Bridgeville Can't Stop New Bedner's Farm Neighborhood
A 136-lot subdivision received tentative approval from the Upper St. Clair Planning Commission.
Developers have a sales agreement with the Bedner heirs to build a new neighborhood on the Upper St. Clair farm.
The Upper St. Clair Planning Commission recommended approval in a 6-0 vote on Dec. 15, and now the plan awaits approval from townhip officials. The public hearing for the proposed Bedner's Estates 136-lot subdivision is scheduled for Feb. 6.
The developers, JT Thomas Homes and Heartland Homes, said the neighborhood plan would take place in three phases. The first phase would create an entrance on Cook School Road and extend Scarlett Drive. The second phase would add a connection to Main Street in Bridgeville.
Nearby residents, many from Scarlett Drive, attended the meeting and spoke out against the development.
"We all believed Scarlett Drive was a cul-de-sac street. Ryan Homes told everyone Bedner's Farm would never be developed," said Cathy Manulo, of Scarlett Drive.
The residents' main concerns were safety and traffic.
Multiple residents warned planning commissioners how dangerous the right-hand turn from Cook School Road onto Scarlett Drive is during inclimate weather. They said the stop sign had been "taken out many times."
"We have a gazillion kids that play on the cul-de-sac," Manulo said.
Manulo and others are afraid of the traffic that would be created by making Scarlett Drive an entrance to the neighborhood.
Upper St. Clair's traffic consultant, Mark Magalotti of Trans Associates, contradicted the residents' worries. He said the traffic study found that only 7 percent of the neighborhood's traffic would use Scarlett Drive. The rest of the traffic would use Cook School Road, which is why a connection to Main Street would be so important, Magalotti said.
Main Street is in Bridgeville and officials and residents there have said they are against the connection.
“Upper St. Clair gets all the taxes and Bridgeville gets all of the traffic," said Bridgeville resident Pasquale DeBlasio at a November borough council meeting.
However, Magalotti and Kim Gales, represenative for the developers, said they know of no legal way Bridgeville would be able to stop the connection from happening.
Upper St. Clair residents also demanded that there would be a Bower Hill Road connection to the neighborhood. Gales said the connection is not possible, not because of the cost, but because of the land's grade and mines, and the developer does not own the land along Bower Hill Road.
Bedner's Farm Market on Bower Hill Road is not part of the land sale and will remain.
Planning commissioners approved the Bedner's Estates plan with the understanding that construction vehicles would only be able to use the Cook School Road entrance and not Scarlett Drive.
This story originally appeared on Upper St. Clair Patch