Belleville officials break ground on The Kelsey luxury apartment complex

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BELLEVILLE, NJ — Mayor Michael Melham and other Belleville officials dug their ceremonial shovels into the ground on Thursday, Dec. 8, marking the beginning of construction of a six-story luxury apartment building that will be erected at the site of a shuttered foam factory.

Deputy Mayor Thomas Graziano and Councilman Vincent A. Cozzarelli also attended the ceremony for The Kelsey, which will feature 114 apartments and approximately 1,200 feet of ground-floor retail space. Construction at 740-748 Washington Ave. is expected to be completed in 2024.

The Kelsey is part of Newark-based Sound Development LLC’s Ethos brand, which already includes a 56-unit apartment complex on Franklin Avenue in Belleville.

The building’s name pays homage to the site’s history as an assembly plant for the Kelsey Motor Co. beginning in 1920. The car company went bankrupt in 1924, after only 601 Kelseys were built.

“The lobby of our building is going to incorporate an industrial look as a nod to the site’s storied history,” Sound Development’s Michael Pacillo said. “We are hoping to locate Kelsey Motor Co. memorabilia, such as photos, and display them prominently in the lobby.”

More recently, the site was home to Foam Rubber Fabricators.

The Kelsey will feature 70 one-bedroom units, 44 studio apartments and approximately 130 parking spaces. It will also feature a rooftop pool, a gym and an expansive outdoor terrace.

“We are very excited to see The Kelsey starting to take shape on Washington Avenue,” Melham said. “My administration has made quality redevelopment a priority. We will continue to seek out suitable development opportunities for Belleville that take advantage of our terrific location, mass transit and suburban feel.”