BRICK – An application for a residential and retail complex to be located near Ocean Medical Center was put on hold by the Board of Adjustment when it was discovered that the public notice was deficient in notifying everyone living within 200 feet of the development.
The Kamson Corporation, of Englewood, is still planning to develop the triangular-shaped 9.3-acre site, bordered by Route 88, Burrsville Squankum Road and Jack Martin Boulevard, said Board of Adjustment Chairman Harvey Langer.
About two dozen residents, many who live in the area of Forge Pond, let out a collective groan when Langer announced that the application had been removed from the agenda during the June 20 meeting.
“I didn’t know until late this afternoon,” Langer said when members of the audience objected to the cancellation. “The Board is prevented from hearing it until the notice is revised and corrected.”
That’s true, said Board of Adjustment attorney John P. Miller, who said that the refiled notice must be published 10 days before the hearing to be “acceptable legally.”
The Kamson Corporation has filed the entire application with the township’s Land Use Department and anyone could review it and/or purchase a copy prior to a rescheduled hearing, Langer said.
About three years ago, Kamson Corporation planned to develop “Ocean Pointe” at the site, which included a 103-room hotel, 66 apartments, some 40,000 square feet of retail and 413 parking spaces.
An application for a new plan – that scraps the hotel but includes some 48,000 square feet of retail space and 92 apartments – would be called “Bay Pointe Village.”
The former application had been before the township Planning Board at least eight times before it was kicked over to the Board of Adjustment who voted that they would have jurisdiction over the application.
According to New Jersey Municipal Land Use law, the Board of Adjustment is the only board that can grant use variances, which require a greater burden of proof.
It is also tougher to get approval from the Board of Adjustment, where the applicant needs at least five out of seven votes for approval.
“A new hearing date is unknown at this time,” Langer said. “Everyone in the room will have an opportunity to make comments when the application is complete. It could go to next year,” he said.
Once the developer’s professionals – including lawyers, planners, engineers, architects and more – have completed their testimony, any member of the public could question them, Langer said.
In the past, many residents wore “Save Our Neighborhood” stickers to the hearings to show their objection to the planned development.
Some said they had traffic and congestion concerns for the area and worries about who would occupy the apartments.
The 9.3-acre parcel was named by Mayor John G. Ducey as one of two suitable sites in town for a new VA outpatient clinic.
The Veterans Administration is looking to lease a site that could accommodate an 80,000 square-foot building with at least 480 parking spaces. Kamson Corporation submitted a letter of interest to lease the property to the VA for the clinic.
Toms River and Wall Township were also named as possible sites for the new outpatient clinic. It is unclear when the site of the new center would be announced.
Once a new hearing date has been scheduled for the application, the date would be available on the township website at Bricktownship.net. Click on “Boards and Commissions” then on the dropdown menu click on Board of Adjustment.