Rt. 1 gas station on agenda

Zoning Board to hear proposal for a new Mobil gas station on Rt. 1.

By: Rebecca Tokarz
   The township’s Zoning Board of Adjustment is expected to hear testimony related to water quality, noise, engineering and planning tonight (Thursday) about a proposed service station on Route 1, according to zoning board Chairman Barry Nathanson.
   The proposal, submitted by APCO Petroleum, calls for the construction of a Mobil station on a 3.5-acre lot zoned for office construction on the northbound side of the highway just south of Raymond Road.
   The meeting starts at 7:45 p.m. in the Municipal Building.
   Mr. Nathanson said it’s likely the board will need at least one more meeting to complete the testimony before rendering a decision on the application.
   The plan calls for an approximately 1,500-square- foot diesel fueling area, an approximately 5,000-square- foot section for gas pumping and an approximately 3,800- square-foot convenience store.
   The proposal includes four diesel pumps for fueling trucks and eight gas pumps for cars, according to the application on file with the township Planning Department.
   Building the project would require a variance to the rule allowing no more than 10 percent of a business’s parking to be in front of the building; the plan calls for 40 percent of the parking to be in the front, according to the application.
   The plan also shows a 45-foot canopy over the gas tanks, where a 100-foot canopy is typically required, according to the application.
   The drawings show an 18-foot canopy over the diesel fuel pumps instead of the required 25-foot cover, according to the application.
   Residents near the proposed site have expressed concern over the potential traffic impact the station would have on the area. They say truck drivers might have trouble negotiating turns to enter and exit the station. They also worry about additional traffic congestion along Route 1.
   Expert testimony provided by APCO said the proposed station would not increase traffic congestion
   The applicant’s traffic engineer, Albert Rinaldi of THP, has said traffic projections show the station would attract 25 additional vehicles during the morning rush hour and 29 more vehicles during the evening rush hour.