Mahwah NJ’s warehouse would be close to shops and restaurants
MAHWAH – Traffic testimony ended on Monday with a proposal to build a distribution warehouse on the site of the now vacant TD Bank office building at 1000 MacArthur Boulevard.
The 208,345 square foot facility is expected to generate 66 tractor trailer trips per day, which will be routed via MacArthur Boulevard Route 17 access to bypass Ridge Road, which has three of the township’s six schools as well as its public library.
Residents quizzed Planning Council for two hours about the proposal, seeking to understand why warehouses, as well as office buildings, were permitted compliant uses in the commercial area sandwiched between MacArthur Boulevard and Ridge Road. .
“Office buildings and warehouses are not mutually exclusive activities in a commercial area,” said Peter Scandariato, lawyer for the Planning Board.
Traffic expert John Harter attempted to explain how changing the location of the building’s main aisle access would improve sightlines and provide space for a longer acceleration lane for the hill along the west side of the property.
But residents such as Lewis Germinario of Sycamore Lane have repeatedly expressed doubts that truckers would be sufficiently deterred by signage from using Ridge Road and have looked for ways to derail the proposal completely.
“How can we reject this project? Germinario asked. But Scandariato warned that the decision was in the hands of the Planning Council.
“It’s up to the governing body,” Scandariato said. “If they meet the requirements of the ordinance, the Planning Council must give them its approval.”
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The project is located on the south side of MacArthur Boulevard, next to Dial America and Mindray Medical Equipment. It is across from a shopping center that includes the new township post office and several restaurants.
The property is in the Office Research Park area, of which authorized uses include professional offices as well as warehouses and / or distribution facilities.
In his July 19 memo on the project, Police Chief Stephen Jaffe expressed concern that truckers could park their vehicles along MacArthur Boulevard to access restaurants. However, Russo’s attorney Bruce Whittaker said there were no shoulders where drivers could pull over to park.
Repeated questions were asked about idling and truck noise. Whittaker said the warehouse would operate around the clock, but would follow state rules for idling and decibel levels.
Hearings are scheduled to end on Oct. 11 with public testimony, a lawyer summary and a council vote.
Videos of the planning board meetings on August 9, September 13 and September 27 where the Russo acquisition proposal is discussed can be viewed at mahwahtwp.org/244/ Planning Board.
Marsha Stoltz is a local reporter for NorthJersey.com. For unlimited access to the most important news from your local community, please subscribe or activate your digital account today.
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