Master waterfront redeveloper iStar Residential has placed surfboards as markers on all the sites they are slated to build on as proof of their committed to the redevelopment of Asbury Park’s waterfront.
The surfboards were placed Friday and can be seen at sites along Cookman Avenue, Kingsley Street and Ocean Avenue among other locations. One was placed at the southeast corner of the cement and rebar skeleton of the Esperanza [shown at top].
Brian Cheripka, vice president of land for iStar Residential, said the company’s goal is to “keep the spirit of Asbury Park” intact, which he defines as “a place where people can live, work and create.”
“Every surfboard represents a future project that we are working on, or will be working on, across the Asbury Park [w]aterfront,” he said. “We care about this city, and we truly hope that the community recognizes our long term commitment and understands that no individual project is planned without being thought of in context of other future development.”
The developer recently faced criticism from some residents and members of the planning board for an approved 28-unit townhome project national homebuilder K. Hovnanian will build on the western waterfront. [Click here to see the Sun’s full coverage of the project’s approval process. ] However, Cheripka said it is important for residents to know they are not planning “in a vacuum” and seek to bring architecturally diverse projects to the city’s waterfront.
“This is a little something we can do for the community that helps them see the bigger picture,” Cheripka said.
The surfboard theme underscores the city’s reputation as a place find good surf along East Coast, he said.
A surfboard iStar commissioned the Collective Art Tank’s Jimmy Leslie to paint during the last Day of Demos may also be hung in the city’s transportation center if the city approves it, Cheripka said.
Exactly how the surfboard project will evolve over time remains to be seen. Cheripka noted some boards already don stickers from local businesses and future involvement may see school kids or local artists in the area take part in the decoration of them.