Channel Club Tower: Shrewsbury Sentinel
The Channel Club Tower, a private high-rise condo, is quite photogenic — as it lords over the Shrewsbury River marina front in Monmouth Beach. I grew up literally in the shadow of the building and watched as the tower and a massive steel and concrete auto garage filled the large riverfront acreage we Kelly kids once called “the woods.”
At 17-stories high and 222-units wide, it’s the borough’s largest housing facility. The ambitious project was the vision of Walter Mihm, who developed the area into a marine empire of considerable scale. The CCT architect was Harold Kent and Kendall Development Co. was the builder. The total construction cost was about $12 million.
In 1972, together with partner American Standard, Walter purchased a 7-acre parcel of land off West Street and built the Channel Club Tower. Walter was also responsible for the Channel Club and the Channel Club marina. And he built the adjoining private street, Channel Drive. Part of the property off West Street had once held a massive 25-room summer home owned by officers of the Salvation Army.
The tower (towers, really) came about as a means to boost town ratables — then badly needed to help fund a new school. In 1970, the borough commissioners approved an ordinance to permit the construction of high-rise dwellings in town; four years later the ordinance was rescinded.
When the CCT opened a sales office in April 1973, the average price for an apartment was $51,000; the average monthly maintenance fee was $115. All units had terraces with water views. Locals remember the place for its 24-hour doorman, pool, health club, and massive parking garage.
Here are some images of the CCT and area through the years: