King George Inn review removed from planning commission agenda
At the request of developer Atul Patel and his company, Hotel Hamilton LLC, the request for preliminary/final plan review for development of the former King George Inn properties was removed from the South Whitehall Township Planning Commission’s Aug. 15 agenda.
The week before, Hotel Hamilton LLC engineer Bud Newton presented an update to South Whitehall commissioners at their Aug. 7 meeting regarding the inn and the proposed development of the 5.3-acre site, including consolidation of the four lots at 3051, 3125, 3127 and 3141 Hamilton Boulevard.
With plans dating back to 2015, commissioners became distressed last year over the appearance of the property with the inn looking increasingly rundown and neglected.
In February, the board granted a 12-month extension to developer Atul Patel and his company, Hotel Hamilton LLC, with instructions to return in six months with evidence of progress at the site.
Newton reported the Carvel and Burger King buildings have been cleared away, and additions to the King George Inn have been removed and it has been weatherproofed.
The development at the northeast corner of the Cedar Crest and Hamilton Boulevard intersection in Dorneyville includes plans for a 4,084-square-foot bank, a 14,562-square-foot pharmacy, a 100-room extended stay hotel, and 192 parking spaces.
The historic inn will be preserved for adaptive use, probably as an office building.
The main holdup for the endeavor has been stormwater management.
Some years ago, Hotel Hamilton LLC engineers prepared a stormwater plan which required an easement for a pipe over a small section of the property of the adjacent shopping center, Cedar Pointe.
As Cedar Pointe officials did not agree to the easement, Newton said the Hotel Hamilton team will now proceed without the pipe.
“It will discharge over land to the grate in their culvert, where the water’s going now,” Newton said. “We’re not changing existing conditions.”
He provided additional information on the matter.
“We will replace the culvert on our property. The on-site drainage is taken care of. The off-site drainage we’ll coordinate with PennDOT,” Newton said.
Newton was asked by The Press whether the system will be adequate.
“It should be,” he replied.
South Whitehall engineer Ralph Russek said the latest stormwater scenario is under review.
“There’s a lot of water there. PennDOT has a big say in it,” observed Russek.
He noted PennDOT plans a new culvert under Cedar Crest Blvd. on the west side of the King George Inn.
Russek said the on-site stormwater will discharge at the northeast corner of the property.
He stated other agencies such as the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission will be involved in a review of the plans.
Commissioners asked for a time frame for work and actual building to commence at the site.
“We accomplished a good bit in six months and plan to have more done in the next six months,” Newton said. “We hope to get all permits this year and start construction some time next year.”