The developer’s engineer said that will be part of the preliminary planning process.
Atty. Thomas Dinkelacker, solicitor to the Emmaus Planning Commission, said all Emmaus requested was an emergency access road and the developer has agreed to provide that.
“We’re fine with it being emergency access only,” said Dinkelacker. “We understand it’s likely that pedestrians will use it no matter what you call it. It may well be that when we look at it we’ll want you to do something to accommodate pedestrians.”
More than emergency access?
Green Drive is a short street that runs behind the East Penn Plaza shopping center in Emmaus. It connects to Cedar Crest Boulevard at one end and swings out to Chestnut Street next to the Auto Zone store at the other.
Koze said he is even receptive to the idea of having the proposed access road off Green Drive open to all Fields at Indian Creek residents -- “if it requires minimal improvement” and if both Upper Milford and Emmaus agree.
“It would be ‘in’ only – no ‘out’,” said Koze. “It wouldn’t be a through street.”
He said residents of the development could be issued “clickers”so they could open a gate to drive in.
He indicated one potential obstacle is if that would require adding a left turn lane on northbound Chestnut Street to reach Green Drive.
Michael Gibson, chairman of the Emmaus Planning Commission, suggested the new access road off Green Drive should become a main entrance into the development, with two-way traffic.
Gibson said that would involve making the road 33 feet wide, rather than 15 feet wide, and putting traffic lights at Green Drive and Chestnut, rather than having lights at Allen and Chestnut.
“It seems that would make more sense than dumping traffic onto Allen Street,” said Gibson. He also argued that also would reduce the amount of traffic using Indian Creek Road from the development.
Gibson said traffic lights at Green and Chestnut also would give pedestrians a safe way to cross Chestnut Street to reach the Weis market and other shops on that side of the street.
Gibson said he appreciates that Koze wants to give the development’s residents easy access to local businesses in Emmaus. “I just want to make sure that it’s done safely.”
Widening that road to handle two-way traffic would substantially add to his costs, said Koze.
“It’s mushrooming,” complained Koze at one point. “I’ve got to draw a line somewhere.”
Larry Turoscy, the development’s engineer, indicated there would not be enough traffic volume to convince PennDOT that traffic signals should be installed at Green and Chestnut.
“It would be strictly for one development.” He indicated the development will not have through roads open to the public.
But Robert Sentner, chairman of the Upper Milford supervisors, maintained PennDOT likes that idea of the development’s main entrance being off Green Drive.
Koze said when he met with PennDOT more than a year and a half ago, PennDOT officials agreed Allen and Chestnut was the best location to add traffic signals.
“It should be at Allen,” argued Koze. “The whole area benefits from having it there more than anywhere else.”
Safety concerns at Allen and Chestnut
Koze said adding the traffic signals at Chestnut and Allen streets in Upper Milford will cost around $500,000.
He envisions Allen Street becoming one of the main access roads to the development.
Sentner said he’s “not all in” on the idea of traffic lights at Chestnut and Allen.