TOWNSHIP OF LOWER MAKEFIELD

ZONING HEARING BOARD

MINUTES – NOVEMBER 3, 2004

 

The regular meeting of the Zoning Hearing Board of the Township of Lower Makefield was held in the Municipal Building on November 3, 2004.  Chairman Kirk called the meeting to order at 7:35 p.m.  Ms. Kirk announced that the Board adjourns at 11:00 p.m.; and if the cases are not completed by this time, they will be continued until a future Board meeting.

 

Those present:

 

Zoning Hearing Board:  Barbara Kirk, Chairman

                                                Rudolph Mayrhofer, Vice Chairman

                                                Paul Bamburak, Member

                                                Darwin Dobson, Member

                                                Paul Kim, Alternate

 

Others:                                     Nancy Frick, Director Zoning, Inspection & Planning

                                                Robert Habgood, Code Enforcement Officer

                                                John Koopman, Township Solicitor

                                                Drew Wagner, Township Engineer

                                                Allen Toadvine, Zoning Hearing Board Solicitor

                                                Pete Stainthorpe, Supervisor Liaison

 

Absent:                         David Malinowski, Zoning Hearing Board Secretary

 

 

APPEAL #04-1286 – MAKEFIELD FLOWERS ASSOC., L.P.

 

Ms. Kirk stated they received a letter dated 11/2/04 from the Applicant’s attorney

requesting that the matter be continued until the next scheduled Hearing on the basis that

they need to attend the next Planning Commission meeting.  This letter was marked as

Exhibit B-1. 

 

The Planning Commission meeting will be held on November 22 and it will therefore be

necessary to continue this matter to the Zoning Hearing Board meeting scheduled for

December 7, 2004.

 

One gentleman was present regarding this matter, and he was advised that it will be

continued until 12/7/04.  The gentleman asked how he would obtain additional

information on this matter and he was advised to either attend the Hearing on 12/7/04 or

contact the Applicant and speak to them directly.

 

Mr. Mayrhofer moved, Mr. Dobson seconded and it was unanimously carried to continue this matter until 12/7/04.

November 3, 2004                                                     Zoning Hearing Board – page 2 of 24

 

 

APPEAL #04-1284 – JOHN CHRISTOPHER AND SHERRY DIXON

 

Mr. John Christopher Dixon, 14 Milton Drive, was sworn in.  The Application was

marked as Exhibit A-1.  Attached to this is an 8 ½” x 11” document entitled Plan of

Survey dated 11/8/63 which was marked as Exhibit A-2.   

 

Mr. Dixon stated they would like a side yard variance in order to expand their kitchen. 

The home is in the Wynnewood section and is a two-story dwelling fronting on Milton

Drive.  Ms. Kirk asked where the kitchen faces, and Mr. Dixon stated it faces toward the

back of the property.  He stated the area shaded with slanted lines represents the

expansion of the kitchen.  The crosshatched area is an existing sidewalk which will be

removed.  Currently the house is 15’ from the property line.  The kitchen area will be 21’

feet wide after the addition.  They are looking for an additional 6’ which will equal 193

square feet.  It will not include a second story.  Mr. Dixon stated based on the

calculations, he feels they only need a side yard Variance.    Mr. Dixon stated they are

already over the permitted impervious surface but the net change on the impervious

surface will be down 1% because they are removing a section of the walkway. 

 

Mr. Habgood stated he did not do the calculations for this property.   Mr. Dixon stated he

provided the figures for the Zoning Hearing Board Application.  He provided pictures of

the property and noted the existing concrete areas which will be removed.  Mr. Habgood

stated to the Township’s knowledge no permit was submitted for this addition and this is

why no impervious surface calculations were done by the Township.  Ms. Kirk asked if

they are already over the impervious surface will they be forced to come back for a

Variance for impervious surface when they submit their Building Permit.  She stated she

would like to address this tonight if possible.  Ms. Frick stated if there was no Permit for

additions that have already been made to the house, they cannot give them credit for

something that was not Permitted.  She stated since no Permits were applied for this latest

addition, the Township did not research the impervious surface calculations.  Ms. Frick

stated they only reviewed the Application for what was submitted, and in this case it was

a side yard setback. 

 

Mr. Mayrhofer asked how the Applicant knew they had to come before the Zoning

Hearing Board.  Ms. Sherry Dixon, 14 Milton Drive, was sworn in.  Ms. Dixon stated

when she came into the Office, she explained what she wanted to do and she was

provided the forms.  She stated they were advised there may be questions on the

impervious surface, and they gave her forms.  Mr. Dixon stated they are not the original

owners of the property; and since they have moved in, they have not added any additions.

 

Ms. Kirk noted a squared area on the Plan, and Mr. Dixon stated this is part of the house

and the patio comes off the back.  Mr. Dixon stated he feels the house was built in 1964. 

It was noted this is in the R-2 District. 

 

November 3, 2004                                                      Zoning Hearing Board – page 3 of 24

 

 

Mr. Dixon reviewed how he came up with the impervious surface calculations.  Details

were shown to the Zoning Hearing Board.  He stated he measured everything himself.

 

Ms. Kirk asked if there are any Permits on record for any of the additions, and Ms. Frick

stated this was not checked because no Permit was submitted yet for the kitchen addition.

 

Mr. Dobson asked if they have had any discussions with their neighbors, and Mr. Dixon

stated they spoke to their neighbors on both sides and the neighbor to the rear. 

Mr. Dobson asked if there are any water problems, and Mr. Dixon stated there are not.

Mr. Mayrhofer asked how close the neighbor to the right is to their property, and

Mr. Dixon stated they are 15’ away from the property line.  He stated those individuals

had no problem with the addition coming closer to them. 

 

Mr. Kim asked if they will expand their basement, and Mr. Dixon stated they will not.

 

There was no public comment.

 

Mr. Toadvine noted the house immediately adjacent which will be impacted by the

Variance and asked which side of their house faces the subject property.  Mr. Dixon

stated it will be the side of their house.  The adjacent home fronts on Milton Drive as

well.

 

Ms. Kirk moved Mr. Bamburak seconded and it was unanimously carried that the

Application for a Variance from the side yard setback be granted to permit the Applicant

to have a side yard setback of 9’ as opposed to 15’ subject to a net reduction of 107

square feet of impervious surface coverage as set forth in Exhibit A-2.

 

 

APPEAL #04-1285 – GREGORY AND ROBIN FRANK

 

Mr. Gregory Frank and Ms. Robin Frank, 908 Hamilton Drive, were sworn in.

The Application was marked as Exhibit A-1.  Attached is a Plan entitled Plan prepared

for Greg and Robin Frank  dated 9/8/04, and this was marked as Exhibit A-2. 

 

Ms. Frank stated they would like to get a Variance from the impervious surface.  They

are currently at 19.2%; and with the addition proposed, it will bring it to 21.3%.  She

stated they would like to add onto the kitchen, laundry room, and add another room next

to the garage which will be an office/craft area.  The kitchen expansion is 19’ by 9’, the

laundry room area is 9’ by 7’, and the new room would be 12’ by 18’.  Total square

footage to be added is shown on A-2 at 474.6 square feet.

 

Ms. Kirk stated according to the calculations, it indicated the porch of 216 square feet

would be removed; and Ms. Frank stated this is correct.  This is a screened-in porch

November 3, 2005                                                      Zoning Hearing Board – page 4 of 24

 

 

located at the rear of the house where the addition is proposed.  Ms. Kirk asked if there is

any other section of the walkway or shed area which could be removed which could help

reduce the impervious surface they are asking for.  Ms. Frank stated the patio area is a

possibility, but they do need walking access to get to the back area.  Ms. Kirk asked how

wide the proposed walkway is at its widest point, but Ms. Frank stated this has not been

finally designed.  Ms. Kirk noted an area which has been squared off, and Ms. Frank

stated this is an existing walkway and an existing cement slab next to the garage.  She

stated there is a double gate which opens which is why the walkway widens at this point. 

