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Blatstein, Post Brothers Announce $3B Proposal For Mixed-Use Neighborhood In Atlantic City

A satellite image of Bader Field, situated on an outcrop of land into the Intracoastal Waterway in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

Connected through two major, ongoing developments in Philadelphia, Post Brothers and Bart Blatstein are seeking to formally partner on a job in Atlantic City that would dwarf the first two.

On Monday, Tower Investments, Blatstein's company, and Post announced plans to build a $3B neighborhood on the former Bader Field airport in Atlantic City, the Philadelphia Business Journal reports. The multiphase project would contain residential, retail, office and hotel components, with a network of connecting canals resembling Venice or Amsterdam.

But the partnership is not alone in having designs on Bader Field — in fact, it will have to make up ground on a proposal made back in February, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports. Deem Enterprises, founded in Los Angeles but with an office in Atlantic City, proposed a $2.7B project with its own mix of residential and commercial uses, plus a Formula One-style racing track as its central attraction.

Another difference between the two proposals: Tower and Post plan for over 10,000 multifamily units, all of them rentals, while Deem's plan calls for 2,000 residences, many of them for-sale, the Inquirer reports. Both proposals call for massive retail footprints, but Tower and Post's plan would include 100K SF of office space. 

The 143-acre Bader Field, the first municipal airport in the U.S. and the location that gave birth to the term airport, is owned by Atlantic City but controlled by the state of New Jersey due to the state government having taken control of major decisions for the city in 2016.

Post Brothers President Matt Pestronk, Verde Capital President Jake Reiter and Colliers International Executive Vice President Joseph Fetterman

Atlantic City Mayor Marty Small has thrown his support behind Deem's proposal, saying a letter of intent between the city and the developer is soon to be signed. Blatstein, though, has called for an open bidding process through a request for proposals.

Tower and Post's plan was announced at the former Showboat Casino, which Tower redeveloped into a non-gambling hotel with entertainment options.

The two companies share some recent history.

Blatstein sold a lot with development plans for over 1,000 apartments adjacent to his Piazza development in Northern Liberties to Post in 2019, and Post is nearing completion on what is now called Piazza Alta. Earlier this year, Blatstein sold another major lot with development plans and entitlements in hand to Post, this time at South Broad Street and Washington Avenue.

With a record haul for the sale of apartment complex Presidential City in hand, Post is looking to fund its increasingly ambitious portfolio of development. Atlantic City would add to Post's non-Philly holdings in North Jersey and Washington, D.C