Condo developers, officials make peace
The township zoning inspector said both sides got what they wanted.
By BOB JACKSON
VINDICATOR COURTHOUSE REPORTER
NORTH LIMA -- Now that their long legal battle to block construction of Pine Lake Reserve is over, Beaver Township officials want to help see the project through.
Trustees recently reached an out-of-court settlement in a federal lawsuit filed against them by developers of the upscale housing project, which will overlook the lake off state Route 7.
None of the trustees could be reached to comment, but zoning inspector Michele Swope said this morning that it's time to put the legal wrangling in the past and move ahead.
"I'm just happy that the parties were able to come to an acceptable agreement. We got what we wanted and they got what they wanted," Swope said. "Now we need to concentrate on moving forward with a new, beautiful development."
First proposed in 1998, the development was put on hold because trustees objected to its size. As part of the agreement, Evergreen Land Development Inc., which is developing the complex, will cut back from 395 to 335 units.
There were also objections from neighbors concerned about the housing development encroaching on the rural farming community, but developer Thomas A. Zebrasky said in a written statement that those concerns have also been addressed.
Built on hillside: The development will be built on a hillside, sloping down from Route 7 toward the lake. By using a "stadium seating" approach, nearly all the homes will have a view of the lake, not just the ones on the lakefront and on a man-made island.
Thomas A. Zebrasky, a partner in Evergreen Land Development Ltd., said the developers amended their original proposal to get the support of the trustees. He said the new agreement doesn't compromise the quality of the homes to be built, nor the atmosphere.
"Pine Lake Reserve will be a first-class, one-of-a-kind condominium community in a setting that has no equal in this region," he said.