Earthmoving equipment is leveling dirt on a Shrewsbury site that may soon be home to a new shopping and dining hub.

Located along Forrest Avenue, the site is adjacent to Shrewsbury Commons in the township's commercial district.

An application from Messina Highland LP, asking for a special exception to a zoning ordinance to construct a shopping center or mall, will be subject of a public meeting at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 27, before the Zoning Hearing Board of Shrewsbury Township.

The meeting will be held at the township office, 11505 Susquehanna Trail.

No formal land development plan has submitted by Messina Highland, but township Manager Todd Zeigler said that may change after an upcoming planning commission meeting at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 20.

Messina Highland officials could not be reached for comment.

Zeigler said he has seen basic sketch plans for the site, which included a one-story building and two-story building housing multiple retail and restaurant outlets.

The parcel isn't large enough to host a major anchor store, like the nearby Walmart and Giant, he said.

"From the sketches it looks like it would be smaller stores and restaurants," Zeigler said. Though a grading plan is the only formal approval the site developer has applied for and received, the potential new commercial center has been met favorably in the township, he said.

"Let's put it this way - I haven't heard any opposition," Zeigler said.

- Candy Woodall can also be reached at