Three Developers Join Forces in $200 Million Redevelopment of the “Golden Triangle” in Riverside

February 17, 2006 (PRLEAP.COM) Business News
HIGHLAND PARK, N.J. – February 17, 2006 – With the Philadelphia skyline visible from most areas of Riverside, the small Burlington County community is now becoming the ideal place to live for city commuters.

Township officials have signed a redevelopment agreement with three developers – Kaplan Companies, Pulte Homes and Keating Development Group – to create a $200 million mixed-use transit village on 32 acres of industrial property.

“Riverside is on the brink of an incredible renaissance; it is an honor that we can play a role in maximizing this property for the benefit of the community,” said Jason Kaplan, president of Kaplan Companies, based in Highland Park. “We look forward to working with our redevelopment partners to create a thriving development that will be an immense source of pride for Riverside residents for generations to come.”

Keating Urban Partners of Philadelphia, Pa. and Pulte Homes, Inc. of Bloomfield Hills, Mich., have joined forces to create the Keating-Pulte Riverside Area Development Partnership, which will work with Kaplan Companies as the lead developers on the project.

“We are excited to play a role in Riverside’s revitalization efforts,” said Michael Sencindiver, principal with the Keating-Pulte Riverside Area Development Partnership. “By combining forces of three quality developers, we will work together to maximize the potential of a blighted area of Riverside.”

Eric Berry, the business administrator in Riverside, refers to the project as the “Golden Triangle,” noting the redevelopment zone is just steps from the NJTRANSIT light rail station, which opened in March 2004 and takes commuters from Trenton to Philadelphia. He noted Riverside has a history as a blue-collar community, but expects this project to make the town a haven for commuters and other professionals.

“From the upper floors of many homes and office buildings in Riverside you can see the Philadelphia skyline,” Berry said. “We are just 20 minutes from downtown Philadelphia and a 90-minute drive to Manhattan. That is why this community is destined for a remarkable renaissance.”

The cornerstone of the redevelopment project will be the Watchcase Tower, which, Berry said, is listed on the National Registry of Historic Places. Swiss industrialist Theophilus Zurbrugg based his Philadelphia Watchcase Co. in Riverside during the 1800s and erected the tower to symbolize the era's greatness. The factory closed 50 years ago.

“You can see the tower from anywhere in Riverside,” Berry said. “It will be a prominent part of this project, as the redevelopment will be centered around it.”

Officials in the Burlington County community expect the developers to submit conceptual plans in the upcoming weeks and look forward to the groundbreaking of “Phase One” in the spring.

Berry said the redevelopment plan will have an overwhelming impact on the local tax base, now funded through businesses and homeowners in the 1.2-square-mile town.