 

Ms. Frank stated their home is in Yardley Hunt.  Mr. Frank stated their home is on a

slight incline.   Ms. Kirk asked about the water flow after rain, and Ms. Frank stated it

flows off to the right toward Revere Road.  She stated it has created a natural swale

between their property and the adjacent property over the years. 

 

It was noted the proposed addition is only a one-story addition.

 

Mr. Kim asked if they will add something to replace the existing porch which will be

removed, and Ms. Kirk stated the kitchen addition will be taking up a good portion of that

area.

 

Mr. Koopman stated the Board of Supervisors has concerns about the extent of the

Variance they are requesting.  He asked how long they have owned the home, and

Ms. Frank stated they have owned it for eight years.  Mr. Koopman stated the existing

impervious is already over the permitted 18% and asked if they added any impervious

surface since they bought the house.  Ms. Frank stated they installed a shed but did not

obtain a Permit.  She stated they did inquire about it because of the setback, but nothing

was mentioned about Permits at that time.  The shed dimensions are 10’ by 10’. 

 

Mr. Koopman asked if they included the shed calculations in the impervious surface

calculations, and Ms. Frank stated they did.   Mr. Mayrhofer asked about the foundation

for the shed, and Ms. Frank stated it is on cinderblocks.  Mr. Mayrhofer stated it is not

really impervious as water can drain under it.  Mr. Koopman stated the Township’s

position is that it is impervious surface. 

 

Mr. Koopman asked about the craft/office area.  Ms. Frank stated currently she is using

her dining room to create jewelry, and she does other crafts as a side business. 

Mr. Koopman asked about the office, and Ms. Frank stated the office would be used as

part of the business. 

 

Mr. Koopman stated the Township likes to see these increases limited to 1% over what is

permitted .

 

 

November 3, 2004                                                      Zoning Hearing Board – page 5 of 24

 

 

Mr. Kim asked if the neighbors have indicated they have any problem with the proposed

addition, and Ms. Frank stated there is no objection.

 

Ms. Kirk asked if some of the walkway/patio in the rear could be eliminated.  Ms. Frank

stated this is a possibility.  She stated the studio space could also be reduced. 

 

Mr. Mayrhofer stated the driveway at the rear is 32’ wide and extends 4’ beyond the

house.  Ms. Frank stated there is also the slab part so that it is actually 6’.  Mr. Mayrhofer

asked if there is anything that they could take off of this portion.  Ms. Kirk stated they are

looking for the minimum of what would be necessary.  She suggested that they go back

to the surveyor and discuss with them where they could eliminate some of the impervious

surface so that the increase is not as significant.  Mr. Frank stated the reason they did it

this way was because they did not want to have to come back at some time in the future

and indicate that they want to put on a patio, etc.  They wanted to know what they could

do. 

 

Mr. Kim suggested that they remove the shed.

 

Mr. Koopman stated they could grant a Variance that the Zoning Haring Board sees fit,

and the Applicant could be required to work within that limit. 

 

Mr. Stainthorpe stated since they have not decided exactly what they are going to use for

the walkway, there are materials that could be used which are not impervious.

 

Mr. Toadvine asked if they would be willing to reduce their request from 21.3% to 20.5%

and it would then be up to them where they would make the changes to the Plan to meet

this requirement.  Ms. Frank stated she knows there was another home in her

development that was approved for more than what they are requesting.  Mr. Toadvine

stated each Application stands on its own.

 

Mr. Kim stated if they set the limit of expansion, it seems like there are a lot of ways that

they could meet it.

 

Mr. Koopman stated since this is a business use, it is not space that is needed to meet

required living space.

 

Ms. Frick stated they would have to submit a Permit showing that they meet the Zoning

Hearing Board requirements when they submit for their Building Permit.

 

Mr. Richard Tattory, 914 Hamilton, asked how close the new structure will be to the edge

of the property facing his home.  It was noted it is all behind the house and will not

impact his side of the property.

 

November 3, 2004                                                      Zoning Hearing Board – page 6 of 24

 

 

Mr. Mayrhofer moved, Mr. Bamburak seconded and it was unanimously carried to grant

the request for 20.5% impervious surface.

 

 

APPEAL #04-1274 – SUNRISE DEVELOPMENT, INC.

 

Mr. Edward Murphy, attorney, and Mr. Joseph McElwee, representing Sunrise, were

present.  Mr. McElwee was sworn in.  Mr. Murphy stated they are present to request a

Special Exception for the property at Heacock Road and Stony Hill Road for an Assisted-

Living facility as well as an increase to the impervious surface from 17% to 19.75%. 

Mr. Murphy stated the matter was continued in order to give the Applicant an opportunity

to discuss the project with abutting property owners.  He stated they will provide

testimony on the height of the building which relates directly to the impervious surface

request.  They are seeking approval for a two-story building.  He stated it would be

possible to have a three-story building and eliminate the need for the impervious surface

variance request; however, the Applicant feels that a majority of the neighbors would

prefer a two-story building which would be more appropriate for this neighborhood. 

 

Mr. Murphy stated there is an existing dwelling on the property.  Ms. Kirk stated they

have come in with a Special Exception even though the Application states it is for an

Assisted-Living facility and asked if they are grouping this in accordance with a Nursing

Home.  Mr. Murphy stated that are based on the definition of Nursing Home, and they

will provide testimony from Mr. McElwee on the facility.

 

Mr. Koopman stated the Township of Lower Makefield would like to be a party to this

matter and feels others in the audience may be interested in becoming a party as well, and

he suggested that they describe party status to those present.  Mr. Koopman stated the

Township has a number of concerns about this Application and would like to listen to the

discussion this evening to see if its concerns are met.  After comments from the residents,

the Township would like the matter continued so that he can report back to the Board of

Supervisors regarding their concerns.  The Township would present any evidence they

have at a future Hearing if there is any to present. 

 

Ms. Kirk asked if the Board of Supervisors has had discussions with Mr. Murphy or the

Applicant prior to this evening.  Mr. Koopman stated Mr. Murphy‘s efforts have been to

address the concerns of the residents as opposed to the Board of Supervisors.  Ms. Kirk

stated this matter has been scheduled several times and has been continued several times,

and she felt the reason for this was to allow the Township to discuss certain issues. 

Mr. Stainthorpe stated there was an informal Sketch Plan submitted to the Board of

Supervisors some time ago but most of the discussions that have gone on have been

between the neighbors and the Applicant rather than between the Township and the

Applicant.  Mr. Murphy stated they did go before the Planning Commission and did

receive a favorable recommendation from the Planning Commission on the Special

November 3, 2004                                                      Zoning Hearing Board – page 7 of 24

 

 

Exception.  They subsequently appeared at a meeting of the Board of Supervisors but

they declined to hear any presentation.  The Applicant did make a subsequent effort to

see if they could provide a more complete presentation to the Board of Supervisors, but

they were advised that the Board was reluctant to listen until they reached a consensus

from the neighbors.  Mr. Murphy stated they have not had any substitutive discussions

with the Board of Supervisors, although he does understand the Board’s position on this.

 

Ms. Kirk described Party Status and asked if anyone was requesting this at this time.  The

following requested Party Status:

 

            Ralph Nuzzolo, 628 Stony Hill Road, Yardley, PA 19067

            Joe Huegler, 506 Heritage Oaks, Yardley, PA 19067

            Ahmooi Lin, 1601 Penn Oaks Circle, Yardley, PA 19067

 

Mr. Murphy had no objection to these requests.

