First Look at Park, Community Center at Jersey City’s HAP Tower

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Hap Tower 500 Summit Avenue Community Center Jersey City
First look at the park and community center that will be developed by HAP Investments adjacent their 500 Summit Avenue tower near Journal Square, Jersey City. Rendering courtesy HAP Investments.

The latest high-rise being planned near Journal Square will be adding almost an acre of public space to the neighborhood and the greenery comes courtesy of a settlement that followed a long courtroom battle.


Developing a sizable plot of land at 500 Summit Avenue has been a long process. New York-based HAP Investments purchased the large parking lot back in 2016 for $26.5 million and pitched a 42-story project dubbed HAP Tower for the property.

Hap Tower 500 Summit Avenue Jersey City
The planned tower at 500 Summit Avenue, Journal Square, Jersey City. Rendering courtesy HAP Investments.

The endeavor saw little progress for many months and HAP eventually filed a lawsuit against Jersey City two years later. It accused planners of stalling the development, claiming Jersey City’s planning department refused to hear or approve HAP’s proposal for over a year.

We were the first outlet to break the news about a settlement last year that will allow the project to move forward with some added community givebacks. HAP has announced that their tower will still rise 42 stories under the revamp but will now feature 902 residential rental units, up from the initial 740 that were initially proposed.

Retail space will be included in the tower, which is designed by CetraRuddy Architecture. The largest change involves 0.80 acres of property directly next to the tower, which is slated to be home to a municipal park and an 8,500-square-foot community center. HAP will set aside $2.5 million toward the construction of the facilities, which will be deeded to Jersey City upon completion.

The design for the park includes an open-air terrace with seating, a playground, pedestrian footpaths, and a dog run. Renderings released to Jersey Digs show the community center sporting a large glass façade and HAP says the facility will feature flexible spaces for art, culture, classes, and meetings.

Hap Tower 500 Summit Avenue Community Center Jersey City 2
A bird’s eye view of the community center’s rooftop green space and playground. Rendering courtesy HAP Investments.

“We look forward to continue working with the City of Jersey City and local community board to finalize our plans for 500 Summit Avenue,” said Eran Polack, CEO and Co-Founder of HAP Investments.

As part of the settlement, HAP will be contributing $500,000 toward off-site green space improvements, new plantings, and public amenities in the nearby Hilltop neighborhood. The company will also need to provide no less than 40 parking spaces for patrons visiting the community center under the agreement and will reserve 24 parking spaces within HAP Tower’s parking garage for the Hilltop Neighborhood Association to allocate at their sole discretion.

“Our goal is to create a destination that serves not only the residents of 500 Summit Avenue, but the entire neighborhood as well,” Eran Polack stated.

HAP will still need to apply to the Jersey City Redevelopment Agency for designation as a redeveloper under the terms of the settlement to move forward with the project. A timeline for a potential groundbreaking has not yet been announced.

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5 COMMENTS

  1. “and will reserve 24 parking spaces within HAP Tower’s parking garage for the Hilltop Neighborhood Association to allocate at their sole discretion”

    I love this. JC is still JC and these developers have thrown in just the right piece of meat. Well done. Small price to pay for this outrageous over-building.

  2. The roof greenspace looks unsafe without some sort of plexiglass to stop people from falling off of it. Also, this park doesn’t seem big enough to support a dog run but I guess it was included because there is no other in the neighborhood.

  3. Cool looking and well thought out compartmentalized design for a smallish public green space. Exactly the concept I was referring to for LeFrak’s Newport Pier Park, only on larger scale. However, I think I might prefer skylights instead of the green roof and solid walls instead of the all glass panels. This would allow for more exhibition space inside. Roof deck as depicted would not pass construction code for obvious safety reasons.

  4. I have a question for you, XTC, since it seems you know a lot about JC development. In the 2060 plan, I see that the area of the actual PATH tracks on either side of the JSQ station are marked in fluorescent green and labeled “Pedestrian Plaza”. Do you have any idea what this means? Is it referring to the green space on either side of the tracks that we can see from satellite images? Would it remain up above the tracks? Or has there been any talk of doing anything down at the level of the tracks? I live in the Marion section, and I heard a rumor a few times that there could potentially be a walking area leading from the area where West Side meets the PATH tracks, leading all the way to the JSQ station… but down at the track level. If you have any links about these things, could you post them? thank you!!

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