AvalonBay buys Somerville site from Somerset Development, ready to build apartments and more in transit-oriented development

AvalonBay Communities Inc. has acquired a 15-acre property in downtown Somerville from Somerset Development, the next step in toward a new phase of the Somerville Station transit-oriented development.

Holmdel-based Somerset Development sold the site to AvalonBay, which has its New Jersey offices in Iselin, enabling AvalonBay to begin construction on a 374-unit apartment community, civic center, retail, New Jersey Transit parking facilities and more.

“AvalonBay is very pleased to be developing another TOD rental community at the Somerville train station, within walking distance from the vibrant Somerville downtown,” Ludivine O’Toole, AvalonBay’s development director, said in a prepared statement.

The project is part of Somerset Development’s master-planned vision for a mixed-use transit village anchored by the Somerville train station.

“This project is the product of more than 30 years of complex planning and collaboration among the borough, NJ Transit and various stakeholders,” Ken Gold, Somerset Development’s vice president of acquisitions and development, said in a statement. “AvalonBay’s land acquisition means that the vision for this site is finally coming to fruition — something that will be celebrated throughout the entire Somerville community.”

In addition to the AvalonBay apartments, PulteGroup is building a new community of for-sale townhomes at Somerville Station. That plan includes 156 units, ranging in size from 1,004 to 1,930 square feet. Construction on this element is already underway, with the first closings expected in early 2021.

“We are thrilled to partner with Somerset Development and AvalonBay to bring this long-anticipated redevelopment to life,” PulteGroup’s Corey Wescoe, vice president of acquisitions, said in a prepared statement.

Among the parts of the AvalonBay project, the civic center will provide space for future borough government and board meetings.

“After many years of planning the redevelopment of the whole landfill site, the borough council and I are happy to see the various elements of this exciting project starting to be built,” Mayor Dennis Sullivan said in a statement.

The entire project comprises 80 acres bound by the railroad, South Bridge Street and Route 206.