What Should Go Here: Patriots Plaza Open Lot

Recently developed area has space available.

Rather than asking readers what they'd like to see inserted into an existing business space, this week's What Should Go Here column is allowing readers to use more of their imagination. 

On Rt. 46 in the Hackettstown portion of Washington Township, just across the street from the Target Department store and a newly-constructed is an open plot of land with no signs of construction being made.

The property backs up to a portion of the Peachtree Village apartment complex, and neighbors the Patriots Plaza medical facility. Inside the Plaza are two businesses leaving very soon– and Pietro's Villa. 

So, Long Valley Patch readers, now is your chance. Be creative. Tell us what should be built (if anything at all), from scratch, and why.

Maybe a big-time restaurant? Maybe a recreation center, like a bowling alley or billiards hall? Are you looking for some kind of retail to complement Target, like a food store or electronics outlet?

Tell us about it!

Hookerman April 18, 2012 at 12:00 PM
Why would even consider developing on vacant land when there are already about a dozen retail locations in Wash Twp that are empty???
Claire April 18, 2012 at 12:04 PM
I agree, no need to build new. So take the Blockbuster and Pietro's and make a Trader Joe's or Whole Foods
Mark Lipinski April 18, 2012 at 01:01 PM
Trader Joe's would be amazing (but in a vacant space --- like in all of the empty real estate in Mansfield) . . . Must every inch of land be developed? Leave it alone and allow it to be just land! And "Patriot's Plaza?" Really? LOL Who named that? It sounds like a Tea Party Disneyland!
Lolita Lisankie April 18, 2012 at 02:01 PM
Trader Joe's
PD73 April 18, 2012 at 02:07 PM
Stephanie Weiss April 18, 2012 at 02:11 PM
Wegmans would be awesome!! We so need something like that in town!
Joanne April 18, 2012 at 02:25 PM
If the lot was big enough I too would change my mind to a wegmans for sure, but I am not sure its big enough. I go to Bridgewater for my fix. I am not a big fan of trader joes, there is one by my folks house, I rarely go when I visit.
Kimberly Prendergast Wohlgemuth April 18, 2012 at 02:26 PM
Wasn't there some sort of food market over by the blockbuster several years ago??? and it closed... I agree...I think it should be left as open land, and with work on filling that strip mall (blockbuster) again, i think 70-80% of that mall is empty now right???
Claire April 18, 2012 at 02:44 PM
There was an old (kinda dirty) A&P years ago. That space has been replaced with Drs/MRi etc. I dont think 70% is empty now, just the few side storefronts. Am I wrong? But yes, WT needs to fill it with some tax ratable businesses. I would hope with the Target and new car dealers, that area could be commercialized bringing in stores that could stay in business.
Jason Koestenblatt (Editor) April 18, 2012 at 02:47 PM
Great suggestions, everyone. I see a recurring theme - here and on previous What Should Go Here columns - about a Trader Joe's or Whole Foods. Sounds like there's a market for the business... Also, one of the reasons we said 'use your imagination' was because this IS open land. If you don't think it should be developed, great, and thanks for saying so! @Kim - The corner of Rt. 46 and East Ave. used to have a 'Fast & Fresh' before becoming the First Hope Bank, which stands there now. Fast & Fresh was more of a convenience store, but had a deli, pickle barrels and other quick-hit goods. Personally, I loved it :) I also remember when the A&P was in the plaza, prior to moving on top of the mountain into Mt. Olive territory, the store was very, very successful. So, some kind of food market - organic or otherwise - may be a major hit. One last question: how many Target shoppers here use their new food section? Has it filled a void in the area? Thanks for your participation, everyone!
Sagerhouse April 18, 2012 at 03:00 PM
Wegmans, Whole Foods , Trader Joes
Tami Howell Ochs April 18, 2012 at 03:58 PM
Trader joes!!!! But more buildings? Don't we have a 1/2 empty mall in the valley already??
Jeff Scotti April 18, 2012 at 04:38 PM
Wegmans, Whole Foods , Trader Joes are great ideas but don't forget we have our own local and organic food and artisan market every Thursday 3-7 pm right in Downtown Long Valley at 20 Schooley's Mtn Road. Organic meats from Mini Mac Farm, Organic Coffee From Black River Roasters, Pickles from PickleLicious and over 20 other vendors, this week Hoffman Supply will be handing out a free Sapling in honor of Earth day to every child. We are so lucky to still have farms in town. check it out LongValleyGreenMarket.com.
