East Marlborough Township
Minutes of February 27, 2018
Cuyler Walker, chairman called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. in the township building. Additional Commissioners present: Charles Streitwieser, Jane Donze, Mary Nell Ferry, and Pat Montague. Also in attendance was Laurie Prysock, Township Manager and Jim Hatfield, Township Engineer. There was a quorum present.
1.Public Comment Period
No Public Comments
- Minutes of January 30, 2018
Motion to approve the minutes of the January 30, 2018 Planning Commission Meeting as submitted by Daniele Whittaker, Secretary. Motion approved,
- Toll Brothers Plan Review
Applicant came before the Commission to present an updated preliminary plan for the subdivision of the Pratt Properties UPI#s 61-5-152, 61-5-81, and 61-5-88.1. The plan shows a 42 unit cluster development of the portion of the Pratt property west of Unionville Road (UPI #61-5-81 and # 61-5-88.1, the “West Tract”)). The portion of the Property east of Unionville Road (UPI #61-5-152, the “East Tract”) is proposed to serve as open space for the cluster development, except for a 5.0. acre area to be subdivided as a separate lot and retained for the existing R-P Nurseries.
Since the January 30, 2018 Planning Commission meeting, the Applicant has provided a Memorandum to provide a legal analysis of the issues raised by Mr. Mike Hogan, on behalf of residents of “Village of Blackshire”, a report from Traffic Planning and Design (TPD), a letter from Longwood Fire Company, a letter from AECOM and a report from Vandemark & Lynch Inc.
The Applicant is seeking direction from the planning commission for the placement of an active recreation area on western side vs. eastern side of Unionville Road. The plan can accommodate passive and active recreation on both the western and eastern side of Unionville Road. Area residents and the commission expressed concerns with having active recreation on the east side and children crossing Unionville Road to use the active recreation. Residents from a neighboring community voiced concerns about active recreation close to the borders between the neighborhoods. The township engineer asked if there was a zoning requirement for applicant to have 10% of open space available for active recreation. The Planning Commission Chairman noted that applicants need to show an ability to offer 10% active recreation and that the Board of Supervisors can waive the subdivision ordinance. Application stated they could dedicate the open space to the Township for future use.
Applicant requested a wavier to the requirement to have sidewalks on both the western and eastern side of Unionville Road. There are site concerns with having sidewalks on the western side. The site concerns include steep embankments utility poles and right of way access. The eastern side is more fluid and can accommodate sidewalks. Applicant agreed to continue the sidewalks on the eastern side to the Willowdale Town Center.
TPD addressed concerns as presented on the Applicant’s previous plans. The concerns addressed in the traffic study include:
- The proposed access road “A” is offset from the R & P nursery driveway on the eastern side of Unionville Road by the minimum offset of 15 feet. Applicant cannot align the road “A” to the R & P nursery driveway, due to grading concerns and not owning the land
- There is a proposed pedestrian crosswalk on Unionville Road at the intersection of Road A. Consideration should be given to reduce the speed limit on Unionville Road to 35 mph as well as pedestrian pavement markings flashing warning device and ambient lighting at night. Pedestrian crossing signs should be installed.
- A left turning lane into the development was suggested. The turning lane would require widening the roadway. The traffic engineer from TPD felt the peak hours may not warrant left turn lane, 10 turns during one hour. She did not feel it is warranted, and was concerned with not having adequate site distance.
- The second access road to the development would connect to Chalfont Road. The residents from Village Blackshire were concerned with increased traffic to their neighborhood. A suggestion was made to limit the connectionroad to emergency access only.
- Area residents expressed concerns with the timing of the Traffic Study. The study was conducted in July. The residents felt the timing of the study was not an accurate reflection of the volume of traffic on Unionville Road. The study was not conducted during the school year or during a heavily traveled time frame. Such as during the morning commute, after school commute, church activities or the evening commute.
Toll Brothers requested the following waivers from the Planning Commission:
- The minimum radius for the loop road is 150 feet; the proposal is 125 feet for proper site distance. The loop road would be 30 feet closer to Village of Blackshire.
