Pennrose, the Woodbridge Redevelopment Agency and Woodbridge Township celebrated the grand opening of Greens at Avenel. The project transforms a former vacant and underutilized site into a vibrant residential community with 100 apartments for families and individuals with special needs and includes the new 1.25-acre Woodbridge Township youth sports field.
Speakers at the event included: John E. McCormac, Mayor, Township of Woodbridge; Caroline Ehrlich, Executive Director, Redevelopment Agency Township of Woodbridge; Craig Coughlin, Assemblyman, Legislative District 19, New Jersey General Assembly; Cory Spillar, Council President, Township of Woodbridge; Tricia Yarger, Director, Citi Community Capital; Kimmel Cameron, Vice President, Acquisitions, Hudson Housing Capital, LLC; and Timothy I. Henkel, Principal and Senior Vice President, Pennrose, LLC.
“Today’s Grand Opening of the Greens at Avenel represents yet another milestone toward achieving our goal of ensuring that Woodbridge Township special needs residents have access to quality residential options that allow them to affordably continue to live in the Woodbridge community. Our partnership with Pennrose resulted in the construction of the first new fully-accessible residential community specially designed for Woodbridge Township’s developmentally disabled residents,” said Mayor John E. McCormac.
The four-story development includes 20 one-, 61 two- and 20 three-bedroom units ranging from 30%-60% of the Area Median Income for Middlesex County. Twenty-five units will be set aside as supportive housing with rental and service support provided by the Department of Development Disabilities (DDD) and the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS). Of the 25 units, 15 will be reserved for physically and developmentally disabled individuals and 10 will be for residents with mental health challenges referred through DDD and DMHAS, respectively.
“Greens at Avenel is a great example of the positive economic impact public/private partnerships can have on a community,” said Timothy I. Henkel, Principal and Senior Vice President at Pennrose. “We worked closely with the Woodbridge Redevelopment Agency and the Township to directly address the need for affordable, special needs housing in central New Jersey and we look forward to residents moving in.”
Residents will have access to an array of community amenities, including a library, game room, fitness center, on-site superintendent and a partially enclosed green courtyard with seating overlooking a tranquil wetland reserve. In addition, a 1,300+ square foot community room was designed to create an environment for residents to gather, socialize and enjoy various programming.
In 2015, Woodbridge Township took title to the site, formerly owned by the New Jersey Department of Corrections, that it had identified as a prime location for affordable, special needs housing. Pennrose was selected as the master redeveloper in 2016 and worked closely with the Township to secure funding for demolition and development activities. Financing for the project was provided by New Jersey Housing & Mortgage Finance Agency, the Woodbridge Redevelopment Agency, Woodbridge Township, Citi Bank, Hudson Housing Capital, and the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York, with critical operational support from the New Jersey Department of Human Services.
In addition to the Greens at Avenel, Pennrose is developing Weinberg Commons in partnership with the Jewish Federation of Southern New Jersey in Cherry Hill. The community includes 160 affordable apartments for seniors and adults with special needs, with tailored supportive services available to all residents.
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