Flashing light will signal new development’s entrance in Marlboro

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MARLBORO — A flashing traffic signal will be in place on Route 79 at the entrance and exit for a new residential development known as The Parc at Marlboro.

In December, the members of the Township Council authorized the placement of the traffic signal at the intersection of Route 79 and a new street known as Arcadia Boulevard, which is the entrance and exit for The Parc at Marlboro.

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As of Dec. 29, the poles holding the new traffic signal were in place, but the flashing light was not yet operational.

The new flashing light – which is not a full traffic signal – is 1,700 feet south of the full traffic signal at the intersection of Route 79 and Ryan Road.

“A traffic condition exists at the intersection of Route 79 and Arcadia Boulevard which requires the installation of a flashing beacon system,” the council’s resolution states.

“This light could help prevent a lot of accidents that may occur in that area,” Mayor Jonathan Hornik said, although he expressed concern about the left turn some drivers will make from Arcadia Boulevard to Route 79 south.

Drivers who make a left turn out of the development will have to clear vehicles that are heading north and south on the state highway as they enter Route 79 southbound.

Hornik said the flashing signal will have the capability of becoming a full traffic signal, but it will not initially be configured as a full traffic signal.

In 2020, a residential development application submitted by El at Marlboro, LLC, was approved by the Marlboro Planning Board.

The Parc at Marlboro is being constructed by Lennar Homes.

El at Marlboro, LLC, will pay for the flashing traffic signal at no cost to Marlboro or to the state, Business Administrator Jonathan Capp said.

The application submitted by El at Marlboro 79, LLC, was part of a settlement agreement related to Marlboro’s obligation to provide opportunities for the development of affordable housing in the 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.

At the time the application was before the Planning Board, Hornik said, “I don’t want to entertain a project of this size or scope, but a judge told us we have to. We have been dreading these days coming when we had to address the unfulfilled affordable housing problem of Marlboro, which was created well before any of our time.

“This application is only here because we are required by a court order to satisfy our (affordable housing) obligation. That being said, what we try to do when we deal with a court ordered settlement is to come up with products the town needs.

“I am a second generation family in Marlboro and my kids will be a third generation and they need a place to live. These are the types of units we need for the next generation. I want to compliment (the applicant) for coming up with a product this town will use and need,” Hornik said.

The residential development application involved a 34-acre property on the northbound side of Route 79 opposite Butchers Lane. A portion of the Henry Hudson Trail adjoins the site along the rear of the property line.

The applicant proposed subdividing the property into 226 lots: 224 lots for attached market rate townhouses of at least 2,577 square feet each; a 2.7-acre lot for 56 affordable housing units; and a 14.6-acre lot containing roads, a clubhouse and a storm water management basin. The only access road to and from the development is on Route 79.

The 224 townhouses were proposed to be constructed in 16 eight-unit, three-story buildings and 16 six-unit, three-story buildings.

The 56 affordable housing units (11 one-bedroom units, 33 two-bedroom units and 12 three-bedroom units) were proposed to be constructed in two three-story buildings.

When the application was before the Planning Board, Mitchell Newman of Lennar Homes said each townhouse would have three bedrooms, a two-car garage, a basement and an 8-foot-tall privacy fence for the backyard.

According to The Parc at Marlboro website, the market rate units are priced between $685,990 and $845,990.

At the time the application was before the board, Hornik advocated for the installation of a traffic signal on Route 79 at the Arcadia Boulevard entrance to the development.

Route 79 is a state highway that runs between Freehold Borough and Matawan.

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