LINCROFT HOUSING PLAN RATTLES NEIGHBORS

avayaA proposal to build more than 300 townhomes at a former Avaya property in Lincroft has neighbors worried. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

A plan to build out a vacant property in Lincroft with more than 300 homes has neighbors concerned and “real nervous” about the impacts of such a large development in one of Middletown’s more tranquil areas.

Plans submitted by Four Ponds Associates call for 342 residential units — 274 of them townhomes and 68 apartments — on the 68-acre property most recently used as an office of business technology giant Avaya.

While the plans are under review by the township’s planning department, nearby residents full of questions and concerns are banding together in opposition to develop the sprawling tract on Middletown-Lincroft Road, which is now the site of a 352,000-square-foot office building, according to property records.

“I think the entire village and Lincroft is so upset by this,” said Bill Elliot, who lives on Seagull Lane, which abuts the Avaya property. “We can’t understand why this property was selected. It really makes no sense.”

Before concerns about traffic, safety and a general disturbance to the area’s makeup, Elliot said he and others want to know, from an official perspective, at least, what the vision is for that property.

A similar plan was submitted to the township last year, but was never completed. Elliot said neighbors and members of the Lincroft Village Green Association, a non-profit advocacy group, were told that the issue was “put to bed.”

Now the developer has submitted this proposal, which Elliot said “came out of the blue.”

The worry is that a major residential development could adversely affect property values, traffic and safety, he said.

“It’s going to have a tremendous impact on our property values. It will just tower over our homes,” Elliot said. “To be honest, we can’t get a straight answer. We’re starting to get really nervous.”