Amendments to the Morgan, Grove, Marin Development (MGM) plan were unanimously approved by the Jersey City Council last night, which will create a community benefit bonus provision on First Street and Louis Munoz Marin Boulevard – which will provide $2.75 million to affordable housing.
According to City Ordinance 15.051, Building block 11508 can â€œrise to a maximum 375 feet in return for bonus payments to the City of Jersey Cityâ€ that will be utilized to provide affordable housing, improved public spaces in Harsimus Cove Neighborhood and enhance the aesthetics and streetscapes.
The bonus payment also required the creation of a landscaped open space that contains public amenities that must be larger than 3,000 sq. ft., an increased sidewalk width and strengthening of building design.
Yvonne Balcer, a regular critic of the city council, was concerned about the overall impact of the plan.
â€œWhat about traffic?â€ she said, â€œthere is only one Holland Tunnel.â€
Councilman-at-Large Daniel Rivera supported the amendment, stating that this would clearly benefit downtown Jersey City, a neighborhood he grew up in.
Council President Rolando Lavarro also supported the amendment.
â€œThere will be a $2.75 million contribution to affordable housing. This will have a major impact and a positive one.â€
This is a scam. If anyone thinks “affordable housing” will be built downtown in Ward E, you are mistaken. This $2.75 million (a mere pittance, in the scheme of things when you look at their market rate rents) will be used to continue to create “pockets of poverty” in less fortunate areas of Jersey City like Wards A (Greenville) and Wards F.
It’s time that we start doing things like NYC and mandate that 10-20% of all new housing built in these skyscrapers be dedicated to affordable and mid-income housing.
Meanwhile this was in a zone designated by Mayor Fulop for ONLY 5 year abatement in his abatement reform initiative. What a sham. Same old same old.
No, we are not NYC and yes, $2.75 million is a lot of money! You’re probably a NYC transplant. NYC’s approach to affordable housing is idiotic and only exacerbating the problem. A select few very low-income folks win the lottery and get to live in a brand new luxury building via poor door, while the rest of us have to suffer. What we need is an abundant supply of market rate housing in all areas of the city.