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Chester County Press

Supervisors OK preliminary plan for Kennett Square apartment complex

01/26/2016 12:34PM ● By Richard Gaw

By Richard L. Gaw, Staff Writer

The Kennett Township Board of Supervisors approved the preliminary plan for the construction of what is being called The Ravello Land Development Plan, an 18-acre, 175-unit apartment complex planned to be constructed along North Walnut Road, near Anson B. Nixon Park in Kennett Square.

The approval was reached at the board's Jan. 20 meeting.

Vic Abdala of the West Chester-based StanAb, LP, the developers of the planned complex, said that the units will offer one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments, and will cater to several demographics, ranging from young professionals to active adults who are looking to downsize after their children have left the home.

Begun in 1995, StanAb is one of Chester County's leading commercial and residential developers. During that time, the company has constructed 24 sites from East Goshen to Media, and most recently, developed the Chestnut Street Lofts, a 60-unit apartment complex in West Chester, in 2014.

The preliminary plans were recommended for approval by the township's planning commission on Jan. 12. The plans were originally drafted on Oct. 7, 2015 and were later revised Nov. 25.

The board approved the plans with the following eight conditions that the applicant must comply with: that Department of Environmental Protection permits are issued to the applicant prior to final approval; that a PennDOT highway occupancy permit is issued to the applicant prior to final approval; the sewage facilities planning module is approved prior to final approval; the applicant continues to develop the design according to guidelines suggested by the township's landscape architect; the applicant sign the rules an regulations for site development; the applicant must establish an escrow account for public improvements and inspection during instruction; the applicant must pay sewer connection fees for 175 connections.

Lastly, there is also a condition that holds the applicant to align the property's trail to either the entrance or trails at nearby Anson B. Nixon Park, if possible, in the future. Currently, the two trails do not directly connect.

Abdala said that he has met with the township's engineer as well as members of local trail associations to discuss the feasibility of connecting the two trails. He said that StanAb will diligently continue to attempt to connect the trails, but not at the risk of taking some property that does not belong to the complex.

"Part of the process has been an attempt to connect the trails someway on Walnut Street," Abdala said. "Typically, with trails, you do what you can on your property, but we don't always have the ability go beyond our property. If the opportunity arises, we will do anything within our power [to connect the trails]."

Supervisor Dr. Richard Leff offered an amendment to the list of conditions – which was later approved – that the township include a requirement be placed on the final plan, stating that StanAb will continue to attempt to connect the two trails, using reasonable means.

To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, e-mail [email protected].