CRANFORD WILL ALLOW 18 MORE UNITS AT RIVERFRONT, GETS $700K IN IMPACT FEES FROM DEVELOPER

By Leslie Murray/Cranford Chronicle

An agreement to allow an additional 18 units at the Riverfront Redevelopment Project in exchange for a payment of close to $700,000 for sewer and parking impact fees was introduced tonight, marking the first time the change was discussed publicly.

The Township Committee approved the introduction of the fourth amendment during the April 26 meeting by a 4-1 vote, agreeing to allow developer Garden Homes to add another level of residential units to one of the buildings at the proposed mixed use site. Commissioner Mark Dugan was the only commissioner to vote against the move.

Township Attorney Daniel McCarthy said the agreement calls for allowing an additional 18 units – including three affordable housing– at the project on South Avenue. In return the developer will pay “somewhere over $700,000 for sewer and parking impact fees” to accommodate impact of the additional units.

Mayor Daniel Aschenbach said the financial gains were a substantial part of allowing the amendment to the project.

“It does have density that I was not in favor of and I am having trouble getting my arms around that, except for a few months ago the Township couldn’t pay its bills,” he said.

The ordinance will be referred to the Planning Board for comment and will have a public hearing and final reading during the June 14 meeting of the Township Committee.