By Joseph P. Scarpelli,
Mayor of Nutley
NUTLEY, NJ — It is my privilege on behalf of the Nutley Board of Commissioners to present the State of the Township of Nutley by providing an update on our biggest project, the redevelopment of the former Roche property.
The BOC recently approved the Nutley Phase 2A Redevelopment Plan with Prism Capital Partners. Phase 2A subdivides a portion of the former Roche property, now called ON3, into three separate parcels for each of the existing buildings – 100 Metro, 200 Metro and Building 102 – on the Nutley side and creates an additional lot, Lot V. Lot V will contain a parking deck and courtyard to service both 100 and 200 Metro Boulevard. The Redevelopment Plan establishes the land use, bulk standards, design criteria, and building requirements on 11.88 acres of the ON3 campus in Nutley, named “Project Area 2A.”
The passage of the Phase 2A Redevelopment Plan paves the way for the occupancy of 100 Metro by the Ralph Lauren Corp. Ralph Lauren signed a lease with Prism on July 3 bolstered by a Grow NJ grant of $33.1 million in tax credits which was approved by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority. The company, headquartered in Manhattan, plans on retaining 518 jobs in the state and creating an additional 250 jobs. Occupancy is expected by the end of 2019.
The entire Board of Commissioners has worked hard to ensure that the re-development of the former Roche campus will provide an immediate economic boost, while providing opportunities for additional future ratables. We are thrilled that Ralph Lauren will be joining the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine at Seton Hall and Modern Meadow in making Nutley its home.
The School of Medicine, Seton Hall’s College of Nursing, and SHU’s School of Health and Medical Sciences are educating their students in a unique interdisciplinary curriculum. This partnership is providing a world-class education for all students on a state-of-the-art interprofessional health sciences campus located in both Nutley and Clifton.
The school, which is the only private medical school in New Jersey, is the centerpiece of the ON3 campus. Prism Capital Partners purchased the entire 116 acre campus in October 2016. Prism has taken steps to convert ON3 into the premier commercial property in the state.
During the past two and half years many pieces have begun to fall in place to start the transformation of the former Roche campus. I am confident that these positive changes will invigorate our local economy and increase our property values. We are optimistic that in the very near future there will be 2,000 to 3,000 people in and out of the facility on a daily basis.
In the summer 2017, Modern Meadow, a bio-fabrication company that produces bio-manufactured leather, was the first tenant to move onto the ON3 campus. It occupies 73,000 square feet of Building 102, a research and development building on the eastern part of the campus. Their relocation from Brooklyn was helped in part by a Grow NJ grant of $32 million in tax credits which was approved by the NJEDA. Modern Meadow plans to add 200 employees by 2020.
Hackensack Meridian will be opening its Institute for Multiple Myeloma at ON3. The Institute will be conducting cancer research on the top floors of Building 102 to support Hackensack Meridian’s clinical partnership with Sloan Kettering. Also in Building 102, the NJIT Innovation Institute’s gene cell therapy laboratory will be leasing space.
Although in Clifton, Quest Diagnostics will also be relocating to ON3 in a new 250,000 square foot facility which only further enhances the campus.
The ON3 site is fast becoming an exciting, unique life science, education, research, and international design innovation hub with the co-location of the School of Medicine, Modern Meadow, Ralph Lauren, Hackensack Meridian cancer research, Quest Diagnostics, and the NJIT Innovation Institute all on the campus. These welcome additions to ON3, besides filling four of the five vacant buildings left upon Roche’s departure, will definitely create quality job opportunities for our residents.
The re-development of the ON3 campus should help Nutley recoup some of the $10 million in taxes that Roche was paying before it ceased operations in 2013. Since that time, Nutley was able to negotiate with the state to secure transitional aid which helped offset some of the loss in revenue caused by Roche’s departure. New development in town, although controversial, has added over $80 million in accessible value and increased revenue by $2.2 million. The transitional aid coupled with the new development has avoided what could have been devastating consequences for Nutley taxpayers.
The untold story is how the members of the Board of Commissioners have worked together to help manage the loss in revenue, lobbied the state to secure state aid, controlled spending, and have weathered the storm. We get criticized at times, but I don’t think most residents appreciate the complex, multiple issues the board has been dealing with the last few years. I am proud to serve with these four dedicated public servants and excited about the future of our township.