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Bethlehem Township Supervisors move forward with Madison Farms development

By Stephen Althouse, WFMZ.com Reporter, news@wfmz.com
Published On: Jun 17 2013 10:45:25 PM CDT
Updated On: Jun 18 2013 10:45:15 AM CDT
BETHLEHEM TWP., Pa. -

The Bethlehem Township Board of Commissioners approved two resolutions Monday night surrounding the Madison Farms Subdivision and Land Development.

In the first of the two resolutions, the commmissioners voted 5-0 to waive various traffic impact fees at the request of developer KRE-Bethlehem.

The request was made because the company noted they are already paying a higher amount than the normal fees required to satisfy standard traffic impact fees in the township and commissioners agreed.

Township solicitor James Broughal clarified the request, by explaining to commissioners the history involved with the waiver.

“The township agreed to either give a credit or waive the traffic impact fees to St. Luke’s Hospital,” he said.

“It’s a matter of math,” said Commissioner Thomas Nolan. “I don’t want residents to feel that we are giving away some money….I personally don’t see a problem with approving this resolution.”

The second resolution granted conditional approval of phase one of the project’s preliminary/final land development plan.  The township’s planning commission approved the measure last month.

When asked by Commissioner Michael Hudak when construction along Freemansburg Avenue was expected to commence, KRE attorney Ed Murphy indicated potentially as soon as this summer, provided a permit from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation could be obtained.

Madison Farms - a massive 837-unit, 103-acre housing development and retail complex off Route 33 – was approved by the commissioners in September 2012. KRE has indicated and reiterated Monday night that they plan to build the commercial aspects of the project first, and then the apartments would be build afterward in two other phases. The townhouses and homes would be constructed last.