The 52nd annual New Good Neighbor Awards recognize the best and most exciting commercial and industrial development projects in New Jersey. Winners are chosen based on economic benefit and job creation, architectural merit, and community involvement. Twelve winners were selected by a panel of judges representing a wide variety of statewide organizations that share an interest in New Jersey's growth and development.
"We're honored to be recognized by NJBIA for building a project that contributes to the vitality of this community and emphasizes the protection of our natural resources and the environment,"
Walters Group's redevelopment of the former brownfield site involved the capping and closing of a 55-acre licensed landfill, eliminating a smaller 25-acre landfill with zero taxpayer dollars, demolishing and relocating dilapidated facilities constructed on top of waste, protecting rare plants and animal species, preserving 1,070 acres of additional land, utilizing sustainable, green building practices, and pursuing all available renewable energy opportunities. Walters' efforts have improved the water quality, air quality, and directly addressed the impacts of climate change.
Located on 370 acres, the mixed-use redevelopment is comprised of residential, retail and recreational components with office, governmental, and retail space. Every commercial structure within Stafford Park was designed using the latest in clean-energy technologies. All of the project's current retail stores have achieved LEED-Silver Certification. The roster of retail tenants includes Costco, Target, Best Buy, PetSmart, Dick's Sporting Goods, AT&T, ULTA, Vitamin Shoppe, and Olive Garden. Many of these retailers made their debut in the area, creating an opportunity for local residents and vacationers to shop locally rather than travel outside the community as was previously the case.
Rick Reynolds, executive director of the Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce, nominated the project for the award. He said that, "The Stafford Park redevelopment has positively impacted our community's economic and environmental well-being."
Herschman Architects served as the architect for the commercial buildings; land planning services were provided by Minno & Wasko Architects and Planners; and Speitel & Speitel provided the engineering services.
Other winners of the New Good Neighbor Award included: Campbell Employee Center; Chem Fleur Inc. (Firmenich); Glopak Corporation;