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First Hamilton Street Redev Project Heard By Zoning Board

510-Hamilton

The Zoning Board Nov. 12 got its first look at a proposed mixed-use development on Hamilton Street.


The Zoning Board of Adjustment got its first peek at a proposed retail/residential development on Hamilton Street, a project township officials hope will herald the renaissance of the business district.

The proposal, made by Recon Services LLC of Rocky Hill, is for a building encompassing the block of Hamilton Street between Ambrose and Home streets, the ground floor of which would be retail topped by three floors of flats and 1- and 2-bedroom apartments.

Part of the application was heard at the board’s Nov. 12 meeting. The application is scheduled to be continued at the board’s Dec. 17 meeting.

The 9,250 square feet of retail space would be divided roughly into three stores of 2,600 square feet, 1,650 square feet and 5,000 square feet, architect Robert B. Roth Jr. told the board.

He said the developer has an potential tenant in the larger space, which is why it measures 5,000 square feet.

The residential area will be comprised of 31 500-square-foot studio apartments, three 1-bedroom apartments measuring about 600 square feet and 50 2-bedroom apartments measuring about 900 square feet, he said.

The building will be designed in a “U” shape, with 84 underground parking spaces.

Roth said the apartments and businesses would share the parking spaces.

The ground floor’s facade will be made of cultured stone, Roth said. The plan presented to the board showed that stone only on the front of the building, but township planner Mark Healy noted that the ordinance requires such decorative architecture to be continued around all sides of a building. Roth said he would “dress that up” by the December meeting.

It will also be decided by the December meeting if Recon has to apply for a bulk variance because the building, which sits on a slope, does not meet some of the height requirements for the zone.

The project is the first of several that township officials say are in the works for the Hamilton Street business district, which runs roughly from Franklin Boulevard to the New Brunswick border.

It’s the hope of district business owners that new investment in the street, along with safety and beautification measures being planned, will revitalize what was once the township’s downtown.

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