MINUTES

OF THE

CRANBURY TOWNSHIP

HISTORIC PRESERVATION ADVISORY COMMISSION

CRANBURY, NEW JERSEY

MIDDLESEX COUNTY

 

 

TIME AND PLACE OF MEETING

 

The regular meeting of the Cranbury Township Historic Preservation Advisory Commission was held at the Town Hall, Cranbury, New Jersey, on February 5, 2002 at 7:30 p.m.

 

CALL TO ORDER

 

With a quorum present, Frank McDonald, Chair of the Cranbury Township Historic Preservation Advisory Commission, called the meeting to order and acted as the Chairman thereof, and, Linda M. Scott, acted as Secretary of the meeting.

 

STATEMENT OF ADEQUATE NOTICE

 

Pursuant of the Sunshine Law adequate notice in accordance with the Open Public Meetings Act (N.J.S.A. 10:4-5) was provided on December 7, 2001 of this meeting=s date, time, place and agenda was mailed to the news media, posted on the Township bulletin board, mailed to those requesting personal notice and filed with the Municipal Clerk.

 

MEMBERS IN ATTENDANCE

 

Bobbie Marlowe, Diane Stasi, and Frank McDonald, Chair.

 

MINUTES

 

The minutes of the December 18, 2001 meeting were amended, motion to approve by Diane Stasi, second by Bobbie Marlowe, all in favor.  The minutes of January 15, 2002 were amended, motion by Diane Stasi, second by Frank McDonald, all in favor.

 

APPLICATIONS

 

Applicants were present for Carmden Pool & Spa, PB 394-00, 2674 Rte. 130 No., HPAC application was received on January 14, 2002.  Unfortunately, architectural drawings of exterior of building were not included with application.  Elevation plans were received on January 16, 2002.  Plans were reviewed and approved with the recommendation to run the roof façade down both sides of the building.  Applicant was in agreement that this would be an enhancement.  HPAC would like to see an update of plan with this change, although not necessary.

Emergency application for Michael & Francine Coffee, 2 Stockton Drive, Block 18, Lot 20.19, for the re-roofing over existing roof was received on February 4, 2002 and approved that day.

Application was received by Frank McDonald, who had recused himself.   Application for Barbara Nelson, 14 Prospect St., Block 18, Lot 20.19.  Changes to existing house will included the removal of a window on south side; change windows on south side, near back yard; removal of window on north side, near back of house; and change the existing glass door to French sliding

 

APPLICATIONS (Continued)

doors which are not visible from street.  Without a quorum, Bobbie and Diane had review application and plans, with recommendation for a trellis to add interest to the wall where window will be removed.  Secretary will have Don Jo come to office on Wednesday for his approval.

 

DISCUSSION

 

Diane Stasi “reported that she, Cynthia and Bobbie had attended and represented HPAC at a conference presented by Preservation New Jersey Inc. (PNJ), on January 26, 2002.  A panel discussion on “New Jerseys Vanishing Villages” on methodology in zoning, planning and Municipal Land Use Law, (MLUL), which allows suburban sprawl to encroach and impact village life and its historical importance.  The speakers stressed the loss of physical settings and environments as “significant” encroachments that impact the remaining village.

Current planning and standard zoning practices facilitate suburban sprawl.  Its by products are at high cost to the infrastructure, pollution and drain on existing capacities of the village.  Trends in planning, question standard zoning and reassess how land is used.  This approach is called Traditional Planning.  It mainstreams historic preservation in political and local municipal planning.  It in fills development with a more rectilinear approach to neighborhoods.  Typical village concepts such as sidewalks and multiple roadways access to the village are used.  The concept of ‘enclosure’ encapsulates the streetscapes with the use of tree-lines streets, front porches and the sizing and locations of the housing stock.  The front yard setbacks, side yard setbacks and process are elements to this ‘enclosure’ concept.

Tools available to fight the Vanishing Village are found in the MLUL and through local government that give importance to local historical inventories on state and national registers as individual sites or districts.  Viable options were discussed to prevent village encroachment and erosion as submitted in the following article.  The Mount Laurel II and Historic Preservation by Richard S. Walling written for New Jersey Municipalities, March 1985, will be submitted to HPAC file.”

While at the conference HPAC reps talked with Michele Donato, who was also in attendance, regarding the time table for Chapter 93 draft.  It was their impression that Michele would be attending this evenings meeting with ½ of Chapter 93 draft. 

 

Comments on Chinmaya Temple are:

·         The Chinmaya Temple is now a stucco building with gabled roofs, approximating the characteristics of Cranbury farm buildings.

·         In addition to actual structures, HPAC focuses attention on the viewscapes in the farmland, as well as the topography of the land, which is characterized by flat slightly undulating fields.

·         In the proposed Site Plan for the Temple, the addition of berms, detention ponds, as well as a large parking lot with a sea of pole lights seriously compromise the historic character of this farmland.

·         Since these Site Plan elements are going to be part of the Chinmaya Temple, we would like these modifications to be considered to minimize their impact:

  1. The detention pond should not have a berm on the side nearest to the road.  The pond should be moved away from the road to the point where the rising land meets the elevation called for as the leading edge of the detention pond.  This natural elevation is not far from the artificial elevation the berm creates.
  2. The back edge of the pond should be bermed slightly or not at all.  It should be at the approximate elevation as the front edge, so the view across the pond is level, consistent with the unaltered farmland throughout Cranbury.
  3. The parking lot should be dropped, so that the large stone area is not readily visible.  This technique is not uncommon in our area, and can be seen at West Windsor High School North.
  4. The pole lighting should be as short and simple as possible, as few as possible, with light directed down, and without side spillage away from the lot.

 

·         When the Temple is completed, it will have less of an impact on our historic farmland if consideration of the land’s unique qualities, and how to maintain them are part of the planning.

 

These comments of Chinmaya Temple will be forwarded to the Planning Board.

 

ADJOURNMENT OF MEETING

 

There being no further business, on motion duly made, seconded, and carried, the meeting was thereupon adjourned at 8:35 pm.  Motion by Frank McDonald, second by Diane Stasi, all in favor.

 

CERTIFICATE OF SECRETARY

 

I, Undersigned, do hereby certify;

 

That I am duly elected and acting secretary of the Cranbury Township Historic Preservation Advisory Commission and,

That the foregoing minutes of the Historic Preservation Advisory Commission, held on February 5, 2002, consisting of 3 pages, constitute a true and correct copy of the minutes of the said meeting.

 

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto subscribed, my name of said Historic Preservation Advisory Commission this February 22, 2002.

 

 

__________________________________________

Linda M. Scott, Secretary