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RED BANK: ZONERS OPEN WITH BIG AGENDA

42-monmouth-st-concept-081618-500x318-9180416Two new floors are proposed for the former Fameabilia building on Monmouth Street, where a microbrewery and restaurant are planned for the first floor. (Rendering by Larry C. Johnson. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot-topic_03-220x138-9108919Should a one-story building in downtown Red Bank be permitted to add two floors? Should a gas station at a busy corner be allowed to add a Dunkin’ Donuts shop to its site?

Those questions are scheduled to go before the borough zoning board at its first meeting of 2019 Thursday night.

rb-shell-071118-4-500x375-8223098The plan for the Shell station includes replacing an existing self-serve car wash and convenience store with the coffee-and-doughnut shop. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

• The agenda calls for the resumption of a hearing begun in September on 42 Monmouth Street, which has been vacant since the departure of Fameabilia 10 years ago. Under a proposal by new owner Florin Lupo, the building would get two additional stories that would contain four apartments.

For the ground floor, Lupu is seeking a use variance to convert the existing retail space to two tenant spaces: a microbrewery and a takeout pasta restaurant.

At the start of the case in September, board member Sean Murphy expressed concern that the expansion would “add to the parking burden” downtown. But Lupo’s attorney argued that the proposal would put less pressure on parking than a 162-seat restaurant at the same address that won planning board approval in 2013, under a prior ownership, but was never built.

The borough planning office has determined that 25 parking spaces would be needed; 10 spots are proposed onsite, and four of them are to be dedicated to residential tenants.

• Also on the agenda is a proposed addition of a Dunkin’ Donuts to the Shell Station at Newman Springs Road and Shrewsbury Avenue. The shop would replace the existing convenience store and car wash on the site.

The meeting starts at 6:30 p.m. at borough hall, 90 Monmouth Street. Here’s the agenda.

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