Supervisors approve rezoning requests in township

January 20, 2004|by RICHARD F. BELISLE

BLUE RIDGE SUMMIT, Pa. - Agricultural land for six more developments, mostly residential, was rezoned by the Washington Township Supervisors before a sparse audience Monday.

The action brings to nine the number of rezonings approved by the supervisors since December. They involve more than 1,000 acres for developments in the township's east end. Among them is a major shopping center to be anchored by a Wal-Mart SuperCenter.

The rezoning for the shopping center and two others were approved by the supervisors in December.

Most of the developments are for single-family and multi-family housing projects.

The supervisors obtained agreements from the developers to deed over a 100-foot strip of land through their properties for a relief route to be built around Pa. 16, the main east-west route through the township and borough of Waynesboro. The developers would build the road according to township specifications.


The road will serve as an access road connecting all nine developments. It will run for about five miles and begin and end on Pa. 16 east and west of the borough.

Jerry Zeigler, code enforcement officer for the township, said the agreements represents about four miles of the five-mile relief road. The one-mile stretch remaining will be built at township expense.

Like the December meeting, Monday's was held at the Blue Ridge Fire Hall in anticipation of a large crowd, but the change of venue was not needed. About 30 people showed up Monday. Only a handful spoke Monday, mostly in opposition to the rezonings.

Raymond Pirrello of Old Forge Road said his research showed that there is adequate housing, existing and under construction, to serve the needs of local residents, but developers are building homes for people from places such as Frederick, Md., and Gaithersburg, Md.

"There will never be enough homes for people who want to move here," Perrillo said. "In 10 years there will be no more farmland. Urban sprawl will keep on going as long as you (supervisors) keep on doing what you're doing.

"One day these developers will get into their Cadillacs, drive to Mercersburg (Pa.) and do the same thing to the farmland there."

Sam Welty, another citizen, said the relief road is needed to get traffic off Pa. 16, which can't handle the traffic that's on it now.

Rezoning requests approved Monday were:

  • Michael Knepper, 136 acres off Anthony Highway and Tomstown Road to R-1 single-family residential zoning, R-2 multi-family residential and a small tract to commercial zoning.

  • Pen Mar Properties, 96 acres on Gehr Road to R-1.

  • D. Curtis Mummert, 33 acres on Stottlemyer Road to R-2.

  • Waynesboro Country Club, Country Club Road, 16 acres to R-2.

  • Harry Buhrman, 113 acres on Gehr Road to R-1.

  • Twila K. Flohr and Carla C. Brandenberger, 170 acres on Eigenbrode Lane and Old Forge Road to R-1.

Christopher A. Firme, the supervisors' newest member, voted against all of the rezonings except for Waynesboro Country Club.

Firme, in a paper explaining reasons for his votes which he provided after the meeting, said the Country Club rezoning fits in with the club's open space plan.

In the paper, Firme cited various reasons for opposing the other five requests. They include lack of open space set aside, conflict with the township's comprehensive plan, lots being too small, poor access and traffic concerns.

Supervisor Richard Eigenbrode abstained from voting on three rezoning requests because of possible conflicts of interest, he said.

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