The stretch of Nassau Street between Olden Street and the Sunoco Station on Murray Place was once known as Gasoline Alley. Now the area is known as one in need of redevelopment.
For more than two years, two major buildings in the neighborhood have been vacant. The former Olive May grocery store closed in 2009, and the building next to it that once housed a West Coast video store and a laundry mat has been vacant even longer.
Residents in the neighborhood want a voice regarding future development. Tonight at the 7:30 borough council meeting, they will present their recommendations for the south side of the street in the area that is zoned a service business district.
More than 60 residents have signed on to a proposal to change the zoning for the district to:
· Encourage the creation of a major mixed use, pedestrian friendly public space
· Ban parking lots fronting Nassau Street
· Prohibit fast-food restaurants
· Allow kiosks
Residents in the surrounding area have been working to create a new vision for the stretch of Nassau through neighborhood meetings and informal meetings with commercial property owners, with assistance of the civic group Princeton Future.
The Olive May site is owned by the Carnevale family, which is being represented by Linda Fahmie of ROI Renovations. The former West Coast video property is owned by the Bratman family.
The Carnevale’s site are revising development plans due to objections from some residents about the scope of the proposal. The original proposal for the Olive May site, which would have required variances, was for a three-story building that would be a mix of retail, office, and residential spaces, with both surface and underground parking.