Archive for December, 2014

Edison Village, West Orange



The redevelopment of the former Thomas Edison battery building in West Orange, N.J. into a project that will include retail space, apartments, and townhouses remains on hold.  The developer, Prism Capital Partners hopes to build 610 housing units and a 640-space parking garage.

The matter is currently pending before the State Supreme Court.  A few town residents challenged a $6.3 million dollar bond issue that the town plans to use to fund infrastructure upgrades. “We are challenging because we feel it’s not fair to taxpayers of West Orange to subsidize a private developer,” said Windale Simpson, one of the residents who filed the suit.  See links below for more details

NED show in West Orange


The NED show has hit West Orange. There’s a program/show stressing character in education that made its way into the Pleasantdale school in West Orange.

It’s a strange coincidence for me as a grammar school buddy or two of mine and I had a NED club which celebrated doing things differently.

Property Taxes and the Marylawn property in South Orange

marylawnThe town of South Orange plans to put the Marylawn property on the tax rolls.

Marylawn of the Oranges Academy, 445 Scotland Road, closed in 2013 after operating as a private Catholic school for girls. The property is owned by the Sisters of Charity of St. Elizabeth and includes the school building and the Graves mansion, built in 1900.

The property is no longer being used for a religious school, so the trustees believe it should lose its tax-exempt status.  The property owners, the Sisters of Charity may be more motivated to sell the property once it is subject to property taxes.

Seton Hall University made an offer in March on the property but the proposal was withdrawn for a number of reasons.  After discovering that the property would not be purchased for use by another tax-exempt party, village officials put collecting property taxes on the table.

On one hand, the sisters are seeking a non-conforming use such as a developer who could build fairly large multi-unit building(s).  On the other, the Montrose Historical Society is hoping a developer will update and ‘save’ the historical property.  The town is in the middle and is hoping for a developer who could fit 5 to 7 single family buildings on the property that would be a conforming use (not require re-zoning).  For more details see the alternative press link.  For more background see my previous post from 2013.

Seton Village is South Orange’s newest brand


Seton Village is the new brand for the Irvington Ave. corridor.  Doug Zacker, the Chairman of the Irvington Ave Corridor Advisory Board announced at Monday Night’s meeting.  A Holiday lighting event will be on Friday from 530-800 at W. Fairview and Irvington Ave.  After the autumn food truck and craft beer fest, this part of town is becoming more of a destination.

First Night Maplewood South Orange


First Night is back.  The Nerds will headline the entertainment, there are many good food vendors and so much more entertainment ranging from hip hop to dance to magic to reptiles.  Great way to stay local and walk for the holiday.

celebrate NJ350!!


Come celebrate 350 years of being a state!!  South Orange is 1 of 16 sites chosen for a ‘pop-up-store’

Being the history and map geek that I am, I’m looking forward to it

65 South Orange Avenue, the old Love and Yogurt space!

The popup store will have a heaping helping of jersey gems and will be open from Thursday, December 11th until Sunday December 14th.

for more info see the links

Leaf Removal schedules in a few Essex & Union county towns


You may have already raked or blown your leaves, but mysteriously they just keep piling up anyway.

The green and less expensive thing to do is actually to use a mower to shred them and leave them on the lawn  as fertilizer.  You don’t need to mow in your garden, just leave them there as extra insulation for the  plant roots that need a bit of protection from the snow.

But if you just want them gone, here is a list and links to more detail about leaf removal schedules in a few Essex & Union Co. towns.

South Orange

all streets by December 6,  unfortunately the town map is so tiny, it’s hard to tell which streets are prior to the sixth