 

The Application was marked Exhibit A-1.  Exhibit A-2 was marked which is the Plan that

accompanied the Application and is a single sheet identified as a Sketch Plan of Sunrise

of Lower Makefield dated 4/12/04 with no revisions.  Ms. Kirk noted the four letters

submitted requesting continuances of these matters, and these were marked Exhibits B-1

through B-4.  Mr. Toadvine marked as Exhibit B-5 the letter to the Zoning Hearing Board

from Ms. Frick dated 7/13/04 which is the letter referred to by Mr. Murphy indicating

that the Planning Commission recommended to the Zoning Hearing Board that they

approve the Special Exception with the suggestion that they present a proposal for

additional parking if needed in the future.  Exhibit A-3 was marked which is the Affidavit

of Posting.  The date of the Hearing was originally scheduled for 8/3/04.

 

Mr. Joseph McElwee, 771 E. Lancaster Avenue, Villanova, PA 19085, stated he is

employed by Sunrise Development as the Senior Vice President of Development and has

been so for eleven years.  He reviewed the scope of his responsibilities in his position

with Sunrise.  He stated he has represented Sunrise well over forty times in Applications

such as this.  He stated Sunrise is the equitable owner of the property under discussion.

Mr. McElwee provided a history of the Sunrise Corporation noting they operate 380

communities in twenty-five States in the U.S. and are also in Canada and Great Britain. 

They currently have ten Assisted-Living residences in the Philadelphia area including the

property that was previously known as Clare Bridge in Lower Makefield.  He stated

Assisted Living is a senior living residence that is a product in between Independent

Living and a Nursing Home.  It is for the frail elderly who need assistance with activities

of daily living to include bathing, grooming, dressing, transportation, etc.  It is about one

half to two-thirds the cost of a Nursing Home, and there is no full-time medical staff.  It

is licensed by the Department of Public Welfare as a Personal Care Home.   He stated

typically their sites sit on a lot of three to five acres in a Residential area and are

transition sites between residential developments and retail/commercial developments. 

November 3, 2004                                                      Zoning Hearing Board – page 8 of 24

 

 

They want their residents to feel like they are part of a community and want the

community to make use of their facilities as well.

 

Mr. McElwee stated the building is approximately 60,000 square feet with 77 units. 

They estimate between 92 and 94 residents will be in the facility.  Approximately 40% of

the building is common area and has a residential feel.  The rooms are one to two-room

suites ranging in size from 275 to 650 square feet with private bath/showers and a

European kitchen with no cooking facilities. They provide three meals a day and snacks,

transportation, and a full-time Activities Director, housekeeping and linen service,

assistance with activities – bathing, grooming, dressing, etc.  They have a full-time R.N. 

 

Mr. McElwee stated they feel there is a need for an Assisted-Living Facility because the

fastest-growing segment of the population is the 85 plus population.  They feel Lower

Makefield has the need for this type of use.  They are a property tax ratable.

 

Mr. Murphy asked that Mr. McElwee describe what about this property attracted Sunrise

to this location.  Mr. McElwee stated it was a use permitted by Special Exception for this

Zone.  He stated they also wanted to be in a residential part of town so that the residents

feel part of a community.  Mr. Murphy showed on the easel the Plan which is identical to

Exhibit A-2, although it does not have some of the general notes and site data. 

Mr. McElwee was asked to describe why they designed the building as they did. 

Mr. McElwee stated for a site that has an intersection, they like to face the intersection. 

They also wanted it to be a residential and appealing building.  A rendering of a Victorian

Mansion design was shown.  This was marked as Exhibit A-4.  Smaller versions of this

were provided to the Zoning Hearing Board and color versions will be provided in the

future.  Mr. McElwee stated this would be representative of the type of architecture this

site will have. 

 

Mr. Murphy noted the Section of the Ordinance which describes Nursing Home and the

subset – Personal Care Home.  Mr. Murphy asked if the facility is a Personal Care Home

licensed by the Department of Public Welfare, and Mr. McElwee stated it is.  He asked if

food, shelter, and personal care are provided for more than twenty-four hours for more

than three adults who are not relatives.  Mr. McElwee agreed.  Mr. Murphy asked if these

individuals require assistance in the nature of bathing, dressing, diet and medications,

etc., and Mr. McElwee agree.  He also agreed that they do not require hospitalization to

be administered.  Mr. Murphy asked if they feel they satisfy the definition of the term

Personal Care Home.  Mr. Koopman objected to the leading nature of the questions. 

Mr. McElwee stated they are a licensed Personal Care Home by the Department of Public

Welfare, and the Definition in the Ordinance describes exactly what would be performed

at the site.

 

Ms. Kirk asked what criteria is used to determine if a resident needs to be in a more

skilled Nursing Home.  Mr. McElwee stated this is a family decision and there are

November 3, 2004                                                      Zoning Hearing Board – page 9 of 24

 

regulations related to appropriate placement where the family members, physician, etc.

make such a decision as to whether a specific licensed facility is appropriate for an

individual.  Ms. Kirk asked if there is any special criteria used such as the resident’s

inability to feed themselves, be mobile throughout the facilities, etc, and Mr. McElwee

stated as long as the resident generally is not bedridden or sick or needs to be fed, they

would be allowed to live in this particular facility.  He stated they do have a Dementia

wing and an Alzheimer’s wing as permitted by the license.  He stated they deal with

those in the early stages of Alzheimer’s. 

 

Mr. Mayrhofer asked them to describe the kitchen facilities in the rooms, and

Mr. McElwee stated it would include a sink, cabinets, and a small refrigerator.  They

have no cooking facilities although some residents may have a microwave. 

 

Mr. McElwee stated 80% to 85% of their residents are female with the average age of

entry being 82 to 83.  They need help with two or more activities of daily living. 

Mr. Murphy asked if any of the residents drive, and Mr. McElwee stated normally the

family or family physician have taken away their keys.  Across the country, they may

have one or two residents who still drive.  He stated this is why their parking

requirements are low.

 

Mr. Murphy asked about the Licensing through the Pennsylvania Department of Public

Welfare.  He asked if it is private pay, and Mr. McElwee stated there are no subsidies in

Pennsylvania for this use. 

 

Ms. Kim asked about security measures for the residents.  Mr. McElwee stated in this

particular design there are four spokes to the building.  He stated on the largest full-time

shift, they would have twenty-seven employees between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.. 

Between 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. there would be 20 people and overnight there are

generally four to five employees so there is 24-hour supervision of the residents.

Ms. Kirk asked the proportion of duties of those employees.  Mr. McElwee stated there is

an Executive Director and an Assistant, a Concierge who is at the Front Desk to monitor

those coming in and that individual is generally there twelve hours a day.  They have a

maintenance person, full-time chef and two cooks along with a helper in the kitchen. 

They have an RN, an LPN, two marketing people, and eight to ten care managers who

have hands-on care of the residents.  He stated at 6:00 p.m. the front doors are locked. 

Anyone who wants to visit would have to dial a code or call the Concierge desk and be

buzzed in through a locked-door system.  He stated all of the doors are locked throughout

the entire evening.  If the Concierge is not there, all the staff members on site have a

“Scout Phone” and a staff member would then go to see who is at the door.    The

Dementia residents reside on the first floor in the rear of the building, and their

community has its own dining room and common areas; and they cannot go into the area  

of the Assisted Living Residence.  There is a separate garden for the Dementia residents

in the outside to the rear which has a six foot high board-on-board fence that secures this area. 

