Developers of two applications pending before the Lakewood Planning Board have pulled their applications "until further notice."

The reason: Neighbors have retained Teaneck Attorney Jan Meyer Esq. to represent their objections to the applications!

10 Sem LLC has submitted Application # SP-2536AA seeking Change of Use/Site Plan Exemption approval to convert a two-story dwelling at 10 Seminole Drive into a school. A Change of Use application indicates that the actual building on site is to remain with only internal construction and site work to be done.

The lot is a rectangular shaped 30,000 square foot property with frontage on the northwest side of Seminole Drive, approximately 72 feet south of West County Line Road.

According to the preliminary architectural plans, the dwelling will be used for 4 classrooms and 2 offices are proposed for the school. The school will also contain a warming kitchen with a large dining room on the first floor, and large storage areas in the basement.

The majority of the front of the tract, including an asphalt driveway, will be removed and replaced with a new parking area consisting of 8 new parking spaces including 1 ADA space. 2 of these parking spaces are stacked. An existing garage is to remain to provide an additional parking space for a total of 9 spaces. 

Access to the site will be provided by 2 one-way access driveways with counterclockwise circulation from Seminole Drive.

Curb and sidewalk exist along the Seminole Drive frontage. Other than the proposed parking area, the only new improvement appears to be a handicap access ramp in the front of the building.

The application requires two variances:

1) The existing front yard setback to the covered porch is 49.70 feet. This would require a Front Yard Setback Variance as a front yard setback of 50 feet is required for schools in the R-12 Zone.

2) Existing Accessory Side Yard Setback variances must be reaffirmed for the 2 existing sheds located near the northern property line and the garage located near the southern property line. Side yard setbacks of approximately 2 feet are proposed for these improvements, whereas an accessory side yard setback of 10 feet is required.

The application also seeks a whole lot of waivers:

• General Note Indicating Method of Water & Sewer Service.

• General Note Regarding Any Grading Required.

• Circulation.

• Locating of playground/activity area.

• Landscape & Lighting.

• Providing a bus drop off/pick up area. A bus loading/unloading area has not been delineated. (The plans note that the ADA aisle can be utilized as a bus loading/unloading aisle.)

Additionally, the proposed bus circulation indicates conflicts with the egress driveway curbing and proposed regulatory signage.

• Providing on-site curbing. A small portion of the proposed on-site parking area does not have any proposed curbing.

• Providing lighting.

• Proposed Grading.

• Providing shade trees and/or landscaping.

• Perimeter buffer relief is required from a residential use. A twenty foot buffer is required from a residential use, whereas a buffer of less than twenty feet is proposed. This is an existing condition that must be re-evaluated due to the proposed change of use.

• Relief is required for the proposed parking which is located within the required buffer. The parking design has been revised to relocate the proposed parking spaces outside of the required buffer. However, an existing garage that is indicated to remain is located within this buffer. Therefore, relief is still required.

• No lighting information has been provided for the proposed parking area. The plans note that minimal building mounted lighting will be provided, and the lights will not be in use after 6pm. No other information such as quantity of lights, location, or footcandles has been provided.

• Testimony shall be provided regarding refuse storage and collection. An 8’x16’ enclosure has been proposed. Unless relief is granted, the enclosure shall be revised to provide solid walls in accordance with the township ordinance.

Access to the proposed refuse enclosure shall be demonstrated. A stacked parking space is located directly in front of the enclosure. At minimum, 2 of the 8 proposed parking spaces will have to be unused in order to access the refuse enclosure.

(Essentially, between saving parking spaces for access to the trash enclosure and utilizing additional parking spaces for bus loading, there does not appear to be much room for actual parking...)

The school is represented by Attorneys Jean Cipriani and Robin La Bue Esq.

Neighbors of the proposed school have retained Mr. Meyer to represent their opposition.

The application was placed on Tuesday's Planning Board meeting agenda.

However, the application was not heard.

Prior to the scheduled public hearing on the application, Ms. La Bue notified the Board that the application is adjourned until further notice!

Congregation Meshech Chochma submitted Application # SD-2564, proposing to extend Rose Place and construct two duplex structures, a single-family residence, and convert the nursing home at 77 Williams Street to a school.

The new roadway extension is proposed to be only 28 feet wide, with no cul-de-sac bulb.

A sidewalk has been proposed on only one side of the private road.

The application requires a front yard setback variance for one of the lots, as well as design waivers from sidewalk along the west side of Rose Place, sidewalk along the Williams Street frontage, and street trees along the Williams Street frontage.

The circulation plan submitted only depicts sufficient room for a "passenger car" to turn around. The circulation plan does not show sufficient room for a fire truck.

Curiously though, Lakewood's Board of Fire Commissioners saw no need to submit any concerns regarding this application to the Planning Board.

To their credit, the neighbors did not sit back, and they retained Mr. Meyer to represent their opposition.

In response, Mrs. Miriam B. Weinstein, Esq., representing the school immediately pulled the application "until further notice."

Mr. Meyer has become the "go-to" attorney to represent opposition to land use applications in Lakewood!

As previously reported here on FAA News, Mr. Meyer scored a big win on behalf of neighbors of Yeshiva Toras Chaim when Judge Ford overturned the Planning Board's approval of their dormitory expansion, and when Judge Hodgson denied the yeshiva's request to reconsider this ruling. Mr. Meyer is currently representing the neighbors in opposition to the yeshiva's appeal.

As previously reported here on FAA News, Mr. Meyer is currently representing neighbors of Sunset Road Sefardic Congregation who are opposed to their Planning Board application. After one contentious hearing, the application was withdrawn until further notice.

As previously reported here on FAA News, Mr. Meyer is representing residents who are opposed to a Zoning Board application for houses on Spruce Street. Facing this opposition, the developer pulled his application.

As previously reported here on FAA News, Mr. Meyer is also representing residents who are opposed to a Planning Board application for a child care center on Spruce Street. Facing this opposition, the developer pulled this application as well.

As previously reported here on FAA News, Mr. Meyer is currently representing neighbors who are opposed to Kollel Kodshim's Site Plan application.

As previously reported here on FAA News, Mr. Meyer is currently representing neighbors who are opposed to Congregation Talmud Torah Toras Yechiel's application.

As previously reported here on FAA News, Mr. Meyer is currently representing neighbors who are opposed to Yeshiva Chemdas Hatorah's application for 125 houses on James and Cross Street.

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Anonymous said...

Land owner wants to develop a space on his property. Neighbors oppose because they are used to having open/private space. Yeshivas stopped.
And somehow you see the opposition as a good thing for jews? For Torah growth? Shame

Henry Street resident said...

The neighbors are opposing the proposed deviations from the zoning ordinance requirements on the basis that the benefits of the deviation would not substantially outweigh the detriments.

Anonymous said...

FALSE. hey are objecting even when there are no variances...
It's just about people not giving an inch.
I personally know of an ongoing case where the neighbor said they would remove objection if they get free land. It's gross. and sickly. The only ones benefiting anre the lawyers...

Shlomo Edelman said...

@Anon 6:58pm

That's exactly what Rabbi Ari Pruzansky of Yeshiva Chemdas Hatorah did - he told the developers that if the give him free land then he will hook up with them and help them get a Planned Educational Campus designation which then permitted them to get 73 duplexes where only singles were permitted.

It's a shame that yeshivos enter into such deals.