Home & Garden

Somerville: Apartment Living Alongside the Raritan Valley Line: Demolition Begins; Leases Signed

3c48d4e6981136f1011c_sompixcobaltaerial.jpg
An aerial view of the Cobalt Apartments, looking west; Veterans Memorial Drive East is in front of the building, right; the Raritan Valley NJ Transit rail line is to the rear of the building, left. Credits: Courtesy Weiss Properties
eff79d65e36d636d406d_sompixcobaltapts2.JPG
Leases are being signed for occupancy at The Cobalt Apartments on Veterans Memorial Drive East in Somerville. Credits: Rod Hirsch
1f1b939e400808d03131_sompixdemo5.JPG
Demolition of the Richards Fuel Oil Company building on South Bridge Street has begun. A 4-story, 69-unit apartment building will be built on the site. Credits: Rod Hirsch
37883ff0e7fadd0e8685_sompixdemorichards2.JPG
A pile of rubble grows as demolition crews gut the interior of the Richards Fuel Oil Company building on South Bridge Street. A four-story apartment building will be built on the site. Credits: Rod Hirsch
dec5130e53b1488ab75d_sompixdemorichards3.JPG
Heavy equipment guts the interior of the Richards Fuel Oil Company building on South Bridge Street. A four-story apartment building will be built on the site. Credits: Rod Hirsch
7820671b91d796fcb1f2_sompixdemorichards4.JPG
Demolition has begun on the Richards Fuel Oil Company building on South Bridge Street. A four-story apartment building will be built on the site. Credits: Rod Hirsch
3c48d4e6981136f1011c_sompixcobaltaerial.jpg

SOMERVILLE, NJ – The borough’s inventory of apartment buildings in close proximity to NJ Transit’s Raritan Valley Line is expanding as developers begin to cash in on the demand for affordable rental properties with easy access to trains to and from New York City and points in between.

Demolition work has begun on the dilapidated Richards Fuel Oil Service building at 110 South Bridge Street to make room for the four-story SOMA Apartments, a 69-unit building that will be built adjacent to the commuter parking lot at the NJ Transit rail station by Sterling Somerville Urban Renewal of Livingston.

As heavy construction equipment tears into the Richards building, rental agents are signing leases around the corner at 70 Memorial Drive East for the Cobalt Apartments, the 117-unit, 4-story complex alongside the westbound tracks of the NJ Transit Raritan Valley Line.

Sign Up for E-News

The distinctive blue, white and orange façade of The Cobalt symbolizes a shift in the New Jersey housing market, one that focuses on lifestyles and a younger demographic not interested in, or unable to purchase their own home, preferring affordability, mobility, a short walk to the train, and a vibrant downtown offering ethnic restaurants and unique retail shops.

The Cobalt emphasizes a two-minute walk to the train and Main Street restaurants on its website. The property was built and is managed by Weiss Properties of New Brunswick.

Next up for Weiss Is construction of The Davenport, a five-story, 60 unit apartment building on Davenport Street, to be built on the current site of the Social Security Administration building which is slated for demolition sometime later this year, according to developer Robert Weiss.

There are several other multi-family developments in various stages of planning and approvals throughout the borough, including a second apartment development on Veterans Memorial Drive East adjacent to the Cobalt Apartments, and further west alongside the NJ Transit rail line on the borough’s former landfill, an 80-acre property that will also include a park.

Once the Richards property is cleared of the main structure and a barn to the rear of the property, remedial environmental work will need to be completed, according to Colin Driver, the borough’s director of Economic Development.

Richards Fuel Oil Service ran a second business from the same building, Richards Swimming Pool Service and Supplies.

A workman on the site said several 55-gallon drums containing liquids had been removed from inside the barn.

Once the site is cleaned up, construction can begin, Driver said, probably within 3-4 months.

Driver describes the SOMA building as “contemporary but it will reflect the historical architecture of Someville.”

The building should be completed within 12-15 months after construction begins, assuming there are no weather-related or other delays, according to Driver.

SOMA will be built on a 1.82-acre tract of property that will front on South Bridge Street, with 109 parking spaces.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Somerville

AtlantiCast

AtlantiCast Episode 17

On this week’s AtlantiCast, it’s National Men’s Health Month, so check out important health tips for you or the men in your life, learn about groundbreaking research into breast cancer treatment that could mean an end to chemotherapy for some patients, meet a local sports hero who’s living his baseball dreams thanks to Goryeb Children’s Hospital and much ...

New Chaplain Appointed to Somerset County Sheriff’s Office

June 21, 2018

SOMERVILLE , NJ - Somerset County Sheriff Frank J. Provenzano recently welcomed the Rev. Joseph Lugo as chaplain of the Somerset County Sheriff’s Office.

Father Lugo was sworn in June 7 by Superior Court Judge Michael J. Rogers at the Somerset County Historic Courthouse.

Father Lugo is a longtime resident of the Bradley Gardens section of Bridgewater. He attended Boston College, Mount ...

Three Reasons Why Tom Malinowski Won't Dump Nancy Pelosi

June 21, 2018

WESTFIELD, NJ - Today Congressional Candidate Jeff Van Drew became the latest New Jersey Democrat to say they won't support House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi for Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives.

While Democratic Candidates in New Jersey and across the country have vowed to dump Pelosi, DC Lobbyist Tom Malinowski remains quiet. But don't be fooled. While Malinowski ...