‘JUST PAINTING A HOUSE’

harding-road-gas-stationProperty owner Ray Rapcavage says he’s not interested in creating a parking lot for postal service employees on the site. But he hasn’t ruled out a farm market.

What’s up with the former filling station property on Harding Road in Red Bank?

A backhoe has appeared in recent days, and the white house next door, which has the same owner, is suddenly forest green.

But owner Ray Rapcavage tells redbankgreen nothing is in the works at the gas station site, which has undergone an environmental cleanup since the pumps and station were removed two years ago.

“I don’t have anything happening there,” he says. “Just painting a house.”

Through various entities, Rapcavage owns a handful of adjoining properties that front on Harding, Clay Street and Hudson Avenue.

Just a stone’s throw from the rear entrance to the Broad Street post office, the property is seen by local officials as a possible temporary solution to the parking shortage that postal workers face. It’s a problem that’s about to get worse as a result of a recent court ruling that upheld the borough’s ban on non-resident parking on Hudson.

Mayor Pasquale Menna, in fact, approached Rapcavage to sell him on the idea of creating a gravel lot on the site. “I don’t think so,” was Rapcavage’s answer when we asked him about the suggestion.

And what about this rumor that he’s thinking of setting up a farm market there?

“I’m open to all ideas,” the Rumson resident says.

There are no development approvals for the site, and Rapcavage says he’s waiting for signs of economic stability before making any long-term decisions about what to do with it.

Here’s our story from May 2007 on the demolition of the filling station.