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Focus on multifamily powers Hartz Mountain portfolio

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Hartz Mountain Industries announced Thursday that it leased or renewed more than 5.7 million square feet of property in 2011, attributing its success to its greater presence in the multifamily market.

The company jumped into the residential market in 2011, building a multifamily portfolio that could soon reach 5,000 units. The company credits volatility in the residential sales market with driving rental activity.

In September, Hartz, of Secaucus, acquired a stake in Roseland Property Co.'s management company. Roseland will manage the company's new Weehawken luxury apartment project, The Estuary, upon completion.

Emanuel Stern, Hartz president and chief operating officer, said he believes industrial will be the top market for the company in 2012.

"For the last several years, conversion of warehouses for data center use kept the market lively, but the traditional users are back and growing," Stern said in the announcement.

The top industrial leases for the company, in terms of square footage, in 2011 included 595,000 square feet to NJ Transit and 225,000 square feet to National Retail Transportation.

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