TOWNSHIP OF LOWER MAKEFIELD

PLANNING COMMISSION

MINUTES – AUGUST 23, 2004

 

 

The regular meeting of the Planning Commission of the Township of Lower Makefield was held in the Municipal Building on August 23, 2004.  Chairman Pazdera called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.

 

Those present:

 

Planning Commission:   John Pazdera, Chairman

                                                Karen Friedman, Secretary

                                                Fred Allan, Member

                                                Cynthia Harrison, Member

 

Others:                                     Nancy Frick, Director Zoning, Inspection, & Planning

                                                John Koopman, Township Solicitor

                                                James Majewski, Township Engineer

                                                Drew Wagner, Township Engineer

                                                Steve Santarsiero, Supervisor Liaison

 

Absent:                         Andrew Strauss, Planning Commission Vice Chairman

 

 

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

 

Ms. Friedman moved, Ms. Harrison seconded and it was unanimously carried to approve the Minutes of July 12, 2004 as written.

 

 

#532-A – FLOWERS-MADANY TRACT – PRELIMINARY PLAN DISCUSSION

 

Mr. David Shafkowitz representing Makefield Flowers Associates was present with

Mr. Joe Sotek, and Mr. Brian Focht.  Mr. Shafkowitz stated they did make revisions to 

the Plan as requested by the Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors.  He stated

the existing residents were concerned about cut-through traffic, and they have therefore

redesigned the project to show two cul-de-sacs.  Emergency access has been provided to

Washington Crossing Road.  Mr. Shafkowitz stated Mr. Majewski has suggested a

change to this access to limit tree disturbance, and they will comply with this request.

 

Mr. Shafkowitz stated they were asked to meet with representatives of Newtown

Township, and they did discuss the Plans with the Newtown Township Board of

Supervisors.  They discussed the access to Gaucks Lane and the engineer will be looking

into this.  They feel some road improvements may be requested by Newtown Township. 

Mr. Shafkowitz stated they could make this roadway the responsibility of the

August 23, 2004                                                             Planning Commission – page 2 of 5

 

Homeowners Association if maintenance becomes a problem.  He added that the lots on

this road will be marketed as premium lots.  Mr. Allan stated he would prefer that they

make this road the responsibility of the Homeowners Association so that there are not

Lower Makefield snow plows, etc. on Newtown roads.  Mr. Shafkowitz stated they will

make this road a private road to be the responsibility of the Homeowners Association.

 

Mr. Shafkowitz stated they will need a Waiver on the roadway width for the road that

will be a public road.  He stated they can reduce the cartway width as well for the private

road and bring it away from the creek in this area. 

 

Mr. Shafkowitz stated they did receive review letters from CKS, the Historic

Commission, and Mr. Yates.  There are no major problems, and they will comply with

the items listed in those letters.

 

The July 22, 2004 PCS review letter was noted.  Mr. Shafkowitz stated most of the items

are technical items or notes that need to be put on the Plan.  He stated they will submit

their Applications for the Variances by the end of next week.  They will also make a

more formal submission before Newtown Township and they will get notice to Lower

Makefield Township when these formal meetings take place.

 

Item #19 of the PCS letter was noted regarding the possible existence of floodplain soils

where the basins are to be located.  Mr. Majewski has asked that they map where they

took soil borings, and they will provide this to Mr. Majewski. 

 

Item #22 regarding cartway widths was noted.  Mr. Shafkowitz stated they have shown

on the Plan what is required by Ordinance, but Mr. Majewski has asked that they discuss

reducing the cartway width to 30’.  Mr. Allan stated he would not be in favor of this

because of concerns with access by emergency vehicles.  Mr. Majewski stated 30’ is the

direction the Township has been heading in lately.  Mr. Shafkowitz stated they have no

preference and would be willing to leave it at 36’.  Mr. Pazdera stated he does not have a

problem going to 30’ but feels this decision should be made by the Board of Supervisors. 

Mr. Santarsiero stated while he shares some of the concerns of Mr. Allan, apparently this

issue has been looked at by the emergency service people; and the Township feels 30’ is

sufficient for a fire truck to get through. It was noted in Dolington Estates, they have 30’

cartways.  Mr. Allan expressed concern with the maneuverability of one section where

the road comes to a point.  Ms. Harrison suggested that they soften it at this point only,

and Mr. Focht stated they should be able to do this without impacting the lot setbacks in

that area.  Mr. Santarsiero stated he plans to drive through the existing neighborhoods

where they have a similar condition with cul-de-sacs.  It was noted the emergency access

driveway easement is 20’ wide.  Mr. Shafkowitz suggested that Mr. Focht and

Mr. Majewski look into this matter further.  Mr. Koopman suggested that they come back

with a few alternatives and present an overlay.  They should also be prepared to discuss

this with the Board of Supervisors to come to a final decision.  Mr. Majewski suggested

that they get input from Mr. Yates on this as well.

August 23, 2004                                                             Planning Commission – page 3 of 5

 

 

Mr. Shafkowitz stated they will comply with all other items in the PCS letter.  He asked

if the Planning Commission would consider making a recommendation on the

Preliminary Plan conditioned on addressing the cartway widths and the technical issues.  

Mr. Koopman stated they also need to obtain Variances from the Zoning Hearing Board.

Ms. Frick stated the Board of Supervisors has canceled their first meeting in September

so there is time to come back before the Planning Commission with revised Plans at their

next meeting before going to the Board of Supervisors.  Mr. Majewski stated they did

indicate that they would comply with the buffer requirements and they are showing the

floodplain for the area around the stream.  They also need to resolve open issues with

Newtown Township.  There is still an open issue as to how the six lots will get safe

access to Washington Crossing Road.  Mr. Majewski stated this is a major safety issue. 

