Author Topic: The Future of Lakewood  (Read 71188 times)

Offline flyingace

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #540 on: January 31, 2021, 10:39:31 AM »
I'm no fan of TLS [for reasons I've posted on DDF], but I happen to think that they usually are better than some of the other sites in this regard. Which is why I was surprised by this post.
Not a fan, either, but hopeful that the real live person who reviews the posts actually thinks a little before approving items. BTW I recently emailed a website regarding offensive content and it was removed immediately.

Offline aygart

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #541 on: January 31, 2021, 10:44:05 AM »
I'm no fan of TLS [for reasons I've posted on DDF], but I happen to think that they usually are better than some of the other sites in this regard. Which is why I was surprised by this post.
Low bar to meet
Feelings don't care about your facts

Offline efflpetzel

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #542 on: February 01, 2021, 12:46:26 AM »
Remember the days when people had tact when writing news, and they didn't just write pointless things that would only inflame non-Jews in the area?

https://www.thelakewoodscoop.com/news/2021/01/photo-is-manchester-township-the-new-alternative.html
And his response

https://riseupoceancounty.com/f/lakewood-scoop-asks-is-manchester-the-new-alternative

Offline YitzyS

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #543 on: February 10, 2021, 07:49:09 AM »
Article in the APP today.

Downtown Lakewood: 99 apartments are coming; 'We're pretty congested already'
Gustavo Martínez Contreras
Asbury Park Press

LAKEWOOD - John Meléndez looked out the window of his family business on Ocean Avenue and considered a future with hundreds more new neighbors.

"Traffic is going to get even worse," Meléndez, 27, told the Press.

Notwithstanding that concern, the township zoning board recently approved a variance sought by developers, paving the way for a 99-unit, four-story apartment building on the site of a former lumber yard on Ocean Avenue.

Traffic jams are already a signature feature of the downtown. Existing merchants and neighbors complain that the newcomers will make congestion conditions unbearable.

For the last six years, Meléndez's mother has owned Blanca's Hair Salon inside the old Lakewood town hall building, erected in 1902, at the corner of Ocean Avenue and the railroad tracks on Monmouth Avenue.

He's watched the township transform, adding more and more traffic and straining township services.

He remembers when the area across the street from the salon was "just woods and a coffee shop." Today, several townhouses line Regal Court, the street off Ocean Avenue, and other buildings are going up on the same thoroughfare.

To green-light the project, the zoning board had to bend the township's 2017 master plan for development, granting a variance. The new construction — the site is currently a lumber yard and building depot — is located in a B-4 zone, which doesn't allow for multifamily residential developments.

The plan calls for 37 one-bedroom apartments and 62 two-bedroom apartments. Amenities in the building include  a 2,900-square-foot events hall, a 3,400-square-foot synagogue, a 1,450-square-foot business center, a 1,200-square-foot gym, a 1,275-square-foot recreational room, and common terrace rooms with play gear for children.

The garage driveways will be "right in/right out" on the Ocean Avenue and Second Street frontages, according to the plan. A project like this would require at least 208 parking spaces. The plan calls for 252 spaces, with the majority of them inside the garage and the rest in parking areas around the property.

The expected rents could not be immediately learned.

In presenting the project before the board, planner Brian S. Flannery, who described it as upscale, referred to the township master plan and said that the project would be justified to provide housing for Lakewood's growing population.

"This project provides a unique housing opportunity that, in my opinion, is greatly needed in Lakewood at this time," he said. "I think that because of the unique location of this property this is an ideal area for this project. It provides the housing opportunities in walkable conditions to the downtown and the bus station."

He also said the project would redevelop an underutilized site. He noted the lumber yard has been vacant for "quite some time."

The applicant said the amenities will only be for building tenants. Meléndez said his business was not notified of the Feb. 1 zoning board meeting where the variance was decided.

"We didn't know they were finally going to vote on it. It could benefit us because that could mean more customers," he said. "But it's a 50-50 (proposition) and in the end it's going to bring more traffic to this area. We're pretty congested already."

In the 5-2 board vote, the dissenting voices — zoning board members Avraham Naftali and Mordy Gross — cited the two-year old traffic study that accompanied the application.

"The traffic situation concerns me," Gross said before casting his vote against the proposal. "The two-year old traffic study bothers me."

The board members who voted in support of the project were Meir Gelley, Moshe Lankry, Judah Ribiat, Moshe Ingber and board chair Abe Halberstam.

"After casting his vote, Halberstam said that at first he was going to vote against it but "the compelling evidence" swayed him.

"First, the design I saw was a magnificent, magnificent building. I don't think Lakewood has a building like this in the whole entire town," he said. "Based on what we heard on what other uses can come to this site the traffic amount would be exactly the same."

Ocean Avenue, also known as Main Street, is a two-lane state road — Route 88 — cutting through the eastern portion of downtown Lakewood. School buses and other vehicles back up traffic during the morning and afternoon peak rush hours.

Hamilton Development LLC, the applicant, first filed its proposal in 2019. Since then, the project had been tabled at least three times for several reasons, and the traffic study originally submitted was not updated.

On behalf of the applicant, traffic engineer Scott Kennel with McDonough and Rea Associates, out of Manasquan, said that the application's traffic study data was still valid for 2021.

