MINUTES – JANUARY 23, 2006
The regular meeting of the Planning Commission of the
Planning Commission: Cynthia Harrison, Chairman
Dean Dickson, Secretary
Karen Friedman, Member
John Pazdera, Member
Others: Maureen Carlton, Township Solicitor
James Majewski, Township Engineer
Ron Smith, Supervisor Liaison
Absent: William Taylor, Planning Commission Vice Chair
Nancy Frick, Director Zoning, Inspection & Planning
APPEAL #570 – BARBARA A. BODINE – DISCUSSION AND TABLING OF
Mr. Richard Bodine was present with Lee Rockefeller, attorney, and Rich Butkiss,
Rockefeller stated the property is located on
The PCS letter dated 1/3/06 was noted. With regard to Item #1 regarding impervious
surface, Mr. Bodine stated the house has been there since 1973. Mr. Rockefeller stated
the proposed Subdivision has 23.5% impervious surface which is permitted under the
24% for the owner/developer. He stated he spoke with Mr. Majewski about this matter,
and he agreed that this would apply under the owner/developer. Mr. Majewski stated
they will need to make some minor changes to the amount of impervious surface. He
stated they are proposing to remove a portion of the driveway and parking; but based on
his review of the calculations, they may need to remove slightly more than they had
proposed. Mr. Rockefeller stated they will remove a part of the pull over on the side
which is approximately 145 square feet.
Ms. Friedman asked how close they are to the maximum allowed impervious surface.
Mr. Rockefeller stated they will be at 23.5% on the front lot which is in existence. They
will remove some of the impervious surface at the pull over. Mr. Butkiss stated the total
amount of impervious they will remove is over 1,000 square feet in order to get to the
23.5%. Mr. Friedman asked how close they are to the maximum permitted, and
January 23, 2006 Planning Commission – page 2 of 6
Mr. Majewski stated currently they are over the limit which is why they are proposing to
remove some impervious surface. By removing the 1,000 square feet proposed, they will
be under the maximum permitted by .5%. Ms. Friedman asked what is on the property
which qualifies as impervious surface. She stated if they sell the property, she would
like to know what a new owner could do as there would not be the ability to install a
deck, pool, etc. as they are already so close to the maximum permitted. Mr. Rockefeller
stated there are slate patios in the back and a walkway up the side. He stated the house is
a stone house with a full basement. Mr. Butkiss stated they will still have a patio and
wood deck remaining. Mr. Majewski stated at 23.5%, they would have an additional 110
square feet on top of what they are currently showing. Ms. Friedman asked if they could
install a pool, and Mr. Majewski stated they could but they would have to remove more
of the stone.
Item #2 was noted, and Mr. Rockefeller stated they will comply with regard to the
payment of the impact fee.
Item #3 with regard to trees was noted. Mr. Rockefeller stated Mr. and Mrs. Bodine will
remain on the front lot. The rear lot will be sold and built as a single-family home. They
will comply with the requirements. He stated the individual doing the building would be
responsible to comply with this request.
will comply with the size and height of trees as required.
Mr. Rockefeller stated they will comply with Items #4 and #5.
Mr. Rockefeller stated they will comply with Item #6. He stated whoever will develop
the property will have to comply with the requirements. He stated he feels the
stormwater management is already basically handled. He stated currently on
stone parking, sheds, a large garage and driveway. These will be taken down so that a
new house can be constructed. He stated by complying with the current Ordinance for a
home, the actual impervious surface will decrease on Lot #2
and not increase at all on
#1 so there will be a net decrease. He stated the stormwater management has been
addressed by Toll Bros. when they developed the large development in the area. He
stated Toll Bros. did have a problem with one of their homes adjacent to the Bodines
which resulted in a lawsuit as it did damage to the Bodine property. This has been settled
and the problem corrected.
The CKS letter dated 12/23/05 was noted. Item #1 was noted, and Mr. Rockefeller stated
this was taken care of in October, and they did work with Mr. Hoffmeister on this.
Mr. Butkiss stated they will comply with Items #2 and #3.
January 23, 2006 Planning Commission – page 3 of 6
Ms. Harrison noted the Bucks County Planning Commission letter dated 10/31/05. She
stated they have expressed concern with the impervious surface, and Mr. Majewski stated
this was addressed in the PCS letter. Mr. Majewski stated they also recommend Fee-In-
Lieu of Recreation, and they will have to pay the required amount as set forth in the
Ordinance. Item #5 of the Bucks County Planning Commission was noted regarding
submission of the Sewer Planning Modules, and Mr. Butkiss stated they did work with
Mr. Hoffmeister on this.
