Five locations proposed for affordable housing

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CAPE MAY COURT HOUSE – Middle Township officials have proposed five affordable housing locations in Cape May Court House, Rio Grande and Whitesboro. One of the locations would have 112 units.

Township resident Bette McGurk told Township Committee this week she is concerned with developing affordable housing in Middle Township.

“When do we get not to have drastic changes happen?” she told Middle Township Committee Monday, June 4.

She also feels her voice and others are being ignored.

Mayor Dan Lockwood says that’s not the case.

“The reality is I  think it’s [affordable housing] going to be less of an impact on our community as a whole – less of a change – than probably Rio Grande was when they brought in the Walmart, the Lowe’s and all the big-box stores,” he said.

On Monday, Township Committee adopted a resolution for the affordable housing trust fund spending plan. Now officials are asking for state review and approval.

Proposed projects include:

• multifamily rental with 112 units at Route 9 South, Rio Grande Avenue in Rio Grande, amounting to $600,000 from the trust fund; Conifer Reality contract to purchase the property.

• multifamily rental with 74 units at Route 47 South, Shunpike Road in Rio Grande, totaling $329,000 from the trust fund; Diocese of Camden.

• multifamily rental with 48 units at Railroad Avenue in Cape May Court House, amounting  to $250,000 from the trust fund; Conifer Reality contract to purchase property.

• nine single-family homes at Raleigh Avenue, Cochran Street and Georgia Avenue in Whitesboro, totaling $113,200 from the trust fund; Habitat for Humanity of Cape May County.

• four single-family homes with each with four disabled adults at Anna Street, Washington Street, and Cochran Street in Whitesboro, amounting to $46,100; ARC of Cape May County.

Township residents will still be involved in the process, with a meeting planned later this month

If the Council on Affordable Housing trust fund money is not committed by July 17, with contracts in place, the state will take the funds. The township has collected $1.6 million in development fees and spent $202,321 of its trust fund, according to township information.

The projects are pending zoning and funding, according to township information. Township planner Elizabeth Terenik said most of the projects are also waiting on federal and state tax funding programs.

“So there are still things that need to happen for these developments to come to fruition,” she said.

Terenik said planning and zoning would be tackled next.

Public input is also going to be sought, and a meeting is tentatively planned for Monday, June 18, starting at 4 p.m. at township hall, 33 Mechanic St. in Cape May Court House.

In other matters, Township Committee approved a resolution to contract with Stephen Martinelli Land Surveying of Cape May County to do boundary and topographic survey and wetland delineation and mapping on township-owned property for affordable housing. The cost is not to exceed $15,500.


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