Village Hall and Marylawn on Agenda for Dec. 5 South Orange Planning Board

by The Village Green
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The site plans for both Village Hall and Marylawn of the Oranges are on the agenda for the South Orange Planning Board for Monday night, December 5.

See the agenda here.

Historic Village Hall is proposed to become a restaurant and catering hall, plus a beer garden (The Pump House).

A nonprofit is proposing turning the former Marylawn of the Oranges school on Scotland Road into a STEM high school and leasing to the Orange Board of Education. The agenda states that the use is solely for a day school purpose and changes “will be limited to the addition of the handicap accessible bathrooms, ramps, chairlift, bathrooms for boys and girls. No physical changes to the footprints of the property.”

According to a posting on Next Door West Montrose, “The projected sale includes a school building with 15 classrooms, lab, library, gym and staff offices, the Graves Mansion (historic building) and adjacent property. The buyer is Orange Educational Foundation, a 501c3 entity. They plan to purchase the property and lease it to the Orange Board of Education.”

The post continues, “Obviously, this is an unusual transaction, a third party purchasing a school building in one district and leasing it for use by another school district. Although permitted under NJ State law. In addition, there are neighborhood concerns such as; hours of operation, size and level of student body, transportation in and out of the site, staff parking, South Orange municipal services to be provided and others.”

The site plan hearing for the Villas at Orange Lawn are being continued to a special meeting on December 14 at 7 p.m. (note the earlier starting time) at SOPAC. On November 21, the architect for the project completed testimony and the Planning Board also received more testimony from a witness who had testified previously (the landscape architect).  The one remaining expert witness is the traffic engineer. Once that testimony is complete, the public will be able to make statements and the Board can rule on the site plan.

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