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EDISON, NJ-Hartz Mountain Industries wins the favor of Ford Motor Corp. to redevelop the 100-acre site of its former assembly plant here, which closed earlier this year. The Secaucus, NJ-based Hartz is in the planning stages of designing a mixed-development lifestyle-center concept that could feature retail, a hotel, entertainment and cultural facilities and restaurants.

Ford says Hartz was chosen after a lengthy bid process “based on its vision for the site, financial ability and experience.” Ford is currently working on decommissioning the site and plans to begin demolition in June, with hopes of concluding soil remediation by the end of the year so that redevelopment can begin early in 2005. A Ford spokesperson tells GlobeSt.com that while the motor giant does have cost estimates for the demolition and remediation process, they would not disclose those figures.

GlobeSt.com’s Eric Peterson reported in late February when the site was closing that Edison Mayor George Spadoro said that the town was preparing to rezone the choice tract for mixed uses, including offices, retail space and indoor recreational facilities.

“Our plan envisions a vibrant mixed-use zoning. We’re thinking in terms of a ‘Chelsea Piers’ for Central New Jersey,” said, referring to the sports and entertainment complex on Manhattan’s Hudson River waterfront. The township had hired RTKL, the Baltimore-based architectural, design and planning firm, to map out a specific plan for the site.

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