Moorestown’s mayor ready for expansion in 2022

Economic development and new businesses forge ahead.

Special to the Sun: Moorestown Mayor Nicole Gillespie (third from left) attends the Lions Club holiday parade last month with council members David Zipin (far left), Jake Van Dyken (second from left), Deputy Mayor Sue Mammarella (second from right) and Quinton Law.

Moorestown will continue to thrive in 2022, with projects such as the Lenola Streetscape improvements and economic development coming.

According to Mayor Nicole Gillespie, changes include adding new and decorative crosswalks, benches and plantings.

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“I think it’s really going to change that, plus it’s designed to make it a little bit safer for pedestrians and vice versa,” she explained.

New businesses and development will include a Dollar General store, an apartment building with retail on the first floor and a potential strip mall.

“I think that’s going to be perfect, because Lenola hasn’t had any significant development or investment in a while,” said Gillespie, “and we think it deserves it and we’re really excited to see that really reach its full potential.”

Projects council will tackle in 2022 include fixing roads and repairing the 100-year-old concrete water main under Main Street.

“It’s huge, it’s expensive, but we cannot be putting that kind of work off any longer,” Gillespie noted.

As for community events, residents will continue to see the annual holiday parades and fall festivals, Moorestown Day, the paddleboard/kayak race at Strawbridge Lake and the Rotary Club’s food truck festivals at town hall.

“Those were tremendously positive; people loved those,” the mayor said.  “We’re excited about making good use of the green right outside town hall and the rec center.”

Since council passed an ordinance that permits the sale of alcohol in the township, Gillespie explained that the Economic Development Advisory Committee (EDAC) is looking at available space for businesses such as microbreweries and distilleries.

“Last year, we auctioned off a license for a liquor store and that has been purchased,” the mayor revealed. “So, we don’t yet know where that’s going to go.”

The Moorestown Mall will continue to grow, with Cooper Health, a new residential development and entertainment businesses planned there.

“There’s been talk of bringing in something – on the order of Dave & Busters, probably not that specific brand – but something where families can go, they can eat, there’s games that people can enjoy,” Gillespie said.

She also emphasized the importance of bringing in revenue, such as utilizing commercial ratables.

“We do have some housing development coming,” she offered. “It is wrapped up with our affordable housing obligation, but those developments do bring in revenue for the township.”

With the legalization of recreational cannabis in New Jersey, Gillespie has seen interest from people who want to bring cannabis businesses to Moorestown.

“If that happens, we think we will be getting some revenue from that as well, all of which should ease the burden on the taxpayer,” she said.

Gillespie also noted that in the year ahead, the Better Together Task Force will make recommendations to council based on the results of its community survey.

“I know that they’re working tremendously hard,” she acknowledged. “I think they have some interesting findings to show us, and I do think there’s more work to do.”

“I don’t think we have the be all, end all of understanding who feels welcome and stays in Moorestown, but we have a start.”

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