Published December 14, 2016
Fourth and Valley , Real Estate , South Orange , Uncategorized
Tags: Andrew Kit, architecture, Catherine Fisher, David Kraiker, development, essex county, Fourth and Valley, Haley Donovan, James Haley, ken krasner, Linda Cappaze, Meridia, nj, Real Estate, residential, retail, Sheena Collum, south orange, Sultan of Sanctuary, valley st., vision plan
I was encouraged at the most recent public SOPAC meeting which discussed plans for the proposed 106-unit development on the Southwest corner of 4th & Valley in South Orange. After many prior meetings over two years in which Village officials and neighbors worked with Meridia, the redeveloper, it appears that area residents are finally feeling that the project will improve the area and deal with potential issues regarding parking and traffic.
Architect James Haley of Haley Donovan made many changes requested by Academy Heights residents
, breaking up the facades, setbacks and heights of the building to make it look more varied and organic to the neighborhood. The newest plan also shows a generous amount of public space to be enjoyed by neighbors – something residents said was missing at the Third & Valley development
. Now featured are extra wide (20′) sidewalks – generating more public space and potentially allowing for the widening of Valley Street should traffic studies call for a turning lane or other improvement.
Village President, Sheena Collum said the Village hoped to re-introduce the plan and agreements in January at a Board of Trustees meeting. The redevelopment plan would then be referred to the Planning Board for approval, then back to the Board of Trustees for a hearing and a vote.
“Third & Valley did not have the robust public process this has had,” said Collum. “Credit the neighborhood for mobilizing.” Neighborhood residents, David Kraiker, Andrew Kit, Linda Cappaze, Catherine Fisher and myself (and others) got together many times in preparation for our meetings with the town on this project. Speaking at the SOPAC meeting, Andrew Kit said, “This is the ideal of what a public process should be like.” We also were vocal about the 320 Valley project that has broken ground nearby.
As the town’s ‘vision plan’ has named the Valley St. corridor as one of the prime areas it’s looking to redevelop (in addition to South Orange Av & Irvington Av), it is very likely there will be interest in other sites nearby in the near future. If you’d like to get involved with contributing to shaping the future of the Valley St. corridor projects, please reach out to me – firstname.lastname@example.org
Published March 20, 2016
developer , development , Developments , Fourth and Valley , Meridia , South Orange , Uncategorized
Tags: architecture, David Kraiker, development committee, essex county, Fourth and Valley, Meridia, planning board, Real Estate, Sheena Collum, south orange, Sultan of Sanctuary
In a March follow up meeting on the Fourth & Valley redevelopment project, the town planner summarized expectations and a general framework to town officials and concerned residents gathered.
The first meeting in February with developers looking to create a major residential and retail building at Fourth and Valley showed that there were differing expectations on all sides. The Development Committee had some major revisions to suggest to the developer, Meridia who was originally looking to build something ‘massive.’ Several members of the Academy Heights neighborhood association gathered prior to summarize their concerns and Academy Heights’ resident David Kraiker spoke on behalf of those members. Village President, Sheena Collum also made it clear that any development was going to be in line with what the community envisioned. It appeared that the developer appreciated the input.
Stay tuned for the next meeting when the developer is expected to submit a revised plan that would hopefully be even smaller scale than the above guideline.
Link to more info on meeting