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10-20-15 Minutes

Planning Commission
10-20-15 Minutes

MINUTES

PLANNING COMMISSION:                                                                                              LOWER ALLEN TOWNSHIP

REGULAR MEETING:                                                                                                                         OCTOBER 20, 2015

The following were in ATTENDANCE:

PLANNING COMMISSION                                      TOWNSHIP PERSONNEL
Brett McCreary, Chairman                                      Dan Flint, Community Development
Geir Magnusson, Vice-Chairman                           Peddrick M. Young Sr., Commissioner
Dr. Jean Dyszel, Secretary                                     Julie Echterling, Recording Secretary
Brian Wickenheiser
Samuel T. Bashore
Patricia Hall
ABSENT
Michael Washburn

Mr. McCreary called the October 20, 2015 Regular Meeting of the Planning Commission to order at 7:00 pm.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Approval of Minutes
Mr. MAGNUSSON made a motion to approve the minutes from the September 15, 2015 meeting. Mr. BASHORE seconded the motion. Motion carried 6-0.

NEW BUSINESS
SLD Docket No. 2015-14: Minor Subdivision Plan, Lot Line Adjustment for Tax Parcels 13-26-0247-092 and -093: Lot line adjustment between two existing parcels at 5019 and 5023 Ravenwood Road.
Applicant Presentation
Mr. Randy Shearer, Hartman & Associates, spoke about the lot line adjustment. He showed the Board the location of the lots. He stated one owner built a fence over the property line. The neighbors agreed to change the lot lines versus moving the fence.

Township Staff Comments
Mr. Flint stated there were no comments from the Township.

County Planning Commission Comments
There was no comments from the County.

Commission Member Question and Answer
There were no comments from the Commissions.

Public Comments:
There were no public comments.

Action: Recommendations on the proposed plan
Mr. BASHORE made a motion to approve SLD Docket No. 2015-14: Minor Subdivision Plan, Lot Line Adjustment for Tax Parcels 13- 26-0247-092 and -093: Lot line adjustment between two existing parcels at 5019 and 5023 Ravenwood Road. Mr. MAGNUSSON seconded the motion. Motion carried 6-0.

OLD BUSINESS
SLD Docket No. 2015-07: Revised Preliminary Subdivision and Land Development Plan for Highpoint, Phase 1.5: This plan proposes to change the configuration of this Phase, which contains 51 single family attached units (townhouses), and proposes a lot with recreational facilities.

Applicant Presentation
Mr. Anthony Faranda-Diedrich, Charter Homes, stated they are asking for the plan to be tabled tonight as they work on the comments from the Township. He stated they would work through the comments and be back in November.

He state the original plan was for 13 detached single-family homes and 36 townhomes. They are now proposing all townhomes as they are selling faster than the single-family homes. He spoke about the connector road which was originally called Cona Road, then Lesher Road and now is going to be called Strong Road based on the Leshers’ request.

He spoke about the trails. He showed the Board the regional stormwater basin and stated another basin is being proposed for phase 1.5. He stated there will be a two acre park. He showed the Board examples of the terra park they are proposing which would include a fire pit, rock climbing, and a slide. He stated they have received the Township’s comments and hope to have them resolved by the next meeting.

Township Staff Comments
Mr. Flint stated there were many comments needing to be addressed. He stated more information is needed about the layout of streets. He stated four homes have no adequate street access with no turn around area for emergency vehicles.

County Planning Commission Comments
Mr. Flint stated the County doesn’t review revised plans.

Commission Member Question and Answer
Mr. McCready asked about the park, roads and stated the park should have swing sets. Mr. Faranda-Diedrich stated they won’t know what will be in the park until they move the land and see what can be built there. He stated they will be meeting with Mr. Flint to discuss the roads and what needs to be done for the emergency vehicles. Mr. Wickenheiser asked about the Recreation Board’s letter about a safe pedestrian crossing of the railroad. Mr. Faranda-Diedrich stated they are talking to the Board and Staff and stated the master plan hasn’t gone back to the Board.

