Newark Police Could Replace Firing Range on Doremus Avenue

Central Steel Drum Co 704 Doremus Avenue Newark
A new Firearms Training Center for the Newark Police Department has been proposed at 704-738 Doremus Avenue. Image via Google/Maps.

One of the state’s largest policing agencies is apparently working with a private developer in order to construct a new firing range in an industrial area.

The Newark Police Division’s Firearms Training Center is currently situated off of Doremus Avenue and Delancey Street near the East Ward’s Oak Island Yard, but a legal notice shows that the facility could be moved just a few yards away to 704-738 Doremus Avenue. The proposed 30,250-square-foot facility that would replace the existing center would include two firing ranges, one of which would be a rifle range with 10 lanes while the other would be a 16-lane pistol range. Two trailers and a watchtower are also reportedly planned.

The property where the new firing range would be constructed is also known as the Central Steel Drum site. In a 2011 statement regarding a proposed cleanup grant, the EPA described the site as being “contaminated with volatile and semi-volatile organic compounds, metals, and PCBs” because of its previous use “for manufacturing printing ink and recycling chemical drums.” The statement also mentioned that a distribution center was expected to be constructed following the cleanup.

Currently, the premises are owned by the City of Newark, but that might not be the case for much longer. El Sid Properties, LLC filed an application with the Newark Central Planning Board for Preliminary and Final Site Plan approval in connection with the proposed facility and mentioned in the notice that they have “entered into a Purchase and Sale and Redeveloper’s Agreement for the Property.”

Newark’s Municipal Council unanimously adopted a resolution earlier this month that stated in part that City Hall is expecting to sell the property to El Sid Properties for the negotiated amount of $4.45 million and that the city would not be required to pay rent for their former property for the first three years after the firing range is finished.

El Sid Properties’ address that was listed in the legislation is the same as that of Daybreak Express. The Newark Central Planning Board is scheduled to hear El Sid Properties’ application today, October 21, during its meeting at 6:30 p.m.

A spokesperson for the Newark Department of Public Safety could not immediately be reached for comment over the weekend to discuss the project and the agency has not yet issued a press release on the matter.

Note to readers: The dates that applications are scheduled to be heard by the Newark Central Planning Board and other commissions are subject to change.



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