RED BANK: SPEAKEASY ON ZONING AGENDA

21-23 broad red bank The former Agostino antique store space at 21 Broad Street, vacant for seven years, is the site of a proposed food market and ‘speakeasy.’ (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njOn Thursday’s Red Bank busy zoning board agenda: a proposal for a downtown food market and speakeasy, plus a plan to build a new house on the site of a devastating fire, and changes outside the Two River Theater.

Fire destroyed the house at 16 Leonard Street in March, 2017. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

• Now nearing completion on construction of a major addition, The Two River Theater has a plan to renovate the existing outdoor plaza in front of its existing lobby. It plans calls for landscaping, benches, tables and chairs, a storage shed and a pergola/stage for outdoor events, which require variances.

• Even though the vacant lot at 16 Leonard Street has houses on either side, Wilson Homes LLC needs a variance to build a new house there because the property is in the light industrial zone, according to the agenda.

The property was the site of a fire in March, 2017 that destroyed the previous home. Monmouth County real estate records show that Michael Wilson bought the lot in early May for $140,000.

• Last on the agenda, which also includes a residential addition on Hudson Avenue, is 21 Broad Street.

Applicant 17 Broad Street Red Bank, LLC, owned by Rick Stavola, needs a use variance approval to convert the basement level of the structure to a “jazz hall/speakeasy,” according to the agenda. The street level would be used for an “open market,” though no detailed description of what’s planned was available in advance.

The second and third levels would be used as office space. Variances are needed because the speakeasy is not permitted in the CCD-2 zone and adequate parking is not provided. Approval is also needed for a change of use from apartments to offices on the third floor.

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