JERSEY CITY, NJ - An effort to increase affordable housing in the city’s growing Bergen-Lafayette section is under consideration by the Jersey City City Council.

According to an ordinance due to be introduced, an area of about 280 acres, with a perimeter of nearly 5.2 miles and currently containing 850 parcels of industrial, commercial, park, and residential space, would be consolidated into the single Morris Canal Redevelopment Plan.

The proposal, Matt Ward, the city’s director of redevelopment told the council at their caucus meeting earlier this week, would allow for construction of residential units above ground floor retail, allowing developers to construct an additional story. In the instance Ward gave a project would increase from 12 to 16 units, and would result in additional affordable housing opportunities.

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“This change has community support,” Ward said.

Expressing concern that the continued redevelopment of the burgeoning area could drive out long time residents Councilman Rolando Lavarro suggested that any changes to redevelopment plans must be accompanied by agreements that sets time tables and imposes other requirements for construction.

Lavarro also said he would like to see a stipulation that would require these affordable units to remain affordable for up to 30 years.

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