UNION, NJ – At their June 27 meeting, the Union Planning Board unanimously approved a recommendation to request the Township Committee to review information on the Weinstein Scrap Metal property and deem it “an area in need of redevelopment”.

Redevelopment Planner Kendra Lelie of Clarke Caton Hintz presented information about the property known as the Weinstein Scrap Metal facility, at 2426 Morris Avenue, bordering Ogden Road, consisting of four pieces of property, totaling 1.6 acres.  The irregularly shaped property contains two businesses -- Innovative Tile and Stone, about .55 acres which is currently in operation, and the closed Weinstein Scrap Metal facility, containing vacant buildings.

According to Lelie, the New Jersey Local Redevelopment Housing Law allows for a planning board and municipality to determine an area of need of redevelopment.  Lelie said the Board’s role in the process is to review the report and make a recommendation to the Township Committee.  The main purpose is to restore and rebuild areas that are in decline and exhibiting dilapidation, and turn distressed property into a productive, economically viable part of the community.

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Lelie said only one of the eight criteria must be met to determine an area in need of redevelopment.  She said the property in question met four of the criteria, which are tied to public health, safety and welfare issues.  Lelie said her investigation determined that general conditions of the buildings are substandard, unsafe, unsanitary or dilapidated, some abandoned which are now untenable. 

The property also met the criteria of “faulty arrangement”, meaning the evolution of the site over many years has caused it to not be in compliance with current ordinances, including zoning, set-back regulations, impervious coverage issues as well as lack of lighting and inadequate storm water management facilities.

Lelie concluded that the site meets the criteria of an area in need of redevelopment and suggested the Board provide the recommendation to the Township Committee for their review and approval.  “The site presents health and safety concerns for the surrounding community that won’t likely be cured without going through the redevelopment process.” 

If in agreement, the Township Committee will adopt a resolution and ask the Planning Board to move ahead with a redevelopment plan.