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Bringing More Ratables To Town Number One On Amato's List

Mayor extends invitation to Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno to see the Beachwood Shopping Center for herself

Ask Mayor what his number one goal is for the year and he answers without hesitation.

Ratables, ratables, ratables.

"The immediate challenge is to get some economic growth in the township," he said in a recent interview in his office at Town Hall.

Berkeley, a traditionally retail-poor town, has seen even more businesses shuttered over the past several months. The biggest blow was the Food Circus' closure of the in the Baywick Plaza off Route 9.

The supermarket was the anchor store for mall's other businesses.

Amato is determined to do as much as possible to speed up state approval of Berkeley's plan, a portion of the township's massive redevelopment plan.

He has invited Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno to tour the deteriorating Beachwood Shopping Center, ground zero in the redevelopment plan. So far, he hasn't gotten an answer.

"I'm trying to get her down to tour the Town Center property," he said. "This way she can get a first hand feel of the .... I think they need to actually see it."

The Beachwood Shopping Center - dubbed Town Center 1 - is just one component or "node" in the township's massive redevelopment plan. The Berkeley Plaza shopping center, which has Shop Rite as the anchor store, and the land around Frederick Drive and the Shar-A-Dee apartments is designated as Town Center 2.

The third portion of the redevelopment plan is the extension of a light industrial area along Hickory Lane. The fourth section involves more intensive mixed use development of 73 parcels along Route 9 near Harbor Inn Road.

Township Engineer Jsaid earlier year that state Planning Commission approval for the Town Center portion of the plan could come by late spring or early summer.

Oscar Wilde February 13, 2012 at 10:26 PM
Lt. Governor Pantsuit isnt going to give you the time of day, unless you are a sheriff looking to double dip into the pension ponzi scam, than she will work hard for you
John B Taxpayer February 14, 2012 at 01:12 AM
NEW SITE TO SIGN GUN LAW CHANGE PETITION! http://www.change.org/petition...ersey-right-to-carry
skizma February 14, 2012 at 10:59 AM
First, get route 9 expanded.
Steve February 14, 2012 at 12:41 PM
What's with the plate of cookies trying to be hidden under paperwork on the desk?
R. Ray February 14, 2012 at 03:12 PM
Mrs. R Ray That is easier said than done! If you have a plan why don't you submit it to the town engineer so it can be done??
L & M February 14, 2012 at 05:25 PM
After 20-years of little action, I think it is about time we have a mayor that is actively trying to help Berkeley address its need for ratables. Unlike his predecessor, he is out there lobbying the County and State government for the best deals he can get for us. Carmen is a go getter, which is the reason he is now our mayor. If you care about Berkeley, lets give him a chance.
Terry February 14, 2012 at 05:55 PM
Some of you people out there are really rooting for Carmen to fail aren't you? What a miserable bunch of hacks. Who is it you are hacking for anyway? Or are you just so pissed off that your man lost that you can't et over it? Time to move on people. Try to make believe that you love the town you live in and you want the best for it.
Hearme February 14, 2012 at 11:44 PM
For the record. This is not a plan developed and implemented by Mayor Amato. This has been in the works for years. It was voted on in I believe 2009 when Mayor Verano was in office.
Hearme February 15, 2012 at 12:04 AM
I am not the biggest fan of Mayor Amato's politics but I do hope he can do some good for this town. Like it or not he is the Mayor and all we can do is hope for the best. This town is and has been filled with "us against them" mentality as long as I remember and I don't see it changing. I wont hold my breath until it does. This all sounds great from the very basic description in the article. I would love Patch to post a much more detailed description of the plan.It doesn't matter how much we all like or hate the plan anyway because it has to be approved and funded. All things that don't happen easily in this town.Don't be shocked if this gets reduced to a much smaller plan if it happens at all.Then there will be the "I don't want to pay for it" people.There is a reality. You have to spend money to make money. It is easy to say "I will do ..." getting it done is another story. This has been in the works for years. The Rt 9 widening has been addressed a hundred times just pull up an old article and read the reasons why it wont be done now or in the near future. It is a complicated issue.
Steve February 15, 2012 at 01:00 PM
The clutter around the entire office and messy desk are a certain undeniable sign, the mayor is much too busy with his many public taxpayer funded jobs to really address the duties he needs to. Staging a fake photo opportunty for this article couldn't take away the background of a messy office with no photos on the wall after more that a month and half and not settled in since he's had little time to even address that!
Terry February 16, 2012 at 01:12 PM
Since we all love to write so much how about we all get a piece of paper and a pencil and write to the Lt. Governor and tell her how important this project is to the Town, mail it to her so she can get heself here to look at the project. I know I will. In fact maybe someone will start a patition. Get to the next Town Council and bring it up. I will sign the patition and in fact will help get signatures. Who cares who started the project or when, Its will we get it done that counts.
Terry February 16, 2012 at 01:13 PM
Now lets see if all of the people that have nothing good to say step up to the plate and do it.
Hearme February 16, 2012 at 08:35 PM
No Terry people would rather complain and tell you everything that is wrong and scream "me! me! I want!" than actually do anything. I used to be the one writing all the letters and people would say "Hey I'll sign that too". Hell NO, not anymore. I tell them to write their own damn letters now.People in general have become lazy and selfish. It's sad to say. I just hope that people wake up in this country before it's to late. We need to fight for the things we need done to sustain us as a township, county, state and country. I doubt many will be bothered to make the effort.
John DiStefano February 17, 2012 at 12:35 PM
And no business is going to want to invest in Berkeley Twp while Rt 9 looks like a train wreck. Overgrown grass and shrubs. Hot dog carts ever few hundred feet Not to mention the prohibited sign that litter the corridor.
John DiStefano February 17, 2012 at 12:38 PM
This town definitely needs a facelift for sure. But it has to start outside of the town center first if we are ever to attract real, meaningful ratables. " if you build it, they will come"
Rita Imperato McGuire February 19, 2012 at 03:58 PM
Steve, I work for the Township and our new Mayor Amato has been in Townhall almost everyday since he was sworn in. Varano was rarely in the building the 12 years I worked there. Regarding clutter in the mayor's office, did you ever take a good look at the office when Mayor Varano was in power,,,,,,,,,now that was a mess. Leave our new mayor alone and let him do some good for this town. Get over it Steve, your man lost!!

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