Montclair Momentum

Montclair’s Third Ward Community Meeting Addresses Lackawanna Plaza Redevelopment Concerns

MONTCLAIR, NJ – A third community meeting on the topic of the redevelopment of Lackawanna Plaza in Montclair was held on November 29 at Hillside School, this one hosted by Mayor Sean Spiller and Councilors Peter Yacobellis (At-Large) and Lori Price Abrams (Third Ward).

Fourth Ward Councilor David Cummings, who hosted the previous two meetings, did not attend, but several prominent Montclair residents – former Fourth Ward Councilor Renée Baskerville, former Planning Board members Martin Schwartz and Peg Seip, and Historic Preservation Commission chair Kathleen Bennett, among others – were in attendance.

Councilor Yacobellis, who lives on Grove Street just a few blocks from the eight-acre Lackawanna Plaza property, made it clear that he has as much at stake and anyone else in Montclair, since he has to live with the impacts of whatever sort of development the Lackawanna Plaza project, to be spearheaded by David Placek, the property’s owner, gets built. Councilor Price Abrams, citing the possible impact of the project on the Third Ward given its proximity to the Third Ward’s boundary with the Fourth Ward (where the Lackawanna Plaza property is located), said that Montclair was at an “inflection point” and said it was necessary to look hard at the project with preparations “well under way.”