CHATHAM, NJ - The Borough of Chatham Council is asking that three developers submit detailed plans for the redevelopment of Post Office Plaza by Sept. 17, steering committee member Peter Hoffman announced on Monday in a written press release.

The steering committee will evaluate the plans and conduct a second round of interviews with the prospective developers in the first week of October. Public sessions on the proposals will take place through the end of November at date and times to be announced. The planning board and council anticipate the adoption of a proposal early next year.

The three developers were interviewed and selected as finalists from those who responded to Chatham Borough's Request for Qualifications (RFQ) sent out in June. 

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Below is the full press release issued by Peter Hoffman, Borough of Chatham Council member.

August 6, 2018
I am pleased to announce that we received responses from four developers to the Request for Qualifications (RFQ) issued in early June. All the developers expressed interest in working with the Borough in designing, financing and executing on a comprehensive mixed-use development solution for Post Office Plaza. As we had hoped, the responses provided meaningful insight into how developers believe they can best deliver on Chatham’s vision for the site

As outlined in my press release issued on June 28, 2018, the goal of that RFQ was to identify developers with the qualifications to renew and revitalize Post Office Plaza, a 5.4-acre site in the core or our downtown business district. Through the RFQ we sought to identify developers who have the experience, financial capacity, and a track record of demonstrating sensitivity to community desires and concerns, as evidenced by successful delivery of quality downtown re-developments in neighboring municipalities.

On July 26, the Redevelopment Steering Committee interviewed all four respondents, and evaluated the overall resume and vision of each team and against criteria the Committee established as essential to a successful project. Three of the four respondents were invited to advance into the next phase of the procurement process and submit more detailed redevelopment proposals to the Borough by September 17, 2018. The Steering Committee has asked the finalists to include the following in their responses:

• Architectural precedents which depict their vision for the site
• Proposed mix and square footage of residential, commercial, and retail uses, along with parking and open space features
• Green building and urban design strategies that reflect and promote current trends in environmental design and energy efficiency
• Concept site plans, elevations, proposed massing, lot coverage, building placement, and sidewalk design
• Plan for public spaces, pedestrian, and bicycle connectivity between the project, the train station, and other parts of the business district
• Assessment of existing conditions and potential impacts on traffic and the environment
• Detailed description of the plan of finance to undertake and complete the project, including sources of funding, development and operating budgets, and applicable pro forma calculations

The Redevelopment Steering Committee will evaluate the proposals and engage each of the developers in another round of interviews during the week of October 1. Should one or all the respondents be chosen to advance beyond this stage, they will be expected to present their proposals to the public at a series of to-be-scheduled town hall meetings to obtain feedback from residents.

These public sessions will occur from mid-October through the end of November. Public feedback and comments gathered by the Steering Committee at both public meetings and from online surveys will be considered and incorporated into the concept Redevelopment Plan, which we anticipate will be drafted by the end of the year.

The Planning Board will review the draft Redevelopment Plan for consistency with the Master Plan, after which it will be formally presented to the Borough Council, where it will be introduced as an ordinance rezoning the site, and following public hearing, we anticipate that it will be formally adopted. At this point the developer or development team selected by the Steering Committee will be formally designated to commence the project.

We have made very good progress so far this year on what is a deliberately planned and thoughtful process. With public support and input, the result will be an exciting, vibrant new downtown of which all of Chatham’s residents can be proud.

Further announcements will follow as events warrant, however please consult the Borough’s website for updates and public meeting notices and sign up for Alert Chatham Borough so you don’t miss an opportunity to be involved in the most exciting development project to impact Chatham’s business district in over 50 years.

Peter Hoffman
Member, Chatham Borough Council