TOMS RIVER – The large swath of land that is being cleared on Route 37 will be a car dealership.
The land, located between St. Catherine Boulevard and Bananier Drive, on the eastbound side of 37, has been worked on for a few months. It won’t be a new dealership, per se. It will be the new home of Lester Glenn Chrysler, which has outgrown its current location, also on Route 37.
There are a number of car dealerships on Route 37 already, including: Suburu, Dodge, Nissan, Porsche, Audi, Toyota, Chevy, Hyundai, Ford, Honda, Volkswagon, Mitsubishi, Buick, and Kia. Some of them are owned by a few companies. There are also stores for used vehicles, like Candor Auto Sales and Eppy’s Classy Cars. Route 37 and Route 88 are two of the busiest roads in the county for car dealerships.
According to Planning Board documents, the land encompasses approximately 5.69 acres in the rural highway business zone. The property used to be home to a landscaping/nursery business and four commercial buildings. These were all torn down. Only the sign will remain, although obviously it will list the new business instead.
Lester Glenn’s development of the property would include parking, curbing, driveways, sidewalk landscape lighting, and drainage basins. The business would be open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., but closed on Sunday. It is expected to support 60 employees.
The Planning Board granted a variance to the dealership regarding the signage. The property only allows for seven “items of information” per business, and the dealership wanted 17. The Planning Board ruled that the additional signage would not negatively impact other businesses in the Route 37 corridor.
The development was approved in 2016, and put in writing certain provisions for the dealership to follow: tractor trailer deliveries of vehicles can only take place in the parking lot, behind the building, not on Route 37 and not in the fire lanes; the dealership must make a contribution to the town’s sidewalk fund in lieu of constructing sidewalks on 37; and no outside speakers pointed toward the residential zone behind it.
Representatives from Lester Glenn didn’t return comment for this story.