Media Borough Council’s light August agenda included an action item with almost a decade of history. Development of an apartment building on State St. dated back to 2007, but settlement on legal issues moved the application to the status of preliminary plan approval from Council.
Borough planners and the Delaware County Planning Commission both reviewed and recommended the preliminary plan. Architect Bob Linn represented Commonwealth Real Estate Investors (the development arm of Media Real Estate) in the application for an upscale, 23-unit complex. The plan includes reverse subdivision of five separate parcels, with frontage on State St. and bordered by Radnor and Baker sts. and Manchester Ave. Most of the existing structures were previously cleared.
The resolution approving the preliminary plan had 17 conditions which included compliance with recommendations of the borough engineer and borough planning consultant; a storm water management maintenance agreement; third party approvals for water and sanitary sewer service; landscaping and site improvements; and all existing borough codes.
Linn said about 90 percent of the work was completed. Preliminary plan approval is a decisive step denoting official acceptance of the land development.
When the project was originally proposed, nearby residents expressed concerns on the impact to existing homes. There was no public comment at Council’s meeting, but opportunity remains at final plan submission.
In other land development matters, Council declined to oppose Wawa’s upcoming zoning request. Wawa will be going before the Zoning Hearing Board for an additional “monument” sign at the new construction of a convenience store and gas station. Given the location bordering three roadways, Wawa will ask for a second sign where borough code allows for one.
Council Vice President Paul Robinson, handling community development issues for President Brian Hall (who was absent), said he wondered why Wawa had not asked for the extra sign during the original application. Councilwoman Lisa Johnson said there should be some assurance the location would not be a safety issue.
In another matter, Robinson and Mayor Bob McMahon engaged in some dialogue concerning an amended mass gathering permit for Dining under the Stars. The Media Business Authority has asked to move State St. closure of vehicular traffic to 4:30 p.m. rather than 5 p.m. Parking will remain restricted after 4 p.m.
Robinson was concerned about the impact on retail businesses not participating or benefiting from the event which takes place each summer Wednesday evening. McMahon said the event attracts thousands to Media each week, and certain accommodations need to be made for safety reasons.
Councilman Peter Williamson said that since Dining was a “signature event” for the borough, the MBA and organizers might start working on the next year as soon as the current season ended. He also suggested a report on the concluding year would assist in determining what changes should be made. Dining, which involves dozens of restaurants, ends the last Wednesday in September.