Developer asks South Fayette to vote on Mayview site
December 24, 2015 12:00 AM
Aloe Brothers LLC purchased what was left of the Mayview State Hospital in 2010 and the company is still in the process of demolishing the buildings.
By Amy Philips-Haller
South Fayette commissioners may vote in February on whether to create a new zoning district for a proposed residential and commercial development on the former Mayview State Hospital site.
But first, the township wants an independent study done on the potential impact of the development.
Charter Homes & Neighborhoods, a Lancaster-based developer, is proposing 620 residences and 100,000 square feet of commercial space for the former hospital site to create a development that would be called Hastings.
The property is currently zoned for business, so a new zoning district, called a Neighborhood Design District, would have to be created for the site.
The South Fayette commissioners had been considering creating the new district when Charter Homes in October asked them to hold off. Then in a Nov. 16 letter, the developer asked the township once again to move forward on the new zoning district, saying it had “since come to terms with the property owner.”
The property is owned by ALoe Brothers LLC, and an April 2014 agreement called for Charter Homes to buy four parcels totaling 160 acres for $7.5 million.
At the township commissioners’ Dec. 2 workshop meeting, South Fayette school board President Bill Newcomer said the proposed development could have a significant impact on the district enrollment and that he believes the developer has been conservative in its estimates of the impact.
Portions of a letter written by Mr. Newcomer were read at the township’s Dec. 9 voting meeting. In it, the district outlined items it would like the commissioners to consider in the independent study, specifically dealing with how the development would affect enrollment and school district finances.
One of the requests asked that the study acknowledge “that there are no accurate existing numbers for reliably projecting the number of additional students that will result to South Fayette from 2 and 3 bedroom apartments of this price range given the District's recent No. 1 ranking in the region … .”
The developer will be charged for the study, but solicitor Jon Kamin said the township will direct all of the work.
After the Dec. 2 meeting, Commissioner Joe Horowitz emphasized a need to work cooperatively with the school board, stating that the possibility of dramatic growth in the township is real. He said, “I think we need to work with the school board to help craft a sustainable long-term solution to the problem the district has in dealing with residential growth.”
Kristin Texter, communications manager for Charter Homes, said, “We will continue to do what it takes, including investing additional time, to make Hastings happen, giving people a special place to live.”
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