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The Journals are the premier publications for high-quality, hyperlocal news and advertising in Monmouth County, New Jersey

Nov 25, 2020

Debate Continues Over Sandy Hook Developments at Fort Hancock

sandy hook fort hancock barracks construction

Photo courtesy of @GDPhotosNJ on Instagram

Sandy Hook National Park officials revealed that they were in talks with developers earlier this year to convert the 21 existing structures at the end of Sandy Hook into residential apartments, as first reported by The Patch. The scenic strip was said to be possibly used for weddings and events.

More than 200 people joined a virtual meeting Monday night, hosted by Fort Hancock public open house. The National Park Service assured those who joined that the project is still in the talking stage, but would benefit the park with nearly $800 million in deferred maintenance.

Those in opposition of the proposal believe the historic park should continue to be a place for the public to visit and appreciate. Despite these strong feelings, Stillman Development International believes that converting the existing structures into 93 apartments will help preserve the buildings. The developers also plan to convert other buildings on Sandy Hook to bars, restaurants and event spaces.

Local residents argue that this development would change the physical landscape and socioeconomic way in which the park operates.

The National Park Service has been working on a revitalization plan for years but had not found a partner who would preserve the park’s structures.

Roy Stillman, president of Stillman Development, believes with his firm’s history in undertaking complex conservation projects, he is confident Stillman Development could take the project on.

There was no resolution made in this open house.

Monmouth County Freeholder Lillian Burry stated, “If there are better ideas with concrete proposals, they should be brought forward at this time.”