Okay, as promised, here's a rundown on the new condo developments in the area:
The Sienna -- Located in downtown Montclair, NJ, on the site of the old Hanes Department Store, once the flagship of a NJ chain. The Sienna is a handsome highrise with more than 100 units, just steps from tons of restaurants, shops (including Urban Outfitters) and the movies. Half the units have been sold as of Nov. 1, 2006. Prices range from under a half-million up to the nines. Near the NYC bus; about a 10 minute walk to trains at the Walnut St. Station or take NJ Transit down Bloomfield Ave. to the Bay St. Station trains. Word is that a large health club facility will inhabit the ground floor.
Montclair Heights -- Located at the edge of Montclair's prestigious Estate Section, on the site of the old Montclair Community Hospital, this noble-looking, all-brick luxury development, is priced at more than $1K per unit and is still in the contruction phase. Bus transportation to the city is at the corner, but it's not near trains.
Walnut Lofts -- These eleven upscale lofts, located in what is sometimes called the Woho section of Montclair, are across the street from popular Egan & Son's pub, the forthcoming Oppenheimer's seafood restaurant and various other eateries, bakeries, antique and clothing shops, with NY Direct trains down the block. Priced between most haven't yet sold.
The Reserve -- In neighboring Glen Ridge, on the site of the old Verizon building, this combination one and multi-floor condo/townhouse structure has an elegant lobby and concierge service, as well as private courtyard, 1-car garage space per unit, and incredible access to NYC Direct trains literally across the street. Shops in neighboring Bloomfield center are available; or, shoot over the hill to downtown Montclair. Glen Ridge, itself, has 2 banks, 1 sandwich shop, 1 florist, 1 manicurist, 1 upscale restaurant, and 1 pharmacy, as well as schools ranked in the top 10 in the state. Units at The Reserve are priced from the high $500's (for 2 bedrooms) to nearly $1.5K for 3-bedroom, 3.1-bath townhouses.
Vizcaya -- Huge, new development, still in the construction phase, located on Northfield Ave., West Orange, opposite the regional JCC facility and on the express bus line to the city. Just listed in the MLS this week, Vizcaya literature touts 2-zone a/c, 2 assigned garage spaces, one-level living, and huge floor plans -- 2502 - 3490 -- with prices ranging from $875,990 to a whopping $1,710,990. Monthly maintenance fees run around $1,500.
Bel Air -- Located on Mt. Pleasant Ave. in West Orange and just listed on the MLS, this is builder Hovnanian/Matzel & Mumford's new development of 250 townhomes. Fitness center, library, card and billiard rooms, tennis courts, outdoor pool, changing rooms, etc., are part of the package here, along with walkout basements, with units offered from the high sixes to high eights. So far, no direct NYC bus on this stretch, but perhaps that will change. Maintenance charges are in the $400 a month range.
The Manors at South Mountain -- South Orange's toney development, located on the mountainside, has been available for the last few years, with several dozen units still to be sold. Through year's end, many new units are being offered for $999.000. These are huge townhouses, approaching 6000 sq. ft. with finished basements, dramatic staircases, huge kitchens and formal dining rooms, upscale appointments all around. Maintentance fees are in the low $400s.
Livingston Town Center -- This large development in "downtown" Livingston, NJ, wraps itself around a shopping area. The largest unit -- 3 bedrooms, 7 rooms, 2.1-baths, on one floor -- is more than 3000 sq. ft., with upscale everything, and priced at $1175,900. with lesser units in the eights.
The Pointe at Livingston -- Another development in Livingston, this one for over-55's, with a very classy clubhouse, is in an advanced stage, with a new building going up now. Units with 3 bedrooms, 9 rooms and 3.1 baths are going for $819,000 with maintenance of about $700 per month.
City Homes at Essex Park -- Centex Homes' new, gated condo development in Belleville has units from about 1,000 to 2,000 sq. ft., priced from the mid $300s to the mid $400's, with the more expensive units having family rooms. There's a pool, community center, bocce court...and public golf course across the street. Maintenance is $280.