Ms. Friedman stated it appears the driveway entrance for the new home will be on
Mr. Garry Forshner, attorney representing the Contract Purchaser of the lot, was present.
He stated there was a sample of a building envelope on the Plan, and they wanted to
make sure that the lot was not locked into that particular sample assuming they do
comply with the Ordinance requirements including impervious surface. Mr. Majewski
stated this is how it typically works, and what has been shown is a representative house
model with representative grading and driveway location. Mr. Majewski stated at the
time of the Building Permit, detailed Plans will have to be submitted showing the exact
house footprint and the grading and should be in substantial compliance with what is
being shown with regard to the Plan. He stated they can develop up to what is allowed
Mr. Forshner stated they had indicated that if someone were interested in installing a
pool, they could remove some stone from the existing lot; and he asked if this would
apply to other improvements as well. Ms. Friedman stated this would depend on how
much they build on the lot. They would have to comply with the maximum permitted
impervious surface. Mr. Forshner stated they have some concerns in terms of the entire
Subdivision as to how impervious surface interplays between one lot and the other.
Mr. Forshner asked if there is any inherent reason why the lot line between the two lots
could not be moved. Mr. Majewski stated if they moved the lot line, this would be a lot
line change; and they would have to go back and get approval once again from the
Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors. Mr. Forshner stated he would like
to have this matter continued as there are some issues between the two parties to the
Contract that need to be addressed; and rather than have to come back with a new
Application, he felt it best to address those issues first and then ask for approval. He stated he hopes that Mr. Rockefeller will concur with this request. Ms. Harrison stated if they change the lot lines, everything would change. Ms. Friedman stated they could not give Preliminary Approval until they see how much they will change the lot line.
Mr. Forshner stated this is why he is asking that the matter be continued.
January 23, 2006 Planning Commission – page 4 of 6
Mr. Rockefeller asked that they take this under advisement the way they have presented it
assuming the line will be as shown and in accordance with what has been reviewed as he
feels this is where the line will remain. Mr. Rockefeller stated Mr. Bodine had made an
estimate of the depth but did not understand that part of his lot in the front is actually in
actually was. He
how far they estimate they would move the line in order to give the back lot more.
Mr. Rockefeller stated they do not feel that they will move it at all and they feel 150 is
appropriate as it fits in with the neighborhood and matches the lines of the other lots.
Mr. Forshner stated he is asking that they not vote on this at this time and instead defer it to a future meeting so he can address this issue with Mr. Rockefeller and his client.
Mr. Forshner stated he only found out about this meeting a few days ago and had not had
an opportunity to address the issue with the Township professionals. Mr. Forshner asked
if there is any reason that the lot line could not be moved, and Mr. Majewski stated they
must comply with the Ordinance requirements.
Mr. Forshner asked if there is a requirement for a certain number of parking spaces, and
Mr. Majewski stated two are required. Mr. Forshner asked if the driveway can be
counted or do the two need to be in addition to the driveway. Mr. Majewski stated they
cannot park in the driveway if they are blocking someone from getting out.
Mr. Rockefeller stated they do need a turn around as you cannot
back out onto
Road. He stated by
moving the line, the only turn-around they could have would be in the front
yard; and he does not feel the Township would want a driveway/parking lot in
the front of the house on Edgewood Road.
Mr. Forshner stated he understood that there was no prohibition from
putting in a turn-around in the front yard.
Ms. Harrison stated they could have a circular driveway. Mr. Majewski stated they could have a
“k-turn” area so that you could pull out straight onto
Mr. Forshner stated they have not seen most of the reports referred to; and while he does
not feel there were any significant issues based on what he has heard this evening, they
would like to reserve this and that they be provided time to review the reports.
Mr. Majewski stated since Mr. Bodine is the property owner, it would be his
responsibility to forward these. Mr. Rockefeller agreed to send these to Mr. Forshner.
Mr. Rockefeller agreed to continue the matter to a future meeting of the Planning
Commission and will contact Ms. Frick as to when the matter will again be heard.
There was no other public comment.
January 23, 2006 Planning Commission – page 5 of 6
Mr. Pazdera moved, Ms. Friedman seconded and it was unanimously carried to table the
matter to the next meeting.
