Parking is big question in Center Street apartment plan

Dec. 1, 2015: It’s not clear where residents in a proposed 22-unit apartment building on Center Street will park, but there are options.

The Metuchen Zoning Board approved the plan for the four-story, 22-unit building at 22 Center Street at its meeting in November on several conditions, according to borough zoning officer Chris Cosenza.

The biggest condition was a payment in lieu of parking, which would be used to potentially create additional parking if necessary, Cosenza said Tuesday. Funds also would be used to upgrade existing parking, pedestrian connections and sidewalks.

Parking has been a concern with this project submitted by Pearl Street Associates LLC and has created a stir on borough-focused social media outlets.

badparkingThe Metuchen Parking Authority committed to providing monthly parking for the residents in Authority parking lots, Cosenza said.

“While no guarantee was provided that residents would be given reserved spaces in certain locations, it was noted that there are various Authority parking facilities nearby, including by the A&P, as well as the New Street lot and the parking deck that is under construction,” Cosenza said.

The four-story building will include eight one-bedroom apartments and 14 two-bedroom units, according to a description of the project from the borough. The building will be located near the intersection of Middlesex Avenue and Center Street, but behind an existing vacant lot that fronts Middlesex Avenue, Cosenza said.

“The proposed building will not be located in such a manner where it will front directly upon Middlesex Avenue,” he said.

The project still has a way to go before construction actually begins. Pearl Street needs various approvals including from Middlesex County Planning Board, Freehold Soil Conservation District and commitments from utility companies to provide service, Cosenza said.

Pearl Street also will have to comply with affordable housing obligation and work with council and the mayor on a developer’s agreement.

“This process typically takes at least a couple months but is heavily dependent upon how aggressive the applicant is to have their design professionals revise the plans, file the necessary paperwork and coordinate with … outside agencies,” Cosenza said. “At this point, I am not aware as to when the project will be completed.”

Photo courtesy of bengt-re

One thought on “Parking is big question in Center Street apartment plan

  1. Not having assigned parking for each and every new housing project is a terrible way to proceed.
    It appears to be taking the easy way out.
    We will soon be having increased traffic from the new deck, Whole Foods and the other new stores. Now add in the cars from this new housing. You don’t need a degree in planning to see what our officials are setting us up for.


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