Tag Archives: Post Office Plaza

Time to weigh in on the proposed design for Post Office Plaza

What do you think of the proposed design for Chatham’s Post Office Plaza?

View of the proposed building from the railroad tracks
… a slightly different design

You’re going to pay for it, so you’re entitled to have your say!

Share your views now, while there’s still time to make a difference.

E-mail Borough Administrator Steve Williams (swilliams@chathamborough.org), Professional Planner Kendra Lelie (klelie@kylemcmanus.com), and us (BrigidMcMenamin@msn.com) with your comments and questions.

Some residents have asked, for instance:

What will the place look like from Bowers Lane, or from the public parking lot?

Will the route along the south side of the Post Office Annex (leading from our public parking lot to Bowers Lane) still be a road, or only an alley?

Should we place the first floor windows a little higher to make the headlights less annoying to first floor residents? Or might taller bushes suffice?

Will there be a sidewalk between the parking lot and the building?

Will the requisite electric charging station take up one of the scarce 17 parking spaces? Will non-residents be allowed to use it?

Where will the new residents park their bikes, scooters, and strollers?

Where will the dumpsters go?

Any potential for trouble with runoff? https://ecode360.com/6793963#6793963

Please comment below and by e-mail to Borough Administrator Steve Williams (swilliams@chathamborough.org), Professional Planner Kendra Lelie (klelie@kylemcmanus.com), and us (BrigidMcMenamin@msn.com).

A good starting point for Post Office Plaza

At last we have some idea what the new apartment house on Bowers Lane might look like:

This is the view from the railroad embankment, alongside which there will be space for at least 17 cars. The short end of the L-shaped building runs along Bowers Lane. We have yet to see the sides that will be visible from the streets and public parking lot.
This is a similar design, but with flatter dormers and a bit more trim

Here’s a glimpse of the proposed floor plan presented by Bergen County’s United Way and Z Plus architects at a public meeting conducted by Borough Planner Kendra Lelie:

Tha is the proposed floor plan for the lower level, which includes seven family apartments and a community room with a prep kitchen.

 

The proposed upper level has eight family apartments, including two three bedroom units.

Of course, that design is only the first step. Our Planner has promised a collaborative decision-making process known as a “charette.”

(Here’s a definition: https://urban-regeneration.worldbank.org/node/40)

Now is the time to ask questions, raise issues, and help choose the ultimate design. You can start by reviewing our Planner’s PowerPoint here: https://onedrive.live.com/edit.aspx?resid=B17AECD7AF3011DE!591&ithint=file%2cpptx

Then contact our Planner (klelie@kylemcmanus.com) and us (brigidmcmenamin@msn.com) with questions. For instance:

What will the place look like from Bowers Lane, or from Post Office Plaza?

Will the route along the south side of the Annex (from our public parking lot to Bowers Lane) still be a road, or only an alley?

Maybe the windows on the first floor should be a little higher so the headlights in the parking lot don’t annoy residents? Or might tall bushes suffice?

Will there be a sidewalk between the parking lot and the building?

Will the requisite electric charging station take up one of the scarce 17 parking spaces? Will non-residents be allowed to use it?

Where will the new residents park their bikes, scooters, and strollers?

Any potential for trouble with runoff? https://ecode360.com/6793963#6793963

Where will the dumpsters go?

For a more detailed explanation of the proposed design and the process, check out this short video of the meeting:

Here’s how the Tap described the presentation:

https://outlook.live.com/mail/0/inbox/id/AQMkADAwATIwMTAwAC0wMmFmLWFmNDctMDACLTAwCgBGAAADm2aEtb9zqkivM9bdxIhNiQcAvxBBvbpmYUeDFmvpbvi7CgAAAgEMAAAAvxBBvbpmYUeDFmvpbvi7CgAF%2BLOYfQAAAA%3D%3D

What will it look like? That’s YOUR call!

Yes, we must build a 15-unit apartment house at Post Office Plaza.

But exactly what it will look like is up to us. Borough planner Kendra Lelie has promised a so-called “charette” process, in which all stakeholders work together to determine the outcome.

https://www.sandiego.gov/sites/default/files/gvchardesc081110.pdf

Care to see some options for Post Office Plaza? Ask questions? Maybe give your opinion?