November 3, 2004                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 10 of 24

 

 

Mr. McElwee stated the definition of height in the Ordinance is it can be 35 feet to the

highest point of the roof.  The three-story building is 34’10” to the highest point of the

roof and it would be a flat roof.  The two-story building would have a pitched/sloped roof

and would be 34’10” at the highest point.  Mr. Murphy stated they are requesting the two-

story building, but the three-story building could comply with the Zoning Ordinance

impervious surface limit at 17%.  They would prefer the two-story building as it has a

more residential design and is what they feel the neighbors would prefer after meeting

with them.  The three-story design would have a different design from the two-story

design.  An artist’s rendering of a three-story design was marked as Exhibit A-5.

 

Mr. Kim asked about visitation.  Mr. McElwee stated visitors can come at any time. 

He stated usually people visit on the weekends, or before and after work during the week. 

They like to have their properties located in the areas where the adult children of their

residents reside.    Mr. Kim asked if the residents have the right to have someone living

with them, and Mr. McElwee stated they do.  He stated normally it is 1.2 beds per unit. 

Some residents choose a semi-private room either for financial reasons or because they

prefer to reside with someone.  Generally this is done by 20% of their residents. 

 

Ms. Kirk asked if there would be any other fencing besides that which was described.

Mr. McElwee stated typically they put fences around their perimeter but this depends on

their landscaping.  It would not be security fencing.  It would be a good neighborhood

buffering fence.

 

Mr. Kim asked if the Department of Public Health conducts scheduled visits, and

Mr. McElwee stated he believes they are semi-annual.  Mr. Kim asked if they have had

any violations.  Mr. McElwee stated their reputation is that they are a leader in care;

although they have may had some violations in specific buildings. 

 

Mr. Bamburak asked if they would have buses to take the residents out.  Mr. McElwee

stated there is one fourteen-passenger van, and it would be parked on the property.

 

Mr. Kim asked what the procedure would be if a resident had a medical emergency.

Mr. McElwee stated for emergencies they would dial 911, and for all normal

transportation they would use a private ambulance or their own vehicle to transport

someone in a non-emergency situation.  Mr. Kim asked if an R.N. or L.P.N. is on staff

twenty-four hours a day, and Mr. McElwee stated the R.N. is there 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. 

Overnight the residents are asleep, but the RNs are on contract for coverage overnight. 

The LPN is on the second shift.  There are treatment care managers overnight.  No RN or

LPN is on site from 11:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m.

 

Mr. Dobson asked about the single access located on Stony Hill Road. Mr. Murphy stated

the Plan does show a single point of access between the intersection of Chestnut Woods

Drive and the intersection of Heacock and Stony Hill.  They have discussed some other

November 3, 2004                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 11 of 24

 

 

scenarios with neighbors - one being the relocation of that access further to the south to

align with Chestnut Woods Drive and the other was eliminating all access on Stony Hill

Road and providing it on Heacock Road.   Neither of these options have been discussed

at any length with the Township staff.     Mr. Murphy stated typically access points are

recommended for the lower-classified street and Stony Hill has less traffic on it than

Heacock.  The Applicant would be open to any recommendation.  The traffic report that

was done contemplates the access directly across from Chestnut Hill.  This access would

permit right and left-hand turns off Stony Hill. 

 

Ms. Kirk asked about the parking requirements, and Mr. Murphy stated they will discuss

this with the project engineer.

 

Mr. Koopman asked Mr. McElwee if he has an Agreement of Sale, and Mr. McElwee

stated they do and will provide a copy.  Exhibit A-6 was marked which is a copy of the

Agreement of Sale.    Mr. Koopman asked if they have a license for this particular facility

at the current time, and Mr. McElwee stated they do not get a Certificate until the

building is complete and staffed and waiting for the first resident to move into the home. 

He stated you are first given a Temporary License, and they come back several weeks

after the residents are in the home and give a Permanent License.    Mr. Koopman asked

the criteria for obtaining a License, and Mr. McElwee stated you would have to

demonstrate your Plans meet the requirements for this use and that you are properly

staffed with capable management.  He stated there is an extensive list of criteria. 

Mr. Koopman asked if there is a need requirement, and Mr. McElwee stated there is not

in Pennsylvania for a Personal Care Facility. 

 

Mr. Koopman stated the Plan shows certain plantings, etc., and he asked if they have

made a determination on the buffers from the neighboring properties.  Mr. McElwee

stated they have discussed this with the neighbors but have not done Site Plans.  He

stated they are always overly aggressive in putting in additional plantings on their sites.

He stated generally they over plant a site. 

 

Mr. Koopman noted the Plan on the easel and stated it does not show any fences other

than the fence referred to for the Dementia area, and Mr. McElwee agreed.  Mr. Murphy

stated whatever the Township Ordinances are with regard to buffering and fencing, they

would be willing to comply with those requests. Mr. Koopman stated they need to show

that they can comply with the provisions of the Zoning Ordinance and the

Comprehensive Plan.  Mr. McElwee stated they feel the Township will be happy with the

engineer’s testimony on these matters. 

 

Mr. Koopman stated they have indicated that some of the residents need assistance with

medication, and he asked who would administer this.  Mr. McElwee stated the RN, the

LPN, and the Medication Care Managers are authorized to dispense medication.

 

November 3, 2004                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 12 of 24

 

 

Mr. Koopman asked if there is any type of medical waste or materials that are collected. 

Mr. McElwee stated they have a Sharps System for insulin needles, and this is very

minimal.  It is collected by a service and permitted under the License.

 

Mr. Kim asked if any of the land is a wetlands, and Mr. Murphy stated the engineer will

testify to this.

 

Mr. Koopman asked about the rendering of the two-story structure, and Mr. McElwee

stated this is the view you would see across the intersection from the McCaffrey site.

Mr. Koopman asked if they will provide a rendering of what it will look like from the

sides and the rear.  Mr. McElwee stated the overview shows it is the same type of design

and they can provide these elevations.  Mr. Koopman asked the materials that will be

used.  Mr. McElwee stated they can have the architect testify on this, but it is generally a

Victorian Mansion design with siding and other Victorian details.  Mr. Koopman asked if

there are any similar facilities in the area that they could visit, and Mr. McElwee stated he

did give a list of these properties to the neighbors and the Planning Commission and

agreed to provide this list to Mr. Koopman as well.  Mr. McElwee reviewed some of their

two-story facilities in the area.  He will provide a list of three-story facilities as well.

 

Mr. Koopman stated he understands they own the facility in Lower Makefield previously

known as Alterra, and Mr. McElwee stated they own this in a joint venture and are a 20%

owner.  This facility is all Dementia.  He stated normally they have two thirds of their

residences Assisted Living and one third Dementia.  This is reflected in the physical

design.  Mr. Koopman asked if they would be able to convert the proposed facility into

100% Dementia patients, and Mr. McElwee stated they would not.  He stated the reason

they have more Assisted Living in this facility than normal is because Lower Makefield

already has two all-Dementia facilities.  Mr. Mayrhofer asked if they would be willing to

restrict Dementia to a certain percentage, and Mr. McElwee stated they would. 

The number of units would be twenty-two to twenty-four for Dementia.

 

Mr. Koopman stated there was discussion at the Planning Commission on the number of

residents who would have cars and they indicated it may be one or two.  Mr. McElwee

stated he feels this would be an abnormal situation.  He stated normally there are none.

 

Mr. Nuzzolo had no questions at this time.

 

Mr. Huegler asked about the Management Contract.  Mr. McElwee stated the business

model they have is to develop senior living communities throughout the Country and

package them to large Pension Funds, retaining a small ownership if you can and get

back thirty year Management Contracts.  He stated someone else owns the real estate.

 

Ms. Lin had no comments at this time.

