Zoning Board Begins Hearings On Mosque’s Proposed School

Zoning Board of Adjustment members got their first peek Sept. 21 at plans for a 32,000-square-foot school proposed by officials of the Masjid-e-Ali mosque on Cedar Grove Lane.

Board members heard from only one witness, architect Yogesh Mistry, because a prior application received a long hearing.

Mistry told the board that the proposed Pre-K through 8th Grade school would be a two-story building containing 14 classrooms, a library, cafeteria, gym and administrative offices.

He said there would be an average of about 20 students per classroom, with a limit of 270 students.

The school’s bottom floor would contain four classrooms, a small library, a staff lounge, a small cafeteria, administrative offices, a nurse’s office and bathrooms, Mistry said.

The top floor would have an additional six regular classrooms, two pre-K and two Kindergarten classrooms, the gym, locker rooms, more administrative offices and bathrooms, he said.

The gym, Mistry said, would not be full-sized, but would be big enough for physical education classes.

The cafeteria would not have any cooking facilities, he said. Any cooked food would come from the mosque, which has a full kitchen.

One neighbor, Josefa Michalski of Cedar Grove Lane, said the plans seemed big to her and her husband.

“That is our backyard, even though it’s in the woods,” she said. “We already have the mosque next door, it’s a lot of traffic, a lot of people in and out of there. When we moved there, it wasn’t there, it was our peaceful getaway. Now you’re going to bring children there.”

The board is scheduled to continue the hearing at its Oct. 19 meeting.


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