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NEWARK-The New Jersey Institute of Technology is planning a four-block redevelopment project, dubbed the Campus Gateway Initiative, and has hired a master developer and master planner to start putting the pieces together. Jones Lang LaSalle, which has its New Jersey offices in Parsippany, is onboard as the developer, while Elkus Manfredi Architects is the newly hired master planner.

“Enhancing the community that surrounds NJIT and campus life is important to both the growth of our university and the prosperity of the city as a whole,” says NJIT president Robert Altenkirch. “At this point in time, NJIT has an exceptional opportunity to work with various stakeholders in the redevelopment of our neighborhood.”

The hiring of the two firms will launch a program of focus group meetings with local stakeholders and others, and a local polling initiative “to arrive at a consensus,” Altenkirch says. The parties involved say they hope to have a conceptual redevelopment in front of city officials by early summer.

The site includes property north of the NJIT campus and a fraternity and sorority housing complex at the south edge of the campus. Campus Gateway would focus on an area along Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard between Central Avenue and Orange Street in a portion of the James Street Historic District that also includes the Newark campus of Rutgers University. Besides the “Greek Village,” the program calls for reuse of a vacant section of St. Michael’s Hospital, and is expected to include new retail and residential development.

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