JACKSON TWP — Trails seemed to be the theme at a recent planning commission meeting.
Township planners voted Feb. 5 to recommend approval related to two housing developments, which would add 288 dwellings to the area when finished.
The first two phases of Seneca Trails were recommended for final approval. In the first two phases, 132 single-family houses and 30 townhouses will be added to the development, which will total 130 acres when all phases are complete.
One of the major features of the development is its trails, which the township expects will connect to the Commodore Perry Regional Trail Network, a system of trails and sidewalks extending through Adams, Cranberry, Jackson, Marshall and Pine townships named for the 19th-century naval commander Oliver Hazard Perry, who is best known for his role in the Battle of Lake Erie during the War of 1812.
The Seneca Trails development will be built off Gudekunst Road in the southern part of the township. At the township’s November planning commission meeting, traffic engineer Josh Haydo said the development would create 2,600 additional vehicle trips along Gudekunst, Route 19 and nearby roads.
The Trails at Harmony Junction development, which will connect to the Village at Harmony Junction off Route 68, received a recommendation for tentative approval on its application to build 124 single-family homes and two duplexes.
In the center of the nearly 75-acre development will be a communal green space, which is based on an existing basin that Chris Kerns, of Eco Land Solutions who was speaking for the developer, said the property owner was unable to turn into developable area. Surrounding the basin will be a walking trail, made of aggregate stone.
Also in the basin will be a pond, for which the developer will use an extant farm pond. Kerns said four benches will be placed around the pond, and there will likely be fish in the body of water.
When finished, the development will add significantly less traffic during peak hours than the Seneca Trails development, with an added 113 trips per day during peak hours, Kerns said. Part of the traffic impact fees from the development may be used for adding a right-turn lane from westbound Route 68 to Riley Lane, according to zoning officer Nikki Colton.
Planners also recommended approval for Natural Concrete Products, a residential concrete manufacturer, to move into the space previously occupied by the A.J. Myers and Sons bus garage on Wahl Road. The company requires approval from the township because it is a conditional use of that specific property and because it is a change from the previous conditional use granted to the bus company.
Some of the conditions to be imposed on the company will be to improve Wahl Road, as there will likely be tractor-trailers and other heavy trucks operating in conjunction with the concrete manufacturer.
All items recommended by the township’s planners must be approved by the Jackson board of supervisors, who next meet Thursday.