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Former Gas Station on 130 and Willow Will be Demolished Soon

The township worked with the property owners to get rid of the blighted property.

 

Cinnaminson will be free of a major blighted property in February when the former Mobil gas station on the corner of Route 130 and Willow Drive will be demolished.

The station—which has been abandoned since 2003—was just recently added to the township’s abandoned properties list, allowing Cinnaminson officials to intervene.

The property owner and attorneys agreed to the demolition Tuesday and have 30 days to make good on their promise.

The Mainline center recently got a facelift and Mainline II is slated for a major one this year.

“To have property that looks like this in the middle of it—clearly it’s not advancing the health, safety and welfare of the township,” said Deputy Mayor Anthony Minniti, who serves as the township’s director of economic development.

The property fit all the criteria to be added to the township’s abandoned properties list, a piece of legislation passed in the early 2000s.

“What the act does is—based on the judgments and examinations reported by a municipal official—the township can take action to remediate blight,” Minniti said. “It gives the municipality many of the same powers that you have in redevelopment, without having to go through a lot.”

Once it’s deemed an abandoned property, the township can demand the site be cleaned, improved or redeveloped.

“It’s been rumored for many years it was going to be redeveloped,” Minniti said. “Now that we’re through developing the big spots [along Route 130], we’re focusing on the little spot properties that are problematic.”

It’s always good when the property owner steps up, Minniti said.

“We don’t want to spend any resources on private property any more than we have to,” he said. “The township is not in the real estate or the redevelopment business. We want to affect all those changes as much as possible by forcing the property owner to do the right thing. That’s always been our approach.”

The township strayed a bit from their normal approach last year when they . The township has plans to landscape it over.

“That’s the first time we’ve ever spent money on an anti-blight initiative,” he said. “Every other time, we’ve utilized the resources of the private sector.”

With the former Mobil getting demolished within the next 30 days, Minniti only hopes the property owner can find a developer to put something there. Calling it a valuable corner, Minniti said it’s a good location for a restaurant or convenience store/gas station combination.

“Cold Stone Creamery was looking at it,” he said. “We’ve had a lot of leads on it but it’s never really pulled together for various reasons.”

The pumps have been removed from the site, Minniti said, but he’s unsure about the tanks. The gas station is slated to be demolished before the end of February.

“I know people have been desirous of seeing it come down. I know I have been desirous,” Minniti said. “We have to keep in mind, it’s private property. It’s current on its taxes and that does afford the owners certain rights. The township has to follow a process—sometimes it doesn’t go quickly. But we’re not letting up when it comes to Route 130 redevelopment.”

