Citing an unfavorable response from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, Manchester Township Mayor Ken Palmer has vetoed the township council’s approval of the ordinance authorizing the Manchester Town Square project.
“Hearing the DEP’s concerns and those of our residents, I, along with the Town Council, have decided to withdraw the plan. As such, earlier this morning I vetoed Ordinance 16-022,” Palmer said in a statement provided to The Manchester Times.
Manchester Township’s form of government does not give the mayor a vote at or have him preside over meetings of the township council, but allows him to veto actions of taken by them.
No More “City In The Pines” – For Now, At Least
The plan – which has now officially been scrapped – called for the construction of 6,543 units of residential housing, in addition to commercial property to create a “town center” on the Heritage Minerals site.
The controversial plan drew widespread condemnation from legions of residents and representatives of environmental groups including the Pinelands Preservation Alliance, which threatened legal action, as well as the New Jersey chapter of the Sierra Club. Many residents spoke out against the project at public meetings, with some concerned of the increased impact to the township’s schools and government services.