Dunellen seeks to continue downtown revitalization success with short-term tax program for all property owners

Dunellen seeks to continue downtown revitalization success with short-term tax program for all property owners

The borough of Dunellen, incorporated in 1887, was centered around a newly constructed Central Railroad of New Jersey station. Dunellen is located in the northwest part of Middlesex County, approximately thirty miles southwest of New York and sixty-five miles northeast of Philadelphia. Encompassing one square mile, Dunellen has an estimated population of 7,600 people.

Dunellen is a developed residential community with a central commercial area, along North Avenue, Bound Brook Road and Washington Avenue. The station, first built in 1867 and named “Dunellen”, is considered a key element in the redevelopment of the borough. A town center redevelopment plan, first adopted in 2003 and amended frequently as needed up to and including 2022, provides for a pedestrian-friendly town center, with shops and restaurants extending throughout the commercial area and residential buildings within walking distance of the station.

Redevelopment projects already approved in various stages of preparation and construction include the Art Color complex, which will feature 130 townhouses for sale and 252 apartments for rent, including 58 affordable units that are part of the city’s affordable housing obligation. ‘borough. Another project, recently approved by Council, is a residential building, located at 120 – 126 North Avenue, consisting of thirty-three residential units, ground floor commercial space of over two thousand (2,000 ) square feet and thirty-five parking spaces. spaces, including eight charging stations for electric vehicles. The building will also provide five affordable units, which will also be credited to Dunellen’s bond.

Dunellen is delighted to offer a new program to current residents who live in the borough’s redevelopment area – a five-year tax holiday that will save homeowners money when making improvements to their homes. and their businesses. Tax exemptions are valuable to our residents as they will reduce the assessed value of property improvements for up to five years.

Some examples of projects for homeowners in the redevelopment area that are eligible for a tax exemption include adding an addition to their home, kitchen upgrades, or adding a new bathroom. In these examples, the resident would receive an exemption on the first $25,000 of value added to your home.

If you are a business owner or commercial property owner in the redevelopment area, you may be exempt from paying 100% of the value added to your property for a period of five years for projects such as the addition of a new storefront, commercial kitchen upgrade, addition of an outdoor seating area or an internal remodel.

The construction of new buildings or the transformation of existing buildings in the redevelopment area is also eligible for tax exemption.

Mayor Jason F. Cilento presented the program to Borough Council, which unanimously supported it. Mayor Cilento said, “These tax incentives will encourage property owners to renovate and remodel, and even build new properties in Dunellen within the redevelopment area. These projects may not have been undertaken, but the tax incentive and their construction will help beautify and update downtown Dunellen and continue the revitalization of our downtown core. After five years of exemption, Dunellen will collect the full assessment tax, which otherwise might not have been collected if the project had not been completed. The new incentive does not negatively impact Dunellen’s overall budget, as it is taxes that have never been collected before.

In order to apply for these incentives, it is important to review the application, which is available at the tax assessor’s office, before beginning construction of the improvements. Different projects have different application deadlines.

For further questions or to apply for the program, please contact the borough’s tax assessor, Dawn Guttschall, CTA, at [email protected]

Also, please mark your calendars for Thursday, December 8, 2022 at 7 p.m. Dunellen will host its second annual redevelopment town hall at the Dunellen Senior Center in Columbia Park to discuss not only the five-year tax abatement program, but also the status of other redevelopment projects in the area and how they are benefiting Dunellen. We will also look at affordable housing bonds, payments in lieu of taxes, redevelopment agreements and other planning initiatives in the borough. If you cannot attend in person, you can join virtually at a link that will be provided at www.dunellen-nj.govwhere it will also be made available after town hall.

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