Developer Mark Forman, who has a contract to buy 96 and 98 West Front Street, at the corner of Maple Avenue, from K Hovnanian, said an architect’s rendering posted on his website under the heading of ‘current projects,’ was a “placeholder” image, not a rendering of the actual design, which is still in development.
Forman, who said he did not receive requests for comment by redbankgreen prior to publication of article earlier in the day, said the image does not reflect his plan. The same rendering had appeared on a Florida engineering firm’s website, which identified it as a medical office building in Orlando.
Still, Forman said he expects to submit plans for an office building on the site, which abuts both the public library and Maple Cove on the Navesink River, in about three weeks.
“It’s not going to be 75 feet tall. It’s going to be within the zoning” parameters for the site, he said. The lots are in the Waterfront Development zone, which allows uses that include office buildings, hotels, multifamily housing and restaurants.
Like the Metropolitan apartments and ground-floor offices on Wallace Street, which he also developed, this one will be “a nice building that fits the town,” he said.
Forman said his purchase of the lots is contingent on his obtaining approval to build from the borough.
As reported Wednesday, the borough’s Historic Preservation Commission has listed the two buildings on the site on its inventory of historic structures, and is concerned about the possible loss of both properties.
K Hovnanian last month sold its headquarters, on the northwest corner of the same intersection, to OceanFirst Financial for $42.5 million, according to a deed filed with the Monmouth County Clerk. Hovnanian is moving to Old Bridge.
(Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)