NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ - Each week leading to the November 5 election, the candidates running for New Providence Borough Council have the opportunity to answer question(s) that will be run in a series by TAPinto New Providence.

The following answer is from Democratic Borough Council Candidate John FX Keane for Week 2.

Week 2 Questions: In February, the Borough Council approved the borough’s affordable housing settlement, which allows for the construction of 1209 residential units, 316 of which will be affordable units. At their September 9 meeting, the council approved an ordinance amending zoning requirements to allow developers to build residential units in designated areas. 

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What is your recommendation for an infrastructure plan to handle the impact of the addition of approximately 1,200 new housing units as part of the Affordable Housing Settlement? (Please include scope of impact on roads, services and infrastructure.)

My recommendation to deal with Affordable Housing in New Providence begins with the facts.  Unlike my opponents, I will not fear monger on this issue.  I am not going to use inflammatory language or place blame.  Instead, I will share the facts and work hard towards solutions after engaging with all of the stakeholders.   

It is important to begin by emphasizing that there are no immediate plans to develop the Becton Dickinson (CR Bard) location. This means that we have time to engage stakeholders and be thoughtful about solutions.

Cleary, we will need to address a number of infrastructure issues including increased traffic, pedestrian safety, enrollment in our schools, sewage, fire, ambulance and others.

As a member of the Borough Council, I will use my experience and relationships that I have developed over 30 years to deliver common sense results.  In particular, I have served on the Planning Board for the last ten years.  In addition, I am a member of the Downtown Improvement District and Economic Development Committee.  I understand the details of the court order, New Providence’s plan and have the ability to work with all of the stakeholders to develop detailed solutions to the issues outlined above.