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Plans For 46-Unit Development On Kinderkamack Advance

A proposed three-building, 46 residential unit development along Kinderkamack Road will face an official vote on April 5 by the Planning Board

Plans for a housing development at 230 Kinderkamack Road in River Edge are nearing the conclusion of its site plan review following Thursday night's Planning Board meeting. With testimony by the projects engineer, landscaping engineer, and traffic consultant, a final vote is set to take place on April 5.

The , presented by Now Atkins LLC, calls for 46 two-bath, two-bedroom units, split between three buildings and measuring 1100-square foot. Two of the buildings would face Kinderkamack Road, while the third abutts the nearby railroad tracks and backyards of residents on Elizabeth Street. Each building is expected to measure 39 1/2 feet.

"We've made some changes based on comments from the , County and others," project engineer Michael Hubschman said. "The site entrance and exit has been changed for a one-way entrance on the north side and a one-way exit onto Kinderkamack Road from the south."

Additional drainage has been included for a three-tier retention basin system. Due to the sloping of the property, with an elevation of 35-feet at Kinderkamack Road down to 14-feet by the railroad tracks, water will be piped through the system down to a ditch by the railroad tracks. Underground water will be collected in the retention basins and slowly moved through the sewer system over to Coles Brook and the Hackensack River.

To install the drainage system though, the developer will first have to access an easement along the rear of two properties on Elizabeth Street. And while the easement area will be completely fenced off after the drainage work was completed, area residents still had concerns about flooding.

"You're saying that the water will drain from the complex down into the ditch between the railroad tracks and the back of the building," questioned Joanne Pierce, 56 Elizabeth Street. "You are cognizant that the area has flooded to the point of having six feet of water in the backyard and one foot of water in the house. I have pictures of this and I'm halfway down the street."

According to Borough Engineer Robert Costa, the proposed drainage system which is still under review will alleviate any flooding caused by the grading of the property. But it would not eliminate any flooding that occurs when the Oradell Reservoir dam is released or from the nearby Hackensack River.

To satisfy neighboring resident's concerns of privacy, extensive landscaping will be implemented by planting a mix of 10-12 foot evergreen trees along the property lines. Approved by the Shade Tree Commission, several maple trees will be aligned with Kinderkamack Road.

"Along the southern border, the buffer will be pretty think and overtime the trees could grow to 40 or 50 feet high," landscape architect Jan Saltiel Rafel said. "On the north side there is more varaince of height but there is a more seasonal interest.

The initial tree plantings will cover the first half of the building.

With 92 parking spaces on site, traffic consultant Louis Lugilo estimated that the housing development would have a low impact on the Kinderkamack Road traffic flow.

"Approximately there would be 30 trips in or out of the site during peak hours," Lugilo said. "This level of development has a low number of vehicles in or out of the site."

According to Lugilo, the northbound traffic count on Kinderkamack Road in the morning is 678 while the evening count measured 1,112. The southbound side had the opposite effect with 1,144 vehicles in the morning while only 800 in the evening.

Initally zoned for , the Mayor and Council amended the conditional use of the in late December 2011. At that time, David Listokin, a professor at the Center for Urban Policy Research of Rutgers University, estimated that the development would add about nine students overall to the local public schools.

The Apil 5 is scheduled to start at 8pm in Council Chambers at Borough Hall.

Rick March 17, 2012 at 05:15 AM
In a heavy rain, the entire project will slide down the hill.
Michael Barry March 17, 2012 at 02:18 PM
To be honest about it, I was considering making a purchase as an investment property but there is a great deal of truth in what you say. I don't agree that the school funding formula should be changed though.
Barbara March 17, 2012 at 08:33 PM
Thank you for your honesty about Oradell having a right to challenge the funding formula! How can people complain about Wall St/the banks and their greed when right here in Bergen County the same attitude exists?
Michael Barry March 18, 2012 at 02:16 PM
Projects like this, and the apartments across the street, actually saved River Edge two or three years ago when the very liberal and wrong headed Jon Corzine was putting monumental pressure on us to build low income housing. Thank God he failed. I certainly understand the point of those who are against building the 46 condo's but I'm not so sure that it's altogether a bad thing. I do agree that traffic access and egress patterns will be problematic given the present road structure. Perhaps a traffic engineering analysis could solve that problem.
lucky March 19, 2012 at 01:14 PM
Oh Barbara - how ironic of you to use the word greed. Are you telling me that the folks in Oradell shouldn't' think that the the RE residents are greedy when it's Oradell that subsidizes RE children? Attitude? Please, spare me the drama. Oradell has repeatedly asked RE council to sit down to discuss a solution. They are still waiting. Now RE adds more housing which will include more students. Who can honestly blame Oradell?

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