Madison Board of Education Moves Closer to Selling the Green Village Road Property
Wednesday, October 17, 2012 • 4:01pm
MADISON, NJ - After being closed for several years, the Green Village Road property in Madison is finally about to be sold.
On Oct. 11, the Madison Borough Council and Board of Education held a joint meeting to discuss the sale of the Green Village Road Property. Mayor Bob Conley and Madison Board of Education President Lisa Ellis issued a dual statement after the meeting.
“Our goal in selling the property has always been to maximize both the short term and long term benefits to the community and to ensure that the development is something we are all proud of for years to come,” Ellis said. “A joint working committee with members from both boards has been meeting for over two years to work through the details of selling the property.”
Both boards previously agreed to sell the property through the Local Redevelopment and Housing Law.
Conley, who graduated from the Green Village Road Elementary School in 1968, said the building hadn’t been used as a school in 30 years, but it was previously used for special education services and Board of Education offices, as well as being rented out to Playwrights Theater and the Rainbow Montessori School.
“The reason the Council got involved was to help the Board of Education get the greatest possible value for the town,” he said.
The mayor said the process to sell the property started last year, and because the Borough designated it as a site for redevelopment, the land may not go the highest bidder as it normally would. Madison now has greater control over how the plot can be developed and who can be chosen to purchase it.
The BOE and the Council interviewed nine groups of prospective buyers and narrowed the choice down to five based on their backgrounds, visions for the property and ability to deliver on the project. At the meeting, both boards completed the details of the Request for Proposal, which is one of the final steps in the process for selling the property. The five possible developers are Roseland Property Group of Short Hills, LCor Incorporated of New York City, Continental Properties of Chatham, The KRE Group of Bridgewater and AvalonBay Communities of Iselin. These developers will now be invited to submit final proposals to purchase and develop the property.
“The list of companies interested in the property is impressive,” Conley said. “All of them mentioned how wonderful Madison is and how great the location is, being close to both the train and downtown. We hope to have a developer selected by the end of the year. I don’t think anywhere in the State of New Jersey there has been a Board of Education and Council who have worked more closely together on a such an important project for the community.”
Conley said the zoning of the property in the redevelopment plan calls for it to be residential with some retail along Kings Road. The goal is to get the best value possible for the Borough, he added.
While he views the potential sale as a positive for the community, it will be sad to see his old school go, he said.
“It will be a little mixed feelings as I say goodbye,” Conley said.