Apr-18-08 Woolwich Township Receives Plan Endorsement
Woolwich Township Receives Plan Endorsement
TRENTON, N.J. – Woolwich Township today received Initial Plan Endorsement from the New Jersey State Planning Commission (SPC). This marks the first time a municipality has been endorsed with an approved Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) Program under the State TDR Act. DCA’s Office of Smart Growth (OSG), the New Jersey Department of Agriculture (NJDOA) and other state agency partners helped provide both technical and financial assistance to aid Woolwich Township in this process.
“Woolwich Township has set a great example of planning and implementing smart growth principles,” said DCA Commissioner Doria. “I encourage more municipalities to work with our Smart Growth Office to receive endorsement.”
Plan Endorsement is a tool developed by the SPC to provide technical assistance and coordination for municipalities, counties, regional and State agencies to meet the publicly supported goals of the State Planning Act. The Plan Endorsement process is voluntary and establishes a method by which government agencies at all levels may develop capital investment and implement plans that will achieve the goals, policies and strategies of the State Plan.
“"Woolwich Township, in the face of some of the most intense development pressure in the state, has done an outstanding job in developing a plan to proactively manage that growth to protect more than 4,000 acres of very important farmland," said Agriculture Secretary Charles M. Kuperus. "This is far more than what the Township could hope to accomplish through even the most ambitious use of our traditional farmland preservation programs and will result in the protection of large contiguous blocks of farmland, with great agricultural soils, that will help sustain the agricultural industry. Woolwich Township is an excellent example for other municipalities seeking to maximize opportunities to protect agricultural, natural and historic resources while striking an appropriate balance between preservation and growth."
TDR is a realty transfer system where development potential in a specified preservation area can be purchased by private investors for use in a targeted growth area. The State TDR requires Initial Plan Endorsement for the enactment of the program and implementing ordinance. By designating centers and directing development into those areas through TDR, Woolwich will preserve approximately 5,000 acres of land or more. Additional preservation will come about through continued participation in the farmland preservation program, clustering and open space acquisitions.
The State Planning Commission, which is staffed by the OSG, is charged with coordinating state land use policies, implementing the State Plan, reviewing legislation for capital appropriations as they relate to the State Plan, and encouraging the use of effective and efficient planning resources, tools and techniques to local governments, businesses, and citizens.
For more information on the Office of Smart Growth and Plan Endorsement, call 609-292-7156, or log on to http://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/osg/.