EATONTOWN, NJ — Cheer up! A special Eatontown Council meeting is being held Monday night at which Kushner Co., the owners of Monmouth Mall, will make a public presentation on their plans for the mall’s development.
This comes at a time when Kushner is on the verge of a major overhaul of Monmouth Mall, including the upcoming closure of JC Penney and the construction of 1,000 homes on site.
Monday night’s meeting will be one of the few times that Kushner will present his latest plans to the public. The developer was due to make a public presentation on July 27th, but that was canceled and tonight is the rescheduled meeting.
From the city of Eatontown:
SPECIAL SESSION Mayor and Council Monday 15 August 2022 at 19:30
This meeting will take place via Zoom video conference ONLY. There is no personal participation. To attend the session virtually, members of the public must dial 1-929-205-6099 or 1-253-215-8782 and use the access code/session ID 872 9068 0442. Or you can join via video at https://. us06web.zoom.us/j/8729… or by downloading the Zoom app. Please follow the instructions. Out of respect for the need to conduct an orderly meeting, we ask all attendees to mute their phones.
This special meeting was convened in accordance with the Public Meetings Act. An invitation to this special meeting has been sent to the Asbury Park Pressthe link messages and the Star Ledger, posted on the notice board in the lobby of Borough Hall and on the borough website. Public comments are always welcome.
2. Flag salute
3. Monmouth Mall – Second public presentation of the developer
4. Council Comment
5. Public Comment
6. Adjournment (vv)
No formal action will be taken Monday night and public comments are welcome, Eatontown Mayor Anthony Talerico said.
The next Eatontown City Council meeting will be held on August 24 at 7:00 p.m. at Borough Hall, 47 Broad Street, Eatontown.
The Eatontown planning board has yet to approve Kushner’s proposal to build the apartments. However, the City of Eatontown has already designated Monmouth Mall as a “development area,” and the city actually worked with Kushner to develop the idea of an apartment complex.
“This was the result of a number of discussions,” Talerico told Patch last month. “They (Kushner) didn’t come up to us and say, ‘Do that.’ This was the result of a collaborative effort. We’re currently trying to gauge public sentiment on this. 1,000 units might upset some people. But we need to develop some sort of product that brings in Ratables so we can collect taxes for this site.”
“We haven’t backed away from (the idea of condominiums),” Michael Sommer, vice president of development and construction at Kushner Cos., told Patch earlier this year. “In the current retail environment, we need to figure out what are the highest and best uses for the mall. In terms of our overall vision (for Monmouth Mall) we envision significant redevelopment for the remaining retail and other local businesses.”
“As you know, there are many vacancies at the mall,” he added.
What Kushner is planning for the Monmouth Mall:
- The JC Penney, an anchor tenant, is likely to close sometime in October. This was a decision made by JC Penney, not Kushner.
- Build 1,000 one and two bedroom apartments in the mall. The new residential complex is to be called “Monmouth Village”, and Kushner also wants to create hiking and biking trails all around.
- Kushner plans to demolish the mall’s multi-story parking garage and replace it with a flat lot that will accommodate far fewer cars; the number of parking spaces will be reduced by 638 spaces. The reduced number of parking spaces matches the reduced number of stores within the mall: Monmouth Mall currently has so many empty stores that the total area of the mall has decreased by 25,000 square feet.
Additional development near the mall:
- Two major new medical complexes opened near the mall this summer, the first being the Anne Vogel Family Care and Wellness Center next to Boscov’s. It is owned by RWJBarnabas. Hackensack Meridian Health currently has an ambulatory care center in the former DSW store at Rt. 35 near the mall. Both have pediatric practices for children, women’s health, and emergency care. The RWJ site will also have a branch of a specialized children’s hospital. Both medical practices were opened at the end of July/beginning of August. (The two hospital systems are competing to dominate New Jersey’s healthcare market, particularly in prime suburban areas.)
- An Amazon Fresh grocery store is slated to open this fall in the former Eatontown Toys R Us on Rt. 35
Kushner Cos. was founded by Charles Kushner, father of President Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner. The Kushners are the developers of Pier Village in Long Branch. Charles Kushner and his wife still live in Long Branch today.