Jackson planners approve commercial buildings on County Line Road

JACKSON – The members of the Jackson Planning Board have voted to approve an application that proposed the construction of six commercial buildings at 440 North County Line Road.

North County Line Road is designated as Ocean County Route 526 in Jackson.

Representatives of the applicant, Ehrman Family Investment Co., LLC, initially presented testimony to the board and members of the public on June 7. The matter was not decided that evening and the application was carried to the board’s meeting on Oct. 4.

The applicant initially proposed the construction of seven buildings comprised of contractor warehouses and office space totaling 130,600 square feet. The application has been revised to six buildings and a total of 122,600 square feet.

The applicant is represented by attorney Salvatore Alfieri, who described the revisions that had been made to the plan since the previous meeting in June.

“Our traffic engineer met with Ocean County (representatives) to make sure the new design would be acceptable to the county,” Alfieri said, adding he believes the applicant had addressed the primary concerns that were expressed by the board in June.

Engineer Brian Murphy described the proposed development site and said, “We are on the north side of County Line Road. To the east of us is a self-storage facility … and there is a county drainage facility also to the east. … To the west is a pool company.”

He said most of the revisions to the plan were made on the east side of the property.

“Previously, we had four buildings along the east side. We removed one building, so we are down to three buildings on the east side. That is a reduction of 8,000 square feet.

“For the record, the new totals are 122,600 square feet, comprised of 108,600 square feet of warehouse space and 14,000 square feet of office space,” Murphy said.

Testimony indicated three buildings were shifted to the west to eliminate a previously proposed double road.

“That (decision) gave us more room in the rear of the buildings, which (allowed us) to get an access road around the back, and we have a one-way access into the property off County Line Road that is going to be for trucks only.

“We met with the county and the county is agreeable for that to be a one-way in access and not an exit. The exit will remain in the center of the property, roughly,” Murphy testified.

The application requires 143 parking spaces and the applicant is proposing to provide 196 parking spaces.

Alfieri clarified the use of the office space, saying, “The office space will be ancillary to the contracted warehouse use. We are not going to have a 14,000-square-foot office.

“The (offices) are going to be ancillary to the various tenants. We won’t know the exact size of each component office until we get a user. I just want to make it clear the offices are ancillary,” the attorney said.

Traffic expert Scott Kennel provided the initial traffic report regarding the proposed development. He said he met in June with representatives of Ocean County to discuss access at the site.

“I explained to them the concerns expressed by the board, the layout of this (project) and the type of users. The county found it acceptable to provide a second driveway that would be for ingress only, and they understood doing that would help to better facilitate truck movement into and throughout the site,” Kennel said.

A revised traffic study was dated Sept. 14, 2021.

“Consistent with the prior analysis, the site driveways will operate at an excellent of service. The driveways will operate at a level of service ‘B’ (on a scale where ‘A’ is the most efficient level of service and ‘F’ is the least efficient level of service) at peak periods.

“We also addressed the intersection of Huntington Drive and County Line Road that currently operates at a level of service ‘B’ and will continue to operate at a level of service ‘B’ with this development fully built out,” Kennel said.

The traffic report had no material change in regard to the traffic count. The applicant will include a formal request for curbs and a sidewalk to Ocean County representatives in accordance with a recommendation from the board.

Following the conclusion of testimony, a motion was made to approve the Ehrman Family Investment Co. application.

Board members Timothy Dolan, Michele Campbell, Jeffrey Riker, Andrew Jozwicki, Manuela Brito, Jackson Business Administrator Terence Wall, Joseph Riccardi, Vice Chairman Leonard Haring and Chairman Robert Hudak voted “yes” on the motion.