Jackson Bans Dormitories At Packed Meeting

Photo by Jennifer Peacock

JACKSON – They shared stories of wanting to flee an “urban jungle” and escape to the tree-lined quiet streets of the suburbs. How to keep Jackson that is where they differ.

While at first it seemed as if no one would speak, prompting several false-starts to close public comment, audience members finally made it to the podium to talk about wanting to keep Jackson as it is. The comments came from both non-Orthodox residents and several Orthodox Jewish men who attended council’s meeting Thursday night.

Residents feared increased traffic and all that comes with development would destroy the rural nature of most of Jackson.

The municipal building was packed to the rafters. (Photo by Jennifer Peacock)

After public comments closed, the Jackson Township council voted unanimously to approve ordinances that would restrict certain kinds of development from specified and, which drew more fire from critics, ban dormitories throughout the township. Several from the dais expressed their belief that this ordinance would help combat sprawl.

Councilman Robert Nixon was absent.

However, the several Orthodox men their families moved to Jackson to escape Lakewood’s out of control development. While they support wanting to restrict such growth, they did not see the logic in banning dormitories. Rather, they said, restrict over-development.

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Ocean County native Jennifer Peacock is a community journalist and photographer. She’s written for weekly and daily newspapers in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Virginia for more than 20 years. Readers can contact her at [email protected]