Panel criticizes Bunn Drive housing proposal

Shade Tree Commission warns of loss of mature stand of trees

By: Marjorie Censer
   The Princeton Township Shade Tree Commission spoke out against the application for a development on Bunn Drive, drafting a letter at its Thursday meeting urging denial of the Regal Homes application for 98 age-restricted housing units.
   The commission’s letter focuses on the damage that will be done to trees on the 14.1-acre site on Bunn Drive, part of the Princeton Ridge. Commission members said many mature hardwoods on the site will be removed or later die.
   "This whole area would be too greatly impacted to be able to survive," the letter reads. "Regeneration could take a hundred years. Replanting or reforestation of the area may prove to be impractical."
   The letter will be sent to Township Engineer Robert Kiser and presented before the Princeton Township Zoning Board of Adjustment at its Jan. 25 meeting, when the board is scheduled to review the plan.
   The application calls for three, 45-foot-tall buildings on a heavily wooded site. Located just south of Princeton Community Village, the property backs up to the Governors Lane development.
   An Oct. 26 review of the project drew largely unfavorable comments from zoning board members, who said the proposed development did not conform to the limitations imposed by the site’s terrain.
   The application, which occupies land straddling office research and residential use zones, requires a use variance from the board to proceed.