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Planning Board to Consider Billboard Proposal for Route 42

Cooper Health System wants to erect three billboards—each up to 60 feet high—on property it owns along Route 42 in the township.

Planning Board to Consider Billboard Proposal for Route 42

The Planning Board will review a proposal by Cooper Health System to place three billboards—each up to 60 feet high—along a portion of Route 42 that runs through the township.

Representatives of Gloucester 42 Associates, a limited-liability company formed by Cooper, will appear before the township planning board tonight, Wednesday, Nov. 16 during a special meeting. The billboard proposal is the only item on the agenda.

The meeting begins 7:30 p.m. in Council Chambers at the .

Cooper Health System owns an undeveloped 113-acre parcel north of College Drive between Route 42 and the Black Horse Pike, to the west of Camden County College's Blackwood campus.

In an application submitted to the township last month, Cooper proposes erecting three double-sided billboards along the portion of the property near Route 42. (To view a copy of the application, click on the PDF above.)

Two of the billboards would have static signs, and the third would be digital, with rotating messages.

The property is known as the Interchange Redevelopment Area. In August, township council unanimously approved an amended redevelopment plan for the site.

When it was first moved forward in 2006 under the name "Cooper Medical Services," the Interchange Redevelopment Area was to be anchored by a medical facility affiliated with Cooper University Hospital.

However, when the amended plan was approved earlier this year, Mayor David Mayer said there is no indication Cooper intends to follow through with that proposal.

In the application the planning board will review tonight, Gloucester 42 Associates refers to the billboard proposal as "Phase 1 of the proposed development." The application does not say how else the property might be developed during subsequent phases.

The application also does not specify whether Cooper would own the billboards and sell advertising space itself, or sell the billboards to an outdoor-advertising company, if the proposal is approved.

The potentially lucrative billboard plan, according to the application, "is necessary to jump start future phases of redevelopment on the property."

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