16 herbert st 030216St. Anthony of Padua parish hopes to win approval to raze this house and garage to construct a new building to provide social services. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)


The needs are evident in the long lines that form at St. Anthony of Padua in Red Bank: families short on cash for food, housing, clothing and other necessities.

Now served out of a multipurpose building on Herbert Street, where the food pantry and clothing distribution operations must be set up and taken down with regularity, the Roman Catholic parish hopes to erect a new dedicated social services building, and is scheduled to make its case to the borough zoning board Thursday night.

The plan calls for the demolition of a “somewhat dilapidated” house at 16 Herbert Street and a garage, to be replaced by a 4,500-square-foot, two-story structure, Father Alberto Tamayo, the church’s pastor, told redbankgreen.

The new building will be used as a food kitchen, with some small offices to provide privacy for clients in need of housing and other aid, he said. A meeting room that can accommodate about 50 people for community events, such as presentations by the borough police or parks and recreation department representatives, is also included, Tamayo said.

The building was designed by architect Ned Gaunt, and won’t look like an institutional structure, Tamayo said.

“I wanted people to feel like they’re walking into a home,” Tamayo said.

The second story will include bedrooms for visiting priests, according to the plan on file with the borough.

Tamayo said the estimated $750,000 cost of the project has already been covered, thanks to a recent capital campaign. He said he had prayed for guidance on the plan, telling himself, “if this is from God, we’ll raise the money. We raised the money.”

If approved, the facility is to be named St. Crispin’s Mission House, after a Franciscan cleric who advocated on behalf of working people, Tamayo said.

The proposal requires variances for a parking shortfall, with 45 spaces provided where 88 are said to be required, as well as lot coverage and setback.

Here’s the agenda: RBZB 030316