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News Alert
Radnor Township: Rabid Raccoon Found at Willows

Don't Give VU 'Preferential Treatment,' Resident Urges

Watch Villanova officials, Radnor planners and local residents talk about the school's plans.

Villanova University officials presented their latest plan for a major development on the school's campus.

Radnor Township's Planning Commission on Monday considered the school's petition to change Radnor's zoning for their proposal, which includes new dorms, a parking garage and retail stores for the space that is currently a parking lot.

A performing art center is also included in possible future development.

Revisions to an original plan include "a 30-foot frontyard setback along Lancaster Ave., increased setbacks along Ithan Ave. and buffering along the Rt. 100 SEPTA high-speed line, reductions in height for the parking structure and student residence buildings, and a parking scheme that diverts parking concentration and decreases the traffic impact at the congestion-prone Ithan-Lancaster Ave. intersection," reports Main Line Media News.

Part of Villanova's selling point for the new dorms is that it will take students out of area neighborhoods and keep them on campus, lessening traffic and student rental issues. Chris Kovalski, Assistant to the President at Villanova, said that demand has always exceeded supply of on-campus housing, and he believes any new dorms will fill up as others have in the past.

Rosemont resident Patti Barker said "We're not opposed to reasonable development... We just are asking why should Villanova be granted preferential treatment." She asked the Planning Commission to "take your time."

Delaware County Planning Commission will review the school's proposal and give its recommendations.

Intheweeds March 08, 2013 at 01:52 PM
Where to start with this one???? First, Villanova's enrollment has been stable for the last 30+ years. With each and every significant on-campus housing project, the new lodging has immediately been filled, and enrollment not increased. Second, what EXACTLY is Villanova supposed to do to regarding code and ordinance violations on property it does not own, over homeowners/landlords whom it does not regulate and adult students not living on its campus? What exact level of remediation action do you think that Villanova has the legal right to do to the students and landlords on your street? Third, how EXACTLY can "Villanova not be trusted"? Fourth, it is already more cost effective to build that high, but because of Radnor Township zoning code, Villanova is restricted and conforming to height requirements in modifications to the proposal. So, you have problems with student residents in the neighborhoods. Don't you think it better to have 1200 students moved from neighborhoods onto campus? Wouldn't that be good for you?
Catherine March 08, 2013 at 03:30 PM
The newest board member, John Lord, was demanding studies to prove that new dorm space was necessary. Villanova has actual proof that's better than any study: 1. some students are living three to a dorm room, rooms that were designed to be doubles... 2.one dorm is a rat trap old house on Lancaster; another an apartment building -- both removed from main campus ... 3. the fact that there has to be a dorm lottery shows demand is much higher than supply: students want a campus experience but lose out. The Villanova spokesman was right: they need more rooms. And, quality dormitory housing (with the latest technology for internet access, air conditioning, better bathrooms, no concrete block walls) is indeed a factor in whether students will chose a school. It's how you attract quality, serious students who are less likely to 'urinate on lawns and fornicate behind bushes'. Let's remember, too: at a pricey, private, Catholic school like Villanova, the parents are probably paying the bills which means they have a say in where their kids live. Most moms and dads like to have their freshman and sophomore children safe, in a dorm.
Linda G March 15, 2013 at 01:14 AM
Common sense... If Villanova increases their students, then no student housing would be removed from our neighborhood. Additionally, the most likely student rental areas to lose students would be those farthest from the university. You can't trust someone who knowingly withholds facts, or tries to hide the truth... Models not to scale.... What else are they hiding? Villanova is supposed to be a Catholic university. They should take responsibility for the students, students that they bring to our neighborhoods. Instead, they take their money and set them loose in our neighborhoods... Ever heard of ethics? Public drunkenness or violation of township ordinances.. No different to me, yet Villanova will only take action on one of those... And not the housing. Why doesn't Villanova keep local addresses on their students... So they don't have to acknowledge the fact that their students are living illegally in student housing... How is that being a steward to the community? Our house has been in our family for over 50 years. Villanova wasn't the monster it is now, and student housing was virtually non-existent in our neighborhoods. And, yes, I said monster. There isn't anything "adult" with the students living in our neighborhoods. In over 20 years living next to student housing, I have never, yes never, experienced anything positive coming from these students, who are supposedly adults, by age only.
Greg Hudson March 16, 2013 at 07:55 AM
So you want Villanova, a non-profit private entity, to spend money and staff time to administer and enforce Radnor Township housing laws and ordinances. That is unlikely burden to ask of them. Instead they are doing what is in their power and that is increase the supply of housing to meet their demand.
Intheweeds April 03, 2013 at 05:42 PM
Villanova has not increased enrollment in 30+ years, and has zero plans to increase enrollments. This despite doubling on-campus housing in that time. Villanova's architecture firm built the original model, and was changed per Villanova's request. Villanova had NOTHING to do with the errors in that model. What does being a Catholic institution have to do with anything else you say? Villanova has no control over the actions of students living off campus in housing it does not own nor control. Villanova would take complete responsibility and ownership if these students lived on-campus. Radnor township owns the responsibility to police homeowners in Radnor township. Villanova has no control over where students live, once they move off-campus. From all your rants and raves, you should be first in line at the next township supervisors meeting pushing for this project. Instead, you'll just fight it, and complain, then complain about students, then fight this project more. So ignorant.

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