UNION, NJ – DSW, the national shoe retailer, is scheduled to open a new store in the Union Plaza Shopping Center on Route 22 West in April.

At last week’s Planning Board meeting, an application was presented for a sign variance for the store.  “This is an exciting project,” said attorney Stephen Hehl, representing the Robins Agency, owners of the Union Plaza.  “There are now some exciting changes planned to the shopping center.”

Hehl said a future application will be presented to the Board in reference to the repurposing of some of the buildings on the 24 acre site, specifically the closed Ruby Tuesday and Pizza Hut restaurants and the vacant gas station.  He said the applicant is scheduled to come back before the Board next month with additional plans.

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The application before the Board at last week’s meeting was specific to requesting approval for a sign variance for the DSW store.

Peter Robins of the Robins Agency said DSW will be moving into a space previously used as a furniture store.  “They are a great addition to the shopping center,” said Robins, “and we are thrilled they have decided to come to Union Plaza.” 

Civil Engineer Daniel Sehnal of Dynamic Engineering said a variance is necessary for the DSW sign, which is 18.4 feet in length and 7.7 feet high, smaller in length, but higher than the previous furniture store sign.

“The characteristics of the DSW sign is compatible with the other signage on this site,” said professional engineer Joseph Staigar. “The benefits outweigh the detriments.  It’s compatible with the aesthetics of the building and I don’t believe there are any negative aspects to what’s being proposed.” 

The application for the DSW sign was unanimously approved by the Planning Board.