Mosque Proposal Causes Stir in NJ Suburb

Township Council to consider ordinance that would send issue to zoning board

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    FILE PHOTO: Woman stands in front of building proposed for mosque site

    A central New Jersey town is considering a proposal to convert a closed banquet hall in a residential neighborhood into a mosque.

    The Bridgewater Township Council will consider an ordinance on Thursday that would take the issue away from the Planning Board and send it to the Zoning Board of Adjustment.     

    The Planning Board on Monday referred to the Council an ordinance which will restrict houses of worship to several main roads and highways. They're currently permitted in residential areas.

    Mosque supporters said the ordinance is unfair because it would change the rules, according to The Courier News of Bridgewater.

    Foes of the proposal claim municipal concerns, not religion, fuels  their opposition. Resident Harold Arlen, for example, said his big concern was the traffic that the mosque would generate.

    Syed Siddiq said it seems there's only a problem because it is a Muslim center.