The Warren County Commissioners tabled a zoning request for a commercial tract along Big Tree Road in Sugar Grove Borough Wednesday morning.
Eric and Lisa Hagberg have requested the county approve their request to rezone a portion of their 14.7 acre lot to be zoned business, which is currently split between two designations, Residential and ACR (Agriculture, Commercial, Recreation).
During the public hearing Lisa Hagberg told the commissioners they originally requested four acres of the property be rezoned and that multiple retail opportunities, including a dollar-type store as well as self-storage units, may be possible development options for the site.
Two neighbors to the property spoke against the request during public hearing.
Joe Levis told the commissioners he is concerned about the lights from the business, the flooding of the proposed property, the 50-foot buffer zone established by the county planning commission is insufficient, and the business would mean more traffic to the area and potentially open the area to more crime.
"My wife and I are totally against this rezoning," Levis said.
Commissioner John Bortz said there are stipulations that can be made for the type of lighting used on the property.
"The most recent time this was realized in the borough of Sugar Grove was when the Kwik-Fill store went in," he said. "and they were specifically directed to utilize lights that cast downward with minimal impact out."
Jack Hunt, who also lives near the property told the commissioners he "just invested a lot of money in the borough of Sugar Grove building a new home there."
Hunt said the proposed storage units would run 24 hours a day with people "coming and going, clanging and banging all the time."
"I did make a huge investment here," he said.
Commissioner John Eggleston asked Hunt to clarify that he built the home in the business district.
"Yes," Hunt said.
Hagberg told the commissioners they were approached by a retail business about 10 years ago to purchase the property and had requested they raise the ground level.
"So this gravel that's here will come forward to raise that up and alleviate the flooding issue," she said. "There is a stream there and I will tell you we've never had a problem with flooding in here until PennDOT came in and put a bunch of rip-rap."
Sugar Grove Borough Mayor Dutch Strand said he was against the rezoning and no one but a chain store would have the resources to work with the property to complete the site work.
"It's going to hurt property values for those people," he said. "And there's going to be light problems, even though they say it's going to shoot down."
Bortz motioned to table the request until "we have the properly drafted language outligning the four-acre change to the parcel."
"My whole outlook is that is a through road from Sugar Grove to New York State that gets a lot of traffic and is probably a good place for business," Commissioner Stephen Vanco said.
The commissioners also delayed a bid opening for the Rouse Home medical equipment until Tuesday, Jan. 3.
The commissioners also reappointed Gary Wareham to the Warren County Planning and Zoning Commission Board for a four year term; Ed Atwood to the Zoning Hearing Board for a five year term; and John Zavinski to the Warren County Redevelopment Authority for a five year term.