Mr. Koopman asked if the work session they had with Newtown Township was a public

meeting, and Mr. Shafkowitz stated it was.    He stated he feels if he goes to Newtown

Township and the Zoning Hearing Board with a Preliminary Plan approval this would

insure that they focus only on specific issues rather than on other items.  Mr. Koopman

stated the Board of Supervisors will not approve the Plan until the Variances are granted. 

Mr. Shafkowitz asked if the Planning Commission would consider granting

Preliminary/Final if they came back with everything wrapped up; and Mr. Pazdera stated

if they have a clean letter, they would consider this.

 

A gentleman from 616 Washington Cross Road stated his home is next to Lot #2 and

asked that they be included in public sewer and water.  He also asked that they take care

of the existing buildings on the site which are an eyesore.  Mr. Shafkowitz stated they

will take care of the buildings once construction starts. He stated he would be willing to

look at the sewer and water situation.  Mr. Majewski stated CKS made note of the

adjacent properties in their review letter and recommended that revisions be made to the

plan to facilitate future connections.  Mr. Shafkowitz stated they would be willing to meet

with CKS on this.  Mr. Allan noted the store in the area, and Mr. Shafkowitz stated they

could consider this property as well.  He stated they would provide the laterals up to the

property line.

 

Mr. Bill Sterling asked what will happen with the land that is not being developed, and

Mr. Shafkowitz stated he assumes it will be put into a Conservation Easement.  

Mr. Koopman asked if they plan to dedicate this lot to the Township, and Mr. Shafkowitz

stated they could do this.  Mr. Koopman stated this matter should be discussed with the

Board of Supervisors to see if they would like this dedicated to the Township or to a

Homeowners’ Association.   The area involved is approximately thirty acres and abuts

Mr. Sterling’s property.

 

 

 

 

 

August 23, 2004                                                             Planning Commission – page 4 of 5

 

 

#538 – BOXWOOD FARMS – FINAL PLAN APPROVAL

 

Mr. Edward Murphy, attorney, and Mr. Joe Marrazzo were present.  Mr. Murphy stated

they received Preliminary Plan approval in April.  The site is six acres with seven new

homes proposed and the relocation of one existing home to a new lot. 

 

The PCS review letter dated 7/29/04 was noted.  Item #1 lists the Waivers granted by the

Board of Supervisors as part of the Preliminary Plan approval. 

 

Item #2 discussed the condition requiring the developer to reimburse the Township for

improvements made by the Township to Oxford Valley Road since there will be no new

improvements made by this developer.  They are still waiting to receive from the

Township the amount of the reimbursement.

 

Item #3 discussed street names, and they are still waiting to hear from the Township on

this issue as well.

 

Item #4 required a document to be prepared by the Township Solicitor.  Mr. Murphy

stated he has discussed this with Mr. Garton who is waiting for information from the

Historic Commission relating to this.  He stated the developer will supply a legal

description of the lot in question.

 

Item #5 discussed the landscaping plan.  Mr. Murphy stated they did receive comments

from the Historic Commission last week who have requested revisions to the current Plan

dated 3/30/04 with no revision date shown.  Mr. Murphy stated Mr. Marrazzo has had

further discussions with Ms. Helen Heinz and Mr. Majewski and they will submit a

revised plan in light of those discussions. 

 

Item #6 was noted regarding a separate bond to be posted.  Mr. Murphy stated they are

waiting for additional information from the Township staff in this regard. 

 

Item #7 was noted regarding the storm sewer system.  Mr. Murphy stated they are still

waiting for information from the Township on this as well.  Mr. Majewski stated

Mr. Marrazzo should discuss this matter with Mr. Coyne.

 

Mr. Murphy stated they will comply with Items #8 through #12.

 

Mr. Koopman stated they will still need an Extension, and Mr. Murphy agreed to provide

this.

 

 

 

 

August 23, 2004                                                             Planning Commission – page 5 of 5

 

 

Mr. Allan moved to recommend to the Board of Supervisors approval of Final Plan for

Box wood Farms Plan dated 3/13/04, last revised 5/5/04 subject to compliance with the

PCS letter dated 7/29/04 noting particularly the comment regarding meeting with the

Historic Commission on the landscaping and compliance with the CKS letter dated

6/23/04.

 

Ms. Frick stated she feels a Note should be added to the Plan that the house is to remain

and be restored.  It was agreed to add this as a Condition of Approval, and Ms. Friedman

seconded the recommendation.

 

Mr. Altomare, 357 Twig Lane, stated the original Plan had a buffer between his property

and the new development; and he asked that it be put back on the Plan.  Mr. Murphy

stated this was shown on a prior submission for a different use, and there is no

requirement for a buffer if it is residential abutting residential.  Mr. Marrazzo agreed to

add the buffer.

 

Mr. Allan moved to amend the motion to make approval subject to a buffer of natural

plantings being installed to the rear of Tax Parcel #20-65-283 and #20-65-284. 

Ms. Friedman agreed to the amendment.

 

A gentleman residing at 354 Emerald asked where the existing farmhouse will be moved

to, and he was shown the location on the Plan. 

 

Motion carried unanimously.

 

 

There being no further business, Mr. Allan moved, Ms. Friedman seconded and it was unanimously carried to adjourn the meeting at 8:30 p.m.

 

                                                                        Respectfully Submitted,

 

 

 

 

                                                                        Karen Friedman, Secretary

 

 

 


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