Wawa Strikes Back!

The developers of the proposed Wawa that was shot down by Borough Council earlier this year have filed for a hearing before the Zoning Hearing Board.  During the previous unsuccessful process, the developers sought to have Borough Council rewrite the zoning code so that a retail store and gas station would be a permitted use within the Residential Office Zoning District.

The timing is interesting because the hotel, office building and parking deck Keystone proposes to build at West Elm and Fayette will all require a rewriting of the zoning code by Borough Council or a whole bunch of variances from the Zoning Hearing Board.  For example, a hotel is not a permitted use in the Commercial Zoning District that currently exists along Fayette Street between West Elm and 8th Avenue.  Another example is that the current permitted building height is 40′ in the Commercial Zoning District.  The hotel, office building and parking garage will all exceed that height, with the hotel exceeding it by 160′.  Those are pretty big changes or variances.

According to the Borough’s website, the Zoning Hearing Board’s primary purpose is “help assure fair and equitable application and administration of the zoning ordinance by hearing appeals on the zoning officer’s determinations and by granting relief from the literal enforcement of the ordinance in certain hardship situations.”

We will work on obtaining more information tomorrow.  Stay tuned.