Deptford Township acquired the Most Holy Redeemer/Holy Angels property for $1,925,000 in April, 2019, according to New Jersey Parcels.
SJO attended the August 5, 2019 monthly meeting of Deptford Mayor and Council; and during the public portion, asked Mayor Paul Medany what the plans were for the property.
Mayor Medany explained that the plan is for sports teams to use the gym as early as October and the intention with the church is to turn it into a cultural arts center for music, art, and plays.
The property is eight acres and there is a school, two buildings, and a church, he explained.
The mayor stated that it is going to take a lot of work and a lot of planning, but “we are undertaking that right now.”
In the rear of the property, there are plans to build a track for kids to run on.
The township is working with the school district and other government agencies regarding the school. “It was a working school up until two years ago,” he said. The police have used the school to hold active shooter drills.
As for the gym, he said: “We desperately needed another gym. So, we have another gym now. Our recreation program is growing exponentially. We needed room for basketball. Soccer is even going to use it. There are people knocking on our door to use that gym. As soon as we get our work done — painting and fixing it up, then the first thing that is going to be put into use is that gymnasium.”
He hopes for the gym to be ready in October for basketball season.
The mayor spoke of the kitchen that groups can use for fundraisers and the church has a full basement. “The plan is to move some other recreation activities there,” he said.
Deptford Council unanimously passed Ordinance 06.19 on second reading at their Work Session on March 18, 2019. The Ordinance authorized the negotiation, acquisition, and purchase of this property “to be dedicated the public.”
(Updated: 8/6/2019 – 10:20 a.m.)