Monroe Township Zoning Board Approves Subdivisions and Senior Living Facility Subdivision

In a recent session, Monroe Township Zoning Board approved a contentious application for a three-lot subdivision despite concerns over technicalities and neighborhood impact. The board also greenlit a subdivision of a 55-acre property housing a senior living facility, emphasizing its alignment with township goals and minimal aesthetic impact.

The January 30th, 2024, meeting of the Monroe Township Zoning Board began with routine administrative matters, including the nomination of board officers and the acceptance of the previous meeting’s minutes. However, the session quickly delved into more issues with the first application, BA-52-09-21, seeking a use variance and major subdivision approval to construct homes on three new lots presented by Michael Herbert from Parker McKay, representing applicants Lucille and Michael D Pasqual.

Despite technical issues with the microphones that caused interruptions, Lucille D Pasquali managed to present exhibit A1. The application included five exhibits, but the technical difficulties and requests for clarification from board members and the attorney hindered the presentation’s flow. The board emphasized the importance of each application’s merit and relevance.

James Bash, an engineer from Vancle Engineering, testified on the proposed subdivision’s technical aspects, discussing lot size and width variances, stormwater management plans, and compliance with existing regulations. The planner, Mark Rimson, provided testimony on why the variances should be granted, bringing his extensive planning experience to the fore.

The application faced challenges, such as the need for bulk variances due to lot depth hardship. A proposal to divide the property into two lots was debated, but it was determined that the hardship would persist regardless of the number of lots. The presenter argued for the compatibility of the proposed residential use with the surrounding area and master plan recommendations, concluding that the use variance and bulk variances could be granted in alignment with R30 zoning.

Further scrutiny arose over compliance with floor area ratio and lot width requirements, with board members thoroughly debating the proposal’s details, considering the potential neighborhood impact.

A notable moment was when a neighbor raised concerns about potential flooding from the development due to a high water table. The developer reassured that basements would be above the water table and grading would improve drainage, with the board indicating they would address any negative impacts if the application were approved.

The board unanimously approved the application for the three-lot subdivision, moving on to the next application concerning the subdivision of the 55-acre property housing a senior living facility. The attorney representing the applicant clarified that the subdivision was for financial purposes with no physical changes to the property. Witnesses Heather Fov and Sha Delaney confirmed the current number of units and parking spaces would remain unchanged and detailed the variances required for the proposed new lot lines.

The applicant argued that granting the variances would not substantially impair the Zone plan and ordinance, citing the inherently beneficial nature of the use variances for both the Monroe Village and the Skilled Nursing Facility. Concerns about building height, street access, impervious coverage, and stormwater management were addressed, with the applicant expressing confidence in the absence of negative impacts.

The board tackled issues of roadway maintenance, deed filing, and utility management, with the applicant assuring compliance and the inclusion of necessary conditions in the cross-access agreement. Despite no public opposition, the application vote was not unanimous, with two members dissenting. Nevertheless, the majority approved the application, subject to the conditions discussed during the hearing.

Note: This meeting summary was generated by AI, which can occasionally misspell names, misattribute actions, and state inaccuracies. This summary is intended to be a starting point and you should review the meeting record linked above before acting on anything you read. If we got something wrong, let us know. We’re working every day to improve our process in pursuit of universal local government transparency.
Stephen Dalina
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