Bayonne elected officials joined in the countdown to implode and raze a 175-foot smokestack and 150-foot steel water tower at the former Military Ocean Terminal to make way for a 1.6 million square-foot logistics center they say will create 2,700 jobs.
Real estate company Lincoln Equities Group first announced its intention to build the new center, with U.S. Senators Cory Booker and Bob Menendez in attendance, back in March.
“The demand for industrial warehousing has never been greater, thanks to the rise of e-commerce and same-day delivery services,”Lincoln Equities Group President Joe Bergstein said in a statement.
“The new Lincoln Logistics Center will help meet that need. The underutilized site, which once held structurally unsound and functionality obsolete buildings, will become a bustling, portside commerce center for the 21st century.”
In an on-camera interview, he said that since the March announcement, the demolition of the smokestack and water tower represents another milestone in the economic revitalization of Bayonne’s waterfront.
“This is a milestone for the development project at Military Ocean Terminal, which played a pivotal role in World War II. It’s very significant that we’re redeveloping a site that has laid dormant for more than a dozen years. It’s an opportunity in Bayonne, it’s going to provide 2,700 jobs in Bayonne,” said Bergstein.
We followed up to ask when can Bayonne residents expect to start applying to fill the 2,700 positions, which will not be for a least two years because of all the necessary preliminary work of raising the land to comply with new Federal Emergency Management Agency post-Superstorm Sandy directives.
“Well, the construction jobs are on a rolling basis as we move forward. But we have to raise the grade here six feet, which will take more than a year in order to meet with post-Sandy FEMA standards. And we expect construction to start for the building in about 12 months, and we expect that the project will be completed in a total of 24 months,” Bergstein said.
Bayonne Mayor Jimmy Davis noted the types of jobs to be created once the new logistics center is up and running.
“My understanding is that its typical warehousing jobs, but also technical jobs, office jobs and computer skills jobs,” the mayor began.
“When Lincoln Equities approached me about purchasing the property here to build a new center that will create 2,700 jobs, I said to them this is such an economic benefit for all of Hudson County, for all of New Jersey and especially for the city of Bayonne.”