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(For more retail coverage, click GlobeSt.com/RETAIL and to read more on the industrial market, click here.)

BAYONNE, NJ-The Cameron Group is set to start construction for Bayonne Crossing, a 400,000-sf shopping center that will rise on 55 acres of remediated industrial property. The remediation process is under way, with oil giant Exxon largely responsible for the cost. Most of the site was at one time utilized by Exxon’s predecessor, Standard Oil.

The site plan approved by local officials calls for two big box anchor stores, one of about 140,000 sf and the other approximately 90,000 sf. Also part of the plan put together by the East Syracuse, NY-based Cameron Group are three mid-sized anchors of between 30,000 sf and 50,000 sf and a variety of smaller stores and restaurants. Names of potential tenants haven’t been released, but the names of Target and Kohl’s have surfaced in discussions. The Cameron Group is a four-year-old firm founded and headed by Thomas Valenti, a former partner in the Syracuse-based Pyramid Cos.

“Bayonne is the last market in Hudson County without a power center,” Michael O’Connor, executive director of the Bayonne EDC told Globest.com in early 2005 when it was announced that the site was being targeted for retail development. The site is within the city’s Route 440 Corridor East redevelopment area, which was rezoned from heavy industrial to light industrial/commercial several years ago.

O’Connor estimates that the completed project will yield upwards of $1.5 million per year in urban enterprise zone sales tax receipts, as well as a 500% increase in yearly property taxes. “This project is the result of continuing efforts led by Mayor [Joseph] Doria to expand our tax base by redeveloping brownfields and old, vacant industrial sites, bringing in more investment and new businesses.”

The site has also gotten brownfield development area designation from the New Jersey DEP, which makes the Bayonne Crossing project eligible for state clean-up grants and loans. Among other assistance, the BEDC last week received a $150,000 grant toward removing underground contaminants.

Assembly of the site also involved a land swap with AGC Chemicals America, a Japanese-owned company. Approximately 35 acres was actually Exxon’s property, and to complete the site plan the city last year swapped another piece of city-owned property for AGC’s 20 acres adjacent to the Exxon site. Along the way, the New Jersey Redevelopment Authority provided $2 million in financing for site assembly.

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