Jersey City Approves Two-Pronged Project with 155 Units on Communipaw Avenue

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851 877 Communipaw Avenue Jersey City 2
Design of approved mixed-use development at 851-877 Communipaw Avenue in Jersey City. Rendering by GRO Architects.

A corridor perhaps best known for its industrial vibe will continue its transition to a more residential area as another mixed-use development has been greenlit by officials.


During their December 2 meeting, Jersey City’s zoning board approved two separate applications for properties at 851-859 and 869-877 Communipaw Avenue. The lots, formerly home to the Powerhouse Gym and Al’s Diner, are all owned by a subsidiary of Guarini Plumbing and the different approvals represent two phases of what will add up to a block-long building.

The approved project was redesigned by New York-based GRO Architects from an earlier version that emerged in January. Set to rise six stories and 60 feet, 90 units will be included in the 851-859 property and 65 will be built in the 869-877 portion.

851 877 Communipaw Avenue Jersey City 1
Site of approved development: 851-877 Communipaw Avenue, Jersey City. Aerial rendering by GRO Architects.

The entirety of the two phases will set aside slightly over 10% of the apartments as affordable housing, with 17 units to be designated for those with moderate incomes for a period of 30 years.

The complex will incorporate a total of 81 parking spaces and both phases will include storefronts. The initial portion at 851-859 Communipaw will have 3,031 square feet of retail space, while the second section will have a smaller 1,297-square-foot space.

The properties fall within a Commercial Automotive District and both applications were granted variances for use, setbacks, building height, lot coverage, building coverage, and off-street parking requirements. The previous plan for the lots had generated some pushback in the form of a petition opposing the project, but the zoning board nonetheless approved the revamped applications by a 6-1 vote.

While a timeline for construction has not been announced, the project looks to contribute to the continued transformation of Communipaw Avenue. Plans for 40 units at nearby 475 Communipaw Avenue were approved earlier this year and recent months have seen plans for a 59-unit project emerge along with a 71-unit proposal at 500 Communipaw Avenue.

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