- Toll Brothers would like to use two modified backfills for sewage and drainage if there are found suitable by the Township Engineer.
- Substitute Belgian Block instead of Concrete Curbing. In lieu of the vertical curb, use roll curb. The center island would use laid-back curb. The Fire Marshall may need to give final approval.
- The proposed plan includes lighting at the intersections and curbs; the height is 13 high and reflects down. The commission suggested street lighting is not necessary. The only lighting will be at the entrance to the neighborhood.
- The Township Landscape Architect made recommendations in their letter. Toll Brothers is agreeable to all of their recommendations and is prepared to make additional buffering between the proposed neighborhood and Village of Blackshire.
On motions made and seconded, the Planning Commission adopted the following recommendations to the Board of Supervisors:
- Sidewalks on Unionville Road. The Planning Commission recommends that the applicant install a sidewalk along the eastern side of Unionville Road between the pedestrian crossing from the proposed entrance road to the West Tract (Road “A”) to the intersection at Rt. 926. For safety reasons, the sidewalk should be setback from Unionville Road, possibly extending beyond the road right-of-way into the applicant’s proposed open space (and also beyond the road right-of-way on the Willowdale Town Center property to the north, if an easement is available).
- Pedestrian Crossing on Unionville Road. The Planning Commission recommends that the pedestrian crossing on Unionville Road be located at the northern edge of the applicant’s proposed entrance road to the West Tract (Road “A”), crossing to opposite side of Unionville Road. For safety reasons and as described in TP&D’s review letter, the Planning Commission recommends the following:
- Reduce the speed limit on Unionville Road south of Rt. 926 to 35 mph – to conform with the plans for the section of Unionville Road north of Rt. 926 under consideration by the Township Safety Committee.
- Delineate the crosswalk with pavement markings (but not a raised surface).
- Install a flashing warning device on either side of the crosswalk to alter drivers of the presence of pedestrians.
- Provide street lighting at the crosswalk; provided it is shielded to prevent lighting from falling on adjoining properties.
- Install ADA-compliant handicapped ramps connecting the crosswalk to the sidewalk adjacent to Road A and the sidewalk along Unionville Road.
- Active Recreation on East Tract. The applicant expressed a willingness to dedicate the East Tract to the Township to be maintained in open space with public access. Although Sections 627.C.3 and 627.D of the Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance which would require the applicant to provide at least two acres with active recreational facilities somewhere on the Pratt Property, the Planning Commission recommends waiving the requirement. If the Township accepts dedication of the East Tract, rather than disturbing two acres to install active recreation facilities at this time, the Planning Commission recommends that any disturbance and improvements be part of a future comprehensive plan for the entirety of the East Tract to be designed by the Township with input from the neighbors and other Township residents. The applicant could provide a contribution in lieu of the installation of active recreation facilities to be set aside by the Township to fund future maintenance and improvements of the East Tract.
- Active Recreation on West Tract. With respect to the West Tract, the Planning Commission recommends that the area proposed for active recreation on the applicant’s plans be left in its natural condition to avoid the impact that active recreation would have on the residents of Blackshire Village, particularly those on the north side of Chalfont Drive. Although there would be no active recreation facilities on the West Tract, passive uses such as walking trails would be appropriate.
- Landscape Buffers on West Tract. The Planning Commission recommends that the applicant install landscape buffers on the West Tract (a) along the eastern property line south of the entrance road (Road “A”) and (b) along the southern property line east of stub connection from Chalfont Drive. The buffering should be in accordance with the standards set forth in Section 1812.D.2.iii of the Zoning Ordinance.
- Street Lights on West Tract. The Planning Commission recommends that street lighting not be required along the roads within the West Tract so as to minimize impact on the neighbors and associated light pollution. (No lighting on the East Tract would be needed at this time.)
- Turning Lanes into West Tract. The Planning Commission discussed the comments in the TP&D review letter concerning the possible need for left turning lanes for access from Unionville Road to the West Tract and R-P Nurseries. It was noted that turning lanes could avoid traffic backing up on Unionville Road but that widening Unionville Road to add the turning lanes could make the crosswalk less safe. Since the TP&D review letter did not definitively conclude that the warrants justifying left turn lanes were satisfied, the Planning Commission did not take a position on whether to recommend left turn lanes.
