Home > Warminster > Warminster Gives Go-Ahead for New WAWA

Warminster Gives Go-Ahead for New WAWA

February 12, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

By Jesse Reilly
The Public Spirit/Globe Times Chronicle

Although there were some concerns about the site, the Warminster Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a preliminary plan for the development of a Wawa near the intersection of Street and Mearns roads at its meeting Feb. 10.

The proposed convenience store would sit on a 2.4-acre lot and include a 4,000-square-foot store, as well as 12 fueling stations.

Although the meeting was the first time the board heard of the plans, Tom Hecker, attorney for Wawa, said the plan had already been reviewed by the township’s planning commission and a number of township officials.

It would be an acceptable use under the site’s current zoning code.

A number of waivers for issues such as the width of driveways, grating and lighting levels were all approved by the board.

“Our plans are not cost-driven, they are development-driven,” Hecker said, adding that Wawa is donating $40,000 as a fee in lieu of certain improvements that could be used to maintain the township’s closed traffic light circuit.

Because the proposed store is off a major road, Supervisor Gail Johnson said he was concerned with the increased traffic that could be caused by deliveries.

To address the concern, Wawa representatives agreed to a condition that would be prohibit deliveries during peak hours.

An additional concept plan that highlighted alternative entrances and exits to the store was also presented at the meeting.

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation was in favor of the second plan but it seems the township is not.

The second plan limits driveway access onto Street Road and allows a right-turn only onto Orchard Avenue.

“This is a balancing act,” traffic engineer Matt Hammond said, adding that a traffic impact study was completed in November. “We don’t want to have too many access points on a major road.”

The plan was not embraced because of resident concerns that it would increase traffic on neighborhood roads.

Instead, Supervisor Tom Panzer asked the team to look into installing a traffic light somewhere along Street Road between Mearns and York roads.

“There are some serious traffic concerns here,” he said.

Although Wawa representatives told the board that PennDOT was against the installation of another traffic light, Panzer encouraged them to think outside the box.

Though there are still some issues, the preliminary approval allows Wawa to move forward with development plans. An intermediate meeting is scheduled to address certain issues prior to final approval.

If all goes according to plan representatives said the Wawa is hoping to have the project completed by next spring.

Republished with the permission of The Public Spirit/Globe Times Chronicle

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