NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - A developer is moving forward with plans to raze seven homes and the Sixth Ward Service Center and construct a five-story, 94-unit apartment building in the northwest part of the city.

Recon Services LLC received bulk and use variances at the Zoning Board meeting on Monday.

The Courtland Plaza Apartments will be located at the intersections of Courtland Street, Central Avenue, Delafield Street and Duke Street. The construction will include 19 studio units, 39 one-bedroom units, 32 two-bedroom units and 12 three-bedroom units.

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Plus, there will be an underground parking garage with an entrance off of

To complete the project, the developer will purchase a small, triangular part of the right of way on Duke Street and Central Avenue from the city.

Thomas Kelso, attorney for Recon Services, said the value of the property would be determined by the tax rate or by an appraiser.

Kelso said the City Council passed a resolution in April allowing for the small tract of land to be included in his client's application.

Engineer Kevin Shelly, who testified on the behalf of Recon, said that removing the triangular piece of land and redesigning the traffic flow would create "a safer intersection."

The board approved variances for the site in building height, building coverage and impervious coverage area. It also approved a variance in parking since the plan calls for 99 parking spots and 179 are required. Four of the 99 parking spots will be designated handicap parking.

Richard Sisti, a site remediation expert, said that although the soil on Duke Street where the service center sits has tested positive for contaminants, that soil will be removed when the subsurface parking garage is built.