Shovels are in the ground for a new mixed-use development in Downtown Montclair, NJ that is set to energize a swath of Bloomfield Avenue and bolster the Essex County township’s reputation as a cultural, dining and shopping destination steeped in the arts.
Joint venture partners Ironstate Development Company and Brookfield, along with Montclair Mayor Robert Jackson, officially broke on the project which will feature residential units, retail, office space, art space, public parking and a pedestrian plaza to create an arts and entertainment district anchored by the adjacent Wellmont Theater.
Occupying 2.5 acres along Bloomfield Avenue, the redevelopment includes two buildings which straddle Seymour Street and complete the block alongside the Wellmont Theater.
A six-story building northwest of South Willow Street will feature 200 rental apartments, 28,000 s/f of street-level retail spaces, 224 parking spaces, and 10,000 s/f of space available for rental by arts users.
Much of the retail space will front on a former portion of Seymour Street which will be converted into a 12,000 s/f public plaza. Featuring extensive landscaping, outdoor seating, and multiple art installations, the plaza is expected to host open-air performances and other events. The theater’s box office will open onto the plaza and create a bustling atmosphere during all seasons of the year.
A second, seven-story building will rise just southwest of the Wellmont Theater and will include 40,000 square feet of office space and 210 parking spaces. The project also includes a five-story municipal parking garage which will house 315 parking spaces at the intersection of Glenridge Avenue and North Willow Street.
The $135 million project will be completed in 2020.
“Downtown Montclair, and this location in particular, offers a unique opportunity for us to execute our core philosophy of combining modern design with intimate collective spaces in a walkable setting that fosters social interaction and a real connection to the surroundings,” said David Barry, CEO of Hoboken-based Ironstate Development Company.
“We also believe very strongly in community building through thoughtfully-programmed public spaces and curated retail that enhances area residents’ overall experience on a daily basis and creates energy and life on the street. We’re excited to be a part of creating a destination that is authentic to Montclair and complements its unique character and appeal.” Adding a mix of new residential, retail, art and public spaces should draw new visitors to Downtown Montclair while providing a vibrant gathering space for existing residents, a goal championed by Mayor Jackson and his administration.
“This development surpasses my dream of a first-class arts district for our Township.” said Mayor Jackson.