Planning Commission:
Bill Westhafer, Chairman, Andre von Hoyer, Vice Chairman, Michael Allen, Michael Churchill, Wendy Leland, Andy Motel. Michael Richter was absent.
Daniel Wright and Thomas Comitta
Linda Csete, Lisa Gardner

Call to Order:

7:30 p.m.


Ms. Leland said Election Day is November 6th, please vote at Charlestown Elementary School.

Mrs. Csete mentioned the acquisition of the Epstein property to add to the Township’s Open Space. Thank you to Ms. Wendy McLean for making the 100+ acre transaction process possible.

Mr. von Hoyer warned that it is the time of year when deer are on the roads.

The Grand Opening of the Charlestown Mill has been scheduled for Sunday, November 11th from noon to 4 pm. Parking will be available at the Charlestown Methodist Church with a continuous shuttle taking visitors to the Mill and Revolutionary War Cemetery. The Charlestown Historical Society will have displays set up at the church and provide guides for those interested in a walking tour of the Village. There will be light refreshments at the Mill.

Approval of Minutes

September 11, 2018 Minutes

Ms. Leland moved to approve the minutes of Sept. 11, 2018, and Mr. von Hoyer seconded. Mr. Westhafer called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Amendment to June 12, 2018 Minutes

Mrs. Csete said she was contacted by Ms. Vicki McCue, whose sketch plan was discussed at the June 12th meeting. Mrs. McCue asked for a correction and an addition. She asked that the minutes be changed to read that she and her husband plan to keep the small lot, instead of the large lot, as the minutes presently state. She also asked for the addition of a sentence indicating that the Planning Commission saw no issue with the intent of their plan.

Mr. Churchill moved to accept these amendments to the previously approved minutes of June 12th, and Ms. Leland seconded. Mr. Westhafer called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Presentation – Phoenixville Regional Comprehensive Plan

Mr. Ed Theurkauf, and Ms. Tracy Tackett, presented the draft Phoenixville Regional Comprehensive Plan. The guide, dated August 29, 2018, was distributed this evening. It will be used for planning the next decade’s housing, development, and open space for the townships of East Pikeland, West Vincent, Schuylkill, Charlestown, and Phoenixville Borough. The PennDOT implementation strategy and formal acknowledgement of the Transportation and Parks, Recreation, and Use Plan, was discussed and will be pursued by Mr. Theurkauf and Ms. Tackett. The vision for each of the 8 categories below was discussed.

  1. Land Use Plan
  2. Environmental Resources Plan (hi-lighting the French and Pickering Creeks)
  3. Energy Conservation & Sustainability Plan (includes some transportation)
  4. Housing Plan (sprawl control, having affordable housing)
  5. Community Facilities Plan
  6. Parks, Recreation, and Use Plan (greenways and inter-connected trails and preserved lands)
  7. Transportation Plan (includes a bicycle roadway rating system and potential commuter routes)
  8. Cultural Resources Plan

The next step is a March 2019 workshop for the public.

Conditional Use Application

Donald and Elizabeth Andersen

Ms. Wendy McLean, Esq. and Mr. Daniel Daily were present for Dr. and Mrs. Andersen, for a review of their Conditional Use Application, seeking two recommendations for approvals. One is for a conventional lot development, and the second for stormwater management facilities in steep slopes for a 2-lot subdivision of 13.37 acres.

Mr. Wright referred to his review letter dated 10/3/18, and noted that item #2 indicates a zoning variance would also be required in order to add a fourth lot to Eastwick Drive; otherwise, the road would need to be upgraded to public road standards.

Mr. Allen moved to recommend approval of the Conditional Use Application subject to the Township consultant review letters, and Ms. Leland seconded. Mr. Westhafer called for discussion, and there being none, called for a vote. All were in favor.

The Planning Commission recommended the Zoning Hearing Board look favorably on the variance to add a fourth driveway onto Eastwick Road, changing the driveways in number from 3 to 4, and not requiring Eastwick Road to be upgraded to meet the Township’s public road standards.

General Review

Conditional Use Review

Mr. Comitta led a discussion on the following four items related to revising the ordinance with regard to Conditional Use. Mr. Comitta will return in November with a draft of Standards and Criteria for Members to edit. Tonight’s discussion was focused on what the Township wants to attract or not attract, what uses are preferable, challengeable, etc.

  1. Review the Solicitor’s comments
    1. Consider that the Use is allowed somewhere else in the Township or nearby
  2. Review edits to Section 27-1809 of the Zoning Ordinance
  3. Review edits pertaining to Conditional Uses in various districts
    1. Consider structures related to pipelines
    2. Consider convenience stores, i.e. square footage thresholds, hours of operation
    3. Consider sizes of warehouses, or limitations that ceiling heights place on Logistics Centers, or outside storage
  4. Review Mr. Comitta’s draft List of Definitions.

Mr. Allen suggested having a map to see where suggestions discussed tonight (for example a Logistics Center) would actually fit within the Township.

Other Business

Administrative Note

Any documents referred to in the minutes are available to the public upon request to the Township office.


There being no further business, Mr. Westhafer adjourned the meeting at 9:15 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Lisa Gardner
Recording Secretary