Quimby Lane Redevelopment Plan


John Perling, Editor in Chief

 There are significant changes ahead for the downtown Bernardsville area, and the plans are quite auspicious, opportune, and utterly progressive. The Borough of Bernardsville recently released the full document outlining and detailing its plan to redevelop more than 5 acres of the downtown area – near the post office.

As of the December statement, the Borough is seeking a developer willing to undertake the task of implementing “The Quimby Lane Redevelopment Plan.” As described by the authors of the official document, “The Plan sets forth a vision and standards for a group of properties in the vicinity of Quimby Lane and the Bernardsville Train Station that collectively hold the potential to transform the community’s downtown,” and the document goes on to state that this area has the power to be another bustling, downtown, plaza-type area in the near future. 


The Plan begins with an overview of its specific goals. It mentions implementing more basic necessities that the area currently lacks, such as “parking that is visually unobtrusive,” and the creation of “Quimby Plaza.” Later in the paper, it describes this Quimby Plaza as a “gathering place for residents and visitors for daytime and nighttime activities, serving to create a walkable community feel…” The paper seems to stress the importance of ground-level pedestrian pathways being active to retain the plaza’s public feel. 


The Plan also includes the creation of a new park, dubbed the ‘Mine Brook Park,’ the Borough describes it as a public park that shows off the natural beauty of the town. The park “will enhance the amenity of the Mine Brook by creating areas for seating and passive recreation along the waterside.” This wonderful addition sounds like a great idea, however, its implementation is hard to imagine in the area’s current state. I theorize that this park will look like a large green area leading to a path along the brook from Mill Street to Mine Brook Road; there will be benches and a bridge across the water. 


The Borough makes comment of the misuse of the valuable land in the heart of our town in its paper and they make a good case against the current situation of the vital area in our town. “Chaotic setbacks of building frontages, use of architectural features that are unsightly and uncoordinated, paved front yards, and unscreened garbage and utility facilities” are just some of the problems that plague this specific area now. The Plan seeks to change this and make the area into a bustling plaza space for Bernardsville residents to enjoy.