Monday, August 04, 2008

Condo Lot Now a Park

The West Front Street lot designated for a 12-unit condo project is now labeled as a pocket park. It has a couple of benches surrounded by shrubs and three trees. The lot was cleared by Oveter's Construction at city expense several months ago. Developer Clayton Bonny proposed the project in March 2007 and both an "in need of redevelopment" study and a redevelopment plan received city approvals. Bonny did not return a phone call Monday seeking comment on the status of his project.

Here's a view of the park from the street. To the rear is a municipal parking lot. The site is on the Tepper's block.

The sign credits Mayor Sharon Robinson-Briggs, the City Council and the City of Plainfield for the park and thanks volunteers from Lucent for doing the work. The pocket park is across the street from the Park-Madison block, where a dispute over a temporary park held up development for several years. That park was mistakenly included in a list of Green Acre sites and litigation ensued.
--Bernice Paglia


Blogger Crescent Area Neighborhood Association said...

What's up with the quotations on "possible by"? Why is it that everything lately has to be on quotations? Did I miss something while I was away?


7:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My question would be how much did it cost to knock down the building, make the park, and have the City eat in lost tax money?

10:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the city plans to redevelop this site in the future they have just made life very difficult for themselves. Green Acres rules say that if a community accepts Green Acres funds (for any park project) and knowingly allows city owned property to be used for open space purposes they basically lose their right to redevelop. This is what hurt the Park Madison project and threw it into a pitched legal battle for 2 years. While having the 4 acre site mistakenly listed years earlier on the Green Acres Park and Open Space inventory made it tougher to resolve, the fact that the city had received Green Acres money (for other city parks) and had knowingly allowed P/M to be used as open space is what caused the legal problem.

There are people still working for the city that should have remembered this -- why did it happen again? This parcel has strong development potential and a redevelopment plan in place!

Madison Ave playground (corner of Madison & Second St, is right across P/M from this W. Front St site. Madison Ave playground was supposed to be enlarged and enhanced by removing half of the existing parking spaces. This was in a legal agreement with Green Acres approved by the City Council. Now I hear that is not happening and that a proposed residential development at Madison & Second will be parking there -- this too is against Green Acres rules.

Pat Ballard Fox

11:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It appears that "Made possible by" just means that someone else did the thinking and the work. And, the real telling is that the Mayor's name is taking credit. And, true to form, nothing gets done - so the administration should get the credit for dragging their feet and being inefficient.

When will the island across from the library in the Crescent Ave. district be "made possible by?"

12:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have never been able to grasp the mayor’s “need” to erect signs (or flyers) with her name on them, even for projects that her contribution to the success of the project was small or nil. And if one notices, her name is always first billing, larger print and often in a different color. Note the sign for the Pocket Park. Good thing the font for her name was not a size larger, because then there would not have been any room to thank the Lucent volunteers that did all of the work. By the way what was it that the mayor and the City Council did to make it possible? Since the mayor likes the sign thing, just based on your recent blog entries how about her erecting signs at the Senior Citizens Center construction site…..Delay of Construction “made possible by” Mayor Sharon Robinson-Brigg. Or a sign in front of Horizons at Plainfield….empty/unused space paid for at taxpayers’ expense, “made possible by” Mayor Sharon Robinson-Briggs. How about, not updated website, courtesy of Mayor Sharon Robinson-Briggs (hey it is August 6th).

9:37 PM  

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