The news has all been all about the race to find single-family homes in New Jersey as people rapidly leave the cities for the space and fresh air that New Jersey has to offer — but there’s another segment of the real estate market that hasn’t been reported on that much, and that is apartments and condominiums.

Developers are turning old, run-down segments of hardscrabble New Jersey towns into sparkling beautiful modern communities with amenities galore. And people are snapping them up before the paint is dry. And if you told most of these renters a few years ago that they’d be living in East Rutherford, Bayonne, Harrison or West New York, they have told you you were crazy — but here they are lining up to sign on the dotted line.

According to an article on jerseydigs.com, what these developments all have in common is easy access to mass transit and lots of open space. For example, Central and Oak in East Rutherford is a new community that’s a mile from the Rutherford Train Station. It’s comprised of seven buildings of one and two bedroom apartments, all with private balconies. The community features an expansive lawn for outdoor movies, a fire pit, grills, and a dog park.

The article also features Woodmont Bay Club in Bayonne. It’s four acres of open space and amenities including a rooftop terrace, a state-of-the-art gym, a business center, a game room, a pool and sundeck, and a private parking garage. It’s surrounded by one of the things people come to New Jersey for: greenery — acres of trees and grass including three miles of a newly built Hackensack Riverwalk.

You probably never even thought of living in West New York despite its proximity to New York. But at Nine on the Hudson at Port Imperial, people are re-thinking West New York. It’s got glass enclosed residences plus tons of rooftop amentifies like an infinity-edge swimming pool overlooking the Manhattan skyline, an open lawn area, BBQs, firepits, al fresco dining areas, and a children’s play area.

Last but not least, Harrison Urby in Harrison is located steps from the path station, a saltwater swimming pool complete with patio, fire pits, BBQ grills, and lounge furniture that is complimented by lawn games and a community garden with individual plots. These new complexes and their modern conveniences have given these communities that were somewhat run down a new “lease” on life. Pun intended.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Judi Franco. Any opinions expressed are Judi's own.