7:30 PM
May 11, 2010

A Regular Meeting of the Planning Commission of the Township of Salisbury was held on the above date at the Township Municipal Building located at 2900 South Pike Avenue, Allentown, Lehigh County, Pennsylvania. Present were Commissioners Licht, Schreiter, Hebelka, Hassick, McKitish and Beck. Also present were Attorney Ashley, Township Solicitor; Mr. Soriano, Township Manager; Ms. Sopka, Director of Planning & Zoning and Hanover Engineering, Alternate Township Engineer. Mr. Tettemer, Township Engineer and Commissioner Snyder were not present.

Mr. Beck called the meeting to order.

On motion of Mr. Schreiter, seconded by Mr. McKitish, the Planning Commission voted  4-0-2 to approve the April 13, 2010 Planning Commission Meeting Minutes as amended. Mr. Snyder was not present for vote.

833 Yorkshire Road – Re-Subdivision
Continued from April 13, 2010, a Re-Subdivision of a previously approved and recorded Final Subdivision, Robin Hood. Project requires a reduction of lot acreage of a vacant residential parcel to be conveyed to 833 Yorkshire Road.

Present was Mr. Art Swallow of AASA Land Surveyors.

Ms. Sopka highlighted the Township Engineer’s review letter dated May 5, 2010 and indicated that Mr. Swallow has provided a Preliminary/Final Re-Subdivision Plan revised April 20, 2010. The plan proposes a lot line adjustment between an existing non-conforming 0.94 acre Lot 60 and a 0.79 acre Lot 61 with intent to add .11 acres to Lot 60, making Lot 60 a conforming lot meeting all set back requirements. The only construction proposed at this time is a portion of a new bituminous driveway to Lot 61 and removal of a portion of the existing driveway to Lot 60. Ms. Sopka concurred with the Township Engineer’s letter.

A motion was made by Mr. Schreiter, seconded by Mr. Hassick, the Planning Commission voted 6-0 to approve the Plan as a Preliminary/Final Re-Subdivision Plan. Mr. Snyder was not present for vote.

3109 Birchwood Drive – Major Subdivision/Final Land Development
Continued from April 13, 2010, a Final Land Development of Parcel #640531577120 incorporates 15.4 acres of land in the C-R, Conservation-Residential Zoning District, for the subdivision of residential properties.

Present were Mr. Erich Schock, Counsel from FitzPatrick, Lentz & Bubba, Mr. Kevin Markell, Engineer from Barry Isett & Associates and Bruce Uhl, Owner.

Mr. Jeremie Schadler of Hanover Engineering highlighted the review letter dated May 4, 2010, stating that they are in receipt of revised Final Plans and supplement information in response to the April 5, 2010 review letter. Mr. Schadler stated that SALDO Items 1, 2, 3 and 4 needs to be addressed. He referenced and reviewed Item #5, SALDO 10.8.B.2 (a), noting that his office received the test results and they are currently under review. In regard to SALDO 10.8.B.2 (b), they are awaiting the conclusion as to whether the result demonstrates adequate water supply.

Items #7 and #8 are general comments that need to be addressed upon the approval of the Township. Item #9, the Operations and Maintenance Agreement covering all Stormwater BMP privately owned, needs to be signed by the property owner prior to recording of the Final Plans.

Ms. Sopka highlighted her review letter dated May 3, 2010. She addressed Item #3, relating to Item #10, which indicates potential of natural drainage area. She stated that she evaluated and visited the site and it is a vegetated drainage area. This area conveys drainage onto adjoining properties where ground water seeps, vernal pools and wetlands exist. This issue is raised because the developer indicates that it does not exist and the design of the development does not take this into account. Ms. Sopka referred to the State’s Stormwater Best Management Practices, which advocates the protection of natural drainage pathways and consideration in storm water planning & design.

