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Controversial Kushner Jersey City Project Loses WeWork, City Support

Controversial Kushner Jersey City Project Loses WeWork, City Support
An aerial view of Jersey City

Kushner Cos.' Journal Square tower project, the one pitched to Chinese investors by Jared Kushner's sister, which caused intense scrutiny over the weekend, has suffered major setbacks beyond its connection to President Donald Trump's White House.

After being forced to apologize for executive Nicole Meyer's mention of her brother, who has distanced himself from the family business in his role as senior adviser to Trump, Kushner has been hit by the anchor tenant WeWork's decision to withdraw from the project, Bloomberg reports.

The co-working firm was set to own 50% of the development and use a large portion of the dual tower development as an incubator and living space for tech startups. Its presence allowed the project to receive $59M in tax subsidies. WeWork reportedly backed out of the deal before Kushner's presentation in China, but its exit was private until now.

The version of Journal Square that was pitched in China also is vastly different — and much larger — from what was initially proposed to the New Jersey Economic Development Authority. A new request for $30M in public bonds and a 30-year tax abatement has been met with extreme skepticism from Jersey City's mayor, who was initially supportive of the project.

In October 2016, WeWork executive Sean Black criticized Jersey City for having no vibrancy or cool factor, shortly before being forced out of the company.