Villanova University moved another step closer Monday to completing a $300 million expansion project.
But the plan approved by the Radnor Township Board of Commissioners requires the university to make some promises about its plan to build dormitories, a performing-arts center, and a parking garage on its campus in Delaware County.
Villanova must ensure, for example, that "no amplified music or other excessive noise" comes from the new dormitory windows that face nearby homes. The university must also pay a portion of the cost of new traffic signals, and build a fence along both sides of Lancaster Avenue that would encourage pedestrians to use an elevated walkway over the street.
Those requirements - and others - address some concerns raised by some residents who said the project would increase noise and traffic in their Main Line community. Several residents who spoke at Monday's meeting, which grew tense at times, remained critical of the plans and approval.
Villanova's plans cleared a major hurdle this year when the township approved zoning changes. That step took two years and drew strong opposition from a vocal group of residents. The township rejected a larger expansion plan last year before approving the zoning changes in April for a scaled-down proposal.
Villanova officials have said traffic would not increase; the new dormitories would house nearly 1,200 students who currently live off campus and drive to school.
The plan approved Monday night requires Villanova to develop a plan for landscaping and buffering along the edge of the development.
Villanova still must present specific building designs to the township before construction can begin. Construction on what is now a parking lot along Lancaster Avenue could be years away. University officials have said they hope to open the new dormitories in 2019.