Assisted living facility OK’d


LEWIS CENTER — Minutes for five of the seven Orange Township Zoning Commission meetings from 2023 are available, and here’s a summary of what happened.

On Feb. 21, officers were selected, and there was a hearing on a development plan for 79 Parkway Drive in the Route 23 Corridor Overlay District. “The plan proposed includes commercial and office development,” the minutes said. Four people made comments about the application.

A zoning amendment application “to allow for the construction of an assisted living facility on a 3-acre parcel” at 7920 Highfield Drive, Lewis Center, was approved at the March 28 meeting, with modifications.

“The first phase of the project would have 28 beds, then in the future would expand and build an additional 28 rooms/beds,” it was said. “They will house residents aged 55 and older who need assistance with selfcare, primarily those with cognitive issues such as people with dementia, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and traumatic brain injuries. They will provide in-house amenities and treatments as needed… the average time of stay for this type of facility is 24 months.”

Rezoning to a new Planned Commercial and Office District to allow for the operation of a bar by DoG Distilling Company at 3733 East Powell Road was heard on June 13. Whiskey and vodka will be made at the site and the applicant requested five divergences. The commission voted 4-1 to approve the application with fewer divergences.

Orange Cove, 23 homes at 2955 East Orange Road, was heard on Sept. 12. The 11.6 acres of Farm Residential would be rezoned to Single Family Planned Residential District. After many comments from nearby residents, the commission approved continuing the hearing to Oct. 24. At that time, the applicant said he met with neighbors. However, several residents still had concerns, with one saying she “is not in favor of cluster homes in Orange Township.”

The commission then voted unanimously in favor of the Orange Cove zoning application “including requested divergences, upon finding that it is in the interest of the public convenience, comfort, prosperity, or general welfare, or sufficiently in accordance with the comprehensive plan.”

The Zoning Commission consisted of Chair Dennis McNulty, Vice Chair Christine Trebellas, Karthik Avadhanula, Rick Beer, Pamela Foster, Mark Freeman, Ciara Harris and Les Pierce. Also attending are Development and Zoning Director Robin Duffee, Senior Zoning Officer Brett Wiemken and Zoning Inspector Andrew Koenig.

Assistant Editor Gary Budzak photographs and reports on stories in eastern Delaware County and surrounding areas.

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