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Is Liberty Corner Location Right for Mosque? [POLL]

Proposed 4,200-square-foot mosque planned for Church Street would be across from Liberty Corner Fire Co.

The Bernards Township on Tuesday night heard a proposal for a new 4,200 square foot mosque at the far end of Church Street in Liberty Corner, an a four-plus acre property that is near the intersection of the street with Somerville Road.

A house of worship, by law, is a permitted use in a residential zone. Moreover, according to Ali Chaudry, a Rutgers professor, longtime Basking Ridge resident and former township mayor, has said the mosque is needed to serve those who live and work in the Somerset Hills area. He also heads the Islamic Society of Basking Ridge.

But will attract 150 members within the next 10 years — and board members asked for Chaudry to provide more information. The next Planning Board meeting is scheduled for Sept. 4, at 7:30 p.m. at the municipal building.

The Islamic Society of Basking Ridge already owns the property where the plan is to demolish the exisiting four-bedroom home, Chaudry has said. Meanwhile, the Islamic temple to go up would be about 4,200 square feet — not considerably larger than many new homes in Basking Ridge.

However, neighbors are concerned that many events that would be at the mosque, from a series of daily prayers that begin before dawn and end as late as about 9:30 p.m. would be disruptive for local residents and two-lane Church Street. The location was questioned.

The mosque already has been operating in rented space, with activities and worship services split between the community center in Basking Ridge, and leased classrooms at the Has anyone noticed those activities having an affect on the neighborhoods around them?

But, as one person mentioned at the meeting, would having a new mosque building attract more people, including more from further afield?

Please let us know by voting in the poll below, but realize that the Planning Board must respond to the proposal in a way that is withing the guidelines of the law.

Alpharox April 08, 2013 at 01:21 PM
Well said, Barbara. The comments in this thread make me ashamed to have grown up in Basking Ridge. I moved elsewhere after college and recently returned to visit my parents. One of the neighbors was displaying a "Preserve Liberty Corner" sign. I was shocked when I learned the meaning behind it. It is embarrassing that people would "proudly" display such racism in my home town.
LC April 08, 2013 at 10:15 PM
Islam is not a race. You are clearly naive. How would your parents like it if someone bought the house right next door and planned to knock it down, pave a huge parking lot, install commercial lighting, and plan to have activities from dawn throughout the late evening? What's "racist" about not wanting that?
R&A April 27, 2013 at 01:19 AM
Let's not be naive. Islam is being called into question on these matters for good reason. There is nothing bigoted or prejudiced about asking how a rapidly growing community of Muslims in Somerset County does not represent a threat of opening doors for extreme Islamic radicals or becoming that way itself. What happens if the mosque gets vandalized or someone ignorantly defames Allah or burns a Quran, will there be a holy war here in Liberty Corner? We live in a time where radical Islam is on the rise as fast a rate or faster than moderate Islam. Don't be naive just so you are not called an "Islamaphobe" or considered backwards. Do the research. See: http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/pages/americanattacks.htm
SweetPea April 29, 2013 at 02:10 PM
Truth and Reason: Couldn't have said it better myself. It's ASTOUNDING to me that so many Americans continue to turn a blind eye to Radical Islam in the name of political correctness, especially in the wake of the Boston bombings. How much more evidence do you need to understand that the Muslim Brotherhood exists in this country and that their sole purpose is to infiltrate our communities? Paranoid? I don't think so. Racist? Absolutely not. It's unfortunate for those moderate Muslims whose faith has been bastardized, but they need to unambiguously and fervently fight against the radicalism that exists within the Islamic community. Anything less is tacit support of the radical agenda. The Islamic Society of Basking Ridge falls under the umbrella of the Islamic Society of North America. The ISNA was created by and supports the Musilm Brotherhood. Barbara Brooks and Alpharox, educate yourself before making such naive and foolish comments: http://www.granddeception.com
Native May 09, 2013 at 10:13 AM
SweetPea is correct and reasonable. Also everyone, please do not forget that a mosque has a call to prayer which is usually done over a loudspeaker. 5 times a day starting as early as 2am. Spending even a small amount of time in the lands of the Islamic faithful will show you this reality, and they are not about to do it differently for this location. Mr. Chaudry should forget the balloon test (LOL) and demonstrate the exact manner this call to prayer will be done, and not be further disingenuous! If you are confused and worried that you might offend someone by trying to protect the harmony and charm of the community, then you should step to the back and let those unafraid of good, reasonable push-back prevail in this effort. Otherwise, good luck with all this.

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