Before plans advance to build 16 two-story townhouses or apartments in a flood zone, the Hatboro governing body is expected to hear more about the plan in March, officials said.
Horizon Property Management LLC, which owns the 332 S. York Road structures housing a handful of car repair shops and Manja pizza shop, was supposed to go before the zoning hearing board last week to seek approval to knock down all but the restaurant on the 1.76-acre parcel to make way for 16 residential units.
At the last minute, the owner postponed its appearance at the meeting.
During Monday night's Hatboro Borough Council meeting, Councilman Bill Tompkins said Horizon is looking to make a presentation at one of the council's two March meetings. Tompkins said the owner also intends to go before the Hatboro Planning Commission before the zoners weigh in on the application.
Hatboro Council President John Zygmont asked the community to keep an open mind about the project.
"I’d appreciate the opportunity to hear what the applicant had to say before we have the jury ... take off and call them and tell them - as was done with Wawa -that they’re not wanted in town," Zygmont said.
Business owners of 332 S. York Road - both past and present - have experienced property damage and losses stemming from flooding. Quig's Pizza, which has since relocated to the other end of town, was forced to close following Hurricane Irene.
The owner is proposing constructing the living areas “at a minimum of not less than one foot above the 100-year recurrent interval flood.” In addition, the stucco and brick residences would “require floodproofing measures” as designated by a professional engineer or architect.
The latest plan follows last year's rejection of a $2.2 million government buyout that the owner, Horizon Property Management LLC, had sought.
According to the application on file in Hatboro's municipal building, the residences, as proposed, would help to lessen existing flooding impacts.