If you travel through the intersection of Bradford Avenue and Route 162, you can’t miss the construction activity at the corner. The former Daily Local News building was recently demolished to make way for a new Toll Brothers townhouse community: West Chester Crossing.
While the land development plan for this community was first submitted to East Bradford Township in 2018, the concept of residential use at this corner first originated in 2016 when the Township updated its Comprehensive Plan. Municipal comprehensive plans are similar to strategic plans in other sectors. In essence, comprehensive planning is the process of organizing for the future. It creates a blueprint for land use patterns and generally has a 10-year horizon. When the Township updated its Comprehensive Plan in 2016, planning professionals and task force members agreed that residential use was desirable in this location, rather than or in concert with additional commercial development, given the strong commercial presence in nearby West Chester Borough.
The West Chester Crossing plans went through multiple iterations. The earliest sketch plans envisioned a 325-unit apartment complex, which evolved to a 270-unit apartment building, then to 60 townhomes, and finally to the 56-unit townhouse concept that was approved in October 2020. In addition to the townhome community, Toll Brothers will be constructing pedestrian walkways and crosswalks to connect the Bradford Plaza Shopping Center to Hillsdale Road in order to facilitate safe pedestrian access to and from the center.
There is no question that the current construction activity is jarring. Many of the concerns raised by citizens (e.g. traffic, stormwater management, density) were vigorously debated during the land development process. A myriad of reports, reviews, and minutes capture much of this discourse. A selection of the final documents and renderings are available on the Plans Under Review page.