and 20 percent cheaper than those in Brooklyn, is making it one of the hottest residential destinations in the tri-state area, its supporters say.

“It’s a terrific location for somebody who wants affordability,” said Jeffrey Kanne, the chief executive of National Real Estate Advisors, which has teamed with Kushner Real Estate Group to build Journal Squared,
a three-phase, 1,800-unit colossus in
Jersey City.

Using our own research and data from CoStar Group and BuzzBuzzHome,

The Real Deal ranked the top developers by number of units that hit the market in 2014 and 2015, as well as those that will come online by the end of 2017. When firms partnered on projects, TRD allocated the full number of units to each of them.

1. Ironstate Development Company

2015-06-05_12-05-03Claiming the top spot is a Hoboken-based firm with deep roots in the area, Ironstate Development Company, with 3,354 units. A huge chunk of that total is made up by URL (Urban Ready Living) Harborside, an amenity-laden rental complex in Jersey City with a total of about 2,300 units. Its first phase, which will open in mid-2016, will consist of 763 apartments in a massive 69-story tower.

Harborside, which is being developed in partnership with Mack-Cali Realty Corporation, will feature a gym and even an urban farm with beehives. Its lobby cafe, which is expected to be operated by New York chain Coffeed, will be open to the public and “become a social hub for the neighborhood,” said Michael Barry, an Ironstate executive.

The company is also the developer — with Panepinto Properties (see #10) — behind the luxury residences 50, 70 and 90 Columbus in Jersey City.

2. Kushner Real Estate Group

2015-06-05_12-06-20Jonathan Kushner’s firm takes the number-two spot with 2,932 units. Among its most notable recent developments is Journal Squared, a three-tower, 2.4-million-square-foot complex underway in the commercial Journal Square neighborhood that will unfold in three phases. The first will consist of a 53-story tower with 538 apartments.

Developed with National Real Estate Advisors, Journal Squared will include the state’s tallest residential tower at 70 stories (though Kushner says other developers have claimed they will build taller), which will best nearby 55-story Trump Tower Residences; it will also add a landscaped public plaza. Other recent Jersey City projects by Kushner include 18 Park, with 422 luxury one- and two-bedroom units, which opened last spring and where rents start at $1,800 a month.

Kushner believes the way to wrest renters from Brooklyn is to emphasize Jersey City’s robust public transportation; Journal Squared straddles a PATH train stop. “And we’re actually finding more and more renters coming from Brooklyn now,” said Kushner, cousin of Jared Kushner.


Jared Kushner buys site of long-delayed Journal Square project for $27M

Kushner Companies announced Monday, Jan. 5, 2015, that it has bought the vacant One Journal Square in Jersey City, the site of a long-delayed project that was once set to house 1,500 rental units and 150,000 square feet of retail space in two 60-story towers mere steps from the Journal Square PATH station. Reena Rose Sibayan | The Jersey Journal

Kushner Companies announced Monday, Jan. 5, 2015, that it has bought the vacant One Journal Square in Jersey City, the site of a long-delayed project that was once set to house 1,500 rental units and 150,000 square feet of retail space in two 60-story towers mere steps from the Journal Square PATH station. Reena Rose Sibayan | The Jersey Journal

via Terrence T. McDonald/

Kushner Companies announced today that it has bought the vacant One Journal Square in Jersey City, the site of a long-delayed project that was once set to house 1,500 rental units and 150,000 square feet of retail space in two 60-story towers mere steps from the Journal Square PATH station.

Kushner, headed by CEO Jared Kushner, partnered 50/50 with KABR Group to purchase the property for $27 million, the companies announced today. The two entities are also developing a site across the street — 30 Journal Square, the former headquarters of The Jersey Journal — into a 40-story residential tower.

The One Journal Square project had previously been called City Centre Towers, located on a 1.5-acre site that was once home to the Hotel on the Square. The hotel and surrounding structures were demolished in 2009 to make way for the two towers.


Around the corner from One Journal Square, KRE Group, headed by President Jonathan Kushner, is building Journal Squared, a three-tower project at the top of Magnolia Avenue. The first phase of that $666 million development, a 53-story tower, is set for completion next year. In total, the three towers will house over 1,800 units and 36,000 square feet of retail space.


Mapping Jersey City’s Tower-Tastic Residential Building Boom

via M. Lorenzo/

CurbedJ2In five years, the Jersey City skyline will look very different than it does today. More than 20 residential buildings are currently under construction in the 15-square mile city, and most of them are not on the waterfront like they have been in the past, thanks to new tax abatement rules to spur greater investment farther inland. Major real estate developers that traditionally focused on Manhattan and Brooklyn have set their sights on the other side of the Holland Tunnel; everyone from Toll Brothers to the Kushners (the architect and the developer) are eager to break ground in JC and take advantage of the strong rental market while stratospheric rates continue to push Manhattanites out of the city.

Following the leads of neighboring Hoboken and the old, artist-filled Brooklyn it calls its muse, still-rugged Jersey City is undergoing a swift transformation that is bothmarket-driven and politically motivated. Brownstones are being restored, new restaurants and cafés are popping up throughout town, and MANA Contemporary is actively luring priced-out painters, photographers and other “makers” to its massive and growing compound that offers the holy grail of cheap rents and huge space. To track the building boom, we mapped 19 new residential developments. Most are in the planning stages or under construction, but a few have recently opened. If you see one we missed, please let us know in the comments section or on the tipline.

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