Kristine April 18, 2012 at 04:55 PM
Trader Joe's or Whole Foods would be ideal!
Jeff Scotti April 18, 2012 at 05:19 PM
Trader Joe's or Whole Foods have both said we don't have the right demographics for them. We have tried to get them to move into or near town. Is it big enough for an Ice Rink? or indoor soccer field?
Joseph Keyes April 18, 2012 at 05:32 PM
A community garden site, depending on who owns it and any $$$ that need to change hands....good fit for peachtree...
stacie bohr April 18, 2012 at 09:40 PM
stacie bohr April 18, 2012 at 09:52 PM
Having grown up in Bergen County (we moved here from Long Island 10 years ago as my husband is from there), one of the things that enticed us to move to Long Valley was that it wasn't saturated with businesses and congestion. It took a little getting used to having to drive a whole four miles to get to the supermarket or a 7-11. Many of our friends are Long Valley natives and tell us how it has changed so much with regard to industry, construction, etc. I’d say…leave it alone. My dad went to Lehigh and that part of 46 was absolutely NOTHING when he would go back and forth from New Milford. He is astonished when he comes to visit when we head into Hackettstown down 46.
Kathleen Mitchell April 19, 2012 at 12:39 AM
Jose Teja's :)
Jennifer Simon April 19, 2012 at 10:06 AM
I am also a Trader Joe's/Whole Foods fan (and they need to reexamine their demographics study...I know a lot of people that go all the way to bridgewater, morristown and madison to go to these stores and would go more often if it was in their own back yard.) I don't think that would affect my love of shopping the local farm markets where you can get 'picked that day' freshness. I also agree with those folks that said we don't need to build. Jersey is addicted to building. And we have a lot of empty space wanted for a tenant. A community garden is a terrific idea if there is the interest. Finally, though some sort of recreation center or community center is sorely needed in this area as the closest YMCA is in Randolph. However, this is a large burden for the taxpayers and the Y has already said that they don't think there is the population to support a Y. Hopefully, some day we'll have that center.
LV Mom April 19, 2012 at 08:13 PM
I would love to see one of the big chicken wing type chains come in; Hooters, Quaker Steak & Lube, or Buffalo Wild Wings.
Claire April 19, 2012 at 10:46 PM
Jennifer, when I questioned the Demographic Study, I found out it is based on car count ... how many cars pass the road on different times of the day. That determines whether a chain will build there.
Geena Anderson April 21, 2012 at 02:55 PM
What about an Olive Garden
LM April 22, 2012 at 12:52 PM
Wow! A Wegmans? The traffic going from East Ave. to Rt. 46 is already atrocious. Hackettstown refuses to address their traffic problems. Maybe if Hackettstown and LV could really engage in a master plan the demographics, i.e. car count for a Whole Foods or Trader Joe's would be improved and they would reconsider. I personally would love one. What a joy it would be for that section of Rt. 46 to have a Whole Foods and an outdoor eating pavilion nearby.. .. Ever hear of Stew Leonard's? They even have a separate ice cream parlor outside their stores. Kids beg to go! A Wegmans is too large for our area and the added traffic would suffocate us without a significant improvement to our infrastructure. I truly think half of LV's problem is the steep curve on one side and the Hackettstown/LV/Rt 57 access on the other. The local market is great if you want to travel over the mountain all the time. There's some local markets over here too but you never can count on them having what you NEED.
Marge April 23, 2012 at 12:04 AM
Yes! We travel all the way to Madison and Florham Park to shop in these stores!
L. Mc April 25, 2012 at 12:36 PM
Agreed, as well!
L. Mc April 25, 2012 at 12:44 PM
Stew Leonards would be a dream! I grew up near the Stews in Yonkers, NY & absolutely loved it. In my family, every Tuesday was Stews-day & I did all our shopping there on that day and the kids loved going! Everything was super fresh: fruit, cheese, fish, coffee beans roasted on site, meat: the very best at excellent prices. Another reason Stews would be as great match is they focus on local products instead of a corporate package deal.
Charley June 11, 2012 at 12:09 PM
Does anyone know the zoning of the lot in question?
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