Hot Topics

Camp Monroe


-In 2019, there are two applications for new housing projects on land reserved for future development after the subdivision of Camp Monroe (CM described below in 2016).

1) Meadow Hill project in Monroe proposing 8 lots (reduced to 6 lots clustered) on 13 acres along Lakes Road.

2) Second Meadow Hill project in Chester for 3 lots on 5 acres along Camp Monroe Road (public hearing June 5 2019 approval Dec 2019).

The remaining 27 acres owned by Meadow Hill LLC was undetermined at the time of the above project reviews. The Preservation Collective raised the issue of segmentation with the Towns because the developer was avoiding a more thorough environmental review by not providing a concept plan for the parcel in between the other two projects. The Town of Chester Planning Board said no plans were before them so did not review the big picture. However, shortly after approval for the smaller parcel, the developer submitted application for the remaining parcel (7 lots clustered) called Oak Woods.

Meanwhile, news of the sale of the Camp gets public attention - See related article: Camp Monroe sold to NJ Congregation

New camp owners want to use the camp beyond the summer months. The camp is a pre-existing, non-conforming use so the current use is not allowed to be expanded, as per town code. Town to discuss with building enforcement and attorney.

- In 2016, the long time landowner of the property changes past development plans and decides to save/sell the Camp Monroe portion to new camp operators, therefore, the land needed to be subdivided to section off the camp facilities from land reserved for future development. Public hearing scheduled in Aug/Sept, 2016 was for lot line changes to create 3 large lots. The proposal included 1) the generous dedication of wells and 30 +/- acres of open space to the Town of Chester which could preserve ridgeline and hiking trails. 2) The new Camp owner plans would retain facilities and continue use away from the remaining land. 3) 27+- acres will be reserved for possible future development by previous owner, which adjoins his 13+- acres in the Town of Monroe along Lakes Road. This plan is setting aside significantly less land for development than proposed years ago (see Background info below).

There is information on the Town of Chester website regarding the lot line change application. check Town Minutes . and view documents listed for the Aug 17 and the past July 6 meeting for more details. Planning Board votes to approve lot line changes as proposed at their Oct 5 meeting. Meanwhile, the Town Board addressed residents concerns about possible through road by proposing a conservation easement to restrict access to their neighborhood if development should be proposed in the future.

A color map is available that demonstrates the proposed lot line changes that were subject of a public hearing. The yellow is the top of ridge proposed to be dedicated to the Town of Chester which connects to the red which is already Town owned in LHF, the large middle green is for the new camp owner to continue business, and the blue is what is being leftover for development in the future by previous owner (but no plans at this time). If/when a housing project is proposed, there will be a new application and hearing.

Camp Monroe - Map of Proposed Lot Line Changes click here

Other news reported from latest Planning Board meeting in detail linked click: here.(leaving TPC site)


In 2004, a subdivision project was proposed titled "Bellvale." The proposed 157 lot cluster residential subdivision consisted of 274 acres, of which 254 were located in the Town of Chester and the remaining 20 in the Town of Monroe. Site located off Lakes Road.

A public input meeting was held on March 20, 2007 at the Chester Academy. Topic: Draft Scope - The documents and applicant's preferred site map available online here

The Preservation Collective submitted a letter that included questions and comments from members living nearby regarding the proposal.

In 2011, the project application was withdrawn so no development is planned at this time. The camp facilities on site ended up staying in business rather than be part of future development plans. See related article: Bellvale housing development falls through in Chester

In 2015, the owner of the property submits concept plan to Planning Board to make separate lots; 99 acres for existing camp to stay in operation with a new owner and remaining land with previous owner.

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