Preliminary and final site plans for a new housing development are expected to come before the Bordentown Township Planning Board at its next meeting.
The proposed construction of homes on Route 130 between Crescent Drive and Highbridge Road is scheduled to have its first public hearing at the board’s Aug. 8 meeting at the municipal building, 1 Municipal Drive. The meeting will start at 7:30 p.m.
The applicant, Team Campus Phase II, LLC, will seek approval to construct 84 two-bedroom units in two buildings. The plan includes 19 affordable housing units for seniors.
The proposed development would be in the township’s Age Restricted-Affordable Housing Zone.
Representatives of Team Campus Phase II presented their plan for the site at a July 11 meeting during which the application was heard for completeness by the board.
Prior to the start of a formal public review of an application, the board reviews an application for completeness. The process can include a land use review of the proposed site to ensure the application is complete and technically accurate, and an environmental review to disclose and analyze potential impacts the development may cause.
Once those items are reviewed by the board members, the application is approved or denied to come before the board for a public hearing.
Although the original application that came before the board indicated the applicant planned to construct 92 units, the applicant reworked the plan and reduced the number of units to 84 after it was determined the building size and height could not accommodate a desirable living space within the units.
The applicant’s professionals said although the number of units was reduced, the site is still planned to include 19 affordable housing units.
“If you tried to use 92 units, they would have been too small,” said the applicant’s attorney, Mark Roselli. “Without changing the footprint of the building, it reduces the overall number of apartments and increases the size of the [living space], but with that, the number of affordable units has not changed.”
After a discussion among the applicant and the board’s professionals, township engineer Fred Turek said the reasoning for the applicant’s decrease in living units was due to constricted closet space within the originally planned 92 units.
“The building size and the building height will remain the same. It’s the internal [plans] that are moving around,” Turek said.
If approved, the development would contribute to the township’s requirement to comply with an affordable housing court-mandated settlement with the Fair Share Housing Center, Cherry Hill.
Representatives of the Fair Share Housing Center advocate for the construction of affordable housing throughout New Jersey.
Bordentown Township is one of approximately 11 municipalities in Burlington County that reached a settlement with the Fair Share Housing Center regarding its affordable housing obligation.
A January 2017 ruling by the New Jersey Supreme Court required municipalities to amend their affordable housing plans to meet the needs for a gap period between 1999 and 2015, when the state Council on Affordable Housing did not approve affordable housing quotas for each community.
Affordable housing is defined as housing that is sold or rented at below market rates to individuals and families whose income meets certain guidelines.
The proposed project is one of several affordable housing developments planned in the township that are in the process of seeking approval for site plans and/or approval from the zoning board and/or the planning board, or have already received approval.
This project came to the Township Committee in November 2018 when the committee members amended an ordinance to rezone property along Route 130, which is now approved for residential development after it was initially zoned for highway commercial use.