With our wishlist in mind and taking the Heights off the board, we narrowed our search down to the Bergen-Lafayette area where the Light Rail that connects to the PATH train is within walking distance.
A Google search revealed 13 new home developments are either being planned or have already started construction in the neighborhood. Berry Lane Park officially opened in 2016 after 4 years of construction on a brownfield site of former rail yards, junkyards, and industrial facilities. It now includes a 12,000-square foot poured-in-place concrete skate park funded by the Tony Hawk Foundation. Old coal silos still stand in the park and the Jersey City Mural Arts Program is in the process of selecting local artists to create Harriet Tubman- and the Underground Railroad-themed murals to honor the more than 55,000 slaves who crossed through Jersey City to escape slavery.
Canal Crossing is also slated for a controversial residential development and will include a greenway along the former route of the Morris Canal, which moved coal to industrializing eastern cities in the 1800s. We also saw the renderings for a 110-unit mixed-use development on Garfield Avenue.
All the changes remind me of Harlem 15 years ago. For better or worse, more people have a place to call home, small businesses can thrive, and city parks and shared public spaces flourish.
So we started our filtered home search.