Mr. Majewski stated they have received an Extension until April 20, 2006.
DISCUSSION AND MOTION ON THE PROPOSED AMENDMENT TO THE CODIFIED ZONING ORDINANCE SO AS TO ELIMINATE THE USE IDENTIFIED AS AGE-QUALIFIED COMMUNITY FROM THE LIST OF USES PERMITTED BY RIGHT IN THE GENERAL BUSINESS/INDUSTRIAL (C-3) ZONING DISTRICT AND IN THE COMMERCIAL/HIGHWAY SERVICES DISTRICT (C-2) AND OTHERWISE RESCINDING ORDINANCE NO. 355
Mr. Majewski stated since this is contemplated to partially incorporate the Matrix
property, there is some concern that this Ordinance without an Agreement made with
Matrix could leave the property open to development by some other developer without
the Township getting some of the benefits that they contemplated from the Matrix
Agreement. The Township, in order to move the negotiations along, put this forward to
repeal the Ordinance to start that process. If the proceedings would fall through, the
Township would already be in the position to repeal the Ordinance quickly if necessary.
Ms. Friedman stated she felt there was a legal ramification to having an Agreement.
Ms. Harrison asked Ms. Carlton for a legal definition of Contract Zoning and how this
affects this matter. Ms. Carlton stated Contract Zoning would be a bargaining between
parties outside the Zoning Ordinance to pre-Zone a particular area outside of the regular
Mr. Majewski stated the Board of Supervisors will not officially adopt the repeal of the
Ordinance, but want to have the process ready so that if everything falls through, they can
repeal it and not have to wait the required advertising days and have to go through the
review process and possibly have the property sold and have Plans submitted for
development which may not be beneficial to the Township. He stated he does not feel
the intention of the Board is to actually repeal the Ordinance, but to be in a position to do
so if necessary. Ms. Friedman asked if an Agreement is almost in place with Matrix,
and Mr. Majewski stated he does feel they are close. Ms. Friedman asked if this is legal,
and Ms. Carlton stated it is.
Ms. Harrison asked if the Planning Commission members want any additional
information on this before making a Motion. Ms. Friedman stated she wanted to make
sure that they are protecting themselves as a Township and wanted to make sure what
they were doing was legal. She stated she wants to make sure that anyone reviewing the
Minutes of their past actions and then seeing that they were taking back what was
offered, will not come back and sue the Township. Ms. Carlton stated she cannot say
January 23, 2006 Planning Commission – page 6 of 6
that no one will sue them. She stated she does feel that they have done everything they
were supposed to in a sequential order.
Ms. Harrison stated they became involved with Matrix initially because there was some
confusion about Zoning. She stated the Planning Commission had a great deal of
discussion about this in December, and it is now coming back to them to be repealed.
She stated they have had some conflicting information as to legality. Ms. Harrison stated
she would prefer to continue this and see if there is an outcome within a month.
Mr. Pazdera stated he does not have a problem with what they are proposing. He stated
he does not see the need to send anything onto the Board of Supervisors and they could
indicate the Planning Commission has “No Comment.” Ms. Harrison stated she would
feel better with this option. Ms. Carlton agreed that the Planning Commission can pass it
on with “No Comment.”
Mr. Pazdera moved, Ms. Friedman seconded and it was unanimously carried to send a
memo to the Board of Supervisors that the Planning Commission has no comment on the
Appointment of Planning Commission Liaison to the Environmental Advisory Council
Ms. Harrison stated the next meeting of the EAC is scheduled for tomorrow evening.
Ms. Friedman stated she was advised that the meeting was canceled due to lack of a
quorum and no meeting has been scheduled at this time. Ms. Harrison asked if they have
indicated what day of the week they will have their meeting. Ms. Friedman stated she
feels their next meeting will be on a Monday in February not in conflict with the
regularly-scheduled Planning Commission meeting.
Ms. Harrison asked if there is a volunteer who would be willing to sit on the EAC to
represent the Planning Commission.. Mr. Dickson stated he would be willing provided it
is 7:30 p.m. on Monday nights. Ms. Harrison agreed to be the Alternate. Ms. Harrison
stated she will advise Ms. Frick of this.
There being no further business, Ms. Friedman moved, Mr. Dickson seconded and it was unanimously carried to adjourn the meeting at 8:20 p.m.
Dean Dickson, Secretary