Brick NJ Berry Fresh Farms property will become self-storage facility
BRICK — A farmers market and garden center that serves as a popular Halloween destination will be redeveloped into a three-story, self-storage facility, after the Brick Planning Board approved the project Wednesday.
The board gave unanimous approval to CE Development Management of Columbia, South Carolina to redevelop the five-acre property of Berry Fresh Farms — or as its known through autumn, “Scary Rotten Farms” — into an Extra Space Storage facility.
Scary Rotten Farms’ frightening Halloween tradition went back more than a decade and was known for its twisted carnival of creepy clowns and chilling reinterpretations of classic fairytales.
Both the Halloween attraction and more routine business of the garden center and market were a public benefit to the residents of Brick, said neighbor Daniel Tomé, 38, of Brick Boulevard. After Wednesday’s Planning Board meeting, Tomé said he was disappointed by board’s decision.
“I think it (the farmers market) is a better service to the larger community as a whole,” he said. “From their Halloween activities, it’s a better service to the families. I think the last thing we need in suburbia is another storage unit site.”
Planner Christine Nazzaro-Cofone, who represented CE Development Management, disagreed and said the self storage building would benefit the area by drawing less traffic on Brick Boulevard than the existing farm market.
The facility would also be the first in the area to offer climate-controlled storage options, she said.
“It’s going to be quieter than what exists (on the property) today,” she said.
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Extra Space Storage — which is based in Salt Lake City, Utah — owns or operates more than 2,000 self-storage facilities across 41 states, according to the company website.
In 2020, about one in 10 American households used self-storage, according to the Self Storage Association.
Amanda Oglesby is an Ocean County native who covers Brick, Barnegat and Lacey townships as well as the environment. She has worked for the Press for more than a decade. Reach her at @OglesbyAPP, firstname.lastname@example.org or 732-557-5701.