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TINTON FALLS, NJ-With last night’s unanimous council approval of a redevelopment agreement with Chelsea Property Group, the latter’s proposed 430,000-sf Jersey Shore Premium Outlets shopping complex has taken a major step toward reality. The agreement is one of the final hurdles the $100-million, 130-store project had to clear before construction can start.

“The project will generate almost $1 million in taxes for our school district, and about $250,000 for the municipality,” Mayor Peter Maclearie told council members yesterday. “We don’t have to worry up picking up their garbage, or about their roads. The only cost to the community is incurred from policing the property.”

As reported by GlobeSt.com, the project was initially proposed by the Roseland-based Chelsea, a division of Simon Property Group, in 2003. Initial planning board and council approval was granted two years later. During the lengthy approval process, the project has been delayed by multiple legal challenges.

One of those challenges has come from the Asbury Park Press, which has its offices adjacent to the 70-acre property and has filed multiple lawsuits relating to traffic and construction of an overpass on the adjacent Route 66. One of those lawsuits is still alive. The other legal challenge has come from the Shark River Cleanup Coalition, an environmental group, relating to stormwater management regulations.

“There are third parties that have [delayed the project],” borough attorney James Berube told council members yesterday. “I think that Chelsea would have preferred to have gotten to this point sooner.”

Still pending are permits from the Borough of Tinton Falls, as well as approvals from state agencies. Once those are obtained, Chelsea officials say it will take between 18 months and two years to complete the project. Chelsea’s Mark J. Silvestri has said that the retail mix will be upscale, and while no tenants have been announced, names like Saks Fifth Avenue, Brooks Brothers, Armani and Nordstrom have surfaced during the approval process.

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