CHATHAM, NJ - There could be plans for a restaurant at the Chatham Train Station and a new zoning vision for the Commerce Street district by the end of the year, according to Mayor Bruce Harris and Victoria Fife, Borough of Chatham council member.

At the recent borough council meeting. Mayor Harris updated the interest from outside parties to bring in a restaurant to the Chatham Train Station. In unrelated business, Fife said that an ordinance to detail plans for the light commercial district could be offered by the end of the year.

New Jersey Transit owns the Chatham station and Mayor Harris spoke about the progress being made for a proposed restaurant that would be allowed to serve liquor.

Sign Up for E-News

"With respect to the train station, I'm happy to report that New Jersey Transit has sent out requests for proposals," Harris said. "There were a number of responses and the deadline for submitting them is mid-September. NJ Transit will review the responses and make a recommendation. They have full confidence they can make a decision by the end of the year."

The idea came from the Boxcar Bar & Grill located at the Short Hills Train Station. The layout is very similar to Chatham's train station. The difference is that Short Hills owns its train station and Chatham must go through New Jersey Transit to receive approval.

Fife, the council liaison to the planning board, reported that there was a "very positive' response from owners and businesses when an open house was held on July 17 to discuss ways to develop the M district, in the area of Commerce Street and Watchung Avenue.

"The next step is to have a meeting with the planning board on Sept. 18 to discuss the plan for the M district," Fife said. "Once we lay out our vision, a public hearing could be held on Nov. 13. The council may be able to consider an ordinance by the end of the year."