Diversified Communities and DeBartolo Development are not together anymore, City Administrator/Redevelopment Director Peter Pelissier said during last month’s Redevelopment Agency meeting, adding that the DeBartolo firm believes the original concept plan should be reviewed given the retail market. Two phone calls to Debartolo were not returned.
Rahway Redevelopment Commissioner Timothy Nash suggested putting out a Request For Prosposals (RFP) to see who else might be interested.
“If worse comes to worse,” an office complex could be considered, Pelissier said, but has declined to elaborate.
Richard Weissman of Diversified Communities — developers of nearby Riverwalk — declined to comment because he was “in the middle of resolution of issues.” Asked for a timeline of when resolution might occur, Weissman said in an email: “It has many moving parts, including in big part the market conditions.”
Diversified Communities made a presentation to City Council in February 2007, proposing a mixed-use project of 175,000 square feet of retail, a 125-room hotel, 375 units of housing (1/3 for sale, 2/3 rentals), along with parking decks totaling 1,300 spaces. Diversified, developers of Riverwalk, was named redeveloper last March and purchased the property from the Redevelopment Agency last summer for $725,000. In October, it signed a deal to with DeBartolo.