A controversial plan to build two warehouses in Palmer Township will not be moving forward.
The township has officially closed the books on land development plans submitted by FGC Van Buren Road Partners.
The plan was to build 128,900- and 138,700-square-foot distribution centers at 1492 Van Buren Road. The 36-acre lot is on the west side of Van Buren Road just south of Route 33.
FGC attorney Timothy Siegfried sent a letter to the township prior to Tuesday’s conditional use hearing on the matter. The hearing before township supervisors was a continuation of a hearing that began on July 1.
Township solicitor Charles Bruno said Siegfried informed him in the letter that the agreement of sale between the developer and the property owner had been terminated and FGC was withdrawing its development application.
The news of the withdrawal was welcome to many of the 750 residents of nearby Highlands and Glenmore housing communities, according to Timothy Fisher, who represented many of the projects’ opponents.
Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to deny the conditional use and land development applications at the developer’s request.
Schoeneck Creek runs through the property, which is in a floodplain.
At the July 1 hearing, Bruno informed the applicant that a township Zoning Hearing Board decision earlier in the year indicated development should not be approved until all federal, state and local permits are obtained.
Siegfried said he did not think development approval should be withheld due to a lack of permits. Typically, development plans are approved conditional on all permits being obtained later, he said.
Siegfried asked that the hearing be continued to a later date.
Bruno said Siegfried contacted the Zoning Hearing Board after July 1 to ask it to review its decision and provide clarification. However, hearing board solicitor Nicholas Noel informed Siegfried that the hearing board would not hear the matter again, according to Bruno.
Siegfried agreed to several time extensions, which delayed the continuation of the hearing, until he eventually informed the township of the withdrawal, Bruno said.
Fisher thanked supervisors, the hearing board and the township planning commission for its handling of the application. He asked that the township inform the housing communities if any other development plans are submitted for the property.
Supervisors’ Chairman David Colver reminded Fisher that the property is zoned for industrial use and may be developed legally at some point.