Brick Township council members are expected to vote on whether to introduce an ambitious plan that could lead to the redevelopment of several areas of land on three major township thoroughfares.
The council, according to a copy of a meeting agenda, will vote Tuesday night on what has become known as the “Village Plan,” which received the endorsement of the planning board last month. The plan, in its simplest form, rezones portions of Herbertsville Road, Drum Point Road and Mantoloking Road in order to allow mixed-use development of first-floor storefronts and apartments above them.
The plan calls for the rezoning of dozens of properties, a list of which appear at the end of this article. At a planning board meeting in August, officials said the rezoning plan is aimed at redeveloping areas along the three major roadways similar to downtown areas of Red Bank, Asbury Park and Toms River. In recent years, studies have indicated that millennials have preferred to live in such settings versus the suburban landscape that characterizes most of Brick. But the plan is also likely to stoke controversy over the development of more residential units.
Swaths of each roadway – all county-owned streets – would move into what would be known as the “Village Zone.” According to a copy of the ordinance up for consideration, the village zone would replace what was previous known as the Mixed-Use Overlay Zone. The Village Zone would be used to “revitalize older commercial areas while maintaining the neighborhood character and quality,” the ordinance states. It would permit apartment units to be developed “only in conjunction with a non-residential use or uses permitted in that zone.”
Permitted uses in the Village Zone would include single family homes, buildings with a maximum of two residential units only when paired with a commercial use, retail businesses, offices, and businesses that sell physical goods, such as food stores, liquor stores, pharmacies, meat and poultry shops, restaurants, stationary, tobacco and newspaper stores, fishing and boating supply stores and hardware stores. While those examples of businesses were included in the ordinance specifically, the zone does not limit uses to those examples.
The zone would also allow restaurants, luncheonettes, microbreweries and “personal services establishments,” such as a salon, a dry-cleaning store, or appliance repair shops. Trades including plumbers, carpenters, painters and printers would also be allowed open businesses in the zone. Adult day-care centers, boat dealership showrooms, plus a slew of “studio” uses, including martial arts, personal training, fitness, dance and music would be allowed.
Gas stations, auto repair shops and auto body shop were all explicitly prohibited from opening within the zone.
In order to develop residential units in the zone, they would have to be placed above a commercial businesses or a “separate or attached” ground-floor structure. The residential units would need their own entrances.
New development or “major” renovation development would require the endorsement of the planning board’s architectural review committee and the board itself, whose members will look to encourage “design creativity, flexibility and quality design that is sensitive to the surrounding context and unique site conditions.” If located adjacent to a residential zone, all buildings in the Village Zone would be required to place a 25-foot buffer between the properties.
All of the development will comply with state affordable housing regulations and be included in the township’s “Housing and Fair Share Plan” that is mandated by the courts.
The ordinance will be introduced Tuesday night, meaning that if it is approved by the council, a second vote would occur at the Oct. 9 council following a public hearing.
Tuesday’s meeting begins at 7 p.m. in the township municipal complex.
Addresses Included For Zoning Changes:
Entire “Village Zone” Ordinance: