This article was funded by LebTown donors as part of our Civic Impact Reporting Project.

Planned improvements to address traffic impacts from the proposed development of the former Quentin Riding Club dominated Monday’s conditional-use hearing that had been continued from May 7.

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Two traffic engineers, one representing the developer Quentin Associates LLC and the other representing West Cornwall Township, testified that the planned improvements would mitigate traffic congestion along state routes 72 and 419 associated with the development.

Improvements include a new right turning lane onto Route 72 from East Main Street, turning lanes into the proposed development for north- and southbound traffic on Route 72, aligned driveways, and modifications to traffic signals to optimize traffic movement.

Quentin Associates is proposing a mix of residential and commercial development for the 46-acre property zoned R-1 low-density residential mixed-used overlay. The township’s zoning ordinance requires supervisors approve a conditional-use permit for mixed-use overlay developments.

Nine lots have been proposed for the property. The zoning hearing board approved special exceptions for three uses: 120 age-restricted apartments, a Wawa gas station and convenience store, and an equestrian therapy facility for veterans. Allowed by right are single-family residential lots, six of which are on Maple Lane in West Cornwall Township.

John Schick, senior project manager with Rettew Associates and representing Quentin Assocates, said the proposed development would generate 462 “new” trips during the weekday peak morning hours (6 to 9 a.m.) and 502 “new” trips during peak weekday afternoon hours (3 to 6 p.m.). A trip includes a vehicle entering and exiting a site.

Those numbers were determined by industry standards, PennDOT criteria, and traffic counts during a week in September, Schick said. Considered were volume of vehicles, classification of trucks, speed data and gap data or spacing between cars.

“We are on our third review by PennDOT of the traffic impact study,” said Schick, adding that the full study is 800 pages long.

Schick said that most of the traffic into the site will be off Route 72. Motorists on Route 72 headed to Wawa or the apartments will turn into a new driveway aligned with a relocated driveway across from the site and into Quentin United Church of Christ.

Motorists exiting onto 72 or Quentin Road must turn right and go north. If headed south, motorists will exit at a new driveway aligned with Riders Way on Route 419 and then turn south onto Route 72 at the traffic signal.

Supervisor Russ Gibble was skeptical the planned improvements would address congestion, noting tie-ups that occur now at the intersection of routes 72 and 419.

“When you come up from Cornwall, there can be tractor trailers backed all the way up to Maple Lane,” Gibble said.

During the public comment period, several residents also expressed concern about increased traffic on both Route 419 and Maple Lane.

Supervisors also heard from Jason Kline of Wolf & Kline Realty, the property management company for the age-restricted apartments. He testified that at least one resident of each unit must be 55 years old or older, and no one under 18 years can reside in the apartment. He also said that lessees can have no more than two cars per unit.

Supervisors closed the hearing at the conclusion of public comment. They have 45 days to issue a written decision on whether to approve a permit for conditional use.

West Cornwall Township supervisors meet at 73 S. Zinns Mill Road on the second Monday of each month at 6:30 p.m. The next meeting will be held June 10. These meetings are open to the public and do not require registration.

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