Jaindl ware­house devel­op­ment gets ap­proval for first phase

The Morning Call - - LOCAL NEWS - By Kevin Duffy

Un­able to add a turn lane at a busy Route 329 in­ter­sec­tion, a de­vel­oper now is will­ing to in­stead ex­tend an Allen Town­ship road to deal with traf­fic con­cerns re­lated to his pro­posed 2.5 million square feet of ware­houses.

David Jaindl, of JW Devel­op­ment Part­ners, told town­ship su­per­vi­sors Tues­day that he is agree­able to ex­tend­ing Savage Road across Route 329 to con­nect to How­er­town Road to re­duce traf­fic conges­tion at the in­ter­sec­tion.

The board voted 4-1 in fa­vor of fi­nal ap­proval for the first devel­op­ment phase of Northamp­ton Busi­ness Cen­ter, planned for five ware­houses to­tal­ing 2.5 million square feet be­tween Seemsville and How­er­town roads.

Jaindl ini­tially agreed to pro­vide a right turn south­bound on How­er­town Road onto Route 329 along­side the Shell gas sta­tion there, but the town­ship was not able to ac­quire the right-ofway from the prop­erty owner for the lane.

As a con­di­tion of ap­proval, he then agreed to con­struct the turn lane should the town­ship get the land in the fu­ture.

Tues­day, Su­per­vi­sor Gary Behler sug­gested an al­ter­na­tive — hav­ing Jaindl ex­tend Savage Road along­side the Ace Hard­ware store to even­tu­ally meet How­er­town Road, with the town­ship’s con­tribut­ing money to­ward the project should the cost ex­ceed that of the right turn lane he orig­i­nally agreed to pro­vide.

As part of the ar­range­ment pre­vi­ously agreed upon be­tween Jaindl and the town­ship, JW Devel­op­ment has 18 months from the com­ple­tion of the traf­fic study re­quired by the town­ship and Pen­nDOT to do the work, whether it is the right-turn lane from How­er­town Road to Route 329 or the Savage Road ex­ten­sion.

The dol­lar value of the work would be hashed out be­tween the de­vel­oper’s engi­neer and the town­ship.

A sixth ware­house span­ning 186,000 square feet to be built on nearly 14 acres just west of How­er­town Road is now planned for the sec­ond phase.

An­n­Marie Vig­i­lante of Lan­gan En­gi­neer­ing, Jaindl’s traf­fic con­sul­tant, sub­mit­ted a traf­fic im­pact study in De­cem­ber 2017 that estimated 4,263 two-way ve­hi­cle trips per day, bro­ken down as 1,319 cars go­ing back and forth per day and 812 trucks.

Lan­gan’s re­vised study, sub­mit­ted in April, now projects 4,095 trips back and forth per day, with 780 trucks and 1,267 cars.

The re­duc­tion is be­cause one of the build­ings, Ware­house 4, is be­ing re­duced from 400,000 to 300,000 square feet, Vig­i­lante said.

The board also agreed to Jaindl’s con­tri­bu­tion of roughly 41 acres to the town­ship in the north­east por­tion of the prop­erty in lieu of $55,000 in recreation fees.

As part of that ar­range­ment, Jaindl agreed to seek per­mis­sion from the town­ship if he wants to in­stall stormwa­ter in­fra­struc­ture within the ease­ment.

Su­per­vi­sor Dale Hassler, who voted no, said he couldn’t sup­port ware­houses on the nearly 300 acres of land, de­spite the zon­ing in place al­low­ing for them.

“Morally it doesn’t be­long there, I’ve al­ways said that from Day 1,” he said.

Behler said vot­ing against them would land the town­ship in court, where he be­lieves it would lose.

“If there was a le­gal way around this, I’d vote no,” he said.

Richard No­vak, of Bally Drive, asked the board to re­con­sider given Pen­nDOT’s re­cent de­ci­sion to cut fund­ing for ma­jor road im­prove­ments in the Le­high Val­ley that would have ac­com­mo­dated in­creased truck traf­fic.

“Jaindl will add a bur­den to the road sys­tem,” he said.

Kevin Duffy is a free­lance writer for The Morn­ing Call.

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