RED BANK: FAMILIAR FACES AT HAMPTON II

Engineer Rich Kenderian testifies for the hotel developer, above. Below, objector Stephen Mitchell reviewing plans. (Photo by Sarah Klepner. Click to enlarge)

By SARAH KLEPNER

Parking and stormwater emerged as early issues when the second round of hearings for a proposed six-storyRed Bank hotel got underway Monday night.

The 76-room Hampton Inn would be built at the foot of the Route 35 Cooper Bridge, at the northern gateway to town, on the former site of an Exxon gas station. A series of combative hearings on the plan that began in August, 2011 ended nearly a year later with a ruling the structure was too tall.

With zoning rules since amended by the borough council to accommodate the building’s height, the start of round two brought out familiar adversaries – and one new one who, if she was present, did not announce herself or her interest.

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RED BANK: CONTROVERSIAL HOTEL RETURNS

A Hampton Inn hotel is proposed for the long-vacant Exxon station site at the foot of the Cooper Bridge.  (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

It’s back.

After a year of dormancy, a controversial proposal for a six-story, 76-room Hampton Inn hotel at the northern gateway to Red Bank returns to the spotlight Monday night, when the borough planning board begins anew with what’s expected to be another series of hearings.

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A CHANGE OF ADDRESS FOR PLANNED HOTEL?

Hampton Inn attorney Marty McGann cross-examines opposition witness Gordon Gemma, center, as lawyer Ron Gasiorowski looks on Thursday night. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

The developers of proposed 72-room Hampton Inn in Red Bank insist the property on which the hotel would be built is not on Rector Place.

Problem: they previously agreed that it was.

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BATTLE OVER HOTEL HEIGHT DRAGS ON

A planned six-story hotel at the longtime site of an Exxon station is the subject of a hearings at both the planning and zoning boards.   (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

An opponent of a planned hotel at the foot of the Route 35 Cooper’s Bridge made his fullest case yet Thursday night that the building violates Red Bank’s height limits.

But after two slow-moving, trial-like hearings before the town zoning board, the lawyer for the hotel has barely begun to put on his defense, and no resolution of the dispute is likely for at least another month.

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MYSTERY HAMPTON INN PLAN OPPONENT ID’D

Lawyer Ron Gasiorowski, left, said the owners of a Tinton Falls hotel have been paying his fees for representing Hampton Inn opponent Stephen Mitchell, right. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

After months of secrecy, the lawyer for the most vocal opponent of a proposed Hampton Inn in Red Bank has identified the moneybags paying for his services.

They’re the operators of the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel on Hope Road in Tinton Falls.

Attorney Ron Gasiorowski ended his cat-and-mouse game over Stephen Mitchell’s backing Thursday night, when he told the borough zoning board that brothers Carey and Doran Tejfal of Tinton Falls Realty Lodging were picking up the tab for his services.

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HOTEL FOES FOCUS ON RIVER VIEWS

gasiorowski-3Lawyer Ron Gasiorowski grills Roy DeBoer, a planner for the developer of the proposed Hampton Inn. Below, a sketch shows the east side of the hotel. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

hampton-elevOpponents of a proposed proposed 72-room hotel in Red Bank seized on a claim Monday night that the seven-story structure would offer improved, albeit “filtered” views of the Navesink River for passersby.

They also began whittling away at arguments made in favor of a dozen variances or waivers needed for the Hampton Inn to be built on the site of a disused gas station on Route 35, at the foot of Cooper’s Bridge.

The  challenges highlighted what foes consider numerous shortcomings of the plan, which is beset by questions about size, traffic, parking and environmental contamination issues – not to mention a pending lawsuit over whether the borough planning board ought to be considering the proposal.

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QUESTIONS RAISED ABOUT HOTEL LAWSUIT

hampton-inn-siteA borough resident has filed suit to stop a six-story, 72-room hotel from being built on Route 35 at the Cooper Bridge. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Is someone lurking in the shadows of the legal challenge to the proposed Red Bank Hampton Inn?

Marty McGann, the lawyer for the hotel’s developer, Rbank Capital LLC, effectively raised the question Monday night, when he asked whether borough resident Stephen Mitchell, who has filed a state Superior Court lawsuit to derail planning board hearings on the proposal, had ties to another hotel or the lodging industry.

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