On eve of Zoning Board meeting, Developer alters Prospect Street rental complex proposal

Project reduces units from 57 to 52, adds age restriction to 55 years old and older

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The Franklin Lakes builder who is seeking approval from the Glen Rock Zoning Board to build a multi-home development on Prospect Street has altered his plans to reduce the number of housing units and change the complex to an age-restricted development, just before more testimony is to be heard by the zoning board at its June meeting tonight.

Ric Harrison, who has been seeking a variance from the Zoning Board that would allow him to build a 57-unit rental complex, including eight affordable housing units, on the 2-acre property between the Sikh Gurudwara and the Ridgewood DPW, sent a notice to the members of the board on Wednesday evening that he is changing his proposal, board president Bruce Beal told Banana Tree News this afternoon.

“His new proposal is for a 55-and-over complex,’’ Beal said.

The proposal also reduces the number of units to 52, with seven affordable housing units, adds more parking and replaces a recreational clubhouse that was in the original plan with a green area that Beal called a “passive’’ recreational space.

Though the new plans were only delivered to the municipal complex on Wednesday, and some board members have not even seen them yet, Beal said he kept the board’s meeting on for tonight because Harrison’s lawyers and expert witnesses were scheduled to attend the meeting. Whether the board will be able to vote on the project tonight is a question Beal said he could not answer.

“I don’t know whether we’re going to vote on it,’’ he said. “The board can ask questions, but I don’t know if they’re going to want to vote on it.’’

Harrison bought the property in 2013 and after Glen Rock updated its master plan for the borough in 2014, approached the Borough Council in 2015 for approval to build a senior housing complex, for ages 65-and-over. Eventually, that became a 55-and-over project. But as the then-mayor and two council members were up for re-election that year, Harrison waited until after the election, which saw a new mayor and two new council members elected that November.

With a new Mayor and Council in place, Harrison approached the council in 2016 for approval for the project, but after opposition from members of the community, the council voted against it. So, in November of last year, Harrison applied to the zoning board for a variance on the property – which is currently zoned for single-family housing – to allow him to build a 57-unit apartment complex that would include eight affordable housing units and no age restriction. The board has been hearing testimony since January, but has yet to vote on the project.

The zoning board meets tonight at 7:30 p.m. in Borough Hall.

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