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A special meeting of the Planning
Board of the Township of Roxbury was held on the above date at 7:00 p.m. with Chairman Scott Meyer presiding. After a salute to the Flag, Mr. Meyer read
the “Open Public Meetings Act”.
BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT: Scott Meyer,
Gary Behrens, Jim Rilee, Joseph Schwab, Charles Bautz, Lisa Voyce, Teresa
DeVincentis, Larry Sweeney.
ABSENT: Michael Shadiack
PROFESSIONAL STAFF PRESENT: Tom
Germinario, Russell Stern.
Also present: Lorraine Mullen
for Dolores DeMasi, Board Secretary
DISCUSSION ON 2005 PERIODIC
REEXAMINATION REPORT OF THE MASTER PLAN AND DEVELOPMENT REGULATIONS AND MASTER
Russell Stern introduced Frank Banisch, planning
consultant, who prepared the reexamination report. He said it is a requirement
of the MLUL to review the master plan every six years. There have been several
master plan meetings over the past few years. The process included invitations
to developers interested in having properties considered for rezoning. One of
those properties was the Southwind property on Route 206. We also met with
developers interested in senior housing projects. We identified things that
need particular attention, and there are regulatory issues that need to be
addressed. Mr. Banisch will go over the goals and objectives as well.
Mr. Banisch stated the reexamination requirement has been
placed in the enabling legislation. Every six years towns are called upon to
reexamine their master plan, and if there have been significant changes, it
calls on the town to make changes. The report has a regimented structure. It
begins in each of a series of sections that identify the questions that we will
be answering in the reexamination process. When your land use regulations are
being scrutinized and the efficacy that they ultimately have in regulating
development in the community, it relates to how closely the goals of the master
plan are tied to policies in the master plan and strategies in your ordinance
that will get you where you want to get to.
Mr. Meyer asked how we move forward with the general
Mr. Banisch stated some communities take on a task with a
subcommittee of implementing specific portions of the master plan. There are
recommendations for changes to the master plan, and some other way-finding
recommendations that there is an opportunity and a need to go into detail to
come up with a solution.
Mr. Stern said his recommendation would be to continue
with the Master Plan committee meetings. In 1998 we prioritized some issues.
In this report there are some priorities, but they are pretty clear. One is
the Housing Element and Fair Share Plan which needs to be completed. We are
also looking at the Buildout Study. It would tell us the impacts that we will
have to deal with as a result of development and a buildout of this community
and would point out areas where, unless zoning is modified, that will have a
considerable increase in development, residential and commercial. There are
also recommendations on specific zoning changes that can be addressed at this
Mr. Rilee said the Master Plan Committee has been making
recommendations since the last reexamination. We also help guide the Board to
make decisions during the Planning Board process.
Ms. Voyce said what has happened in this Township is that
the Master Plan gets incorporated by everyone in town. The Environmental
Commission has done the Natural Resource Inventory, the Buildout Analysis,
there is a trails commission, there is Highlands information in the report as well. Having a full time
professional planner and hiring a consultant like Mr. Banisch serves us very
well. I would encourage members of the Board to understand the planning in
Roxbury doesn’t stop at these meetings. There are a lot of opportunities to be
involved. It comes to life everyday in and out of the municipal building.
Mr. Banisch said if you compare the 1998 goals with the
2005 goals, the general feeling is highly respectful of the quality of life in
the community, and that growth needs to be managed. The plan for this document
is to clarify that the intention is to reduce the intensity of development.
There is concern about the impact of traffic on neighborhoods. As we looked at
the planning history, there has been a proactive effort on the part of the
Planning Board. On the first and second page there is a list of
accomplishments that sprang from 1998 and the Planning Board’s suggestions in
the reexamination report, including the 2000 Land Use Plan amendment, 2001 Open
Space Plan Element, and a variety of recommendations that have been acted on by
other bodies – water master plan, wellhead protection study, expanded historic
district, 2001 Land Development Ordinance amendments, 2002 Natural Resources
Inventory, Open Space program, rezoning of the northeastern part of the
Township, development of a significant amount of affordable housing,
redevelopment along the Route 46 corridor, improvements at the Horseshoe Lake
complex, establishment of park and ride and planning for a future train
station, focus on design in newer developments, establishment of tree
replacement fund, establishment of traffic advisory committee.
Councilwoman Sandy Urgo, who was a former member of the
Master Plan Committee, was invited to attend this workshop meeting. She
arrived at this time.
Mr. Banisch said the next section of the report lists the
goals in 1998.
Ms. DeVincentis said any of the issues that led to the
solutions listed in Section IV should be listed in Section I.
Mr. Banisch said the report goes on to list the
recommendations involving development of new plan element changes to is
regulations and items for further study.
Ms. Voyce said at the Highlands Council meeting this
morning, COAH is considering a reexamination of the second round obligations,
and if we feel they should be revised based on how the Highlands affect the township in terms
of grown, they would like to hear from us as soon as possible. If we feel our
second round obligations should be revised, we need to get to them sooner
rather than later.
Mr. Banisch said there were a number of specific
recommendations that altered the intensity of land use in the Township. Two
rural districts (3 acre and 5 acre) were either created or expanded. Other
adjustments were made to other residential districts, generally to recognize
environmental constraints. There were also a number of non-residential zoning
recommendations including creation of the LI/OR District and the PO/LI
Mr. Banisch went over the remainder of the draft report.
There was discussion on corrections and changes to the
document recommended by Board members and Ms. Urgo.
Ms. DeVincentis left at 8:30 p.m.
After further discussion, it was determined any
recommended changes should be submitted to Mr. Banisch by the end of the week,
and a revised draft will be discussed at another work session on March 16, 2005.
The meeting was adjourned by motion at 10:00 p.m.
A. DeMasi, Secretary