On Monday, June 17 at 7pm (formerly scheduled for May 6), Asbury Partners LLC (APL), is petitioning the City’s Planning Board for more time to build a luxury pool club.

The board approved the site for construction of a beach club on the Green Acres property on the north end of Asbury Park beach on Ocean Avenue on November 15, 2021. According to state law the permit can only be extended in one-year increments three times, prompting Asbury Partners to ask for two (2) more, one-year extensions of zoning protection.    

The project’s delayed start, according to Jennifer Phillips Smith, an attorney with the firm of Gibbons P.C., representing APL, was due to a lack of government approvals. Essentially, Madison Asbury Retail has to give consent and it has failed to do so. The contractual agreement states that neither Asbury Partners or Madison Asbury Retail “shall commence construction of the initial beach club without the consent of the other.” Asbury Partners requested consent in writing from Madison Asbury Retail three times; twice in 2018 and once in 2022.

Smith underscores that in the agreement, once the pool club is built, a second public beach club must be built by Madison Asbury Retail within 18 months of the completion of construction on the private beach club.

An unprecedented sixteen planning board meetings held from May 2019 through September of 2021 have dealt specifically with the issue of this highly contested pool club.

An unprecedented sixteen planning board meetings held from May 2019 through September of 2021 have dealt specifically with the issue of this highly contested pool club. During those meetings, the Planning Board heard voluminous testimony from construction experts, land-use attorneys, the City Historian, environmentalists, and members of the public.

Residents of Asbury Park were highly upset by the taking of open public space, encroachment on views and access to the ocean. Many of these concerns are likely to be aroused again by Asbury Partners’ request.

There will be an opportunity for the public to offer comment.

Maureen Nevin is an award-winning independent journalist who has won the National Press Club's First Place Award for Consumer Journalism for “Who's Watching the Watchdog?” An Asbury Park resident from fall of 1999 to 2021, Nevin launched and hosted a live call-in show Asbury Radio – The Radio Voice of Asbury Park from July 2000 to November 2006, broadcast over WYGG 88.1 FM and the internet.

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2 Comments

  1. It’s incredibly disappointing that this terrible project is still being pursued after so, so, many residents actively spoke up against it at every Planning Board meeting whenever it was on the agenda. The dire impact of climate change is only getting worse, and the last thing we need is a poorly designed private so called ‘Beach Club’ being built on this site between the boardwalk and a private residential area. I strongly encourage every resident of Asbury Park that can attend this meeting show up in solidarity against this plan moving forward in any way, shape, or form!

  2. I would suggest they make a pool club for residents only! I believe it planned for the same location of the 7th Ave pool which was a resident only pool and beach club. After all that has happened on AP, I think the residents deserve to get this one privilege as we have given up so much to the developers and paying record high taxes.

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