RED BANK: STATION PLACE WORK BEGINS

After years of zoning hearings, lawsuits and aborted plans, shovels finally went into the ground last week for what’s now dubbed Station Place, 45 luxury apartments and 12 affordable units at Monmouth, West and Oakland streets in Red Bank.

Formerly to have been called Courtyards at Monmouth, the project is being built by Roger Mumford, who has replaced substandard housing on Bridge Avenue near Drs. James Parker Boulevard with new homes. Mumford tells redbankgreen he expects tenant move-ins at Station Place to begin in July, 2014. (Photos by Dan Natale. Click to enlarge)

COURTYARDS PROJECT WINS FINAL OK

courtyards-at-monmouthThe development, fronting on Monmouth, West and Oakland streets, calls for a dozen units for low- and moderate-income buyers. (Click to enlarge)

With a last-minute concession to neighbors, a plan to build 57 residences on a vacant lot near the Red Bank train station won final approval Thursday night.

It’s the third such plan for the property, after two earlier ones ran aground. But a lawyer for the property owner, Amboy Bank, pledged that this one, called Courtyards at Monmouth like its immediate predecessor, will actually get built.

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BAIT SHOP SEEKS TO REEL IN APPROVAL

111-efrontThe former Harper’s Copy Center on East Front Street would become a bait and tackle shop if Red Bank zoners approve. (Click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Looking to sink a hook into a property on the East Side of Red Bank, a Fair Haven man will go before the zoning board Thursday seeking approval to open a bait and tackle shop.

The application, for a “certficate of continuation of non-conforming use” in a zone that prohibits retailing, was submitted earlier this week by Max Berry, of Fair Haven.

Berry, who could not be reached for comment, intends to open Pride Bait and Tackle at the former site of Harper’s Copy Center, which relocated its services to Rumson earlier this year.

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COURTYARDS PLAN GETS CLOSER ONCE-OVER

courtyards-2James Hulsizer with a depiction of the planned Courtyards at Monmouth. Below, an architect’s rendering from last summer. (Click to enlarge)

courtyards-at-monmouthRed Bank zoners held the first of what is expected to be a series of hearings on the details of a proposed 57-unit housing development on a neglected stretch of Monmouth Street Thursday night.

GS Realty, the unit of Amboy Bank that owns the site, is seeking a long list of variances, from building heights and setbacks from the street, in order to clear the way for the so-called Courtyards at Monmouth project.

Last July, byt a 5-2 vote, the zoning board granted a use variance for what members called “a very dense project” in a new train station zone formed to attract high-density housing and retailing, though the plan calls for no stores. At the time, those in favor cited a desire to jump-start construction on the 1.24-acre property, which is also bounded by West and Oakland streets.

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BANK SAYS STORES WOULD DOOM PROJECT

courtyards-at-monmouthRobert Cogan, architect for the Courtyards At Monmouth proposal, gives his segment of the three-hour testimony to the zoning board Thursday night. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Representatives of the bank looking to build 57 residential units on a desolate corner of Monmouth Street have no doubt that if they get borough approval, their project will be a success in Red Bank.

They’ll just have to wait to find out if they can even step on the path toward approval.

After three hours of testimony from a handful of lawyers and experts representing the property’s owner, Amboy Bank, the zoning board short-circuited the group’s pitch for the evening and continued the hearing until next month.

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BANK AIMS TO UP ITS RETURN ON MONMOUTH

courtyards-1-040710A subsidiary of Amboy Bank is seeking approval for an all-residential project at the corner of Monmouth and West streets, below. (Click to enlarge)

courtyards-2-040710On the agenda for a special meeting of the Red Bank zoning board tonight: yet another plan for a major development on the site of a former filling station on Monmouth Street.

Yep, that same place at the southeast corner of West Street that was the subject of not one but two prior approvals in the past seven years, neither of which resulted in so much as a shovel going into the ground.

Amboy Bank, which now owns the property, wants to build townhouse-style apartments there under the name Courtyards at Monmouth. So why not just dust off the approval won by Rumson’s George Coffenberg, who relinquished the project to the bank shortly after getting his approval for a project, also dubbed called Courtyards at Monmouth, in early 2008?

Because in the interim, Red Bank’s governing body changed the zoning laws and included the property in a so-called “train station overlay” zone that allows for buildings up to 50 feet tall and densities of up to 35 dwelling units per acre, up from the prior limit of 25.

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