“The West Clay”, A 14-Condo Development Approved At Mimi’s Location

Monday night the Municipal Land Use Board (MLUB) unanimously approved a proposed 14 condominium complex at the current Mimi’s Pizza & Ice location. The three-story development will be at the end of West Clay at Faitoute Avenue next to the train tracks. There will be two stories of residential units while the ground floor will retain Mimi’s as a small restaurant take-out business and a foyer area. The development will be named “The West Clay”.

The application was heard in two parts with the preliminary application hearing happening in February and the second one last month.

At the February 5th MLUB meeting, the applicant – West Clay Associates, LLC – was represented by Stephen Hehl from Hehl & Hehl out of Union Township and provided their original concept. A major issue was that the applicant did not state whether the 14 units would be rentals or owned properties. Other issues involved setbacks, the height of the development, a retaining wall, three-bedroom apartments, and some technical aspects of the project.

On March 12th, the applicant returned and issued a revised plan based on comments from the MLUB and Neglia Engineering, the board’s planner. The applicant stated that the development would be owned condominiums and a condominium association accompanied by bylaws would be established. The reconfiguration in the application had the following changes:

  • The side yard setback on West Clay was increased from five feet to eight feet
  • The rear yard setback was increased from 32 ft. to 34½ ft
  • The retaining wall was extended along Faitoute as requested by Neglia Engineering
  • The buffer area between the curb and lot 3 was increased from 4′ 1″ to 4′ 6″
  • An extra parking space was created due to reconfiguration which increased the count to 31 from 30
  • The height of the development was reduced to 38 ft. from its original 43 ft.
  • The density of the building footprint was reduced
  • Closets and dens were removed from two-bedroom units as requested
  • The three-bedroom units were eliminated from the project
  • Seating in the area of the restaurant will be 12 or less

The condominiums, described as high-end, will be comprised of granite tops within the kitchens along with stainless steel undermount sinks and Moen faucets. All appliances (dishwasher, stove, refrigerator, microwave) will be stainless steel. All cabinets will be white wood cabinets with all-wood floors throughout the condominium including the bedrooms. Ceramic tile will be in the bathroom and shower areas and all plumbing fixtures within the bathrooms will be Moen faucets. Each unit will have its own laundry area and its own air and heat.

In discussing the new height, the applicant’s representative stated that only the ornamental sections of the parapet are 38 feet and that the primary height of the building itself is at 35 feet. Finally, the development is compliant with 2015 international building codes.

The board was satisfied with the changes made and approved the project.

This latest approved development is different in that the units will be owned properties – not rented – and as of now has not applied for any abatement such as Payment In Lieu Of Taxes (PILOT).

After the meeting, Paul Minitelli, owner and operator or Mimi’s stated, “I’m happy it passed. It was something my father had wanted to happen.”

The approval for the application and development was approved by resolution at the April 16th MLUB meeting.