 

November 3, 2004                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 13 of 24

 

 

Dr. Mel Burchman, 1591 Silo Road, stated recently there was an article in the Yardley

News regarding the Matrix compromise for a 55+ development and it indicated that use

would increase the need for Township services.  He stated he feels this use under

discussion this evening will also increase the need for services because of the need for

911 services.  He asked if they would be willing to provide an annual impact fee based on

the use of public services.

 

Ms. Kirk asked how many more witnesses they plan to present, and Mr. Murphy stated

they have three, and it should take no more than thirty to forty minutes for that testimony. 

Mr. Koopman stated he is not planning to present any witnesses at this time.  He stated he

would like to request a continuance so that he can discuss the matter with the Board of

Supervisors and then determine their position.

 

A short recess was called.  Once the meeting was resumed, Mr. Toadvine stated that

during the break, they did speak to the Applicant’s attorney for the Appeal still to be

heard this evening (Appeal #04-1282) and the property owner’s attorney involved in that

Appeal (Mr. and Mrs. Robert Vogel) and advised them that in all likelihood, the matter

will not be raised by the 11:00 p.m. cut off.  He offered them the opportunity to continue

the matter to a future date,  and they have decided they would like to stay and see what

happens.

 

Testimony continued on Appeal #04-1274 – Sunrise Development, Inc. 

 

Mr. Tim Woodrow, 323 Norristown Road, Ambler, was sworn in.  He stated he is a Civil

Engineer employed by Woodrow & Associates, a Civil Engineering and Consulting

Firm which has been in existence for over eight years.  He reviewed his education and

stated he has been a licensed professional engineer for fifteen years.  Mr. Woodrow

described the type of clients he has represented in the past.  He has represented Sunrise in

two prior Applications similar to this one this evening.  Both were in Montgomery

County.  He is familiar with the property that is the subject of tonight’s Application and

prepared the Plan marked as Exhibit A-2.  He stated the Tax Parcel is #20-24-1 located

on the southeast corner of the intersection of Stony Hill Road and Heacock Road.  The

property is 7.93 acres to the title line and 7.4 acres to the ultimate right-of-way line. 

They have approximately 800’ of frontage on Stony Hill Road and 600’ on Heacock

Road.  The current zoning is R-3M.  Currently on the property is an existing stone two-

story dwelling including several outbuildings which are shown on A-2.  Mr. Woodrow

stated the public water and sewer infrastructure is in place to serve the property,  but the

existing house is currently not served.  The site is rectangular in shape and falls from the

corner of Stony Hill Road and Heacock Road to the southeast.  Mr. Murphy asked about

the natural resources on the site as defined by the Lower Makefield Ordinance, and

Mr. Woodrow stated they do have an area of woodlands shown in dark green on Exhibit

A-2 below the proposed stormwater management facility.  There is also a drainage

channel defined as Waters of the U.S.  Mr. Murphy asked if Sunrise authorize the

November 3, 2004                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 14 of 24

 

 

preparation and submission of a Jurisdictional Determination request to the Army Corps

of Engineers to determine wetlands; and Mr. Woodrow stated they did, and the Army

Corps did make an inspection. A copy of the Jurisdictional Determination is available.

and was marked as Exhibit A-7.  This is a letter dated 9/30/04.  Mr. Woodrow showed on

the easel where the Waters of the Commonwealth are located on the site.  He noted

specifically the 15’ wide drainage easement from Heacock Road across the rear portion

of the Sunrise property to the wooded area.  Ms. Kirk asked who has ownership of the

drainage easement; and Mr. Woodrow stated he feels it is in favor of the Township, but

he will check into this.  He stated there are no other areas designated as wetlands or

Waters of the Commonwealth. 

 

Mr. Woodrow was asked about existing land uses in the area .  He stated to the east and

south there are single-family developments.  On the opposite side of Stony Hill Road

there are also single-family detached homes.  At the northeast corner of the intersection

of Stony Hill and Heacock Roads is the ambulance facility.  On the northwest corners

there is a shopping center, and to the west is the Condominium Development. 

 

Mr. Murphy asked about the Zoning Districts that surround the property. Mr. Woodrow

noted on the north side of Stony Hill it is R-2, at the northwest corner it is C-1,  to the

west of Heacock Road it is R-4, and the site itself is zoned R-3M.  He stated each corner

of the intersection bears a different Zoning classification.

 

Mr. Murphy referred to A-2 and asked what improvements are proposed from an

engineering standpoint. Mr. Woodrow stated A-2 shows their Application at this time and

they show a single point of access, 200’ east of the intersection. The driveway itself

services their employees and staff parking to the east side and the access to the front of

the building and Visitor Parking.  He stated there is also a walking trail system that

surrounds the buildings.  The site is intended to be improved with a large stormwater

management basin to be designed according to Best Management Practices. 

 

Mr. Murphy noted Section 228D of the Zoning Ordinance indicates that the proposed

Personal Care/Nursing Home use is permitted by Special Exception, and Mr. Woodrow

agreed and stated he is familiar with the requirements for a Special Exception.  Section

268-26C was noted which refers to the area and yard requirements for a Nursing Home. 

Mr. Murphy stated the first requirement is for a minimum lot area of five acres. 

Mr. Woodrow stated they do meet this requirement as their net lot area is 7.4 acres. 

Mr. Murphy noted a lot area summary labeled on A-2, and Mr. Woodrow stated he

calculated this according to the requirements of the Ordinance.  Mr. Murphy stated a

minimum lot width of 300’ is required, and Mr. Woodrow stated they meet this

requirement.  Mr. Murphy stated minimum yards are to be provided when located in a

Residential District.  Mr. Woodrow stated they are a corner lot and they therefore have

two front yard requirements of 100’ and a rear yard of 100’.  Side yards are 50’ and A-2

shows that they meet these requirements. 

November 3, 2004                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 15 of 24

 

 

Regarding the adequacy of the on-site parking, Mr. Woodrow stated the Ordinance

requires one parking space for every three beds and one space for each staff doctor. 

Since they anticipate a maximum of 94 beds, they would need thirty-two spaces. 

Mr. Murphy noted the Note on A-2 regarding parking calculations.  Mr. Woodrow stated

this describes the Ordinance requirements.  There are no staff doctors.  Ms. Kirk asked if

this includes calculations for handicap spaces, and Mr. Woodrow stated it would in the

total.  Mr. Woodrow stated A-2 provides for forty spaces at this time.  He noted the

majority are located parallel to Stony Hill Road between the building and the road itself. 

 

Mr. Murphy stated the final requirement in Section 269 is with regard to maximum

impervious surface ratio which requires that it be in accordance with the District in which

the property is located.   Mr. Woodrow stated the maximum impervious surface permitted

in R-3M is 17%.  Mr. Murphy stated on Exhibit A-2 the request they have made for relief

seeks 19.25% impervious surface.  Mr. Woodrow stated this represents the actual

impervious surface shown on A-2.  Mr. Murphy stated the Application requests relief to

permit 19.75%, and Mr. Woodrow stated they recognized that through the Land

Development review process should they get to that point, there are oftentimes requests

made by the Planning Commission and the Supervisors which could require additional

impervious surface to be added to the Plan, and they added additional impervious surface

to their request in case it was needed to accommodate Plan changes.

 

Mr. Murphy noted the comments previously raised about buffering and landscaping and

asked that Mr. Woodrow describe what A-2 depicts in this regard. Mr. Woodrow stated

the Plan shows street trees and parking lot trees which are consistent with the Zoning

Ordinance requirements.  They have also shown a buffer area of a Type I planting

scheme even though only a Type IV is required for this use.  They feel they have

developed a plan that meets or exceeds the Ordinance requirements in this regard.