- Access to the West Tract from Chalfont Drive. The Planning Commission discussed whether the stub connection from Chalfont Drive should be for public access or only emergency access (in either case, including pedestrian access). There was strong support from the neighbors for limiting the connection to emergency access, although some neighbors have expressed a preference for full access believing that providing alternate routes in and out of Blackshire would enhance safety and convenience (for instance, there would be two locations from which a driver turning left (towards the high school) could access Unionville Road). There were strong feelings on both sides among the Planning Commission members, and no consensus was reached.
- Waivers. In addition to the waivers of active recreation facility requirements described in 3 above and street lighting described in 6 above, the Planning Commission recommends the following waivers of provisions of the Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance:
- Section 607.B.1 to permit a reduction of the centerline radii from a minimum of 150 feet to 125 feet along the loop portion of Road A.
- Section 801.C to permit an alternative suitable backfill acceptable to the Township Engineer to be used in the trench details for storm sewer, water main, and low pressure force main rather than the specified 2RC or modified stone backfill.
- Permit Belgian Block curbing in lieu of concrete curbs, with laid back curb around the center island inside the loop portion of Road A.
- Gale Lane Preliminary Plan Review
Applicant is moving forward on the land development plans. They are working with Township Engineer, Jim Hatfield and will be submitting preliminary land development in approximately 2 weeks. Applicant has received conditional use approval. The grading plans include 54 units with two accesses off of Gale Lane. The Fire Chief has approved the plan and storm water reports. Commissioners expressed concernwith the completion and recording of the emergency access easements. Jim Hatfield stated the plan meets conditional use order’s set back requirements.
Plan submitted by applicant includes a 5-foot walking trail. There will be sidewalks in the proposed development that will connect and be perpendicular to each other. There is no plan for lighting in the development. The developer would like to install granite curbing at the entrance of the development.
The Commission took no action pending the resolution of issues raised inthe township engineer’s review letter.
- Citadel Bank Land Development Plan
Applicant presented revisions to preliminary pla, which was approved by the Planning Commission five years ago for TD Bank. In June 2013 there were 24 conditions that needed to be addressed. The Department of Transportation permit has expired, applicant is renewing the permit. The plan shows two access points onto Route 1. The Citadel Bank preliminary plan shows less square footage for the building, the additional space will be used for additional green space. Citadel Bank is proposing one drive-through lane for an ATM machine and thirty-one parking spaces. The TD plan allowed for two drive-through lanes. The ATM lane will have 24 hour lighting for security purposes.
Aecom, the Chester County Planning Commission, Glackin, Thomas, Panzak (GTP), and Vandemark& Lynch, Inc.have submitted review letters regarding outstanding issue with Citadel Bank’s preliminary plan. Applicant will comply with the recommendations with the following exceptions.
The Citadel Bank plans shows an enclosed trash dumpster with surrounding landscaping which will be approximately 30’ feet from the southern property line. The minimum distance between property lines is 100’, so the applicant will seek a waiver.
Applicant is requesting a waiver of the township requirement for building materials for the Citadel Bank. The township requirement is to use red brick as the primary building material. The Citadel Bank would be constructed using stone, stucco and a red metal roof. The wavier is requested to allow conformity and brand recognition with other Citadel Banks in the surrounding area. The Citadel Banks in the surrounding area have the same design and building materials as in the proposed plan submitted to the Commission. The Commission voiced their opinions on the use of different building materials. The Commission Chairman suggested the application should seek approval from the Board of Supervisors.
Adjournment 9:40 p.m.
EAST MARLBOROUGH TOWNSHIP
AGENDA – February 27 – 7:00 P.M.
Agenda subject to change
Call to Order
Public Comment Period
Minutes of January 30, 2018
Toll Brothers Plan Review
Gale Lane Preliminary Plan Review presented by Doug White
Citadel Bank Land Development Plans