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New Homes, Warehouses Approved By Planning Board

Applications to build two homes on undersized lots on Douglas Avenue and two warehouses on Roosevelt Avenue were approved at the March 5 Planning Board meeting.

The home developer, Edison-based Gregory Kingburk,wants to build two, two-story homes with four bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms, he told teh board. The homes would also have full basements and one-car garages, he said.

Paul Fletcher, Kingburk’s planner and engineer, told the board that sub-dividing the 10,000-square-foot parcel into two 5,000-square-foot parcels, and putting a house on each one, would be better for the township than keeping the tract intact and building a two-family house on it.

That’s because single-family homes are more likely to be purchased, and two-family homes are more likely to be rented out, he said.

Kingburk needed several bulk variances, including ones for lot area, lot width and frontyard setback. The township requires minimum 10,000-square-foot lots in that area, he proposed 5,000 square-foot lots The township also requires lots to be a minimum of 100 feet wide, Kingburk’s plan has 50-foot-wide lots. And finally, the township requires a frontyard setback of no more than 10 feet, Kingburk proposed 25 feet.

That design is “more in keeping with the character of the neighborhood and it allows for parking in the front yard, in front of the one-car garage,” he said.

“They could build a two-family home there tomorrow,” said Mark Healey, the township’s planning director. He said that the benefits of building two single-family homes in that area – closed to the Hamilton Street business district – “certainly outweigh the detriments.”

Township Councilman Ted Chase said he did not like the idea of creating two undersized lots.

“I don’t like the precedent of subdividing and creating a lot smaller than is called for in the zoning ordinance,” he said.

Vince Dominach, the township’s senior zoning officer, said that allowing the subdivision “isn’t the greatest precedent,” but added that it would be limited and noted that the township is trying to encourage development in and near the business district.

The board eventually approved the application.

F. Greek Development won board approval over its plan to build two warehouses on 31 acres at the corner of Roosevelt and Veronica avenues.

Much of the land is wetlands and cannot be built on, the board was told.

The property had already been approved for development in 2003, but that never occurred, said attorney Steven Tripp.

The current plan is to build two warehouses, one 86,400 square feet on 15 acres and the second, 122,350 square feet on 24 acres.

The buildings would be used for warehouse uses, light industrial or “any other use permitted in the zone,” Tripp said.

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