A little taller and with 40 affordable housing units, another Journal Square high-rise heads for planning board review

A gleaming high-rise proposed to replace the C.H. Martin store in Journal Square has grown since it was initially introduced and would now include more than three dozen affordable housing units after initially being proposed with none, the developer says in documents submitted to the Jersey City Planning Board.

Since details emerged about the project in February, another major project that would border the Loew’s Theatre was announced, signaling a massive transformation of the western side of Kennedy Boulevard opposite the PATH Plaza. Once complete, the Loew’s, set to become an estimated $110 million performance venue, would be surrounded by mixed-use skyscrapers, new public plazas and hundreds of new residents.

The project at the C.H. Martin site at 80 Journal Square is now proposed as a 28-story building, rather than 26, with 400 residential units, up from 368. It also now includes a 10% set aside of affordable housing, or 40 of the 400 proposed units.

Only the highest earners of the residents who qualify for affordable housing in Jersey City would be eligible for those apartments. The units would be designated for individuals or families who make 80-to-120% of the area median income, the highest income bracket of the four designated under state standards.

The application is scheduled for planning board review Nov. 29.

BH3 Management, with offices in Manhattan, Florida and Colorado, is developing the project with Hope Street Capital while Hoboken-based Marchetto Higgins Stieve Architects designed it.

While this tower would border the Loew’s to the north, towers that the planning board approved in October will surround the theater from behind, where there is currently a parking garage. Those two towers would dwarf the one replacing C.H. Martin, with one standing 55 stories tall and the other 49.

They would bring in 1,189 new residential units in a project representing a collaboration between KRE, a Kushner family real estate endeavor, and Silverstein Properties.

BH3′s proposed building would have ground-floor retail facing Kennedy Boulevard and office space on the second and third floors. Plans include a walkway between the new building and the Loew’s Theatre, a space that does not currently exist between the theater and store.

While the bottom three floors are surrounded with clear windows, the rest of the building is blue/grey glass and aluminum with a design inspired by the texture of the Loew’s Theatre curtains.

“This architectural element of this serrated ‘curtain-like’ building design is a benefit to the overall design and compliments the adjacent historic theater while allowing for additional light into the space,” the applicant said in its “principal points statement” to the planning board.

With the lower three floors set back further from the street than the residential space above, the sidewalk will be widened, creating a pedestrian plaza with benches, planters and moveable furniture, according to the architectural plans.

The breakdown of the residential units is 38% one-bedroom, 31% studio apartments, 25% two-bedrooms and 6% three-bedrooms. There would be no parking garage, but indoor storage for more than 200 bikes.