Located between the Forest Hill and Woodside neighborhoods, the Mt. Prospect Avenue business district in Newark’s North Ward is currently lined with small businesses, rowhouses, and churches, with few large buildings or structures over three stories tall. This corridor sits a few blocks from the Belleville border and Belleville Park, and is served by bike lanes along with New Jersey Transit buses to Irvington, Downtown Newark, Clifton, and Paterson. However, it has barely seen any new development of the kind that is being constructed further south in the Central and East Wards. That could soon change should a new proposal by two developers be given clearance to move forward.
Coyman View Apartments, LLC and Mt. Prospect Commons, LLC are planning to construct a mixed-use complex at 839-845 and 847-849 Mt. Prospect Avenue, between Coeyman Street and Verona Avenue, according to a legal notice from the City of Newark. Records from the New Jersey Division of Revenue and Enterprise Services show that both companies were registered in 2016 out of Perth Amboy, Middlesex County.
The project is expected to consist of two buildings, each of which would be five stories tall. One of the structures would include 10 residential units on each of the upper four floors with three commercial spaces available for lease on the ground floor, while the other would feature 12 units on each of the top four floors atop one ground floor commercial space. In all, there would be a total of 98 units in both of the buildings.
Currently, the properties include a large one-story garage that has been mostly vacant for over a decade, a driveway, and a two-story building that has contained a variety of restaurants over the years, including Meson Rosa, the Brick City Diner, Havana Restaurant and Cafe, and most recently, Taino’s Kitchen. The garage previously contained the Atlantic Elevator Co., and last summer, a mural with the Puerto Rican flag in the center was painted on the structure.
The proposal is scheduled to go before the Newark Zoning Board of Adjustment during its meeting on Thursday, January 25th at 7:00 p.m. at City Hall. The developers are seeking Preliminary and Final Site Plan approval with variances for use, excessive lot coverage, insufficient trees, and excessive lighting.