Haddonfield’s Board of Commissioners convened for a special one-hour work session on Monday, Jan. 27 to discuss plans related to the ongoing issues surrounding the construction of new townhomes on the Bancroft parcel.
Commissioner Jeffrey Kasko issued the following statement regarding the outcome of the meeting, which was closed to the public:
“We did not make any final decision, we merely reviewed an updated plan from the developer to comply with the agreement to settle the suit and implement an age-restricted townhouse development. We will likely discuss with HERD (Haddonfield Encouraging Responsible Development), and in public, very soon and then make a decision.”
Borough governance continues working in tandem with principals from HERD, per the settlement agreement last autumn of a lawsuit brought by the latter regarding the scope and size of the project.
Per the rulings of Camden County magistrate Judge Nan Famular, both sides are to formulate a plan providing for somewhere between 64 to 71 units on the site, age restricted to borough residents 55 and over who do not have dependents under the age of 19. Included in the future construction are at least 10 units set aside to satisfy state-mandated affordable-housing obligations.
An amended agreement from developer J. Brian O’Neill, and accepted by the commissioners, eliminated the originally-proposed 30-percent tax break offered to O’Neill, but will retain the Payment In Lieu Of Taxes (PILOT) designation. As a result, Haddonfield would receive a larger-than-normal share of Bancroft residents’ tax payments.
Mayor Neal Rochford, back on Jan. 18, said there was no final approval as yet for age-restricted housing on the site and that negotiations between the municipality and developer would continue. In a conversation with the Sun back in mid-December, Rochford was hopeful that the issues surrounding Bancroft’s housing would be resolved some time this year.
Reached for comment, former Haddonfield Mayor and a driving force behind HERD, Jack Tarditi said, “HERD continues to be committed to age-restricted housing on Bancroft site in a way that is supportable to the community. The developer is working with us to come up with an answer that would meet with the agreement. We have developed what I would call ‘principles’ of what age-restricted housing would include.
“We fully expect that, in working with the developer and with the borough, we can come up with a proposal that satisfies all requirements. We will, as neighbors, come up with a good answer. I’m very optimistic that we can arrive at a solution which can best serve our town.”
The board of commissioners’ next public session is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 11.