GALLOWAY TOWNSHIP — For the past 12 years, plans have been made to build homes at the more than 400-acre former Blue Heron Pines East golf course off Tilton Road.
The property had been approved for senior housing from 2007 to 2013. In 2013, the township Planning Board approved eliminating a 55-and-older age restriction for the previously approved 944-unit complex.
Following the housing market collapse in the area, property owners, Galloway-based Ole Hansen and Sons, told the state Pinelands Commission it was giving up its approvals for the housing project.
Ole Hansen then started working with the township to have the deed restriction for the property lifted, said David M. Goddard, president and CEO of the company.
At the request of the property owner, Township Council last month canceled the development deed restriction rights for Blue Heron Pines East, which lets future plans for the property match the light industrial uses for which the area is already zoned, Mayor Anthony J. Coppola Jr. said.
“Rescinding the approvals and all the terms and conditions in those approvals allow us to fully pursue potential commercial and industrial development options, which are permitted under township zoning ordinances without the prior approvals hindering us,” Goddard said.
Buildings at Blue Heron Pines East have been renovated to accommodate Enlightened Solutions, an addiction treatment center run by Jennifer Hansen, who also is the director of real estate development for the family company.
Barrette Outdoor Living, an aluminum and vinyl fence and rail manufacturing operation, has done well in the same neighborhood, one of several in the township that allows for tax breaks because it has been designated for redevelopment, Coppola said.
In 2014, Barrette took over the former Lenox china plant on Tilton Road. The company has created more than 500 jobs in the area during the past five years and has been a great ratable for the township, Coppola said.
GALLOWAY TOWNSHIP — A long-stalled plan to develop Blue Heron Pines East into a community of…
In fact, “Barrette expressed interest in some of our property to enhance their business operations if our land use approvals and restrictions were rescinded,” Goddard said.
Barrette Outdoor Living did not respond to a request for comment.
The Blue Heron Pines East site is a great property for industrial and commercial development and is close to Atlantic City International Airport and major highways, Goddard said. The township works closely with Ole Hansen to attract development projects, he said.
Coppola said the township needs another tax revenue source to help offset costs without increasing the demand for services.
Projects in the Blue Heron Pines East area will go before the Zoning Board if there are any changes in usage and before the Planning Board to figure out logistics and to make sure any future development adheres to township building codes, Coppola said.