Thursday, September 25, 2003

Stricter zoning guides urged

Idea pondered for I-75 exits

By Jennifer Edwards
The Cincinnati Enquirer

WEST CHESTER TWP. - Township Trustees are looking at stricter standards at the township's three Interstate 75 interchanges.

They are considering whether to establish special zoning to guarantee quality development.

The move comes as a Wal-Mart Supercenter is planned for the township's Cincinnati-Dayton Road/I-75 interchange, prompting Trustee Catherine Stoker earlier this year to suggest an overlay at that exit.

Now, that idea has expanded to the other two interchanges, particularly Union Centre Boulevard, which is seeing a retail, restaurant, car dealership and hotel boom.

"We are looking at all our commercial areas to see if there are any needs to ensure attractive development that will bring in more businesses and expand our ever-growing commercial foundation," Stoker said.

In other township business, trustees heard from several upset residents late Tuesday who complained about "devastating" flooding over the last four years, most recently Sept. 2, in their neighborhoods on Cox Road, Monticello Drive, Esther Drive, Taffy Drive and Butler Warren Road.

These are older areas that previously haven't flooded to the frequency and volume of water they are now, residents say. Some of the neighbors showed trustees pictures depicting several feet of water in their homes.

At Alice Weisbrod's home on Butler Warren Road, 8 inches of water flooded her basement Sept. 2.

In the July 2001 floods, 2 feet of water poured into the basement.

But she says some of her neighbors have it worse - their entire homes have flooded, causing thousands in damages.

"The more you complain, the more they listen to you. They are going to know my name until somebody listens and comes and helps us to see what the problem is," said Weisbrod, 54, who has lived on Butler Warren Road 31 years.

Township officials aren't sure what is causing the problem but pledged to find out.

Township officials plan to ask the Butler County Engineer's Office to help them investigate and report back to trustees at their next meeting, Oct. 14.

West Chester residents with flooding information and/or pictures are asked to contact Mark Fitzgerald, the township's service director: 777-6145.


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