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Ridgewood Air Club v. Board of Adjustment of Village of Ridgewood

Decided: October 17, 1947.

RIDGEWOOD AIR CLUB, A CORPORATION, PROSECUTOR,
v.
BOARD OF ADJUSTMENT OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD, BERGEN COUNTY, NEW JERSEY, DEFENDANT



On certiorari.

For the prosecutor, Doughty & Dwyer (John W. Ockford, of counsel).

For the defendant, William E. Reinhardt.

For the defendant-interveners, Moses Sandler and Charlotte Sandler, Morrison, Lloyd & Griggs (George A. Brown, of counsel).

Before Justice Donges, Colie and Eastwood.

Eastwood

The opinion of the court was delivered by

EASTWOOD, J. This is a zoning case. Prosecutor, Ridgewood Air Club, a non-profit corporation of this state seeks by certiorari to reverse the action of the Board of Adjustment of the Village of Ridgewood in refusing to grant a permit for the use of certain lands in the defendant municipality as a non-commercial airport. The Board of Adjustment denied prosecutor's petition for a permit following a hearing on the merits.

We have before us a record which, to say the least, is highly confused and incomplete. From what we are able to glean from the record it appears that prosecutor, Ridgewood Air Club, is an association of individuals who are desirous of advancing their interest in aviation and to provide economical and convenient flying facilities for its members. The association was incorporated under the non-profit laws of this state early in the year 1946 and has approximately twenty members enrolled at this time, each of whom has contributed $100 for the purposes of the organization. Richard Marlow is the president of the air club and also the owner of a tract of land situate within the boundaries of the Village of Ridgewood, consisting of approximately 108 acres. It is proposed by the air club to convert this tract into an airfield. To that end applications were made on November 27th, 1945, and again on March 12th, 1946, to the superintendent of buildings of the defendant village by Mr. Marlow for permission to construct certain buildings on the premises in question to be used in connection with the proposed airport. The applications were denied by the building inspector and so far as we are able to determine from the record no appeal was taken from this determination.

Thereafter a petition was filed by prosecutor with the Board of Adjustment signed by Richard Marlow, owner of the land, as president and trustee of the Ridgewood Air Club, to conduct an aviation field in accordance with plans and specifications alleged to have been filed with the building inspector of the Village of Ridgewood on February 27th, 1946. The petition seeks approval for an aviation field pursuant to a zoning ordinance of the defendant municipality known as Ordinance No. 764, the same having been adopted by the municipality on April 14th, 1931.

The zoning ordinance adopted April 14th, 1931, and known as Ordinance No. 764, placed the property in question in a single dwelling zone, and for purposes material to this decision provides as follows:

"Section 5. Single Dwelling Zone Uses. Within any Single Dwelling Zone no building shall be used in whole or in part for any industrial, ...


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