The Lanwin Development Corp.’s proposal to build 30 single-family homes on a 90.6-acre property on Herrontown Road at Bunn Drive will be back in front of the Princeton Planning Board at a special meeting set for July 18.
The meeting, which begins at 7:30 p.m., will be held in the Main Council Room at the Witherspoon Hall Municipal Building at 400 Witherspoon St. It marks the fourth one in a series of public hearings on the application, beginning in April.
Lanwin Development Corp. is applying for preliminary and final major subdivision and site plan approval for the property at 725 and 823 Herrontown Road and 915 Mount Lucas Road.
The tract is located on the north side of Herrontown Road. It is bordered by Herrontown Road, Herrontown Lane and Mount Lucas Road in Princeton, and by the Montgomery Walk townhouse development in Montgomery Township.
At the last public hearing on June 20, Geoffrey Brown, the applicant’s engineer, testified that the plan would not have any impact on the existing homes on nearby Herrontown Lane. There were concerns about drainage issues, but Brown said the site would be designed to reduce the amount of water runoff.
Keenan Hughes, the applicant’s planner, told the Planning Board that utilizing the cluster option – building houses tightly clustered on a portion of the land – would help to preserve trees on the heavily-wooded property. The cluster option has become a popular tool to preserve open space on a developable parcel, he said.
Lanwin Development Corp. has proposed subdividing the land into 30 building lots of about a half-acre each. It will set aside a 3-acre lot on Mount Lucas Road that would be dedicated to Princeton, earmarked for affordable housing. The remaining 67.4 acres of the 90.6-acre tract would remain as open space.
The applicant could have applied for permission to develop 20 building lots on minimum lot sizes of 4 acres each, which would have consumed most of the 90.6-acre parcel, but opted instead to use the cluster option.
The cluster subdivision design will avoid disturbance to major portions of the environmentally constrained and sensitive areas to be preserved as open space. The houses will be built on about 18.5 acres of land that had formerly been farmed.
Princeton’s zoning ordinance allows for density bonuses for providing more than 70 percent of a parcel as common open space; for providing more than 1,000 linear feet of walking paths; and for dedicating the 3-acre parcel on Mount Lucas Road for affordable housing.
As a result, the developer could create the additional 10 building lots over the 20 building lots that could have been created under a conventional subdivision plan.