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Jackie Lieberman
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Westfield Town Council Hears Proposal for Apartments at Central and South Avenues

February 18, 2014 at 10:35 PM

WESTFIELD, NJ — At a conference meeting Tuesday night, the Westfield Town Council heard a proposal for a 70-unit apartment building that Claremont Companies hopes to build at Central Avenue and South Avenue.

Dean Marchetto, founding principal for Marchetto Higgins Stieve Architects, showed the council what the proposed building would look like. Taking cues from architectural examples downtown, the firm designed a four-story, 70-unit building meant to fit into Westfield, he explained.

The proposed building would be four stories high (one story higher than the area is currently zoned for), 42 feet above the ground—2 feet higher than current zoning allows. Of the units, 35 would be one-bedroom (renting for about $2,400 per month) and 35 would be two-bedroom (renting for about $3,200 per month). Apartments would be for rent only, not sale.

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There would be 122 parking spaces, all behind the building and most of which would be enclosed. The building would also include a gym and common area for residents.

The building would be about 20 feet from the street. Retail space is not part of the plan.

“When you walk by the building, you can see windows, you can see people,” said Marchetto.

The apartments, which would be located very near the train station, would likely draw empty-nesters looking to downsize and young couples, Marchetto noted, and not families with school-age children.

In order to meet Westfield’s affordable housing requirements, 15 to 20 percent of the units could be rented at lower rates to those who qualify. Councilman Keith Loughlin pointed out that these reduced-rent “affordable” units could attract families with children who attend public school.

More on the Feb. 18 town council meetings to come.

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