September 21, 2016

A House Grows In The Inlet?

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Update: An early version of this story said the hearing was October 5. 

The Casino Reinvestment Development Authority has before it an application for a duplex in Atlantic City.

A variance – for a duplex! Sexy! I know.

But wait, there’s more.

The property’s on Vermont Avenue in the South Inlet, arguably the most surreal stretch of vacant land in a city teeming with tracts of surreal vacant land.

When Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop toured the city and noted the “vast tracts of oceanfront property” (Amy Rosenberg’s words) he was probably talking about Vermont Avenue, or one of the neighboring blocks.

The owners of 206 Vermont Avenue need a variance because their property’s RS-C on the zoning map, meaning it’s zoned for “resort commercial development,” i.e. casinos. But nobody wants to build a casino on Vermont Avenue anymore.

The reason the owners are applying to the casino redevelopment agency for permission to not build a casino on their property is because CRDA, rather than the local city zoning board, oversees development on Vermont Avenue. I’m new to the game, but this seems like a peculiarly Atlantic City situation.

Anyhow, the proposed duplex looks delightful–two units, little porches looking down on the street. The ground floor has parking and storage space. The upstairs unit has a habitable attic with room for another bedroom and bathroom.

The investors, Estate of A.C., are based in Florida. They did not respond to a call for comment, but they’re responsible for the townhouses on Formica Way in Ducktown.

Sheldon Grace, the real estate broker for 206 Vermont Avenue–who also sold townhouses on Formica Way–said many (if not all) of the Ducktown properties were sold through a grant program that offered financing to first-time home-buyers in the city. And maybe these units would be too.

On the other hand, maybe CRDA will nip this whole thing in the bud.

The hearing’s October 6 at 10:00 a.m. You can have a look at the submitted documents here.





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