Swaths of West Grand and Elizabeth avenues, industrial properties on Regina and New Brunswick avenues, and a shopping center that straddles the border with Woodbridge, are among six areas that could be studied as potential new areas of redevelopment.
City Council is scheduled to consider AR-208-16 at its regular combined meeting tonight at 7 p.m. The Redevelopment Agency last month passed a resolution requesting that City Council undertake a preliminary study.
The resolution directs the Planning Board to undertake preliminary investigations to determine if properties qualify as a condemnation redevelopment area, pursuant to Local Redevelopment and Housing Law (N.J.S.A. 40A:12A-1). UPDATED, Nov. 22: The resolution was not part of the agenda that was voted upon at last night’s meeting. City Administrator Cherron Rountree said “there were some technical issues with the resolution that we wanted to correct before presenting it to council for consideration.”
The six potential redevelopment areas identified in the resolution include about
90 120 properties in all:
- Shopping center on St. Georges Avenue, portions of which are in Rahway and Woodbridge, Block 276, Lot 7;
- Dri-Print Foils property and adjoining properties on New Brunswick Avenue, Block 276, Lots 1-6, 10;
- Swim n’ Play property on Regina Avenue, Block 281, Lot 1;
- Elizabeth Avenue from Rahway River to Grand Avenue, Block 160, Lots 11-15;
- Elizabeth Avenue from West Scott Avenue to Linden border, Block 229, Lots 1-9, Block 273, Lots 1-3;
- West Grand Avenue between St. Georges Avenue to Irving Street, both sides of the street, Block 164, Lots 15-24, 26.01, and 27-29; Block 165, Lots 2, 12, 13.01, 13.02, 14-20; Block 202, Lots 1-11, 13.01, and 26; Block 203, Lots 6-9; Block 204, Lots 15-32; Block 205, Lots 1-14 and 27; Block 215, Lots 1-8, and Block 216, Lots 1-5.
Redevelopment areas allow for the use of eminent domain and provide incentives such as tax abatements. The redevelopment law also allows the city to use powers of eminent domain, if necessary.
The city’s downtown Central Business District (CBD) was designated a redevelopment area in the early 1990s along with the Lower Main Street Redevelopment Area, which eventually were combined. Declaring an area in need of redevelopment doesn’t mean eminent domain is always used but it can help cobble together disparate properties as was the case for instance, with the Park Square development.
The Planning Board is authorized to have each redevelopment area presented separately or together at a public hearing required under the law.