Station Place rentals approved

The Planning Board unanimously approved an amended preliminary and final major site plan for Station Place on Tuesday night, paving the way for 116 rental units instead of the 80 condos that gained approval 18 months ago.

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Station Place returns to Planning Board

The developer who once proposed 80 units for the Station Place development is expected to come before the Planning Board Tuesday night with plans to convert the project into 116 rental units.

Clay Bonny of East Hanover-based Heartstone Development advised the Redevelopment Agency in May of plans to change the Campbell Street development into rental units. The project would remain five stories but would need Planning Board approval for the increased density on the 1.6-acre site. Zoning allows for about 60 units per acre.

Heartstone also constructed River Place, the 135-unit rental complex on Lewis Street.

Plan for Koza’s comes back

A new plan for Koza’s bar on West Scott Avenue was deferred Monday night until next month’s meeting, Oct. 20. Only five members of the Zoning Board of Adjustment were present, barely enough for a quorum.

Only Rahway Rising had the story last December when the Zoning Board of Adjustment rejected a concept plan for 12 units at the 3/4-acre site that would have renovated the 1920 structure and added a second floor. While Zoning Board members appreciated the plan, there was some concern about the density. The new plan includes nine townhouses but still requires a bulk variance and use variance.
Koza’s didn’t fare too well in our “What’s your favorite bar in Rahway?” poll this past spring, but it must be considered one of the “elder statesemen” of Rahway bars (read: old school), as I’ve heard the second-shifters at Merck used to patronize it back in the day.

Rahway hosts Downtown NJ conference

Rahway will host Downtown New Jersey’s annual conference (“Hard Times…Real Opportunities”) next week at the Union County Performing Arts Center. Downtown officials from all over the Garden State will descend on the city, starting with a redevelopment tour Wednesday night.

The all-day conference on Thursday will focus on “all the things you need to know to succeed as a downtown investor, retailer, community leader, or manager in this uncertain economy.”


Remember the movie that filmed some scenes in Rahway earlier this year? Bruce Springsteen reportedly wrote a song for it and “The Wrestler” won the Venice Film Festival. It’s scheduled for release in December.

Bachmann’s begins demolition

Maybe there’s something about this time of year that makes people want to knock stuff down. A little more than a week after the old Hamilton Laundry was razed, work began on demolishing Bachmann’s Tavern on St. Georges Avenue, near the Linden border.

The Zoning Board of Adjustment in February 2007 gave its approval for a new structure (.pdf) to replace the 65-year-old tavern. Demolition started last week on the parking lot side of the building. Plans are to construct a new building with three apartments. The garage on the rear of the property will remain but be updated to match the new tavern.

The property dates back about 180 years, according to the Zoning Board meeting minutes, and some items, such as fireplace mantles, will be preserved and brought into the new structure.

Bachmann’s had a respectable showing in our “favorite bar” poll back in the spring, and you can find an “Ode to Bachmann’s” of sorts on YouTube.

Town Center scaling back, has new developer

The Town Center project, originally proposed 18 months ago as a massive residential-retail plan for property around City Hall, has a new developer and scaled-back plans.

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Salon seeks downtown space

A “multicultural, full-service salon” has its eye on an Irving Street property but needs a waiver from the Redevelopment Agency to operate at the proposed location.

Lisa King presented her plan for “Heavenly Hair Styles” to the Redevelopment Agency Wednesday night. A city ordinance does not allow personal service businesses within 1,000 feet of each other and since the property is within a redevelopment area, the Redevelopment Agency would have to grant the waiver. A barber shop, Earl’s Cuts and Curls, is located a few doors down from the site. A similar waiver was granted this summer for Carriage City Cleaners to operate in the hotel building while Fulton Cleaners is only a block away.

Elizabeth-based Silcon Inc., which constructed Carriage City Plaza, renovated the property at 1645 Irving St. for some Hotel Indigo operations. The space would be subdivided for the salon, King said. It would occupy about 1,350 square feet on the first floor and basement.

Redevelopment Agency Attorney Frank Regan said a recommendation on the waiver request would be made to commissioners at next month’s meeting on Oct. 1.