Fear of industry replacing Three Mile Island’s absence

Harrisburg

MIDDLETOWN, Pa. (WHTM) — Mini-warehouses, business parks, and distribution facilities could soon pop up in Londonderry Township.

Township officials say zoning needs to be updated to reflect current industry uses, but some residents say they don’t want their neighborhood taken over by big industry.

Three Mile Island’s closure will cost Londonderry Township more than $356,000 in various taxes and charitable contributions.

The closing of the plant is one of the reasons in revising the township’s C-2 commercial district along the Route 230 corridor.

“What they’ve come up with would really damage the character of our neighborhood,” township resident Courtney Archer said. “They’re looking at putting a distribution center basically between where our property is here and our children’s elementary school.”

Archer is opposed to the change and fears what it will bring.

“It also is going to contribute air pollution right next to an elementary school, light pollution, traffic jams,” she said.

The amendment to current zoning would allow for logistics facilities, such as warehousing and distribution, but excluding trucking terminals. It would also allow mini-warehouses or storage unit facilities and business parks.

“Historically, they’ve tried to rezone it to residential and build a development there (but it) never came to fruition because they couldn’t afford to put sewer in,” Archer said.

State-mandated sewer improvements across the township would cost $27.5 million. However, interested developers have proposed contributing $15 million toward sewer lines and a pump station.

“I think there’s a lot more we could be doing as a township to attract businesses that would contribute more than just tax revenue,” Archer said.

A public hearing on the matter will be held Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Londonderry Township building.

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