Cinnaminson Eyes Industrial Area for Redevelopment

Cinnaminson's industrial zone lacks site plan review standards, and solicitor John Gillespie says it's needed if the township wants to 'reinvigorate' the area.

Cinnaminson municipal building.
Cinnaminson municipal building.
Though somewhat stagnant in recent years, Cinnaminson's industrial zone is open for business, and township officials want to do everything they can to attract new tenants.

Following an inquiry from Mayor Ben Young regarding the township's land use ordinance, solicitor John Gillespie discovered the township lacked an ordinance governing site plan review in the industrial zone. Site plans are critical, he explained, as they cover everything from parking to lighting, as well as setbacks and traffic circulation, among other things.

The township needs those plans "to make sure (the development) is compatible with our standards," said Gillespie. 

The solicitor said there hasn't been much positive activity in the township's industrial zone since Sea Box expanded in 2011, so the lack of site plan standards hasn't been an issue. But if the township wants to revitalize that area—and it does—it needs them.

"One of the things we need to do is reinvigorate that area," said Gillespie. "That's a great area for future development."

The last major development in the industrial zone on River Road was the demolition of the shuttered Hoeganaes plant in 2012, which had been in operation since 1953 and closed in 2009, the latest in a series of industries to leave the area in recent years.

At the beginning of this year, Young and Deputy Mayor Anthony Minniti pegged the industrial zone as an area they wanted to put a renewed focus on (in addition to the township's efforts to redevelop the Route 130 corridor).  

“Hoeganaes is gone—it’s 90 acres of empty ground,” said Young. “Whitesell has 400,000 square feet of empty buildings. And in Delran, they have an additional 400,000. That’s almost a million square feet of empty space. We’ve got to try to develop some attractive incentives to come here.”

Citing one example for potential development, Gillespie said the township could take advantage of the presence of the Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst just up the road (so to speak) and try to attract companies with ties to military operations.

"There are really no areas in South Jersey that are supportive of military operations," he said.

Committee gave Gillespie its blessing to come up with recommendations for site plan standards in the industrial zone by the January work session.

"The earlier we get this taken care of, the more you set the table for trying to redevelop, particularly in the industrial zone, in 2014," he said.
Chip December 04, 2013 at 08:54 AM
It will be tough sell. Industrial Highway by the Riverline station is one of the worst, unmaintained roads that I have ever driven on. The overgrown weed lot in front of the Whitesell buildings really makes you think this is Detroit. Worst of all, the Whitesell parking lot has major flooding every time it rains. Like 20" deep, employees have to risk ruining their cars or park elsewhere. They might wanna address that before wooing business owners. I hope to see this area thrive. It has potential.


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