Planning Director Janice Talley points to a map showing what Montclair’s downtown business district would look like with a revised set of zoning classifications. The proposed changes, following a review period, will go to the council and the public for further discussion later this winter. ERIN ROLL/STAFF

By ERIN ROLL
roll@montclairlocal.news

Montclair’s planning board wants to do some housekeeping on its zoning guidelines.

The board introduced a rough draft of revisions to the township’s zoning ordinance during Monday night’s workshop meeting, including a new list of residential and commercial zoning classifications.

Planning Director Janice Talley said that the ordinances were due for revisions. “I’ve been here for seven years and my first job was to try…I’ve been itching to update our regulations because they’re not very user-friendly.”

Talley delivered a presentation showing the new zoning classifications, which include nine different zones for commercial and office use, and 10 low to medium-density residential zones based on lot sizes.

The next step is the board to continue discussing the revisions at the Dec. 18 regular meeting. If approved, the board will pass the revisions along to the council for review and a public forum.

Several members of the audience asked what the zoning changes would entail if approved, citing Montclair’s increasingly unaffordable housing prices for many families, while others asked if there was any way for the public to see the drafts of the ordinance changes.

The board eventually agreed that the drafts could be shown to the general public, with the caveat that they were being updated and revised. Talley said that the rough drafts, including the new zoning maps and the PowerPoint presentation of all the ordinance changes, will be posted on the township website on Tuesday.

Besides the zoning guidelines, the board had a continued discussion of the Montclair Gateway redevelopment plan. The discussion centered on what would become of some pieces of property on Orange Road, adjacent to the high-rise hotel being built there.

This is a developing story. Follow Montclair Local for more information.