A possible vote on whether to allow the construction of a six-story hotel on the Red Bank anchorage of the Cooper Bridge was postponed Wednesday night after a borough resident filed a lawsuit challenging the plan.
After 40 minutes behind closed doors, the town’s planning board voted to postpone a scheduled hearing on the proposal for a 72-room Hampton Inn until September 19 so that its members could “digest” the lawsuit, filed in state Superior Court in Freehold Tuesday.
Meantime, Ron Gasiorowski, a lawyer representing Prospect Avenue resident Stephen Mitchell, hopes to persuade the court that the matter belongs before the zoning board, not the planning board.
The zoning board’s decision exempts the former filling station site from an ordinance that appeared to limit its use to residences. Planner Roy DeBoer, below, testified for the developer. (Click to enlarge)
A plan for a six-story, 76-room Hampton Inn hotel on the Red Bank anchorage of the Cooper Bridge advanced Thursday night.
Asked solely for an interpretation of a 2009 land use law that allowed only single-family housing along once-stately Rector Place, the borough zoning board unanimously ruled that the ordinance was not intended to apply to the proposed hotel site, long home to a gas station, and had been mistakenly included by the town council.
The plan, however, still faces substantial procedural hurdles, including requests for height and density variances, as well as a glaring question: should a site that the state Department of Environmental Protection says is too contaminated for housing, schools and hospitals have a hotel on it? More →