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AnoninCinna January 30, 2013 at 05:41 PM
Definitely a good thing! Wonder why it took so long to get this done? They should focus on Bo's Wok next.
Ric January 30, 2013 at 05:43 PM
John, when I attended CHS it was among the top in the state. Schooldigger.com now rates it 163 out of 381 – essentially mediocre. The administrators, teachers and teachers union have failed the students. Instead of improving their teaching they are trying to blame their failures on the age of CHS which is not all that old. Holy Cross High in Delran is older and 99% of their graduates go onto two and four year schools. Of course I support fixing problems at the school but I do not support Sal’s $100 million makeover. That is plain ridiculous. For example, he wants to put in a hallway to connect the left and right upper floors. The school has survived without that hallway because there is no need: a different grade level uses the left and right hall. Nor does the school need to be enlarged. The school held six grades when I attended it and it had more than 1200 students. Now it holds only four grades and only 733 students - about 500 less students. I know the school and township administrators, school board, teachers, and teacher’s union would love to build a new school or spend Sal’s 100 million on a major redo but the only one would benefit would be their buddies in the construction industry. If they are all willing to take cuts in pay and benefits so our taxes will not rise to pay for a new school, I am all for it. But I do not think it is fair to expect the taxpayers of this town to pay for another school when the one we have is fine.
Ray Budden January 30, 2013 at 06:07 PM
Cold Stone Creamery? That would end any hope I ever had at losing weight but it would be a welcome addition for those people in town that understand and adhere to portion control ... sadly I am not one of those disciplined people.
FbS January 30, 2013 at 06:09 PM
wow, that is a great idea.... That would be a great addition to our town
Barb Rivera January 30, 2013 at 06:38 PM
While the township worked on legislation to get this done in the early 2000's why didn't they work on getting Ordinances in place for Repetitive Loss Flooding? Many towns in NJ have done this many years ago but we are lax in this area. The flooding isn't going away, its only getting worse!
John January 30, 2013 at 07:12 PM
@Ric, good information about the size of the school....Its truely amazing how far out of wack things are in this town...I guess Holy Cross High School does a better job of controlling there costs....This is the world we live in....tax and spend no matter what...I guess people are now going to place orders into the vacant lot to see whats going to go there, I have an idea how about a small golf course....a putt putt....we do not need any more 7-11 nor do we need any more wawa's....guess we shall have to wait on whats coming besides higher taxes.....have a good day
Christina Paciolla (Editor) January 30, 2013 at 07:15 PM
You're welcome. But I must say. I just reports it likes I sees it! I have no agenda here. I know everyone knows that but it bears repeating! I'm just a little ol' reporter/editor for a newspaper! We're very glad you're reading.
Christina Paciolla (Editor) January 30, 2013 at 07:16 PM
That's an idea I could get behind!
John January 30, 2013 at 07:17 PM
Oh boy Mexican food, a better idea how about a chicken holiday.....oh well we shall have to wait and see whats coming, I do know one thing, its going to be raining alot tonight....get the boats ready.....
Sean McDonough January 30, 2013 at 07:53 PM
Rather than worry about getting new business to redevelope how about we worry about the vacancies in the larger retail areas first??? Old ACME, Mainline and such. And Cold Stone is never gonna happen. I know of six that didn't last after the first year. Great concept, but too expensive. What about a Bounce U or something like that?
Chris January 30, 2013 at 08:06 PM
I agree to the Mexican food since or something other than pizza in Cinnaminson because we got nothing.
Barb Rivera January 30, 2013 at 10:41 PM
@John...I guess I will be needing a canoe tonight and the Township could care less! Just pay their workers OT to put out the usual cones and barricades. The rain hasn't started yet and the area meant to hold water is already over flowing!
Radiohead January 30, 2013 at 11:35 PM
The high school is not a failure. The teachers and administration are doing their very best. The school is in need of upgrades . A cleaner, newer , more modern facility absolutely will promote academic success. Holy Cross does not offer as good an education as Cinnaminson. That is why their enrollment is dwindling. As we speak , I am at another high school that is much, much nicer. New Egypt High School. The list continues to accumulate. I think a nice upper end Mexican Reataurant would be great at Willow and Route 130. Something like a Tortilla Press. Although I do think it is hard to sell anything upper level on Route 130 in Cinnaminson. Most people would rather eat in Moorestown or Collingswood. Route 130 is more of an Hibachi Grill type setting, unfortunately .
Val January 31, 2013 at 12:16 AM
Bounce U or something like it would be great in the ACME spot.
John January 31, 2013 at 01:35 AM
@Barb, sorry to hear that, as soon as I heard the weather forecast about rain and HIGH winds I thought of U and the others, so sorry, but the Township needs to get rid of the empty gas stations....Just saw a comment about Mexican food, I countered with a chicken holiday, I saw that they have kick boxing for adults, good luck....
John January 31, 2013 at 01:41 AM
Ideas, a putt putt, batting cages, indoor walk way for young and old, penny arcade its all endless if someone wants to invest in capital improvements, we already have a race track....it can all fit in the ACME site.....
Richard Magee January 31, 2013 at 04:03 AM
The TANKS MUST be removed and the Soil examined for polution before any other building can proceed. Obviously Old tanks that may leak. Drain, neutralize them with water than pump them out before removal to avoid explosions. Gas fumes ignite!. Just a reminder for the good citizens. ~Rick Magee, FL
Beth Bresnahan January 31, 2013 at 12:26 PM
Tanks have been removed but I'm sure they didn't do any environmental testing. That will still have to be done.
John January 31, 2013 at 06:32 PM
@Radio, I think U live in la la land, How on earth can you compare schools without knowing the tax structure, student population, when it was built and were there set aside money for needed repairs....U have to get the facts buddy, not just say oh it looks nice.....I sure hope the teachers are doing there jobs thats what we are paying 60% of our taxes for....I think it wonderful that you are making a list for schools, maybe the density of the system is lower than here....who knows not me but I do know this is remember the movie Money Pit.....sorry we are not that movie
Dan Reynolds February 01, 2013 at 02:17 AM
Mexican, seriously... good Mexican would be a true winner...
Will Smith February 01, 2013 at 02:40 AM
I'm with you Radiohead. I'd love the see the highschool get some upgrades in infrastructure and technology, the school was built in '64.Theres the possibility of state funds becoming available. John, you are correct, 60% of our taxes go to the schools and this is one thing I would like to see done with that money. Theres also the possibility of state funds becoming available soon.
Jeff February 01, 2013 at 05:31 AM
A lot of the Cold Stone restaurants are closing down. I hear they lose a lot of money so I don't think anyone is opening new franchises.
John February 01, 2013 at 04:02 PM
Come on Beth, they did a study on stopping the flooding in 2003 and U want them to do an environmental study on testing for benezene....good luck
John February 02, 2013 at 05:42 PM
Its like the flooding issue, turtles never put there heads out unless its needed...The roofing company will get rid of that one toooo....Remember turtles are SLOW and not very QUICK....Bo's Wok is the property owner I believe, there was an article a while ago about him trying to work on the Mainline...
mike payne February 03, 2013 at 10:21 PM
what about a bowling alley where branch brook was
mike payne February 03, 2013 at 10:23 PM
you guys are talking about mexican food there is supposed to be a chipolte mexican going in where triboro was along with a starbucks
John February 04, 2013 at 07:33 PM
Have not heard about the status of that yet, do not know if the plans are firm yet.....the turtles are not sticking there heads out yet, oh well, chicken holiday would be nice tooooo....
Christina Paciolla (Editor) February 04, 2013 at 07:37 PM
Nothing is confirmed for that location.
mike payne February 05, 2013 at 12:35 AM
I have the perfect thing for the twp. What is the one thing that we dont have. A Billiard Hall that would be great
John April 26, 2013 at 11:34 PM
We are already behind the EIGHT BALL lol...enjoy it.....

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