CHATHAM, NJ - Robert Kasuba, the attorney for developers proposing the Skatepark affordable housing units on Southern Boulevard and the Dixie Dale townhomes, has targeted Oct. 21 for a vote on his applications before the Chatham Township Planning Board.

The planning board held a special meeting on Wednesday night to hear details of the only two items on the agenda - the 24 affordable housing units known as Arbor Green at Chatham and the plans for the 53 multi-family homes at Dixie Dale.

Attorney Robert Kasuba tells the planning board of his goal to receive approval of the plans at the Oct. 21 meeting

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Civil Engineer Patricia Ruskan presented the reconfigured site plan for the affordable housing on Southern Boulevard. Instead of two 12-unit buildings, Ruskan showed plans for a single building with a maximum length of 225 feet.

The reconfigured plan on the 3.8-acre site places the building perpendicular to Southern Boulevard, making them less visible from the road. The 37-space parking lot would be placed in front of the building.

The new plan also creates more space around the Chatham Township Police Department, putting the corner of the building five feet away from police department property.

Civil Engineer Patricia Ruskan talks about the reconfigured site plan

The affordable housing will be 2 1/2 stories high and the developer, Southern Boulevard Urban renewal, will still need a bulk height variance for the building.

Robert Hoffmann, the township administrator, commended the applicants for their reconfigured plan, characterizing it as a "significant improvement" over the original plan. Chatham Township Planner Frank Banisch III said the changes were "entirely consistent" with the approved redevelopment plan.

Board member Mike Kelly pointed out that reconfigured site plan would also keep a grove of mature trees from being taken down, maintaining a soft buffer between Southern Boulevard and the units.

Resident Rez Estevez asked if there were any lawsuits that would keep the two linked developments from moving forward. Kasuba said there weren't any court hurdles to clear at this time. He explained that one project could not proceed without the other since the they were connected.

In regard to Dixie Dale, residents of Chatham Glen, specifically Heritage Greene, are concerned with additional stormwater runoff from the proposed 53 townhomes on Hillside Avenue. Ruskan presented data from a study she conducted and explained the plan to install three infiltration basins (see video below) into the overall stormwater design to control the water flow.

Ruskan said that the stormwater eventually will end up in the "offsite pond', which is located on the other side of River Road in the Heritage Greene development. Ruskan calculated that water from 9 1/2 acres of the 56-acre Dixie Dale property would send its stormwater to Heritage Greene. The rest would drain through the other two infiltration basins.

John Ruschke, the township engineer, stated in the video below that he agrees with the plan for infiltration basis offered by the developers.