January 22, 2013 at 7:22 AM
I understand that there is interest by 7-Eleven to build a facility in the parking lot next to Barth’s Market and that a meeting before our Town or its Planning Board is scheduled in March 2013. Our elected officials have the responsibility to reject their request.
We have a similar business across the street, “South Street Market” that has served the Town residents’ needs for a fast convenience store for many years. To build the same type of store directly across the street is absurd.
At this point, we have enough traffic on South Street and significant parking issues in the new A and P reconfigured lot that any further congestion will create a hazard. In addition, there is no crosswalk or traffic light anywhere along that section and having more pedestrians crossing in the middle of South Street, including children, increases the likelihood of fatal accidents. If a crosswalk or traffic light were to be put there, the entire street would back up towards Springfield making turning onto South Street a nightmare.
I thought our Town had a Master Plan or any Plan whatsoever. New Providence, with the addition of a 7-Eleven, is turning into a highway strip mall. We have multiple nail salons, bagel stores, pizza places and banks. Lest we forget, we now are the lucky ones to have a Cash for Gold storefront on our main thoroughfare with garish moving signs. It seems that New Providence attracts an element of businesses that we need to question (two applications for two different massage parlors involving possible criminal investors) why these businesses are drawn to our Town.
New Providence has been ranked the #1 high school in New Jersey and this past Fall the NY Times did a full page review in its real estate section raving about our Town. Yet, any business such as Starbucks, Trader Joes, or any other reputable and useful business does not seem to have any interest in serving New Providence.
Where are our public officials?
Why do other surrounding towns attract classy and appealing businesses while New Providence does not?
I know the students as would adults love to have a Starbucks, somewhere we could all go and have coffee, tea or whatever.
Is a 7-Eleven the best we have to offer to residents and our high school students walking home?
We all know South Street Market would not survive. Is there a future plan for their facility and lot when they are forced out of business? Maybe we will get lucky and a check cashing business or pawn shop with bullet proof glass might be interested.
The residents of New Providence continually support our education, are intelligent and generous. Many of our residents volunteer both in Town and for the benefit of others.
I urge you, as a resident, to take an interest in this issue and voice your opinion to our elected officials right now and please attend any public meeting in which this ridiculous proposal is presented.
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