Creekside Manor still topic of Jackson debate

November 27, 2019 Cranberry Local News


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JACKSON TWP — Speakers at Thursday's board of supervisors meeting made their voices heard during the public comment period with discussions and questions about a development.

Just not the development on the evening's agenda to be approved.

Creekside Manor, which was green-lighted by the board in October, drew more criticism from attendees, who wanted the board to rescind its approval Thursday.

Vice Chairman Jay Grinnell said before the public comment period that Creekside Manor had already been approved and was not under consideration. His point, however, didn't deter speakers like Sherry Cepek.

Cepek questioned why the board allowed the development waivers from ordinance requirements when they said the development met the township's requirements and had no choice but to approve it.

The Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code dictates terms for waivers, which are granted when land conditions present undue hardships to meet ordinance requirements.

Other attendees agreed with Rodney Gasch, president of Historic Harmony. He questioned why the developer's land development application said it was not within a quarter-mile of a building on the National Register of Historic Places, and yet the Mennonite Meetinghouse is well within that range.

“It sports a large Pennsylvania state historical marker and a National Register plaque,” Gasch said. “The building is clearly visible from Wise Road and from virtually anywhere within the development. How could the applicant miss this historic structure?”

When Gasch finished reading a letter he will post to the board Friday, many in attendance clapped. But the speech — and the applause — were for naught.

“I just wanted to say quickly, I understand,” Grinnell said at the end of the meeting. “Some of you people came about Don Rogers' plan. This has been two years that this thing's been discussed, over and over. It was approved a month ago.”

Another development approved

A public hearing for Seneca Trails, the 270-unit residential development on Gudekunst Road that was actually on the agenda Thursday, saw no public comment and was approved by the two members of the board who were present.

The development was recommended for approval by the planning commission Nov. 6. It includes 140 single-family houses and 30 townhouses on 130 acres. Its name comes from a series of planned trails throughout the development, with plans to connect them to the Commodore Perry Regional Trail network.

In addition to the homes and the trails, the development will include 69 acres of permanently-dedicated open spaces, including active open areas like small parks.

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Alex Weidenhof

Alex Weidenhof