Township Moving Ahead with Plans to Redevelop Bahr Lumber Yard
Residents encouraged to meet with township engineer to assess plans.
The Verona Township Council meeting was fast and efficient last night with all five resolutions approved and adopted and plans for the redevelopment of the Bahr Lumber yard moving forward.
The Bahr property will be discussed at the next planning board meeting, which has been pushed back from its originally scheduled date this Thursday to March 1.
Township Engineer Jim Helb said a single lot on the south side of the lumber yard is up for redevelopment and the board is accepting applications. He encouraged residents to visit his office to view the plans prior to the meeting, which will be held at the Verona Community Center at 7:30 p.m.
“Anyone can come to the public works office to review the plans,” Helb said, noting the plans have been available for several weeks.
Likewise, Township Manager Joseph Martin welcomed residents perplexed by the budget to meet with him in his office for a clear explanation of how the budget is assembled. “I will take as much time as needed to explain the budget process to you,” he said. The town's budget workshop is scheduled for next Monday.
Council member Kevin Ryan reported the clean-up from the October snowstorm is ongoing, explaining the effort was still going “hot and heavy.” He said while most damaged trees have been addressed, work will continue for the next couple of months focused primarily on stump removal. He urged residents to call the township if they suspected a tree had not been included on the list. He also said chairman of the Shade Tree Commission Bob Dickison had been reaffirmed in his post.
In other business, Ryan said the Montclair Social Security office was slated to close in early March and would be moving to a Clifton location at 935 Allwood Road. For an exact date, he recommended calling (800) 772-1213.
The remainder of the evening was spent discussing drainage issues plaguing town residents.
The council adopted a resolution awarding Sanzari Asphalt Maintenance a $76,343 contract to construct drainage improvements on Rockland Terrace.
Because of an old drainage system the resident experienced “a great deal of flooding during high-intensity, short-duration storms,” for a number of years, Helb said. “The house was at a low point, and the water had nowhere to go but in the person’s basement,” he added. “The only solution was to run a whole new independent drainage system.”
Helb expects the project to start at the beginning of next month and take about four to six weeks to complete.
The other drainage issue involved a county pipeline on Durrell Street.
Because of a situation similar to the Rockland Terrace issue, ancient pipes and high-intensity, short-duration storms caused water to accumulate on several residents’ properties on the street. Helb has set up a meeting with county officials to address the problem.
“It’s the county’s responsibility that their pipe isn’t draining right,” Helb said.
In other business, the council:
• Announced the library’s participation in e-Library N.J., allowing library card holders free access to 5,000 e-books and 9,000 audio books, starting next Wednesday.
• Announced the library will commemorate Dr. Seuss’s birthday with a celebration on March 1 featuring Polka Dot the clown. In addition, the mayor will visit Forest Avenue School on March to highlight Read Across America.
• Reminded those in attendance the capital budget will be discussed in two weeks.