HANOVER TWP., Pa. - With the Lehigh Valley expected to enter the green phase of reopening on Friday, Hanover Township, Northampton County, has plans in place to open its parks and community center with limitations.
Township Manager John J. Finnigan told the board of supervisors on Tuesday night that an email will be sent to residents on Wednesday informing them that parks will open up along with basketball and tennis courts.
To help curb the spread of COVID-19, there will be no public water facilities for drinking. The township dog park will open, too, but also without drinking water.
The community center will remain closed until July 7, with limited access and activities.
Finnigan said that there will be restrictions on the number of people allowed in the fitness area and their length of stay, to allow staff to sanitize the used areas. Signed waivers will be required to use the center and for people renting public fields, which will be allowed starting Aug. 3.
He said that it will be important for residents to follow social distancing and other health and safety protocols.
Finnigan lamented the wisdom of the three-color reopening plan, noting that no one hardly stops at red, yellow means a surge to get through the light, and green signals that “they just continue on their merry way.”
Residents will also be reminded of the township’s ordinances governing the use of fireworks and the hours and days of the week they can be used, Finnigan said.
While there was an acknowledgement among board members that the increased use of fireworks is in reaction to being cooped up for months, “it’s like the Fourth of July every night,” Finnigan said, adding that the township needs to enforce the ordinance, otherwise “it’s going to be a long summer.”
In other matters, the board held a conditional-use hearing for the previously announced plan by Utah-based Advanced Health Care to build a 33,000-square-foot transitional care rehabilitation facility on 3.75 acres of an 8-acre property at 3370 High Point Blvd. in the Lehigh Valley Corporate Center.
The board will vote on the conditional-use request at its July 28 meeting.
Before it can build, Advanced Health Care needs subdivision approval and a variance because its proposed lot size is under the township’s 6-acre minimum for the type of facility proposed.
The board voted unanimously to grant conditional-use approval to allow Faulkner Subaru to store vehicles at 370 and 380 Stoke Park Road, site of a former truck terminal.
During a June 9 conditional-use hearing, Faulkner representatives said that they wanted to consolidate their inventory near the dealership at 330 Stoke Park Road to alleviate the need to move vehicles from other storage areas in the Lehigh Valley.