‘It always reminded me of my father’: Gross realty firm trades building in Wall, final piece of storied family project

An office building in Wall Township on a 300-acre tract has been sold by the family of the late Sheldon Gross, a well-known real estate executive who developed or sold the parcel in phases during six decades of ownership.

CTC Holdings LLC acquired the 24,000-square-foot building located at 4810 Belmar Blvd. for $5.2 million.

Sheldon Gross Realty Senior Vice President Jonathan Gross, Executive Vice President Jonathan Glick and President Marcy Gross brokered the deal for the property, which has a storied history that dates back to the early 1960s.

Situated just east of Route 34, the roughly four-acre property is part of a site that Solomon Gross, the grandfather of Sheldon and Peter Gross, gifted to the brothers in the mid-1960s, providing a large development opportunity in what the family admits was an unproven location.

“My father, Sheldon Gross, was a young man when his grandfather, Solomon Gross, gifted he and his brother Peter a 300-acre tract in Wall Township,” Marcy Gross said. “That was in 1964, when there wasn’t much in Wall Township … so, my father was undecided about how to use the land. Ultimately, after buying out Peter, he took a wait-and-see approach.”

Ideally, the property would have been a cleared lot, ready for development. Unfortunately, that’s far from what Sheldon Gross had on his hands. Solomon Gross had already subdivided it into many small lots, with the expectation that these would be bought up by people anxious to build vacation bungalows. As a result, the land was an extremely irregular shape, with multiple gaps throughout. The streets between the residential lots existed only on paper.

“It took quite a while to reassemble that property and make it whole again,” Jonathan Gross, who is Sheldon’s son, said. “I helped my father during his ongoing negotiations with the town.”

Jonathan Glick adds: “Sheldon actually gifted some of the property to Wall Township. And, as for those small residential lots, we bought quite a few of them back. This made sense from a business perspective — but it was a challenge, since much of the formal paperwork was inaccurate or had been lost.”

Slowly, surely, Sheldon Gross — with support from Glick — was able to reassemble a large, contiguous tract for development. He constructed an office building with room for multiple tenants — and Sheldon Gross Realty’s Wall Township office was among them. In 2001, a 60,000-square-foot, flex structure rose right along Belmar Boulevard and was sold a short time after.

The transition from development to sales has been underway for about a decade. In 2016, the final open land — 42 total acres — was sold. In 2022, Sheldon Gross passed away at the age of 94 and the agency that bears his name worked in earnest to part with the final remnants of the Wall Township property.

That process concluded, once and for all, with the sale of 4810 Belmar Blvd.

“It’s certainly bittersweet,” Marcy Gross said. “That property might have presented challenges through the years, but it always reminded me of my father … and now the last bit of it is gone. That said, my father always looked toward the positive, so that’s what I’m trying to do. He’d be extremely proud that when the time came to part ways with the property, it was his own family that sold it. Now, it’s up to other people and other families to take advantage of the opportunities tied to that section of Wall Township.”