Planning Commission:
Andre von Hoyer, Chairman, Michael Richter, Vice Chairman, Michael Churchill, Wendy Leland, Andy Motel, Matt Rogers, and Dan Walker. Bill Westhafer was absent.
Daniel Wright, Tom Comitta arrived at 7:50 p.m.
Lisa Gardner

Call to Order:

7:30 p.m.


Mr. von Hoyer introduced the two new members of the Planning Commission and all welcomed them to the group. Mr. Matt Rogers was appointed to fill the remainder of Mr. Allen’s term, and Mr. Daniel Walker was appointed as an Alternate Member, and also as the Planning Commission’s liaison to the Environmental Advisory Committee.

Mrs. Gardner circulated a handout explaining how the new position of Alternate to the Planning Commission, which is being filled by Mr. Walker, is to be handled. The Alternate becomes a voting member when assigned to specific matters by the Chairman, due to the absence or recusal of one of the seven voting members.

Approval of Minutes

January 8, 2019 Minutes

Mr. von Hoyer moved to approve the minutes of January 8, 2019, and Mr. Richter seconded. Mr. von Hoyer called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.


Commons @ Great Valley Lot 1 Land Development Plan

Mr. Tim Townes was present to discuss the revised Preliminary/Final Land Development Plan dated 1/9/19. He is proposing to add 78 additional parking spots to PJ Whelihan’s and change a lot line adding a portion of Lot 15 to Lot 18.

Some background information was given for the new Members.

Mr. Townes said they own all three locations and with the Township’s help, they can all become one location, with a “parking only” easement. Mr. Wright said with a basin located where it is, this is entirely possible. Mr. Townes said he will comply and place a note on the Plan as to a future build. Mr. Motel said build now, so there are no future misunderstandings. Mr. Wright said future parking will be under the Township’s scrutiny and something like an escrow fund could hold it to being only and ever parking.

Mr. Wright referred to his review letter dated 2/5/2019. He stated that there will be further discussion with the DEP, the Conservation District, and Mr. Townes. New stormwater data will be compiled to be sure BMP’s are followed. Mr. Townes also has some legal work to do regarding the subdivision lines.

Mr. Wright will contact Mrs. Csete to confirm that the new subdivision and land development application was submitted with payment. Mr. Townes believes he paid approximately 18 months ago.

Mr. Townes will return after addressing items with Mr. Wright, and his legal counsel, regarding line changes. The following suggestions were added:

  1. Mr. Wright suggested a raised table on the Plan, add appropriate items such as signs, trees, missing consultant details, etc., before returning.
  2. Mr. Motel recommended adding at least a “Parking Only” note on the Plan, but preferred Mr. Townes to build now.
  3. Mrs. Leland discussed the absence of an access in front of the hotel exit, but Mr. Townes has an alignment problem with the basin. He will see if he can make an adjustment.
  4. Mr. Churchill stated that the new Plan sacrifices a good rain garden for parking and safety but safety is the Township’s concern.
  5. Mr. Comitta suggested a speed table and a crosswalk, Mr. Townes will comply.

George Meyer Conditional Use Application

Mr. Nick Vastardis, P.E., and Mr. George Meyer, were present to discuss the Conditional Use Application for Mr. Meyer’s property at 2227 Bodine Road. Mr. Meyer is seeking recommendation for Board approval, for using a conventional lot development design for his 23.8-acre property.

Mr. Wright began by telling the Members that the last sketch plan shown to the Board was not met with opposition for Conditional Use for this conventional vs. Open Space layout. The ordinance recommends, and the Township prefers, an Open Space design. However, Mr. Meyer is submitting this 5 house Plan instead of a more confined 6 house Plan. Each home will have on lot septic with backup location, on lot wells, and its own stormwater management, without easements.

Mr. Vastardis referred to Mr. Wright’s review letter dated 2/5/2019 and responded as follows:

Mr. Vastardis stated they will more than comply with all stormwater requirements. This will include filling a ditch and adding inlets. Plus, there is a management system on each property, which allows for a better infiltration bed in the cul-de-sac, per Mr. Wright. Mr. Wright also said they will take a close look at the 100-year storm requirement for Foster Road.

Ms. Kim Walsh, cross street neighbor of the proposed development, will have the retention basin across from her home. After talking with several County departments, she learned that it is not unheard of for wells to be contaminated, and that it is very costly to rectify the situation. She was told to test her well before any ground disturbance begins. A County representative, per Ms., Walsh, suggested there be an escrow, and written document, stating who will manage the retention basin. Ms. Walsh is concerned that since the basin is far from the new homes (but close to her) the new residents will not be interested in caring for the basin.

Mr. Wright said that this is something the Township oversees due to stormwater regulation. Best Management Practices state stormwater management agreements are required that include maintenance, yearly inspections, and reports by the Township Engineer. The testing measures rates and demonstrates DEP requirements. The Board of Supervisors has the authority to make the HOA hold an escrow and make it all happen.

Mr. Greeney who lives across from Bodine Road has had rapidly flowing water on his property as recently as August 2018. Mr. Wright was not sure if this storm was classified as a 1, or 2-year storm.

But, Mr. Meyer’s project will-

  1. Deter flow in its current condition
  2. The Ordinance change will
    1. Reduce a 100 year storm to a 10 year storm
    2. Reduce a 10-year storm to a 2-year storm
    3. Reduce a 2-year storm to a 1-year storm
    4. Without causing a point discharge
    5. To a point where you may see no discharge at all since the changes are so strict

Based on the pending 3-D model and the EIA, Mr. Comitta urged the applicant to decide what further details are appropriate. They need to clear up uncertainties on the review letters, to prevent the Board from considering the Conditions necessary, to be too broad (see#5 below).

For the pending Board of Supervisors Meeting the following suggestions where made:

  1. No road will be dedicated, but sidewalks are nice for children getting to a bus.
  2. The Board will be interested in the Scenic Road impact from each Plan.
  3. It is always suggested that a Board presentation include an EIA and 3D rendering. It is required for a Land Development submission.
  4. A testimony from a landscape architect would suffice for a landscape plan.
  5. More items are likely to be questioned by the Board, since many items remain uncertain on Township consultant letters (such as the Horseshoe Trail, visual screening and/or enhancement to the architecture of the dwellings, good design principles).

Mr. Churchill moved to recommend approval to the Board of Supervisors, that the conventional lot layout is better than the Open Space version. However, there is not enough information to decide what Conditions are appropriate, especially for visual impact and stormwater management, and other items mentioned in review letters by Thomas Comitta Associates, Inc and Advanced GeoServices. Mr. Motel seconded. Mr. von Hoyer called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Other Items

Supervisor Philips had suggested at a prior meeting, other Uses to consider when drafting standards and criteria. Members discussed the threshold for appropriateness, or otherwise stated “if it is not included it is not permitted”. Mr. Comitta read aloud the provision in the IOB section of the Ordinance- “any other lawful use not provided for in any other district”. The Uses to be considered next are rental properties posted by owners on websites (such as Airbnb’s), athletic facilities, drones, continuing care retirement communities, contractor’s yards, helicopter pads, solar farms, pig farms, and self-contained RV visit and stay network members such as, etc. Members discussed the difficulty of protecting land but needing means to take care of what’s on the land.

Action Items

Mr. Wright is to contact Mrs. Csete regarding the need to refile the application for the Commons.

Mr. von Hoyer noted that the parking deed restrictions need to be on the Plan for the parking built.

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. von Hoyer adjourned the meeting at 9:10 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Lisa Gardner
Recording Secretary