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Residential Building Proposed to Replace Lavallette Office

The property at 1503 Grand Central Avenue, slated for residential development, Dec. 5, 2022. (Photo: Daniel Nee)

The property at 1503 Grand Central Avenue, slated for residential development, Dec. 5, 2022. (Photo: Daniel Nee)

Residential development is being proposed to replace commercial space along Grand Central Avenue (Route 35 north) in Lavallette.

The borough’s planning board, later this month, is scheduled to consider a proposal to tear down the commercial building at 1503 Grand Central Avenue, which currently houses offices for Birchler Realtors, and replace it with a new duplex residential building.

The residential building would include a self-contained parking area that would be enclosed on the first floor, below the living space. According to a public planning board notice, the developer, Eric J. Birchler, will request a variance that would allow the building to stand 35.4 feet from design flood elevation to top of ridge, or 38.8 height from ground level. The increased freeboard – the area under the building – is 5.80 feet to allow parking under the house. The borough’s zoning ordinance allows a maximum of 28 feet from “top of sill to ridge.”


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More routine, minor “bulk” variances may also be requested for development on the 50-by-100 foot parcel.

The property at 1503 Grand Central Avenue, slated for residential development, Dec. 5, 2022. (Photo: Daniel Nee)

The property at 1503 Grand Central Avenue, slated for residential development, Dec. 5, 2022. (Photo: Daniel Nee)

Conversions of commercial space to residential development have occasionally drawn scrutiny in recent years as Jersey Shore towns have become concerned with a surge in residential real estate valuations affecting the presence of a vibrant business community. The property where the duplex is proposed is located within the B-1 business zoning district.

The planning board is scheduled to hear the application at its Dec. 14 meeting, which will be held at 7:30 p.m. in the municipal courtroom at borough hall.


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