Page 4 THE VILLADOM TIMES IV • August 12, 2009 Mahwah Township seeks new uses in industrial zones by Frank J. McMahon An ordinance recently introduced by the Mahwah Council would, if adopted, add health and wellness centers, and fitness and health clubs as permitted uses in the township’s GI-80 general industry and IP-120 industrial park zones. The proposed ordinance has been sent to the planning board for review and comment. That board has 35 days to return the ordinance to the council with its concurrence, comments, or recommendations. The council has scheduled a public hearing on the ordinance for Sept. 10. There are four GI-80 zones in three parts of the township. One is located in the Fardale section near the Wyckoff border; another lies between Island Road and the Conrail right-of-way off McKee Drive near Route 17 and Macarthur Boulevard in the center of the township; another is located west of Franklin Turnpike opposite police headquarters at the intersection of Siding Place and King Street; and a fourth is located in the northern part of the township at the end of Christie and Cedar Hill avenues, both of which connect to Franklin Turnpike. There are two IP-120 zones. One extends from the Ramsey border and Macarthur Boulevard to north of Corporate Drive. The other extends from the Conrail right-ofway to Ramapo Valley Road and Railroad Avenue in the northern portion of the township. The proposed ordinance was prompted by a May court decision in a lawsuit filed against the township by the NY Sports Club and its landlord, Mahwah Realty Associates, Inc., which owns the sports club property on Leighton Place in the Fardale section. The NY Sports Club and its predecessors have been located in a GI-80 industrial zone in Fardale since 1976 when the board of adjustment granted a variance for a nonconforming use in that zone. In the lawsuit, the club challenged a previous township ordinance adopted in September 2007 to allow wellness centers and health clubs in Mahwah’s GI-80 and IP-120 industrial zones. That ordinance was intended to permit a facility named The Valley Fitness and Wellness Center, which was affiliated with the Valley Hospital in Ridgewood, Helpful Hints Helpful Hints from ome “Keep a spray bottle of 3% hydrogen peroxide in the kitchen and use to wipe off countertops and appliances. It will disinfect and give the kitchen a clean, fresh smell.” Mary Says... to operate a health and wellness center in the GI-80 zone on McKee Drive off Island Road east of Route 17. Prior to the adoption of that ordinance, the township’s planning board indicated its support for permitting a wellness center in the industrial zone. Superior Court Judge Jonathan N. Harris invalidated the township’s ordinance earlier this year, claiming it was “invalid and ineffective” because it “unexpectedly” added the same uses to the township’s B-40 highway business district zone. Harris said Mahwah officials did not recognize that the addition of these two uses in the IP-120 industrial zone automatically would cause them to be treated as permitted principal uses in the B-40 highway business zone. At the trial, township officials conceded that Mahwah neglected to alert interested parties in the B-40 zone when it gave notice of the ordinance adoption hearing to the property owners in the industrial zones, but they said they considered that to be immaterial because the ordinance otherwise substantially complied with state law. Harris ruled that the lack of realization that the B-40 zone would be affected by the ordinance could not be overlooked. Harris did not find the township’s ordinance to be arbitrary, capricious, or unreasonable, but he did find that the township council, and the township’s planning board did not appropriately consider the ordinance’s effect on the B4 0 z on e a n d t h a t f a i lu r e t o d o s o s u p p o r t e d h i s (continued on page 16) Paul Banach Construction, LLC Home Remodeling Waldwick • 201-689-0765 • Windows • Doors • Garage Doors • • Finish Carpentry • Crown Moldings, Cabinetry, Walk-In-Closets, etc... • Kitchen & Bathroom Renovations • Take advantage of the Energy Tax Credit in 2009 Speak to your tax advisor to ascertain if you qualify, as these credits will make a project more economical for you! 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