Elizabethtown train station parking lot opens

 An August 2013 file photo of the then-just-opened new Elizabethtown Train Station parking lot.

- When: Elizabethtown Borough Council meeting, Feb. 6.

- What happened: Council members looked favorably upon a proposed apartment complex and retail development near the train station, but expressed concern that a zoning change might be used for developments that might not be as beneficial.

- The plan: Plans for 449 W. High St. were presented by attorney Thomas J. Nehilla of the Barley Snyder law firm and Sidney L. Kime Jr., a senior project manager with the engineering and landscape architecture firm ELA Group. Nehilla said the plan was for a three- or four-story apartment building with commercial retail space on the ground floor. Kime said the planned development would have 44 units on a little more than 1.1 acres of land, or 1,140 square feet of land per unit. He noted that other nearby apartment buildings were more densely built that the proposed development.

- Parking: Nehilla said the development proposed to have 1.5 parking spaces per unit, not the two currently required, but said apartments right next to a train station would need less parking because many residents would commute to work by train. Kime said there would by 12 parking spaces for the retail space.

- Quotable: “It seems to me like this is a great project,” Council Vice President Neil Ketchum said, but he added that he did not want the zoning changes to be used elsewhere for a project that would not have adequate parking.

- Next steps: The applicants will need to make an official proposal and a petition for rezoning to get the borough to consider the zoning rules they seek.

- Plum Street garage: Council discussed whether to sell or keep the old public works garage on Plum Street that is being replaced with a new building. Suggestions for its repurposing included police uses or an emergency operations center.