West Chester Twp. trustees tabled a vote on Tuesday on the $1.8 million Activity Center sale for a new Kroger Marketplace, as one trustee wants to study options for senior programming that would be displaced.
Trustee Mark Welch told the Journal-News he wants the township to see if the basement of the Muhlhauser Barn would be a suitable location for senior programming before they finalize the sale of the Activity Center.
“I need another couple of weeks to insure that the board is doing the absolute right thing for residents and taxpayers of West Chester, that it’s the prudent thing to do,” Welch said. “I’d really like to have a solution for the seniors before any decision is made, amongst other things.”
West Chester Plaza owner Regency Centers was the only group to submit a proposal for the Activity Center. The activity center acquisition would allow for a new 95,545-square-foot Kroger, and the grocery giant and retail center owners have even bigger plans to build a 117,166-square-foot Marketplace.
Welch previously told the Journal-News he favored the sale.
“We’re not indigent, we’re not in foreclosure, we don’t have to sell it, but the potential of adding about $1.8 million into the township’s general fund, what we’re looking at now is when it sells, how else can we use that money to benefit the township,” he said, adding the Activity Center is a “non-performing asset” and it could cost $100,000 to $130,000 to fix existing problems in the short-term.
Welch said Tuesday morning he hadn’t made up his mind yet and Tuesday evening asked his fellow trustees to hold off for two weeks on a decision.
Trustee Ann Becker said she was a bit surprised.
“I was as surprised as everyone else because I was ready to vote,” she said. “He has the right to take more time if he needs it and I would hope they would give me more time if I needed it.”
Becker planned to vote in favor of the sale with the caveat some of the proceeds would go into installing HVAC at the barn for the senior programming.