Media Real Estate’s Wawa Plan Clears First Hurdle: Preliminary Approval
Last night Borough Council unanimously approved the Land Development (SALDO) application for Media Real Estate’s plans to place a Wawa at the corner of Baltimore Ave and 252/Providence Road.
We placed 33 conditions on the approval, which, by the way, may be contested by Media Real Estate in the next 30 days if they so choose. We’ve met with them at least twice in public meetings in the past month and they indicated they were in agreement with the conditions we requested, with minor legal language changes, save #33 which was added last night after discussions with Media Real Estate and the borough’s engineering firm.
Most of the conditions, as you can imagine, are things to protect nearby residents from noise, light pollution, and requiring the application to follow all of our local laws. A summary of the conditions is at the end of this article.
In approaching this project, Borough Council must approve this project unless we can list a specific ordinance that the project violates (which it doesn’t). Otherwise, our solicitor recommended that we take the opportunity to look at this project as possibly being approved in the future (as it has a 5 year time span to get approved after this), and place conditions on it which make it the best possible project. I think we’ve accomplished that.
Our primary goal was to, if anything, improve traffic at the intersections nearby, which from most of our public meetings was the primary concern of residents.
Part of the application includes the addition of a right hand turn lane from State Street onto 252/Providence Road, and we added last night the condition that the developer pay up to $290,000 for improvements to the intersection at 252/Providence Road and Baltimore Ave. These figures were given to us by Media Real Estate’s traffic engineer representative, Matt Hammond. Mr. Hammond and a representative from Media’s Engineering firm (Amy Kaminski) determined the most effective improvement to the traffic in that area was to add an additional left hand turn lane to the southbound intersection.
There was some discussion in the special meeting last night (7PM – 8PM before regular council) to trade one traffic improvement for the other, but we ended up including both of them in the final approval.
To help folks understand how this project works, Media Real Estate has three steps to go through in order to be able to put shovel in ground for the Wawa.
- Get Subdivision And Land Development Ordinance (SALDO) approval from Borough Council. (Approved last night)
- Get Zoning approval from the Zoning Hearing Board (an independent judicial body appointed by Borough Council)
- Acquire rights to use the land for the project (Media Borough owns Baker Street on which they are proposing placing the Wawa.)
So, checkmark there by number one. We’ll still have to wait and see if Media Real Estate plans on contesting any part of the approval. The Zoning approval will be in the hands of our Zoning Hearing Board, and in the end, it’s up to council to approve the use of our land for the project.
One final note: We have some vacancies coming up on the Zoning Hearing Board in Media come January. I believe you must be a resident of Media Borough in order to serve, but we welcome any member of the public who has interest. Obviously, any experience with development, construction, or zoning laws would be preferred, but in all we’re ultimately just looking for active, willing volunteers. If you are interested, contact the Borough Manager Jeff Smith with a letter of interest and a resumé.
Kent Davidson, Media Borough Council
Summary of Approval Conditions
Please note – this list is a summary and is not a substitute for the final ordinance. It gets interesting at number 20.
- Adhere to our Engineer’s recommendations for the plan (outlined separately)
- Must gain right to use Baker Street in order to get final approval
- Must get Zoning approval
- Must agree in perpetuity to manage storm water, landscaping, and right of way for the property
- Must get PennDOT approval via a Highway Occupancy Permit (HOP)
- Must get sewer approvals
- Must get NPDES Phase 2 Permit (storm water approval)
- Must get approvals for water/sewer from Aqua/LWW
- Must get permits for dispensing oil products
- Must show they can pay for all improvements prior to final approval
- Must comply with all conditions in this agreement or any related agreement
- Must file final plans with Delaware County Recorder of Deeds
- Must execute a Land Development Agreement with Media Borough
- Must adhere to their final plans
- All costs involved in getting approvals is paid for by developer
- Must notify Media Borough 72 hours prior to doing grading work
- Must pay all fees owed to Media Borough
- Must submit final plans with modifications included within this document
- Developer has the right to reject conditions within 30 days
- Developer must allow the placement of Media Borough logo on both street walls
- No televisions screens or monitors are permitted at the fuel pumps
- Light must not spill over into neighboring properties and must shield neighboring properties
- Recycling bins at pumps and at each entrance to the store
- Must be sprinklered building
- Outdoor lighting must be approved by the borough
- Developer “may” install solar panels on the building/fuel pump canopies
- Enhancements to perimeter including brink facades and brick-stamped walkways
- No fuel deliveries between 11PM and 6AM
- Must comply with all applicable laws at all levels of government
- Minimize visual impact of fuel tank pipes by use of black paint or landscaping
- Must use recent plans submitted by Linn
- We waive 5 SALDO conditions (listed in the document)
- Borough reserves the right to require developer to make traffic enhancements by adding two left-hand turn lanes to Providence Road southbound at Baltimore Ave, or contribute up to $290,000 for traffic improvements.