Developers responsible for hydrants

26 May, 1989

Developers responsible for hydrants

By John P. McAlpin
Staff Writer

Princeton Borough Council’ has introduced an ordinance that would force developers to prove that fire hydrants serving their projects have ad adequate water supply and press.

The move is in response to last summer’s water crisis, which saw the water levels drop to dangerous lows at hydrants in both the borough and Princeton Township.

As introduced at the council’s meeting Tuesday night, the ordinance would set minimum standards for various housing and office projects, according to borough officials.

The standards would be based on those net by national fire and insurance organizations as well as local zoning requirements, said Councilman Mark Freda.

Any developer would have to prove, that the hydrants near his projects had ample water pressure and the the water flowed at an acceptable rate of gallons per minute, Mr. Freda said.

“What we are more concerned with is the gallons per minute,” said Mr. Freda, who also is fire commissioner for the borough.

Previously, the borough has had some potentially dangerous situations where that water level was not up to par at the hydrants, he noted.

“All last summer, that was one of the major problems,” Mr. Freda said. ”

What we are frying to do now is to ensure that does not happen again,” he added.

Borough Engineer Carl Peters told the council that last summer “there wasn’t enough water to fight fires in some areas.”

The Princeton Regional Planning Board would require the developers to prove that such standards were met, Mr. Freda explained.

Once in place, the ordinance would see that the Planning Board has the ,opportunity to make sure that those safeguards are in place,” he noted.

The developer would probably use “lengthy computer programs” that would account for the size of the ‘water mains. current demand for water and the added demand of the project, Mr: Peters explained.

Princeton Township is considering a similar measure, according to mayor Phyllis Marchand.

“The Township Committee has lOoked at it,” Mayor Marchand paid, noting that it is being reviewed by the township’s legal staff.

“Hopefully, we will be getting it back soon,” she said.

Borough Council will hold a public hearing on the ordinance at its June 6 meeting.

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