 

There was further discussion on the impervious surface. Mr. Woodrow stated the

difference between 17% and 19.3% is approximately 1,600 square feet.  This would be

equal to approximately nine parking spaces at 9 ½’ by 18’ per space.  Mr. Murphy asked

if that additional impervious surface has been considered in the storm water management

systems, and Mr. Woodrow stated while they have not done the final design, they have

done some rough calculations and have considered this additional impervious surface.

 

Mr. Murphy asked if they intend to serve the facility with public water and sewer and

Mr. Woodrow stated it will be so served. 

 

Mr. Murphy asked about site lighting, and Mr. Woodrow stated they have not yet done a

great deal of design with lighting, but they will have to have it be residential in character. 

He stated they do pay close attention to lighting specifically as it relates to the

surrounding residential projects.  Mr. Murphy stated he assumes lighting would be

shielded and will have no glare on the adjacent properties, and Mr. Woodrow agreed.

November 3, 2004                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 16 of 24

 

 

Mr. Mayrhofer asked if the drainage from the property will be toward the stormwater

management facility, and Mr. Woodrow stated it will and is proposed for the low area of

the property.  It will be designed to handle the increased impervious surface proposed.

 

Ms. Kirk asked the approximate total square footage of the building, and Mr. Woodrow

stated it is approximately 60,000 square feet although the architect can testify to this.  

 

Ms. Kirk asked if they reviewed the Section of the Ordinance regarding off-street loading

berths, and Mr. Woodrow stated he did and does not feel it is applicable to this site

because the loading facility needs to be appropriate for the vehicles coming to the site. He

stated large tractor trailers would not be coming to this site.  Smaller scale vehicles would

be coming, and they feel they can handle these.  The proposed loading area was shown at

the far end of the parking lot.  The area is 40 by 25,  and they feel this is appropriate for

this type of facility.  This is connected to the facility itself through a walkway system. 

There is no direct access to the building by a vehicle.  From the loading area, they would

follow a walkway to the rear entrance of the building.

 

Ms. Kirk asked how many of the parking spaces would be handicap spaces, and

Mr. Woodrow stated two of the forty spaces will be handicap spaces.  Ms. Kirk asked if

the forty spaces proposed are in response to the Planning Commission’s request for

additional parking if needed in the future.  Mr. Murphy stated the Applicant has not made

any changes to the Plan as a result of comments made by the Planning Commission, and

the Plan before the Zoning Hearing Board is the same one seen by the Planning

Commission.  He stated the Planning Commission felt that during times of special events,

there may not be adequate on-site parking.  He stated Sunrise has indicated that even

during Holidays, the amount of parking proposed is sufficient.  Mr. Koopman stated he

objects to Mr. Murphy testifying on this and he stated they can review the Planning

Commission’s record.  Mr. Murphy stated they agreed to provide an area where parking

could be installed if it was necessary, and a separate Application would have to be made

to the Zoning Hearing Board for additional relief for impervious surface if it is found to

be needed in the future.  The area would be kept in green until that time.  Ms. Kirk asked

where additional parking would be proposed, and Mr. Woodrow stated they do have

flexibility in the design of the parking lot because of the crescent shape which they could

extend further if needed. 

 

Ms. Kirk asked if the proposed parking spaces meet the dimension requirements

according to the Ordinance and Mr. Woodrow stated they do.  He was asked the

dimensions of the parking spaces and he stated they are 9 ½’ by 18’. 

 

Mr. Kim asked if the building will have sprinklers, and Mr. Murphy stated the architect   

will answer this.

 

 

November 3, 2004                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 17 of 24

 

 

Mr. Bamburak asked about the loading area and stated if they are delivering food for

ninety-four beds, he feels they may need a short tractor trailer.  Mr. McElwee was asked

to comment on this following Mr. Woodrow’s testimony.

 

Mr. Toadvine asked about the calculations for minimum net lot area and asked if he

excluded areas of resource protection, and Mr. Woodrow stated he does not believe he

did.  Mr. Woodrow stated because they have 7.4 acres and the area is encumbered with

less than one half acre, they feel they can still meet the requirements of five acres.  He

will exclude these from his calculations. 

 

Mr. Koopman asked if Mr. Woodrow was at the Planning Commission meeting, and

Mr. Woodrow stated he was.  Mr. Koopman asked if one of the members of the Planning

Commission objected to the Special Exception.  Ms. Kirk stated B-5 does indicate the

status of the vote by the Planning Commission and that Mr. Fred Allan did object.

Mr. Koopman stated this Plan does not provide any plans for additional parking, and

Mr. Woodrow agreed.  Mr. Koopman stated if they were required to provide additional

parking, this would involve additional impervious surface and an additional Variance. 

 

Mr. Koopman stated Mr. Woodrow testified that the parking shown was 9 ½’ by 18’. 

Mr. Woodrow stated he has reviewed this again and they are 10’ by 20’.  After review by

others present this evening it was noted that the Plan shows that some of them are 9 ½’

by 19’.  Mr. Woodrow reviewed A-2 and stated it does appear that the parking is shown

as 9 ½’ by 18’.  Mr. Koopman asked if they have obtained permission from the Board of

Supervisors to reduce the parking stalls from 10’ by 20’ to 9 ½ ‘ by 18’, and

Mr. Woodrow stated they have not. 

 

Mr. Koopman stated Mr. Woodrow testified that he was involved in at least two Sunrise

facilities in Montgomery and asked if these were two or three-story buildings. 

Mr. Woodrow stated both of these were three-story buildings. 

 

Mr. Koopman stated they testified that the frontage along Stony Hill Road was

approximately 800’ and 600’ on Heacock Road.  Mr. Woodrow stated this is along the

title line. 

 

Mr. Koopman asked if they obtained a Certificate of Adequacy for sewage to serve the

project from Lower Makefield or any other entity, and Mr. Woodrow stated they have

not.  He asked about water service, and Mr. Woodrow stated they have not obtained a

certificate for this either.  Mr. Koopman asked who would provide the sewer, and

Mr. Woodrow stated he believes it is Bucks County Water & Sewer but is not sure about

the water.    Mr. Woodrow was asked and showed on the plan where the existing facilities

are located.  Mr. Koopman asked if he knows if there is sewer capacity to serve this

project, and Mr. Woodrow stated he does not and he has no certificate from any entity. 

 

November 3, 2004                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 18 of 24

 

 

Mr. Koopman asked if he is aware that there is a moratorium in place for sewer that goes

into the Neshaminy Interceptor and then into Philadelphia Treatment Plant, and

Mr. Woodrow stated he is aware of this.  Mr. Koopman stated one of the criteria to be  

met is a Certificate of Adequacy under Section 200-98 of the Ordinance.  Mr. Murphy

stated typically this can be attached to any condition of Approval.  Mr. Koopman stated

absent meeting this requirement, the Township would feel that they do not meet the

requirements for a Special Exception. 

 

Mr. Koopman asked for an explanation on the location of the water course. 

Mr. Woodrow noted the area on the bottom of Exhibit A-2 and stated it is in the wooded

area on the side of the property.  He stated this is the only water course on the property. 

 

Mr. Koopman stated A02 depicts the various yards – side, rear, and front and asked if

they are measured form the extent of the natural resource protection land.  Mr. Woodrow

stated they are not.

 

Mr. Koopman noted the accessway which is 24’ in width and asked for more detail on

this.   Mr. Woodrow stated this is a Sketch Plan only.    Mr. Koopman noted the 4’

walkway around the property, and Mr. Woodrow stated this is the walking trail. 

Mr. Koopman asked if there is any access for fire vehicles, etc, and Mr. Woodrow stated

at this Sketch Plan stage, they have not shown this. 

