The Elizabethtown Borough Council has approved a conditional use for eight apartment houses containing eight apartments in each building next to a group of similar-sized apartment buildings owned by the same developer.
The buildings are an addition to the Village Green apartment buildings at 701 E. Willow St., which already have 128 apartments. Anthony B. Seitz, vice president of development for owner High Associates, emphasized during the conditional use hearing that every apartment community his company owns has on-site management. He said the new buildings would have similar exteriors to the existing buildings, but would be about 10 percent larger to comply with modern building codes and to make room for newer amenities. He said he hopes to begin construction in the third quarter of 2019.
During the hearing held during a Borough Council meeting on Thursday March 21, councilors and borough staff brought up concerns about pedestrian safety and the availability of covered bicycle parking. Seitz agreed to work with borough staff to address those concerns.
During the public comment portion of the meeting, East High Street resident Jocelyn Gehman spoke about traffic safety concerns. She said the intersections of East High Street with Mount Joy Street and Chestnut Street are particularly dangerous for pedestrians to cross because it is difficult for drivers to see them since there are parked cars on the street. There are no traffic lights at those intersections.
“We ask that at a minimum that you consider removing parking on this section of the road,” Gehman said, adding that she was also speaking on behalf of some neighbors.
Gehman said in addition to the danger to pedestrians, there are accidents between vehicles and she hears screeching tires daily.
“Fender-benders are now biweekly,” Gehman said
Council President Marc Hershey said he appreciated the comments about safety on East High Street. He noted that because it is a state road maintained by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, there are limits to what the borough can do, but said the borough would look into the matter.