"We've done other data collection in Lakewood and traffic counts are consistent with what we've collected over the last couple of years," he said.

Kennel said that the traffic study counts were conducted Feb. 8 through 28, 2019. He said that, based on engineering manuals, the 99 apartments would generate 64 trips in the morning and 74 in the afternoon.

Residents from an adjacent residential development on Midtown Circle emailed the board with their concerns, nothing their opposition to the project. One of them, Yosef Schustal, dialed into the public comment phone line to say that "there are multiple compelling reasons for this variance request to be rejected."

Chief among them, Schustal said, are safety, congestion, and quality of life. He said that his main concern was that the applicant was asking "to build a 50-foot building literally up to my property line."

"Put simply, the developer's requesting that the rules not apply to him," Schustal said. "I beg you, I implore you, please, please, please don't allow one man's profit to take away another man's property. All I ask is for you to uphold the rule of law for all."

Schustal also said that technology difficulties made it impossible for many of his neighbors to call or follow the meeting live stream, but that they had been in attendance "to show their concerns" during the prior three times the board was scheduled to listen to the application.

"In ordinary times, there would be many, many, many more neighbors commenting," Schustal said.

In total, the board received 28 letters objecting the plan and six others conditioning their support in case there were plans to installs crosswalks and street lights, something that's beyond the applicant and zoning board's purview.

While the board approved the project, the applicant still has to get permission from Consolidated Rail Corporation (CONRAIL) to remove the railroad tracks on Monmouth Ave. or prove that the company has no jurisdiction over them.

CONRAIL did not respond to requests for comment.


Gustavo Martínez Contreras covers Lakewood. Contact him at gmartinez@gannettnj.com or at 732-643-4061.

Offline yesitsme

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #544 on: February 10, 2021, 08:51:20 PM »
על רגל אחת Please

Offline Lurker

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #545 on: February 10, 2021, 09:00:23 PM »
When you find yourself agreeing with me more often than not, it's time for a cheshbon hanefesh.

Offline AsherO

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #546 on: February 10, 2021, 09:03:35 PM »
על רגל אחת Please

A building with 99 apartments is getting a zoning variance to be built in downtown Lakewood, article is concerned that traffic will get worse.

Offline yesitsme

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #547 on: February 10, 2021, 09:15:47 PM »
Gustavo Martínez Contreras covers Lakewood fair and balanced

Offline YitzyS

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #548 on: February 10, 2021, 10:17:22 PM »
Gustavo Martínez Contreras covered Lakewood fair and balanced
FTFY.

He's been a little looser recently with the fairness aspect, IMO, which started IINM when he got blowback for not wearing a mask at Rav Chaim Dov Keller's levaya while writing that others weren't wearing masks.

He's a very sensitive person, and I think those attacks against him (which I believe are justified) have turned him off a little.

Offline yuneeq

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #549 on: February 10, 2021, 11:29:44 PM »
A building with 99 apartments is getting a zoning variance to be built in downtown Lakewood, article is concerned that traffic will get worse.

Yeh it's not good. It's one thing if there was no major variances requested, but there were a bunch, and they could've made the project a lot more palatable by agreeing to reasonable variances that don't hurt anyone but denying the ones that hurt everyone. But COVID has been a developers dream, no one to fight their greedy requests, and they're partying like it's 2015.

"Originally, the applicant requested a waiver from providing sidewalks on the Route 88 frontage, however, the applicant withdrew that request. They will provide sidewalk along Route 88. There currently is no sidewalk or street trees along the 2nd Street frontage. The board granted a waiver from providing sidewalk and street trees along that frontage."

Are they insane! 99 apartments and they requested no sidewalks? And they partially gave in. Meanwhile every new house is required to build sidewalks. But 99 apartments don't need it, especially in a place that's advertised to be within walking distance of everything.

Another thing about parking, they claim they had enough space, but that's only if you don't include the "2,900 sq feet social hall, a 3,400 sq feet shul, and a 1,450 sq feet business center room".


Offline MarkS

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #550 on: February 10, 2021, 11:32:46 PM »
Another thing about parking, they claim they had enough space, but that's only if you don't include the "2,900 sq feet social hall, a 3,400 sq feet shul, and a 1,450 sq feet business center room".
And then there's the 1 bedroom apartments that only need one spot but also have a 'childs room'.

Offline smart man

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #551 on: February 11, 2021, 02:16:49 AM »
Walkable to the bus station, lol did they make a study how many tenants are ever going to use that bus station?!
What does it mean by 64 trips in the morning and 74 in the afternoon? Is that an engineering study in Lakewood? I would guess there’s at least 100-125 trips in the morning for every 99 apartments in Lakewood.

Offline gogreen

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #552 on: February 11, 2021, 02:56:42 AM »
Are they insane! 99 apartments and they requested no sidewalks? And they partially gave in.
The developers always overask, so that the board can say they're denying part of what was requested.

Offline YitzyS

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #553 on: February 24, 2021, 06:36:48 PM »
This is the piece in the Yated's Purim section right after the piece about Dan:




Offline YitzyS

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Re: The Future of Lakewood
« Reply #554 on: March 14, 2021, 08:14:42 PM »
I hate to be cynical when there is a fire burning, but...

Developers eagerly eyeing the now available land (I'm sure)