 

Mr. Koopman stated they indicated the parking criteria was calculated on the number of

beds alone, and Mr. Woodrow stated this is correct and it was not based on the number of

employees.  Mr. Koopman stated the testimony stated the maximum number of

employees at any one time would be twenty-seven, and Mr. Woodrow stated this is

correct.

 

Mr. Koopman asked if there are any details on lighting, and Mr. Woodrow stated there

are not at this point.

 

Ms. Kirk asked if the parking dimensions shown on A-2 are the actual dimensions they

intend to submit, and Mr. Woodrow stated this is correct.  Ms. Kirk asked if they are

seeking a Variance from the parking stall size requirements, and Mr. Murphy stated they

are not.    Mr. Mayrhofer stated it would then appear that they would need more

impervious surface.  Ms. Kirk stated she assumes they will reduce the number of spaces

to 32 to provide for the correct size required for the parking spaces.  Mr. Murphy stated it

will be something less than 40 spaces and more than 32. 

 

Mr. Murphy noted Mr. Koopman’s questions regarding lighting, emergency access, water

and sewer capacity, etc, and asked Mr. Woodrow if these would typically be dealt with

during the Land Development stage, and Mr. Woodrow agreed.

 

November 3, 2004                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 19 of 24

 

 

Mr. Nuzzolo stated he is confused as to the proceedings as it seems to be floating back

and forth between Zoning Hearing and Land Development.  Ms. Kirk stated the Zoning

Hearing Board only considers the Zoning requirements – not Land Development and

Subdivision.

 

Mr. A. Andrew Feranda, Schropshire Associates, 709 Stokes Road, Medford, NJ, was

sworn in.  He stated he has been employed by Schropshire for one year and prior to that

was employed for seven years at Horner and Cantor Associates which is also a traffic

engineering firm.  He stated he is a licensed engineer and has a Degree in Civil

Engineering.  He has been a Civil Engineer licensed in Pennsylvania by reciprocity for

four years and in transportation and traffic engineering for fifteen years.  He provided a

list of clients he has represented including private and public entities including

commercial and residential and Assisted Living facilities.  His firm has represented

Sunrise in the past, and he was asked to undertake a traffic study for the subject location. 

Exhibit A-8 was marked and distributed this evening and is the Traffic Impact Study

prepared by Mr. Feranda. 

 

Ms. Kirk asked about and Mr. Feranda described the reciprocity procedure.  He stated

there is no separate test for the State of Pennsylvania. 

 

Mr. Murphy asked if Mr. Feranda heard the testimony this evening, and he stated he did

and is familiar with the property.  Mr. Murphy asked that he review the Traffic Impact

Study marked as Exhibit A-8 and provide a general overview of the scope of the study

explaining the steps taken. 

 

Mr. Feranda stated they were requested to do a traffic study for this facility, and they

observed traffic and the existing roadway conditions doing manual traffic counts at three

intersections in the area.  They obtained traffic volumes at the intersections for the

movements – left turns, right turns, and through movements and then evaluated the data

collected to determine a Level of Service.  They found that for the existing conditions,

there was a Level of Service B or better for all intersections.  Mr. Feranda stated Stony

Hill Road is a State road  and is a two-lane undivided roadway with one lane in each

direction, 24’ in width.  This is an arterial highway according to the Township.  He stated

Heacock Road is a State road  It is also a two-lane highway with one lane in each

direction and is also classified as an arterial road by the Township. 

 

Mr. Feranda stated the three intersections they studied were Stony Hill and Heacock

Roads, Stony Hill and Chestnut Wood Drive, and Stony Hill and N. Oxford Valley Road. 

They took manual counts on August 10 at the three intersections.  As School was not in

session, they came back and took counts at the Stony Hill and Heacock Road intersection

after School was in session to determine the difference between School and non-School

counts. As there was an increase, they then adjusted the volumes they had taken in

August for the other two intersections as well.  Ms. Kirk stated she feels this presupposes

November 3, 2004                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 20 of 24

 

that the level of traffic would be the same at the other two intersections, and Mr. Feranda

agreed.  Ms. Kirk asked if they checked with the School District as to the bus routes, and

Mr. Feranda stated they did not; however, they feel the percentages they built in are

conservative. 

 

Mr. Murphy stated on Page 5 of the Traffic Study it notes the percentages in September

compared to August.  Mr. Feranda stated there was a 12% increase in the A.M. period

between 7:00 A.M. and 9:00 A.P. and for the P.M. period the increase was 6%.  The P.M.

period was from 4:00 P.M. to 6:00 P.M.  He stated the School timeframe would typically

be before the P.M. peak calculation time.  Mr. Murphy asked if they used the September

counts or August counts, and Mr. Feranda stated they used the September counts. 

 

Mr. Murphy asked about the traffic impact before and after build out of the facility.

Mr. Feranda stated build out was felt to be 2006, and they projected traffic based on

growth in the area.  They determined this additional growth to be about 3% per year

based on their conversations with the Township.  They determined a “no build” count and

then determined from Institute of Transportation Engineer trip generation standards the

traffic that would be expected to be generated from a facility of this size.  They add this

volume to the “no build” volumes to determine a “build” volume which would be the

site’s traffic with the projected increase in traffic in the area.  Stony Hill and Heacock

Road is presently signalized and Page 7 indicated all movements operated at Level of

Service B or better.  Stony Hill and Oxford Valley Road is also signalized and on Page 7

they show all movements operated at Level of Service B or better.  Stony Hill and

Chestnut Wood is stop controlled and not signalized and the study indicates it operates at

a Level of Service B or better.  Mr. Feranda stated they determined that a site of this size

with 94 beds would contribute a total of thirteen trips in the A.M. peak and twenty trips

in the P.M. peak.  This would be the highest hour in the peak time.  They used these

numbers and added it to the “no build” volumes that were calculated based on 3% growth

in the area and determined at capacity at the individual intersections.  The individual

intersections continue to operate at Level of Service B or better with no changes to

individual movements and overall operation continues to function at Level of Service B. 

This includes the two signaled intersections and the stop controlled intersection.

 

Ms. Kirk asked about the grading system used to determine the Level of Service. 

Mr. Feranda stated it is a grading system based on Levels of Service from A through F

which is a convenient way to make it easy to understand what delay a motorist would

experience.  This standard is based on the standard used by the Institute of Traffic

Engineering. 

 

Mr. Murphy noted the proposed access for the site. Mr. Woodrow stated the study relates

to an access directly across from Chestnut Wood Drive because it would involve more

conflicting movements and would provide a more conservative estimate.  If the access

were located separately there would be less conflicting movements and potentially could

operate at a better Level of Service. 

November 3, 2005                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 21 of 24

 

Mr. Murphy asked the impact if the access were on Heacock Road, and Mr. Feranda

stated they would have to re-analyze this since there is more traffic on Heacock Road and

the potential for conflicting movements may result in slightly more delays, but they do

not feel it would change the Level of Service. 

 

Mr. Murphy noted page 9 of the Study that draws a distinction between the amount of

traffic on Heacock Road to that on Stony Hill Road.  Mr. Murphy asked the amount of

increase in traffic generated from this facility and the impact on the intersections.

Mr. Feranda stated this is not a traffic intensive use since residents of the facility do not

typically have their own vehicles.  They can determine the volume that will be generated

by traffic passing through the site and feel it represents less than 1% of the total traffic for

both the signalized intersection.  At Stony Hill and Chestnut Woods Drive, he does not

feel they have calculated a particular percentage, but it would not be significant. 

