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West Orange Development Project Scaled Back

Edison Village developer says he will eliminate condominiums and penthouses on the property, though the new plans have not yet been approved by the planning board.

Plans for the Edison Battery Building have been scaled back, though the proposal sent to the township planning board has not yet been approved.

High-end penthouses in the original plan have been nixed along with condominiums on the property. The penthouses were supposed to added onto the existing building. Instead of the condominiums, the redeveloper is suggesting that trees are planted to partially hide the 45-foot tall, 30-feet long garage.

The plans were discussed by the West Orange Planning Board on Wednesday.

 “We are looking to create a product that really meets this market today ...,” said architect David Minno, speaking on behalf of Prism-Green Urban Renewal Associates IV LLC, a subsidiary of the redeveloper.  “It is a little less expensive, but it still has the same ... emphasis.” 

The size of many of the rental units has also been decreased throughout the entire complex. The average apartment size dropped from about 1,200 square feet to approximately 1,000 square feet as the redeveloper shifts toward smaller units. 

The redeveloper also made changes to the number of parking units and the kinds of apartments that will be available.

• There will be a slight increase in parking from 631 to 642 spaces.

• Studio apartments jumped from nine to 33 units.

• One-bedroom apartments increased from 121 to 181 units.

• Two-bedroom apartments dropped from 128 to 82 units.

• Three-bedroom apartments decreased from 18 to six units. 

Eugene Diaz, one of the principals for the redeveloper, said that construction could start within about six months once these changes to the original 2007 site plan were approved. 

With half of the excavation work already done, the site needs about three months of remediation and utilities work before construction on the garage can begin, which will take another four months, said Diaz.  

“We remain excited about the project,” said Diaz. “We have been here a long time; we have been committed to the project. We think this is the appropriate direction to take ....”in the program should contact the state at 609-292-9560.

Jazmine July 13, 2012 at 02:50 PM
I know that they were lying to the taxpayers in the beginning.
Jazmine July 13, 2012 at 02:59 PM
Will Eugene Diaz be the landlord? I do believe that the state police may have to set up shop downtown within five years. There will be nothing we can do about it, because we may very well have a Mexican mayor next.
Mike D'Onofrio (Editor) July 13, 2012 at 04:22 PM
Jazmine: I deleted some of your other posts for obvious reasons. Please refrain from making racial and ethnic comments. If you continue, I will delete the posts and/or suspend your account. -- MCD
Jazmine July 13, 2012 at 08:01 PM
Facts are facts Mike....but thanks for the heads up. Those apartments will be run down like those I past in Newark and on the Garden State Parkway in Irvington. Same people will occupy them, dont you think? You know that my comments are true. The yards before the building are unkept, the ones behind are deplorable, and no middle class people will leave uptown to come and live in this filthy downtown. The mayor just fixed all the streets and put in sidewalks in the downtown area and people are already literring the street. You may not like what I wrote, but I will be there at the meeting, speaking out. Some these people downtown are nasty. Let me leave out ethnicity, they are drunks, out of control having children, and they are burdening our taxpayers. These are the people they are building the apartment for. Note he took out the condominiums and the Penthouse.
Jazmine July 13, 2012 at 08:02 PM
I meant liter. You better look at what is coming.
Jazmine July 13, 2012 at 08:19 PM
It did not start out as rental units. Mr. Diaz will have sufficient of his own people living in those buildings to help him or his allies controlling the school board, and the mayor's office. You should do a study on Little Havanna in Miami, that exactly how that community started out
Jerome Leslie Eben, AIA, PP July 14, 2012 at 01:12 PM
Mike: thank you for deleting those most hurtful comments from Jazmine. As I stated during the recent campaign for Twp. Council, people can agree to disagree on any number of topics. They certainly do not have to stoop to the kind of comments that were left by this Jazmine person, though person might be to kind of a description to call her. All who have a concern about the development are welcomed to come to the Planning Board (PB) and ask questions, of the developer's experts. in due time they can eventually voice their opinions. The members of the PB will listen and make their opinion known just prior to the calling the question by the Chair. The next mtg. is August 1st. Thank you, Jerry
badbul July 15, 2012 at 06:55 AM
Section 8 will be coming to West Orange, and it will land at the old Edison Battery Building. I said before that there will be no luxury in that part of town. Nobody with money will buy/rent/live in a building surrounded by filth. The whole area is an eyesore. You have rundown 2/3/4 family homes on Ashland Avenue that look like they aren't inhabitable. Our taxes will rise once this project is complete. We will have to hire more police officers to combat the quality of life crimes that will arise from the Edison Battery Building. We will have to build or extend our schools do to over crowding.
Cynthia Cumming July 16, 2012 at 03:35 AM
It appears the revamped plan would allay the concerns for school overcrowding. Single and Dinks and older couples would do well there. Low number of Coah units... What's the problem?
Lynn Gauvain July 18, 2012 at 07:31 PM
What about adding a food store to the plan? We lost A&P years ago and really need a store in this part of town. If you need medicine you can get it from 3 drug stores starting at Northfield Ave. I for one will be happy to have the eyesore cleaned up and finished. I wish that there was a way to help the area residents fix up their properties.Maybe redevelopment funds of some type.Thank for deleting those posts. Negative attitudes will not help anyone.
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