Red Bank, NJ, July 18, 2018 – Scarinci Hollenbeck, Scarinci Hollenbeck, Attorneys at Law, successfully received a seven to one vote from the Eatontown Planning Board in favor of its client who sought approval for its Monmouth Mall redesign plans. The client, a major real estate developer, was granted approval from the Board to move forward with its Monmouth Mall redesign plans to convert the property into a “live, work and play” destination. The long-awaited approval comes after a series of roughly seven hearings and over two years of planning.
The ambitious redevelopment project calls for a major redesign and expansion of the Monmouth Mall. The design will increase the leasable space from 1.54 million square feet to 1.62 million square feet. It will also include the addition of 700 residential apartment units as well as spaces for entertainment, recreation, shopping, dining and even medical offices. The plan to redevelop the mall serves as a response to the issue of a declining brick and mortar retail industry due to the emergence and popularity of online retailers such as Amazon.
Mall at a Crossroads
Patrick J. McNamara, Partner in the firm’s Environmental & Land Use practice, represented Kushner Cos. before Eatontown’s Planning Board. Mr. McNamara, with the support of Counsel Roshan D. Shah, presented the application before the Planning Board in a series of hearings, which began April 2nd. He stressed the importance of making changes throughout the traditional retail industry as an increasing number of store locations continue to close down across the country due to online retailers’ growing dominance on the market.
According to Mr. McNamara, in order to compete with online retailers, shopping malls must change and become a part of the hospitality industry. In his closing remarks at this week’s hearing, Mr. McNamara stated how “malls must offer not only retail but recreational opportunities, entertainment and a wider variety of dining opportunities. They have to become part of what is more commonly known as live, work and play.”
The Heights at Monmouth
The Eatontown Planning Board voted seven to one in favor of “The Heights at Monmouth,” which will be the new name of the multi-purpose property. The next steps in the process require the developers and Eatontown Borough Council to enter into a developer’s agreement, which will establish a timeline for construction. County Planning Board approval is also needed for the project to proceed.
“I am pleased with this outcome due to the circumstances involved. We’ve arrived at a time and place where malls must be repurposed in order to compete with online retailers. While this approval is only the beginning, I look forward to working with a great project team in securing the rest of the permits and approvals needed,” said Mr. McNamara.
About Patrick J. McNamara
Patrick J. McNamara has extensive experience in redevelopment and land use law. In addition to his involvement in the Monmouth Mall project, Mr. McNamara has been counsel for the redevelopment of Pier Village in Long Branch, NJ since 2001. He has represented residential, commercial, and industrial developers in securing land use approvals required as part of in the redevelopment process. Mr. McNamara represents clients on numerous land use and redevelopment projects throughout New Jersey.
About Roshan D. Shah
Roshan D. Shah is a distinguished litigator and trial attorney with extensive experience in all facets of litigation. He has represented multinational corporations, federal defense contractors, health care providers and public entities.