This is a large 4 Phase Development bounded by Coles, Monmouth, 13th, and 16th Streets. Included in Phase 1 is Coles Street Park (between Coles, Monmouth, 16th, and 18th Streets). Also included in Phase 1 is the creation of an interior public use space that the city will fit out. Reportedly at this time, it will be a public pre-k school.
The City Planning Staff recommends that the roads, all of them, be upgraded in Phase 2 as opposed to spread out between all the different phases, some as late as Phase 4. The HPNA supports this recommendation because if there is a school and park north of here, having safe roads and sidewalks is a necessity, particularly for parents with strollers attending the new Pre-K School.
Included in Phase 4 is the development of a small park on the south border of the development, titled Emerson Park, which is visible on the attached site plan. Also of note is that the Park is specifically noted as "in accordance with the Redevelopment Plan." This suggests that there is some caveat in the redevelopment plan that precludes this from being developed. This area is currently being leased by the Port Authority and the public has not been informed as to when this lease expires or the details of the lease. This detail should be raised at the Planning Board Meeting and residents should push for this park to be developed in Phase 2 or Phase 3 as the roads will be completed and the park will be accessible.
This is a small park in comparison to Coles Street or the existing Hamilton Park but could be utilized for the unrepresented sports of Pickleball and Bocce Ball. These two sports require smaller courts and give options to the residents of the area and beyond.
Also attached is an image of the Necessities before Amenities Campaign. While I am not sure if video will be allowed during the public testimony portion of the meeting, having this printed and used as a virtual background, or held up, will let the Planning Board know we speak with one voice on this issue.
Additional files such as civil and architectural plans are available for you to peruse on the city website: Planning Bd app: p19-187