By JOHN T. WARD
The owners of Red Bank’s T. Thomas Fortune house ran into the first obstacle Thursday in their controversial quest to raze the historic structure.
Borough planning director Donna Smith-Barr found the Vaccarelli family’s application for a demolition permit incomplete, and kicked it back for more information, she tells redbankgreen.
In itself, the decision itself may barely slow the Vaccarelli’s plan for a decrepit structure that once was the home of the pioneering civil rights journalist Timothy Thomas Fortune. But the request could also face the hurdle of a zoning board review, Mayor Pasquale Menna tells redbankgreen. And the leader of a year-old group formed to save the structure said he is prepared to sue to stop the demolition, if necessary.
“The attorneys I have can have it stayed for 18 months,” said Peter Primavera, director of the T. Thomas Fortune Project. “We’re doing the paperwork right now.”