By: Megan Roche
Early discussions in Mount Olive have been taking place over the last few weeks to revitalize the area of Budd Lake. The lake, a summer hotspot in town, has potential for complete overhaul, according to township administrator Andrew Tatarenko.
“We’ve had an active beach area for a period of time. This year, we scaled back and we didn’t really offer any recreational programs there or any type of organized swimming facility. It was really just a passive recreation beach. A lot of our other town facilities are in great shape and it’s time that the beach was also granted the same,” Tatarenko shared.
While the conversation is in its very early stages, Tatarenko is planning on showing the potential renderings to the township council at their next meeting. If the township council likes what they see, monetary figures can be brought up and discussed during the budget process for the following year. At this point, ground would likely not be broken on the project until 2022 at the earliest.
“We’re looking to add some landscaping and privacy screens. We’d also like to add a pavilion area, a playground for the kids, expand the actual beach area itself. We’re also talking about rehabbing the parking area, adding more docks for people to go out and enjoy the lake, even potentially offering some kind of boat rental service. We’d also add restroom facilities. It would be a complete overhaul,” Tatarenko said.
Also being discussed is the Marveland Farms property. After being used as an equine facility over the last few years, the township has decided not to renew the lease. The current proposed idea is that of an “extreme” park. The extreme park would be home to things like a skate park, a roller hockey rink, an RC track, etc.
“I’m hoping to rejuvenate the areas. We want to encourage our residents and residents from other towns to use our parks. We’re taking on the mindset of ‘if you build it, they will come,’ especially during this whole COVID-19 scenario,” Tatarankeo says.
Much like the Budd Lake Beach project, the ideas must be presented to the township council and details would be worked out if approval was met. This plan would also not see ground break until 2022 as well.
“The idea of revitalizing the beach area has been something that has been talked about for years. Now is the time to get it done. Mount Olive has such great facilities for our residents. Creating a recreational area around the beach is a great idea. The entire area will look beautiful and offer another option to the residents. Having the state’s largest natural lake, it would be great to use that resource to its greatest potential. With Marveland Farms it is great location for an extreme type park and again will offer another type of facility for our residents. I look forward to seeing these projects get completed and opened for residents to enjoy for years to come,” Council President Joe Nicastro said.
More information will be forthcoming on both projects. For more information, visit the township website at www.mountolivetwpnj.org.