May 16,2017

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, Tuesday, May 16th is residents’ last chance to address the planning board about the massive new 66 unit, multi-retail store complex coming to Franklin and Broad from local developer John Saraceno. This high-density housing project sets off a chain reaction of public safety problems in Ridgewood. The hearing and vote is set for 8pm at village hall on Tuesday night. Between Saraceno’s 60+ families plus new stores on Franklin and the 40+ families moving in yards away at the new Chestnut street high-density development, the Franklin Ave corridor will likely be overwhelmed with hundreds upon hundreds of more cars and pedestrians creating an even bigger threat to public safety on an already dangerous road. The Franklin ave corridor has a long history of accidents and pedestrians struck by cars and busses.
High-density development downtown is allowed thanks to controversial laws championed by Ridgewood resident Saraceno and then-mayor Paul Aronsohn.
In the zoomed in version of developer Saraceno’s “rendering” above we see the already congested and dangerous Franklin & Broad intersection which will be drastically impacted by the new 5 story building and the nearby 4 story Chestnut apartments. The archway on the right is one of two entry/exit for the 150 new parking spots on Franklin. The current lot is private and not open to the public. There will be a great deal of new traffic at one of the most important, dangerous, and crowded intersections in the village.
The new light at this intersection will cost $300k, Saraceno has offered to pay 25% [which is more than the law requires]. The bigger problem is how other, non-upgraded intersections will handle the traffic flow. By law, developers of Ridgewood’s 4 new high-density buildings have only to pay a small fraction of any needed new lights.
The planning board meets Tuesday the 16th at 7:30pm in Village Hall. The public is encouraged to attend.