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Lower Mac BOC Approves Jaindl Subdivision

The unanimous decision to divide the property is only the beginning of the development process.

In a move they called "cleaning up another board's mess," the Lower Macungie Township Board of Commissioners on Thursday voted unanimously to approve the Spring Creek Properties Subdivision, more often called the Jaindl Subdivision.

More than 100 people packed the meeting room of the Lower Macungie Township Building -- most to say they did not want the BOC to approve the plan.

Though several taxpayers asked the commissioners to reconsider because of repercussions that several taxpayers said would put a undue burden on the East Penn School District, the May 3 voted pertained only to the division of the commercial, industrial and greenspace parcels.

The vote had no bearing any part of the residential plans for the property.

It created light industrial and commercial lots that will be sold to third parties to develop. It also set up the part of the plot that will remain greenspace. When land development plans are discussed -- most likely years from now -- that will be the time the kinds of buildings will be discussed and decided. 

decisions on what kinds of buildings will go

Taxpayers also voiced complaints about the certain increase in traffic along Route 100 and the widening of the road, the possible addition of traffic lights that may be necessary to allow residents of Ancient Oaks and Ancient Oaks West to access Route 100 and possible encroachment of property that may be needed to widen the road.

Engineer Scott Pidcock responded by explaining that if, for example, 25 feet was needed to widen Route 100, it would not mean taking equal amounts of land from either side of the road, which would mean taking parts of some residents' front yards. 

Rather, Pidcock said, the land would be taken from the side of the road on which there are no homes.

When the property is developed, there will certainly be more traffic. But that day is far in the future -- possibly 10 years -- said Township Engineer William Erdman.

"We're trying to provide for conditions that will be needed 10 years down the road," he said.

One of the most misunderstood parts of the plan, he added, is that the waiver of traffic impact fees does not mean that taxpayers will end up footing the bill for the road reconfigurations repeated referred to as "improvements."

That Jaindl does not have to pay the fees usually charged to developers only means that Jaindl will be paying for the entire cost of the work.

"The township pays nothing," Erdman said.

Still, residents tried to convince the commissioners to vote down the subdivision plans.

"We feel like we've been dumped on," said Mike Siegel, an Ancient Oaks resident.

The Friends of Lower Macungie Township, a grassroots group that has challenged the Jaindl development at every turn was not happy with the vote.

"We are very disappointed in our elected officials tonight," said Ron Beitler, a Friends organizer.

"It was very clear that this board had already made it's mind up prior to the meeting. It's our opinion the board was going to approve the subdivision plans no matter what tonight.

"It's important to note however, even though we are disappointed in the decision made by the BOC it was fantastic to see the community show up in numbers to speak out against this game-changing subdivision plan," Beitler said.

Howard R.Bachman,Jr. May 05, 2012 at 02:09 PM
WELL--IT'S LIKE THEY SAY---MONEY TALKS AND BULL DOO DOO WALKS- HE WHO WAS THE MOST MONEY GETS WHAT HE WANTS NO MATTER WHAT !!!
Jeff Lotte May 05, 2012 at 03:16 PM
I also firmly believe that all this concrete and blacktop beginning to cover every square foot of our lands is what is impacting nature much more than cow farts and automobiles. Mother nature cannot digest and recycle our pollutants, natural and man made through blacktop and concrete. Our soil and plantlife is the heart of this planet and heart disease is setting in faster and faster. That being said, these developers get away without even scratching the surface of their McMansion communities impact on the townships resources which are spent over the "useful life" of the buildings they construct.. When you have hundreds of cars traveling roads that were not designed for heavy traffic, the maintenance for these roads is no longer sustainable, these roads need to be replaced with roads that were designed for heavy traffic, no just adding lanes and lights. For every home that has more than one bedroom there is a great impact on our school districts, the tax revenue brought by the new home owners will NEVER catch up to the impact the developer created. The "fees" charged to these developers is a joke when you look at the whole picture.
Carl W May 06, 2012 at 02:22 AM
God forbid, we plant SEEDS, rather then more buildings, & traffic congestion!?!
Carl W May 06, 2012 at 02:27 AM
Allentonian - sad to see 50 years of trashing our once-beautiful rolling fields of corn & countryside. Can I sign, too?
Linda Leayman May 06, 2012 at 11:05 AM
I have been following this since the beginning, and I am extremely dissapointed that we have commissioners that only care about money and more money. No one on the board has any consideration of the townships needs for the quality of life that its residents have. Its also extremely curious as to how the land has been subdivided, why such irregular shapes, and we are told that there are no plans for these plots of land, really??????, I also have noticed how the words have been changed as to what is planned, first a strip mall now a shopping center,and there have been many changes like this that are not publicized. There was suppose to be only so many truck trips for the construction, I believe 4000, for everything, and this count was to be passed on to whom ever built up the land, is this now changed too. To have all the money in the world and do no good with it is such a shame. All I pray is that the Lord will have mercy on him, when his judgement day comes. To have all that family has and to not to do good with it, to only distroy what we have.

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