 

Mr. Murphy noted Page 11 which is the Conclusion Section and Summary.  Mr. Feranda

stated the site would be stop controlled from the site access.  They feel based on the

minimal impact that this will have, they would not recommend any improvements to the

roadway or the signalized intersections.

 

Ms. Kirk asked if they did a comparison based on this proposed use and other uses

permitted by right or Special Exception in this District.  Mr. Feranda stated they did not,

but he could provide information on a residential development and feels the traffic

generated from this proposed use would be the same as twenty-four single-family homes. 

Ms. Kirk asked if it is typical to do a use comparison, and Mr. Feranda stated sometimes

they do this and would provide this if it was felt that it would be a traffic intense use.  He

stated the use proposed for this site is a very low intensity use.

 

Mr. Kim stated at this point in time McCaffrey’s has limited service due to the fire, and

he asked if they have taken into consideration the impact of an expanded McCaffrey’s

which may increase the traffic. Mr. Feranda stated any expansion would add traffic

volume.  They considered 3% growth per year to the build-out year which would include

any expansion.

 

Ms. Kirk moved, Mr. Dobson seconded and it was unanimously carried to continue this

matter to the Hearing on 12/7/04.

 

 

APPEAL #04-1282 – MIKE AND BARB GRAFELD, ETAL.

 

Mr. Stephen Goldstein, attorney, stated he is present on behalf of a number of Applicants

who filed the Application.  He stated it is the position of the Applicants that by reason of

the fact that the Hearing was not held on this matter within sixty days of the Application,

it has been a deemed decision of the Board.  He stated that having said this, they would

still like to proceed.

November 3, 2004                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 22 of 24

 

 

Mr. Toadvine noted the Application which was marked as Exhibit A-1.  He stated on the

face of the Application is a stamp from the Lower Makefield Township Planning and

Zoning Department indicating it was received on September 8, 2004 so that they are

clearly within sixty days.  Mr. Goldstein stated they would dispute this since they feel the

Application was submitted before that and the check was delivered to the Township on

September 3.  He stated this is an issue to be determined by whatever authorities need to

recognize this.

 

Ms. Kirk asked if they are saying that this Application was delivered prior to

September 8, and Mr. Goldstein stated he does have a witness that will testify that it was

delivered prior to that time.  Ms. Kirk asked if the Application was delivered to the

Township with all required documents and fees as mandated, and Mr. Goldstein stated

the check was not delivered until September 3.  Ms. Kirk asked how much sooner than

September 3 was the Application delivered to the Township, and Mr. Goldstein stated

they will have someone testify to this.

 

Mr. Michael Klinkl, attorney for the property owners, Mr. and Mrs. Robert Vogel, stated

the Building Permit was issued on 6/10/04, and this Application being heard this evening

was signed August 11 which is significantly more than thirty days after the Permit was

taken.

 

Mr. Toadvine stated it would be the Applicant’s burden or proof to show that this Appeal

is timely; and he would think that if that issue is addresses initially before they get into

the testimony stage, then the Zoning Hearing Board can render a decision on the

timeliness issue.  If it is unfavorable to the Applicant, it would be superfluous to continue

on with other items.   He would recommend to the Zoning Hearing Board that they deal

with the issue of timeliness initially before proceeding with any more substitutive

matters.

 

Mr. Goldstein stated they would like to put their case on; and if the issue of timeliness

becomes an issue, he does not feel the procedures of the Zoning Hearing Board have

something similar to preliminary objections.  He stated they are the Applicant, and they

will put their case on.  If the issue of timeliness is raised by one of the parties which

appeal it, it will then be something that will have to be explored and the issue will shift to

the timeliness.

 

Ms. Kirk asked that the witness be sworn in.  Ms. Ruth Anne Boylan, 1585 Harvest

Drive, was sworn in.  Ms. Kirk asked how she is related to the Applicant in this matter –

Mike and Bark Grafeld.  Mr. Goldstein stated she is one of the Applicants as well.  He

stated the Application is Grafeld Etal. 

 

Ms. Kirk noted Mr. Klinkl is representing the property owners.  She asked if the property

owners are requesting Party Status in this matter, and Mr. Klinkl stated they are.

November 3, 2004                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 23 of 24

 

 

Mr. Koopman stated while the Township is not requesting Party Status, they are present

on behalf of Ms. Frick as she has been subpoenaed. 

 

Ms. Kirk asked if there were any members of the audience who were seeking Party Status

with respect to the Application and a number of people indicated they were.  She asked

how many are present who are parties to the Application and a number of people

indicated they are parties to the Application.   She asked if there is any member of the

audience who has not signed the Application that seeks Party Status.

 

Mr. Toadvine stated as part of Exhibit A-1 the following people are listed as Applicants:

 

            Mike and Barb Grafeld

            Karen and Gary Groesbeck

            Bob and Carol Hammond

            Jean and Mark Kuhn

            MaryAnn and Jim Lindner

            Paul Miniter

            Ruth Ann and Brendon Monaghan (Ruth Ann Boylan)

            Elizabeth O’Brien

            Jim and MaryAnn Shannon

            George and Mimi Sabol

            Jim and Jean Taylor

            Carol Wuyant

 

Mr. Goldstein stated he represents all of these individuals.  Mr. Goldstein asked that they

explain for those people who are not Parties by reason of having filed the Appeal, that

Party Status means they have the right to get copies of the Notice, etc.  Mr. Toadvine

stated they want to make it clear that the people who are the Applicants who are in the

audience do not have to request Party Status.  He stated if there is anyone in the audience

that would request Party Status at this time, they need to provide their name and address

and they will be given Party Status unless there is an objection by Mr. Klinkl or

Mr. Goldstein.  Mr. Klinkl stated he would like to know where the individuals reside in

relation to the property.

 

The following people requested Party Status:

 

            Dr. Mel Burchman, 1591 Silo Road (100’ feet away from the property)

            Joanne Giovanni, 1549 Harvest Drive (3 houses down)

            Julie Mallon, 1584 Silo Road (adjacent/behind the property)

            Helen Cresta, 1537 Harvest Drive (4 houses away in the rear)

            Maryann Smith, 1514 Harvest Drive (opposite side of street, 4 houses down)

            Mary King, 802 Combine (across street, 3 houses down)

            Bill Feeney, 1425 Silo Road (off Harvest Road, 6 houses down)

November 3, 2004                                                    Zoning Hearing Board – page 24 of 24

 

 

            Pat McCormick, 1587 Silo Road (3 to 4 houses down, opposite side of street)

            Teresa Foody, 1579 Silo Road (5 houses from the property)

            Marge Allen, 803 Combine (4 houses away)

            Susan Morrell, 1542 Silo Road (corner of Harvest and Silo)

 

There were no objections to these individuals seeking Party Status.

 

Ms. Kirk noted since they have on record those requesting Party Status and it is now after

11:00 p.m. she moved that this matter be continued to 12/7/04.   Mr. Dobson seconded

and it the Motion was unanimously carried.

 

Ms. Kirk stated that Mr. Klinkl has requested that Ms. Frick be available to testify at that

time.    Mr. Klinkl asked if they would provide Ms. Frick without another subpoena on

12/7 and they agreed. 

 

 

OTHER BUSINESS

 

Ms. Kirk stated she has been informed by Ms Ellison that they have nothing scheduled

for 12/21/04 and asked if the Board would consider canceling this meeting.  Mr. Dobson

moved, Mr. Mayrhofer seconded and it was unanimously carried to cancel the meeting

scheduled for 12/21/04.

 

 

There being no further business, Mr. Mayrhofer moved, Mr. Kim seconded and it was unanimously carried to adjourn the meeting at 11:05 p.m.

 

                                                                        Respectfully Submitted,

 

 

 

                                                                        Barbara Kirk, Chairman