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Boro Vacant Lots, Parking Rules to Be Discussed

Business Zone ordinance also up for second approval at Chatham Borough Council meeting Monday.

The will hear discussions on overnight parking, parking limits and vacant lots for sale at their Monday night meeting.

The six vacant lots were first discussed in July, when Borough Engineer Vincent J. DeNave said . The lots in question are:

  • 184 Center St., which is assessed at $343,400
  • 83 Chatham St. (corner of Lafayette Avenue), which is assessed at $424,400
  • 57 Watchung Ave. (corner of Girard Avenue), which is assessed at $300,200;
  • 72 N. Hillside Ave. (corner of Weston Avenue), which is assessed at $375,800;
  • 62 Yale St. (dead-end street), which is assessed at $331,800;
  • and a corner lot at 39 Front St./16 Walnut St., which is assessed at $508,800. 

If they can be sold, Council President James Lonergan said each property could add between $12,000 and $13,000 to the municipal tax revenue.

However, several of the lots are not currently deemed buildable and would require the borough to pass site waivers or or exceptions to existing zoning laws.

Neighbors of at least one of the properties, 83 Chatham St., are . Besides other concerns, a new home on this particular vacant lot could further complicate a neighborhood that is already struggling with traffic and pedestrian safety, neighbors said.

Parking in Chatham

The council will vote on a resolution approving new . Parking permit fees will increase by $45 in the new year for final costs of:

Chatham Borough Municipal Parking Rates 2012 2013 Lots No. 1 and No. 2, Railroad North and South $375 $420 Lots No. 3, No. 4 and No. 5, Center Street East, Center Street West, Bowers Lane $195 $240 Lot No. 6, Division Avenue $185 $230

Business Zone Ordinance

An ordinance which would change existing definitions and add new ones to the existing business zone law is also up for second reading and final adoption.

Among the changes included in the ordinance would be less parking requirements for new business applications before the Chatham Borough Planning Board and Board of Adjustment.

"The parking standards in the existing ordinance weren't based on anything," Mayor Bruce Harris said. "The Planning Board worked with the Borough Planner, [who] recommended switching [the parking requirements] to match industry standards because it would be more defensible in court."

, and the council continued the second vote from their August meeting to address their concerns.

The Chatham Borough Council meets at 7:30 p.m. Monday at the . A full copy of the agenda, along with a copy of the ordinance amending the business zone laws, can be found in the Photos & Documents section of this article.

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