Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Westward ho for the PMUA?


What can the PMUA do now that the City is poised to take its carefully assembled Cottage Place/East 3rd Street property?

Overcrowded at its headquarters, and with a growing fleet of vehicles to store, clean and maintain, the PMUA has quietly pursued a policy of assembling a parcel on which to build a new complex that would consolidate its operations (except for the transfer station) in one location.

A little too quietly, though, it seems. The agency patiently toiled for years to assemble the parcel, making sure that it was large enough that the Authority would not need to apply to the city for variances.

That is all well and good, but the downside was that there was no 'sympathy vote' for the PMUA when the Planning Board discussed -- and voted on -- the proposed East 3rd Street Redevelopment Plan.

The elephant in the room is that the PMUA is a guaranteed developer, ready to roll. How long will it take to get a deal with the PMUA so that the UCIA-anointed developer can get up to bat?

Though the planning process was rushed at best -- and perhaps flawed -- PT's money is on the plan going forward. Unless, of course, the ripping off becomes so egregious that Prosecutor Ted Romankow or US Attorney Chris Christie have their attention drawn to Plainfield.

So, what is the PMUA to do?

PT has a thought. The Planning Board did NOT see fit to include the ENTIRE BLOCK FROM RICHMOND STREET TO ROOSEVELT AVENUE in the Plan, leaving the western portion out. (One argument PT has heard is that the developer WAITING IN THE WINGS for the project doesn't have the resources to take on such a large redevelopment area.)

Well, nothing prevents the PMUA from resting its eyes on the WESTERN portion of the block, left out by the Planning Board, and starting the process all over again.

Unless, of course, the City decides that it needs a REAL developer, with REAL resources, ENOUGH to do the entire block as a coherent whole.

-- Dan Damon

Previous post on this topic: "Problems with the Cottage Place study area"

P.S. And this is being pitched as being close to the NETHERWOOD STATION? And SHUTTLES could be a possibility? Do these people ever get out of the office and out of the car and actually WALK AROUND? The area in question is about 2½ blocks from the Main Station and about a half mile from Netherwood. Yardstick-challenged, too?

Not getting your own CLIPPINGS email daily? Click here to get started.

No comments: