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EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ-AMB Property Corp. completed 144,000 sf of industrial in Elizabeth in a joint venture with Portview Properties earlier this month, and now the San Francisco-based developer has another million sf or so on tap for the North Jersey market. Most of that is 878,000 sf proposed for Jersey City.

But the first part of that came online this week when AMB, which has its New Jersey office here, officially opened AMB Liberty Logistics Center on the west side of Newark Liberty International Airport. Located on 9.4 acres at 158 Mt. Olivet Ave., it’s the first major new distribution center in the immediate submarket in two years.

“It reflects our continued investment strategy in the portfields area,” says Bo Farkas, the company’s VP-development for its East Region. “It will serve as a model for continued industrial development in Newark.”

AMB acquired the site two years ago from Penick Pharmaceuticals, which operated out of a 27-building complex before shutting down completely in 2005 and moving its operations to South Jersey under new ownership. The site was subsequently remediated and AMB Logistics Center, designed by Princeton-based KSS Architects, was constructed. EVPs Robert Kossar and David Knee, and VP Chris Hile of Jones Lang LaSalle have the marketing exclusive; the asking price for the space is listed as “negotiable.”

In Jersey City, meanwhile, AMB has closed on 50 acres, part of it a landfill along routes 1 and 9, buying the site from the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Newark. Plans call for development of 878,000 sf of distribution space, with construction slated to start in the second half of 2008. Named AMB Pulaski Distribution Center, it will be built to the LEED Silver Standard, according to Farkas.

“The landfill has been abandoned for more than 30 years,” he says. “We’re gratified with the support and leadership of the groups that came together to ensure the site will be redeveloped.”

Those groups include local officials and agencies, Waste Management of New Jersey, the NJ DEP and the US EPA. Once completed, the distribution center itself will function as a cap over the landfill. Waste Management will cap the adjacent 26 acres to prepare it for future use.

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