Come to Borough Hall, 54 Fairmount Avenue this Tuesday, December 6 at 7:00 pm.

https://www.chathamborough.org/component/dpcalendar/event/3917

What do you think of the proposal?:

Great News

Yesterday morning, after three tense public hearings, Morris County Superior Court Judge Stephan Hansbury soundly rejected the Kushners’ brazen attempt to cram an unpopular 100-rental unit project on mostly public land behind our Main Street Post Office.

That decision frees Chatham Borough to meet part of its affordable housing requirements by building a 15-unit apartment house there, as our Mayor & Council voted on May 2.

For a quick summary, watch the video of Mayor Kobylarz’s comments in this Tap story:

https://www.tapinto.net/towns/chatham/?utm_source=ActiveCampaign&utm_medium=email&utm_content=Chatham+Borough+Mayor%253A+Court+Finds+that+the+Borough+is+in+Compliance+with+its+Affordable+Housing+Obligations%253B+SV+Suit+Denied&utm_campaign=Chatham+Borough+Mayor%253A+Court+Finds+that+the+Borough+is+in+Compliance+with+its+Affordable+Housing+Obligations%253B+SV+Suit+Denied

For details, check out the records at e-courts, culminating in this final court order finding Chatham in compliance with its affordable housing obligations through September 29, 2026:

Will the Kushners accept that outcome and let Chatham build some affordable housing at Post Office Plaza, or will they continue to sue, appeal, and otherwise try to block progress? Stay tuned here and at this FB group:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/2429255717325924

Like a dog with a bone

Looks like the Kushners will never give up trying to seize control of Chatham’s Post Office Plaza.

They’re still kicking and screaming to a Morris County Judge, even after he denied them standing, our Mayor announced the timetable for a better plan for that spot, the Borough Council voted to backstop the cost up to $6 million, and the Special Master seemed satisfied.

#keepchathamsmall

The Kushner partnership SV and FSHC are trying to re-litigate the same issue the judge decided at the last hearing:

On October 12 they filed this with the court:

On October 21 they demanded that the court reconsider its decision:

Check our what Chatham counsel Jonathan Drill has to say about all that:

FSHC is on their side:

Will the judge do the right thing again? See for yourself! Monday, Nov. 7, 10:00 am, Morris County Court House, Morristown, NJ

Why $6 Million?

Why would the Borough Council vote to backstop the POP project to the tune of up to $6 million?

Here’s why Chatham is bonding $6 million for a 15-unit housing project.

Here’s a copy of the report by the Special Master:

Last Act?

Has Chatham met its obligation to allow affordable housing in the Borough, including Post Office Plaza?

We’ve done everything on the punch list. Now a judge will decide if that’s enough.

Come see for yourself: Monday November 7, 10:00 am, in Court Room 151, Morris County Court House, 56 Washington Street, Morristown, NJ,

The choice is yours

Do you like Chatham’s small town quality of life?

Or would you prefer to see our leafy little town transformed into yet another crowded NJ city?

That’s the choice you’ll make when you cast your vote for Chatham Borough Council members this fall. https://www.facebook.com/groups/2429255717325924/posts/3235741443344010/

If you’d like to see Chatham turned into a densely populated city, then you’ll vote for incumbent Council member Karen Koronkiewicz.

Photo Credit: https://www.tapinto.net/towns/chatham/sections/real-estate/articles/chatham-borough-mayor-kobylarz-casts-tie-breaking-vote-for-post-office-plaza-chooses-15-100-affordable-housing-over-kre-100

You can count on Karen to try to turn Chatham into a city. She recently voted to sacrifice 100% of our public parking at Post Office Plaza so a rich developer could build a 100-unit, commercial/retail housing project that would have clogged up our streets, and cost taxpayers heaven only knows how much. [Check out Option #2 at http://chathamchoice.org/2022/04/sophies-choice/]

A vote for Karen is a vote to turn Chatham into another crowded NJ city. https://www.facebook.com/groups/2429255717325924/

Would you prefer to preserve our small town quality of life? Then you’ll vote for incumbent Council President Irene Treloar.

Irene resisted intense pressure to go along with Karen’s overdevelopment scheme. On May 2, she voted to substitute a modest, 15-unit apartment house, fulfilling our need for affordable housing without destroying what we love about Chatham. [Check out Option #3 at http://chathamchoice.org/2022/04/sophies-choice/]

You can either vote for Irene alone, or cast your second vote for one of the other candidates on the ballot.

Either way, your vote this November will send a powerful message to the Mayor & Council about your vision for the future of Chatham Borough.

Here’s the result:

https://results.enr.clarityelections.com/NJ/Morris/116156/web.303253/#/summary