Stor­age cen­ter seeks ware­house ex­pan­sion in Up­per Ma­cungie

The Morning Call - - LOCAL NEWS - By Kevin Duffy Kevin Duffy is a free­lance writer for The Morn­ing Call.

An Al­len­town stor­age and dis­tri­bu­tion cen­ter is seek­ing a ware­house ex­pan­sion in Up­per Ma­cungie Town­ship well be­yond what is per­mit­ted.

Amer­iCold, which spe­cial­izes in the com­mer­cial stor­age and ship­ment of tem­per­a­ture-con­trolled goods, is seek­ing a vari­ance for a ver­ti­cal ex­pan­sion of an ex­ist­ing ware­house to reach as high as 135 feet, well above the 50-foot cap.

Reach­ing as high as 75 feet is al­lowed “with spe­cial con­di­tions,” Com­mu­nity De­vel­op­ment Di­rec­tor Daren Mar­tocci said dur­ing the Board of Su­per­vi­sors meet­ing Thurs­day.

Chair­man James Brunell ob­jected to the ex­pan­sion and wanted to at­tend a Sept. 11 Zon­ing Board of Ad­just­ment meet­ing to raise his concerns. So­lic­i­tor An­drew Schantz said he could only at­tend as a pri­vate ci­ti­zen.

Su­per­vi­sor Sean Gill said he wanted to know more about the re­quest be­fore mak­ing that de­ci­sion.

Sec­re­tary Kathy Rader was ab­sent.

The town­ship’s fire­fight­ing ap­pa­ra­tus can only ex­tend as high as 125 feet, said Grant Grim, emer­gency man­age­ment co­or­di­na­tor.

Amer­iCold serves lo­cal food ven­dors and re­gional gro­cers, along with do­mes­tic and in­ter­na­tional food and bev­er­age producers, its web­site says. The ware­house is at 7150 Am­bas­sador Drive in a district zoned light in­dus­trial.

In other busi­ness, signs will be re­placed and re­lo­cated along a por­tion of Cetro­nia Road that has been a con­cern for the town­ship and its res­i­dents.

Pen­nDOT agreed to re­place out­dated sig­nage with larger ones that are more re­flec­tive and meet cur­rent stan­dards, Town­ship En­gi­neer David Al­ban said.

These in­clude ar­row signs and warn­ing signs for nearby curbs, which will also be moved closer to the curbs, he said.

The signs are along a trou­ble­some “S” curve be­hind Air Prod­ucts, headed west­bound to­ward Route 100 from Mill Creek Road.

The signs are “too close to the curve” and fail to give mo­torists suf­fi­cient warn­ing, Mar­tocci said.

Donna Gregory, who lives on Cetro­nia Road, said trucks trav­el­ing from Route 100 east­bound to­ward Mill Creek Road have been a con­cern. She would like to see them pro­hib­ited from do­ing so.

“It’s be­come a ma­jor prob­lem. I’m sit­ting in my house and things are start­ing to rat­tle be­cause of the trucks,” she said.

The town­ship is lim­ited in what in can do be­cause it’s not illegal for trucks to pass along Cetro­nia Road in that direc­tion, po­lice Chief Edgardo Colon said.

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