To Address Flooding Concerns, Princeton Council Advances Study of New Stormwater Runoff Fee

Flooding in Princeton after spring rainfall, April 8, 2022

Princeton Concil has awarded a contract to a consultancy firm to investigate whether the town should set up a ‘stormwater utility‘. If so, every local property owner would be required to pay a new fee, which would be dependent on the amount of stormwater runoff generated at their site. The revenues would fund local improvements to manage stormwater. The decision to fund the study was made after a short discussion at the end of the April 11 Council meeting.

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Princeton Council Rejects Another Bike Lane Proposal

Council decided that this section of Witherspoon Street will not be getting any bike lanes.

At their meeting on Monday night, Princeton Council held a work session to identify final design alternatives for the ‘Witherspoon Street Phase II’ engineering project. This is a major engineering project for the part of the street between Green Street and Frankin Avenue, and the design selected is likely to define it for the coming decades. Advocates including former Princeton Borough Mayor Yina Moore had championed a bike lane on this section, which would improve the safety and comfort of cyclists, including the large population of low-income workers who live in the area around Witherspooon St. Based on staff recommendations, however, Council decided to reject the bike lane concept. Cyclists will instead have to share the road with car, bus, and truck traffic. The saga is a good illustration of why the town of Princeton keeps failing to install high-quality facilities for bike users.

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Posted in Alternative Transportation, Biking, Complete Streets, planning, Princeton, Sustainability, The Parking Question | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Princeton Council Approves New Survey of Park Place Parking Lot, With A View To Redevelopment

The Park Place parking lot, which will be the subject of an extensive survey funded by the town.

Parking has once again dominated Princeton Council’s agenda in 2022, with multiple meetings devoted to reviewing the findings of the ‘Permit Parking Task Force‘. Following substantial opposition, Council scaled back the original plan to expand resident permit parking, and, as discussed previously at walkableprinceton.com has rented parking at the former Westminster Choir College site for employee parking. However another Council action potentially affecting parking has seen little attention. At their meeting on Feb 14, Princeton Council awarded $38,470.00 to T&M Associates to prepare a detailed map of the surface parking lots between Nassau Street and Park Place. And at least one Council member sees it as a potential first step toward redevelopment of the site.

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NJ Transit Focuses On Two Options for Future Of Princeton ‘Dinky’ Rail Corridor

Rendering of potential Princeton Dinky light rail / busway at proposed new Roszel Road Station under ‘Alternative 1’

A spokeswoman from NJ Transit announced on Thursday night that the agency has narrowed the field of potential options in its ‘Princeton Transitway’ study. The study aims to identify ways to improve transit along the Princeton ‘Dinky’ rail corridor. Whereas four potential options were being considered previously (see full story at walkableprinceton.com), NJ Transit is now focusing on ‘Alternative 1’ and ‘Alternative 4’.

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First Look: Concept Plan For ‘Hobson College’ At Princeton University

Rendering of proposed new ‘Hobson College’ as viewed from Goheen Walk looking north.

On Thursday, Feb 3, 2022, the Princeton Planning Board will consider a concept plan presented by Princeton University, outlining their design for a new undergraduate residential college. The new college will be called ‘Hobson College’, after donor Mellody Hobson, and will be the first college at Princeton University named for a Black woman.

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Princeton Jewish Center Co-Hosts Speaker Discussion On Affordable Housing

Rendering of Princeton Community Housing’s new 100%-affordable housing proposal at Princeton Community Village

Affordable housing remains a major ongoing topic for discussion in Princeton. Where should we build it? What should it look like? And how should it be paid for? Stepping up to the moment, the Princeton Jewish Center co-hosted the second in a series of panel discussions on housing earlier this month. The session was entitled “Affordable Housing in a Just World: Basics and Beyond”, and featured presentations from three participants with distinct perspectives on the process of planning and building affordable housing.

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Ten Predictions For Princeton In 2022!

The famous “Cicada Choc-Chip” ice-cream, available at ‘The Bent Spoon’ ice-cream parlor in Princeton in 2021 coinciding with the emergence of the Brood X cicada swarm this year.

2021 may be remembered as another year ruined by coronavirus, but a lot of good things happened in Princeton this year. A very-busy Princeton Planning Board gave the green light to construction of more affordable homes (probably more than in the previous 5 years put together) and an amazing new Princeton University Arts Museum. Princeton Council approved a new vision for Witherspoon Street that is likely to create a more beautiful and walkable downtown. And the long-delayed Gateway project to build new rail links between New York and New Jersey finally gained key federal approvals. But what will the new year bring? Here are ten guesses about what 2022 might have in store for Princeton…and don’t forget to read to the end to check how our predictions from last year held up!!

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Posted in Affordability, Alternative Transportation, Complete Streets, planning, Princeton, Smart Growth, The Parking Question | Tagged , | Leave a comment

NJ Transit Reveals Alternatives for Princeton Dinky Transitway Upgrades (Updated)

Alternatives for Princeton Dinky Transitway (via NJTransit.com)

NJ Transit today announced alternatives for upgraded transit along the Princeton ‘Dinky’ rail corridor. The agency has been considering different options for the Dinky line as part of its ‘Princeton Transitway’ study. Earlier this year, NJ Transit launched an outreach effort to get suggestions from the public about what kind of transportation options people would like to see (Report: “NJ Transit Launches Public Consultation to Identify Potential Upgrades to Princeton ‘Dinky’ Rail Line). An interim report was was finally released today on the NJ Transit project website. As expected, the latest update does not include a preferred alternative. Instead, it outlines four possibilities for the Dinky line in the future.

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Subdivision With Three Single-Family Homes Proposed At Bayard Lane and Birch Ave in Princeton

Site plan showing arrangement of three proposed houses in the new subdivision.

A development application has been submitted to the Princeton Planning Department for three new homes on the western side of Bayard Lane (Route 206), at the intersection with Birch Avenue (see map below). The proposal, from “West Windsor Real Estate, LLC” is for a small subdivision, in which three single-family houses would be accessed by a common driveway.

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New Era of Affordable Housing Begins With Expansion of Princeton Community Village

Rendering of under-construction 100% affordable housing at Princeton Community Village

An event to mark the first new affordable housing to be constructed under the town of Princeton’s 2020 housing settlements was held last Friday. Princeton Community Housing, the non-profit organization that is the largest operator of affordable housing in the area, held a virtual ground-breaking ceremony for 25 new apartments at Princeton Community Village, on Bunn Drive (map)

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Posted in Affordability, Events, People, Placemaking, Princeton | Tagged , | 2 Comments