Burlington Township Planning Board passes DCT Industrial Site Plan

An issue that was brought up at the June 8 Planning Board meeting, finally saw a decision made at the recent meeting on July 13.

After another long night of explanation and opinions being voiced, the Burlington Township Planning Board passed the DCT Industrial Site Plan at its Thursday, July 13 meeting. DCT was approved for a major site plan to construct two warehouses totaling around 1 million square feet.

DCT was also approved for a minor subdivision application for the site as well, which will also be in the same area — on Route 130 and Neck Road, which is near several homes. The plan passed with five votes for approval and two board members absent, while one member voted no and one abstained.

Residents were only allowed to speak on changes to the plan from the prior meeting. Residents made emotional statements against the proposal in the June 8 meeting, citing health issues that come with building construction and with a variety of trucks commuting through the area. Not only would the residents nearby have to deal with possible health problems, but sound, fencing and added transportation issues could also play a factor.

“There were roughly 30–35 members of the township at the meeting,” Board Engineer Scott Hatfield said. “Community members were given the ability to voice their opinions, if they hadn’t done so at the June meeting. Other than that, members were allowed to speak on new topics only.”

DCT will now look to start construction on the site as soon as possible, with a target date in the fall. The redevelopment process would take approximately 12 to 18 months, with around 180 trucks entering and exiting the facility on any given day, said Fred Ferraro, vice president of development and construction at DCT. The company will still need approvals from the state Department of Transportation and the Department of Environmental Protection before construction can begin. No ideas for what will be in the warehouses have been identified yet.

“We understand the community’s feelings on the matter and respect them,” Planning Board secretary Eileen Liss said. “This isn’t the first issue regarding warehouse construction in our town, after prior business developments on Neck Road.”

For more information, contact the Burlington Township Planning Board at (609) 239–5810, or visit its website at http://www.twp.burlington.nj.us/planning-and-zoning.