Mr. Courtney, from McNees Wallace, spoke about the recreation obligation and open space. He stated they are preparing a lengthy recreation plan to present to the Township. He stated the trails will be open to the public except for the trails that end at the townhomes. He stated the park will be owned by the home owner’s association and will be open to residents, guests of residents, and customers of the businesses. He stated a swimming pool will be used for residents of the apartment. Discussion ensued.

Public Comments:
Roger Meilton, Brandton Road, stated he has some observations as a resident. He stated he thinks the character of the neighborhoods is family and the request of all townhomes will change it. He stated when the development was first proposed it was positive with retail, shops and parks for public use and is concerned that this has changed. He expressed his concern about the curve with the realignment of Arcona Road and the safety. Mr. Faranda-Diedrich stated they are doing what PennDOT tells them and it will be replaced with a roundabout. Mr. Flint spoke about the realignment and pending roundabout. He spoke about the delay in the Rossmoyne/Lisburn roundabout because of funding opportunities.

Action: Recommendations on the proposed plan
Mr. BASHORE made a motion to table SLD Docket No. 2015-07: Revised Preliminary Subdivision and Land Development Plan for Highpoint, Phase 1.5. Dr. DYSZEL seconded the motion. Motion carried 6-0.

SLD Docket No. 2015-09: Preliminary Subdivision and Land Development Plan for Arcona, Phase 2: Second phase of the Arcona Traditional Neighborhood Development (TND) on a total of 247.6 acres in the vicinity of Lisburn, Rossmoyne and Arcona Roads. Phase 2 proposes: 52 single-family attached units (townhouses); 32 mixed use residential units; 282 apartments; and 28,204 sf of commercial space, on 44.36 acres.

Applicant Presentation
Mr. Anthony Faranda-Diedrich, Charter Homes, stated they are asking for the plan to be tabled tonight as they work on the comments from the Township. He stated they would work through the comments and be back in November.

He stated there are two components to the plan. The first is apartments in 11 buildings that would include a clubhouse and pool for the residents’ use. The second component is the railroad crossings. He stated the plan is 28 acres with 17 acres of open space to be obtained from the Leshers which is part of the plan left open. He stated this would be the heart and soul of the new neighborhood with a downtown core area. They anticipate 30,000 square feet of commercial space. He stated phase 2.5 hasn’t been planned as of yet. He stated he would appreciate the Board’s comments so they can work through them and resubmit the plans. They see this as the first town added to Pennsylvania in a long time.

Township Staff Comments
Mr. Flint stated there were many comments that need to be addressed. He stated details need to be finalized and depending upon the final details, there could be more comments. Questions about the pedestrian crossing need to be answered.

Mr. Courtney spoke about a zoning comment. He stated he has discussed this comment with the Staff and their concern if the project stopped after this phase, they won’t meet the requirement of the number of single-family homes. He spoke about a restrictive covenant that would spell out terms and responsibilities in case of an issue. Discussion ensued.

Mr. Faranda -Dietrich, spoke about the PPL easements and lines near the railroad. He stated they have found where the bridge could be placed. He stated they have contacted two firms about the bridge and the cost for just the bridge is $800,000. Discussion ensued. Mr. Courtney stated they are addressing the crossing but not making a commitment to do it but will plan it. He stated there could be funding available for the crossing and they need to do some leg work first. Mr. Meilton stated they need to protect the children with a fence and the railroad. Mr. Courtney stated they have discussed a fence with Staff and are concerned the fence can block visibility but will be having more discussions.

Action: Recommendations on the proposed plan
Mr. MAGNUSSON made a motion to table SLD Docket No. 2015-09: Preliminary Subdivision and Land Development Plan for Arcona, Phase 2. Mrs. HALL seconded the motion. Motion carried 6-0.

OTHER BUSINESS
None was discussed.

NEXT MEETING
The next meeting is scheduled for November 17, 2015 at 7:00pm. Mr. Flint stated yesterday was the deadline for plans and none had been received.

ADJOURN
Meeting adjourned at 8:03 pm.