SOMERVILLE, NJ - The Borough Council got a glimpse at what may be the future profile of West Main Street Monday night during a presentation of revised plans for a proposed 5-story luxury apartment building and integrated parking facility.
Bordered by West Main Street, South Davenport Street, Veterans Memorial Drive West and South Doughty Street, the complex will include a second, three-story building that will feature a 40,000-square foot gym and fitness center connected by a foot bridge to the main structure. It will be built alongside the main structure.
The proposal is for Phase II of the Somerville Town Center complex; Phase I is “The Edge,” the 5-story residential and retail building on the eastern side of South Davenport Street, which bisects the Town Center property. That building, also developed by Edgemere, includes Wolfgang’s Steakhouse and a Starbucks coffee shop.
The latest set of plans for Phase II, now under review by the borough’s Planning Board, features 153 apartments, of which more than half – 58 percent – will be one-bedroom, according to Ron Aulenbach, director of Engineering and Planning for developer Jack Morris, owner of Edgewood Properties. There will be 13 three-bedroom apartments; the balance will be two-bedroom apartments.
The ground floor will feature 34,000 square feet of retail space; the upper four floors will be residential.
The developer is proposing several amenities, including a 20,000 square foot all-weather food court that will front on Davenport Street; a 40,000 square foot gym and wellness center; and a pool and bar on the top floor.
The façade facing South Doughty Street will be designed to imitate early 20th-century brownstone buildings, according to Driver.
The parking deck will features 520 spaces, with 291 spaces exclusive to the tenants of both buildings; the remaining 229 spaces will be available for public parking, helping to alleviate the shortage of parking in the downtown district. The borough’s Parking Utility will manage the public parking, according to Colin Driver, the borough’s director of Economic Development.
Entry for residents will be off South Doughty Street; public access to the parking deck will be off of South Davenport Street, according to Aulenbach. A portion of the deck will be below grade.
The developer also plans to create a temporary parking lot at the northeast corner of the property to accommodate cars from tenants in the first building that now park in an area that will be disrupted by construction of Phase II, according to Aulenbach.
“We are excited to get going on this project,” he said.
Once approvals are secured, the developer will have to relocate existing underground utilitylines before a concrete foundation can be poured. Aulenbach said the first phase of construction will be on the 3-story parking deck, with one level below ground, the second at ground level and the third level actually on the second floor of the complex.
“It’s good for the council to understand what is going before the planning board,” said Mayor Brian Gallagher.
Because Phase II is an active application under the jurisdiction of the Planning Board, members of the Borough Council are not permitted to comment on the details of the project.