Mo Hill, Council Scrap Plan to Convert Huddy Park Green Acres into Private Developer Land Sale For Now

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TOMS RIVER, NJ – A plan by Toms River Mayor Maurice Hill to convert a parking lot which is part of the Huddy Park Green Acres land preservation inventory into a lot for sale to an urban redevelopment firm has been withdrawn after it was exposed last week by a Shore News Network report.

The land, purchased from private land owners through a 1960s federal HUD grant to beautify Downtown Toms River was used to expand Huddy Park to the north side of the Toms River canal that separates the park from the village proper. The town forefathers built a block house on the site and installed a parking lot for access to the park.

Hill wanted to sell the land to the developer, Capodaglia, that is building a nearby 10-story twin tower apartment complex to convert into a multi-deck parking garage, shops, and possibly more apartments. The township-owned Green Acres land would have been sold to the developer under a plan similar to the one where the towers are being built.

“The reason for this tabling is there were a bunch of residents that had some concerns that wanted answers,” Councilman Matt Lotano said. “We want to answer their concerns before we move on with this.”

Councilman Daniel Rodrick, who strongly opposes the building of high-density apartments and city-like structures in the downtown Toms River village area, thanked Councilman Kevin Geohegan and Mayor Hill for “seeing the light”.

“I’m glad the council and the mayor have seen the light on this issue,” Councilman Rodrick said. “I vote yes.”

Lotano, a commercial builder and Downtown Toms River land owner, hinted that the project would go on at some point in the future.