At a meeting July 9 the Plainsboro Township Committee voted unanimously to introduce an ordinance allowing for a residential housing component to be built at Princeton Forrestal Village (WW-P News, June 27).
Said Plainsboro Mayor Peter Cantu: “This ordinance is the result of the master plan subcommittee efforts. Now it will go back to the Planning Board for review and recommendations, and then it will come before the committee again for public hearing and approval. Forrestal Village was always envisioned to have a residential component, and these high-end apartments will allow the facility to truly become the mixed-use community it was envisioned to be.”
Added Deputy Mayor Neil Lewis: “Because of the way it has been planned, the development will generate very little loss to the open space there. It will utilize the existing parking lots, lighting, and other fixtures already in place.”
In addition, the committee held a public hearing on the ordinance allowing for the creation of additional bus stops, particularly in the areas near the Village Center and the University Medical Center. The ordinance passed unanimously.
Cantu also recently announced that the new owner of the Plainsboro Plaza, Onyx Equities, has signed leases with two new tenants: Rainbow Academy, a day care and preschool that is part of a network of 18 similar facilities across the state, and which will occupy a portion of the former Ace Hardware space; and a branch of the Indus American bank, which specializes in servicing Asian customers. The bank will be located at the front of the Plaza, along Schalks Crossing Road.
“Of course we are pleased that two new businesses will be locating at the plaza,” said Cantu. “But we really need a supermarket as an anchor. To help Onyx attract a supermarket, I recently sent out letters to seven executives of food store chains, encouraging them to locate at the Plaza, and promoting Plainsboro as a welcoming community. Four of the seven have responded, and three of those responses have been encouraging; the fourth was more generic.
“I am cautiously optimistic about the fact that three appear to be interested in Plainsboro. I don’t want to prematurely raise the residents’ hopes, but I think this is a good sign. Although the township cannot officially get involved with the business negotiations, we are being as supportive as we can so that we can attract another supermarket to the plaza.”
The signing of the two new leases coincides with the beginning of the planned renovation work for the plaza, expected to start in the next two weeks. Onyx has received approval to reface the facade, improved signage, and landscaping, and reconfiguration of the parking lot to improve traffic flow.