Two vacant office buildings on Thanet Road, off Terhune Road, have been demolished and site work is under way in preparation for the construction of a pair of new apartment developments.
AvalonBay Communities is going to build a 221-unit rental apartment complex on 13 acres of the 15-acre property, and PIRHL is going to build an affordable 80-unit, age-restricted apartment complex. AvalonBay Communities conveyed two acres of the 15-acre site to PIRHL for its development.
The two developments contain a mix of market-rate and affordable apartments. Both developments will help Princeton to meet its obligation to provide affordable housing. The town was sued, along with many New Jersey towns, by the nonprofit Fair Share Housing Center for its alleged failure to provide its fair share of affordable housing.
It is expected that the two developments will be ready for initial occupancy in the second quarter of 2023.
The AvalonBay Communities development, which will be known as Avalon Princeton Thanet Circle, will consist of 193 apartments in three apartment buildings, and 28 townhouse units spread among seven townhouse buildings.
Of the 193 rental apartments, 11 will be set aside for affordable housing. Five of the 11 units will be earmarked for residents with special needs. The 10 affordable units will be interspersed in a four-story apartment building, and the 11th unit will be located in one of the two three-story apartment buildings.
PIRHL is constructing a four-story apartment building that will be known as Princeton Senior Living. It is an age-restricted development, which means it will serve households with at least one member who is 55 years old or older.
The 80 rental apartments – 69 one-bedroom apartments and 11 two-bedroom apartments – are earmarked for low- and moderate-income households. There are no market-rate apartments in the PIRHL development.
The project is being funded through a combination of tax credit financing and a municipal contribution from a PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes) agreement with AvalonBay Communities.
The Princeton Senior Living apartment building will include an on-site management office, a community room, indoor and outdoor bicycle storage, a fitness center, game and craft rooms, and a community garden.
A social services room on the ground floor will accommodate health and wellness needs. An on-site coordinator will help residents connect with an array of comprehensive services, including health screenings, nutrition programs, benefits assistance and financial literacy seminars.
Combined, the AvalonBay Communities and the PIRHL development will provide 91 affordable rental apartments for very low-, low- and moderate-income households.
In Mercer County, the maximum income for a one-person household to qualify for a moderate-income apartment is $61,175 and for a two-person household, it is $69,915.
A one-person household can earn up to $38,235 to qualify for a low-income apartment, and up to $43,697 for a two-person household.
The maximum income for a one-person household to qualify for a very low income apartment is $22,941, and for a two-person household, it is $26,218.