Court Denies Advance Realty’s Motion on Center of Excellence Site Plan Approval
Bridgewater, NJ – On Tuesday, April 21st, lawyers on behalf of Advance Realty filed a Motion for Partial Summary Judgment to obtain final site plan approval for the grocery store and hotel at the Center of Excellence site in Bridgewater. Their goal was to do this without being required to submit additional documentation to the Bridgewater Planning Board or go back for an additional final site plan hearing. Bridgewater Township filed a response to this Motion on May 5th and today, June 5th, Judge Thomas Miller issued the Court’s decision.
The Court denied Advance Realty’s attempt to force the Bridgewater Township Planning Board to issue final site plan approval for the hotel and grocery store and denied their request to remove language from the Planning Board’s most recent Resolution issues on February 25th.
Mayor Matthew Moench issued the following statement in response to Judge Miller’s ruling:
“On behalf of the residents of Bridgewater, I am grateful that Advance Realty’s request to circumvent our municipal land use process did not succeed. Instead, the Court will take the time to review the entire record of the Center of Excellence application before it issues a ruling on the merits of the claim that the Planning Board acted improperly. I am confident that after such a review the Court will uphold the Planning Board’s reasonable requirement that the developer come back before the Bridgewater Planning Board with greater details on the supermarket and hotel before receiving final site plan approval. As mentioned in the Court’s decision, the supermarket and hotel make up 150,000 square feet out of the 275,000 square feet of non-residential floor area. It is essential to the redevelopment of this site and its impact on the community that the Planning Board has all the information it needs on this significant aspect of the proposed development.
“My Administration has been crystal clear that we will advocate on behalf of our residents for a redevelopment plan that is appropriate for our community and that fits within the character of the Township we love. Whether it is this developer, or any other, we will provide a full, fair opportunity for businesses to grow and expand in Bridgewater. But for those developers, like Advance Realty, who want to impose their will on the Township to turn a profit at the expense of the quality of life for our residents, we will be fearless in our defense of the character of our community.
“I am grateful for the victory today on behalf of our residents, and look forward to a final resolution of this chapter in the saga of the Center of Excellence development.”
The Township will announce information on next steps of the litigation as it becomes available.