By JOANNE L. PAPAIANNI
Developers who own property in Asbury Park’s Waterfront Redevelopment Area may be able to start building on their lots as early as June 1 following a vote by the Planning Board this week on amendments.
The amendments will now be sent to the City Council.
The first part of the amendment deals with the lot by lot development and stipulates properties must be 15,000 square feet and have a 100 foot frontage.
The second part of the amendment, Global Redevelopment, will oversee individual parcels of land that do not adhere to the the first part and will require that variances be issued.
City Manager Michael Capabianco said he had to “tread very carefully” in explaining the changes at a public meeting because the amendments were discussed in executive session and are governed by confidentiality guidelines.
Another aspect of the changes involved the proposal to expand the redevelopment area to include a larger part of Sunset Lake.
Capabianco said expanding the area will allow work on the lake to be funded with grant money acquired by those building in the WRA.
The board has 45 days to memorialize the application which if approved will then be introduced at the following council meeting. After council’s introduction and second reading, if approved, developers may be able to start submitting applications by June 1.
“I have four or five developers asking ‘When can we start,’” Capabianco said.
Board Attorney Jack Serpico asked board members to submit their recommendations to him, which he will put into a list for the them for final review at their March meeting.
Capabianco said the amendment resolution could be introduced at council’s March 28 meeting.
Design exemptions, which would come before the board for review could include variances for parking requirements and changes or additions to curb cuts.
The amendment also stipulates that the Master Developer, iStar, is solely responsible for infrastructure in the WRA.
Mayor John Moor who is on the Planning Board said the council would have final approval for variances granted in the WRA.
Capabianco said there are several lots of varying size that would have to be reviewed under the Global Redevelopment
Councilwoman Yvonne Clayton said if someone came to the board with a 14,500 square foot lot, the board would look at the variances needed.
When casting her vote Clayton said, “We are letting loose the hostages (and) lets them develop the property they own,” she said.
Interim Planning Board Planner Michael Sullivan said the changes will generate more development and clarifies guidelines.
He also said the amendments don’t change the direction of redevelopment efforts but promotes more flexibility.
“I have no hesitation in recommending it,” he said before the vote.