Skip to main content

Chester County Press

New Garden approves Thompson Road subdivision plan

03/01/2022 02:56PM ● By Richard Gaw

Photo by Richard L. Gaw              At their Feb. 22 meeting, the New Garden Board of Supervisors gave final approval to the construction of a 51-unit development on the western side of Thompson Road that will feature three-to four-bedroom single-family residences between 2,800 and 3,200 square feet in size, each with an attached garage.

By Richard L. Gaw

Staff Writer

After several drafts, provisions and nearly seven years of presentations before the New Garden Board of Supervisors, the team behind the proposed construction of a residential development on Thompson Road received final land approval at the board’s Feb. 22 meeting.

The 51-unit development, which will be constructed on the western side of the road only, will feature three-to four-bedroom single-family residences between 2,800 and 3,200 square feet in size, each with an attached garage. The homes are valued at a beginning cost of $650,000.

Short Brothers, a West Chester-based developer, is expected to break ground on the construction of the development in early to mid-summer of this year, with an anticipated completion date of between two and three years.

“It has been a rather lengthy road of approval, but we are pleased to report that the township consultants have been satisfied with the changes made to the plan,” said attorney John Jaros, who introduced an additional four waivers that were granted as part of the preliminary plan approval, that were read by township Solicitor William Christman.

As the plans for the development were being approved in stages, two of the sticking points expressed by the township board dealt with the possibility of having to widen Thompson Road to accommodate new residents, and the need to provide adequate room for emergency vehicles that may need to navigate through the development. Emergency routes will be located on the north and south entrance to the development, and Thompson Road will not be widened, except at the development’s entrance points.

When Short Brothers – and Hillcrest Associates, the developer’s engineer – first appeared before the township’s board in 2016, the planned development looked quite different. During a presentation on Sept. 18, 2017, the project was proposed as a 77-unit development of three-bedroom homes between 2,200- and 2,700-square feet, with detached garages and driveways – and priced between $450,000 and $500,000.

“Our interest is in specific community building,” Short Brothers Principal Richard Meadows told the board at the 2017 presentation. “We’re not in the business of doing cookie-cutter and one-acre-per-lot subdivisions. That’s not where we put our expertise and it’s not where we’d like to see this project go. We think this project and piece of ground is uniquely qualified, given that it sits in the township, on the main thoroughfare close to Route 1 between Kennett Square and Avondale.”

Other township business

The board approved a proposal from McMahon Associates that locks the township in a $194,500 grant match for a Transportation Alternatives Set-Aside (TASA) grant that the engineering firm received and will apply to the Toughkenamon Streetscapes Project.

Offered by PennDOT, the TASA grant provides funding for projects and activities defined as transportation alternatives, including on- and off-road pedestrian and bicycle facilities, infrastructure projects for improving non-driver access to public transportation and enhanced mobility, community improvement activities, and environmental mitigation, trails that serve a transportation purpose, and safe routes to school projects.

Sara Dickens-Trillo of Mighty Writers and Casa Guanajuato received approval from the board to provide the organizations with access to New Garden Township Park during summer camps for a period of between four to five hours per day during the camp periods – as well as for public events.

“Our goal is to help these children have a better summer, if not a better life, and we were thinking that you have a beautiful park that perhaps we could use,” Dickens-Trillo said.

Brandywine Valley Sports and Recreation (BVSR) received approval from the board to use the township park and the Lyceum Building from June 13-Aug. 5 for its 2022 summer camps. During its first year in 2021, BVSR used the park for its camps, and drew more than 100 youngsters.

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