Planning Board Recommends Approval of Riverfront Development Project Amendment
The motion passed 5-4 after nearly four hours of discussion.
After an exhausting meeting lasting close to four hours, the Cranford Planning Board recommended the approval of the 4th amendment to the Riverfront Redevelopment Plan. The ordinance passed 5-4.
At Wednesday’s meeting, Victor Furmanec of Beacon Planning fielded questions from the Board and residents, who raised concerns that the plan would compromise Cranford’s small-town charm. The Board also worried the proposed fourth floor of apartment buildings was inconsistent with the township's Master Redevelopment Plan.
The Riverfront Redevelopment Project proposes the construction of five mixed residential and retail buildings on the 3.5 acres on South Avenue by Chestnut Street, across from the Cranford train station. Ordinance 2011-18 was introduced at the April 26th Town Committee meeting following a 4-1 vote. As previously noted, the ordinance would allow the developer Garden Homes to add 18 more apartment units to the development area, making a total of 124 proposed units. The units will make up an entirely new fourth floor on one of the five buildings.
Mayor Daniel Aschenbach, a supporter of the ordinance, stated that the proposal would generate $80,000 in property taxes, create affordable housing and provide $756,000 in unrestricted funds for the township in impact fees. The Township Committee will hold a public hearing at their meeting on June 14th before putting the ordinance to a final vote.
Patch will have a full write up of the evening, outlining the hot topics and specifics of the Riverfront Redevelopment Plan, later today. Stay tuned.