Prism Capital Partners’ Edwin Cohen spoke on a redevelopment-focused panel at the prestigious Governor’s Conference on Housing and Economic Development this fall. The Bloomfield, N.J.-based commercial real estate firm’s Edison Village in West Orange served as an example of the best practices and innovative strategies driving New Jersey communities forward.
Cohen (second from left) shared the stage with (L-R) moderator Stan Slachetka from T&M Associates; and speakers Michael Sullivan from Clarke Caton Hintz, Jae Shin from Hector, and Robert S. Goldsmith from Greenbaum, Rowe, Smith & Davis LLP. The group discussed how to successfully plan and implement effective redevelopment projects.
“With continued high demand for multifamily product, New Jersey is seeing more and more creative use of infill areas,” Cohen said. “Done right, and with strong public-private cooperation, the redevelopment and adaptive reuse of obsolete properties can serve to preserve their communities’ pasts while anchoring their futures.”
As designated redeveloper, Prism Capital Partners in 2016 launched construction for Edison Village, the industrial-to-residential redevelopment of the historic Thomas Edison Invention Factory and Commerce Center in West Orange. Representing the largest non-waterfront adaptive-reuse project in New Jersey, Edison Village encompasses 21 acres on Main Street, in the heart of the Township’s Downtown Redevelopment Area.
Phase I, now nearing completion, involves the total renovation and reconstruction of the 100-year-old Historic Thomas Edison Battery Building. Built in 1913, the factory served as a manufacturing operation where Edison employees produced storage batteries used in light delivery vehicles, automobiles, railroad signals, industrial applications and mining equipment. Today it is being transformed into 300 rental homes; 18,000 square feet of street-level retail topped with 34 apartments; and a 635-space parking structure.
Hosted by the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs, the New Jersey Housing & Mortgage Finance Agency and the New Jersey Economic Development Authority, the Governor’s Conference on Housing and Economic Development included distinguished housing, economic development, and business professionals, government officials, lenders, developers, nonprofits and consultants.