21 Apartments and Liquor Store Proposed in Wildwood
In the often perceived slow season for the Wildwoods, the off-season is proving to be anything but sluggish. Business owners are rolling up their sleeves, engaging in extensive renovations, proposing new ventures, and reshaping the city’s landscape.
This off-season, in particular, stands out with several major projects already proposed or underway. One such project, aptly named “The Gem Apartments,” has recently been submitted to the Wildwood zoning and planning board, promising to redefine the cityscape at the corner of NE Rio Grande Avenue and Park Boulevard.
The proposed development, located at 4809 Park Boulevard (Block 48, Lots 1, 3, & 5), aims to revitalize the current site, which houses Ed’s Citgo Service Station, formerly a gas station, and the H.B. Christman and Son building.
At the heart of the application is the vision to demolish these existing structures, making way for a groundbreaking mixed-use project that includes a ground-level liquor store, “Park Boulevard Liquors,” and a total of twenty-one residential apartment units on multiple above-ground levels.
The design of “The Gem Apartments” aligns with the city’s growth strategy, presenting a harmonious blend of commercial and residential spaces. Mockups of the proposed building, shared on the Facebook page “Preserving the Wildwoods,” offer a sneak peek into the future.
The first floor is designated for Park Boulevard Liquors, while the apartments above are collectively known as The Gem Apartments.
These residential units consist of thirteen 3-bedroom apartments and nine 2-bedroom apartments. Noteworthy from the mockups is the inclusion of small balconies for each unit, providing a touch of outdoor space for residents. The proposed design envisions a modern living experience, with sliding doors leading to enclosed balconies.
However, a critical challenge looms over the project in the form of a parking dilemma. The city mandates a total of 71 parking spaces, with 38 allocated for the apartments and 33 for the liquor store. The current application only accounts for 36 parking spaces, indicating a shortfall that may prompt residents to rely on street parking—a concern voiced by many in the community.
A Public Hearing, scheduled for Monday, December 4, 2023, at 6:00 PM in the Commissioners’ Meeting Room on the second floor of City Hall at 4400 New Jersey Avenue, Wildwood, New Jersey, provides a crucial platform for community engagement.
During this hearing, community members can express their opinions, raise concerns, or voice support for the proposed development. The primary focus is expected to be on the parking situation, a key determinant in the project’s feasibility.
If the parking challenges can be effectively addressed, the prospects are promising for “The Gem Apartments” to receive approval, potentially transforming the current intersection into a vibrant hub. The development aligns with the city’s vision for growth and progression, offering a modern and dynamic space for both residential and commercial purposes.
Recent developments in the area, such as the opening of a Starbucks grab-and-go location on the opposite side of the street in September, underscore the evolving nature of Wildwood. This Starbucks, distinct in its design without an interior seating lobby, caters to the fast-paced lifestyle, allowing customers to utilize the drive-thru or swiftly pick up their orders at the window. This is something very much needed in the winter months.
The Wildwood Video Archive did a tour of this new Starbucks which you can watch at the bottom of this article.
As Wildwood navigates this period of change and development, “The Gem Apartments” stands as a symbol of potential transformation. The upcoming Public Hearing marks a pivotal moment for community input and decision-making, and the resolution of the parking concerns will undoubtedly shape the future of this proposed development. If successful, “The Gem Apartments” could set the stage for future ventures, contributing to the city’s growth and providing residents with contemporary, convenient living spaces.
The WVA will record a video walking the property with the blue printed in early December so be on the look out.
Below is the Starbucks tour. Be sure to subscribe before watching.