Ms. Sopka continued her review regarding stormwater design and the documentation of consent for easement, the extension of Birchwood Drive, the recommendation to retire the cul-de-sac and conform to the standards of the street design referenced in SALDO 10.4.D.  Additionally, she stated that a Note should be placed on the Plan indicating the definition of a cul-de-sac and that the termination of Birchwood Drive will be permanent with no additional street extensions.

She also referenced that in the process of development if blasting will be required, it should be the developer’s responsibility to inform the surrounding neighbors. Another item of concern is the minimal use of the 1,500 S.F.  footprint of the home in the storm water calculations, and the sizing doesn’t take into account larger homes, accessory structures, etc.

Discussion continued on SALDO items addressed in the Zoning Officer’s letter dated May 3, 2010. Mr. Schock responded briefly to Item #3, relating to Item #10, and stated that the design has been reviewed by all appropriate parties and went through a two (2) year process with NPDEP to obtain NPDES permit.

In regard to Items #5 and #17, Mr. Schock stated that Hanover Engineering requested a Note be placed on the Plan for record that each lot needs to supply calculations based on their specific house footprint for the seepage bed requirements. Mr. Beck stated that the house design on the Plan is 1,500 S.F. which is the smallest area to choose to get the plan approved. Discussion continued in regard to underground drainage and per documentation, for required future permit plans, the seepage beds will be adjusted per the calculations.

In regard to the layout of the street in reference to Items #12, #13 and #14, Mr. Schock stated that the developer would like Birchwood Drive to remain as approved on the Preliminary Plan. Mr. Schreiter stated that the developer is speaking of the outbound layout which is not related to Birchwood Drive. Mr. Schreiter stated that the approval was for the property itself which abuts against the cul-de-sac. The difference is that the cul-de-sac was not included in this Development Plan at that time. Birchwood drive was shown on the Plan but that does not mean it was approved. Mr. Schreiter stated that there are proposed right-of-way lines on the plan showing the intention of correction.

Discussion continued as to the maintenance of the street and the conformance to a regular street. Per the Ordinance, it is a requirement that the developer repair or bring the street to the original state. Mr. Uhl stated that at the time of preliminary approval, there was discussion to realign the road with the right-a-way, and the neighbors did not want the street to change. Mr. Schreiter stated that the Plan shows that the road is being realigned with the right-of-way.

Mr. Schreiter inquired about the natural features and if any person has visited the site. Ms. Sopka stated that she had communication with the LCCD and was informed that they do not review or evaluate stormwater management plans, that they only review the E&S portion. Mr. Schock stated that LCCD reviews a checklist by the DEP. Ms. Sopka stated that they are not looking for the same features as the Township. Mr. McKitish stated that the feature downstream was not necessarily evaluated; therefore, he believes it is appropriate for it to be reviewed in context of the downstream impacts so the final approval is based on fact and existing conditions.

Mr. Schock continued with Item #15 regarding the possibility of blasting. He stated that there is a Note on Sheet SP1 on the revised set of plans that all parties be notified. Mr. McKitish recommended requiring a two week time frame to notify the surrounding neighbors and parties after a permit approval has been received. Attorney Ashley recommended putting a Note on the Plan that if any damage should occur by the blasting, the developer is responsible, but there must be proof of documentation that the damage did occur from the blasting.

Conversation continued about the size of the 1,500 S.F. homes. Mr. McKitish addressed the zoning impact and referenced Lot #6. Mr. Uhl stated that they are two story homes at 3,000 S.F. Mr. McKitish stated that they are looking at the impervious area and how it will impact the underground vaults. They expressed concern that the future homeowner will have no area for auxiliary structures, (i.e. sheds, decks, patios, etc.); therefore, they are locked into a 30x50 home. Mr. Uhl stated that the Plan is showing the profile footprint, but if the owner chooses to make it larger, they will be required to put more drainage in because the drainage is based on the size of the house. Ms. Sopka stated that for some of the lots, expanding its footprint will be encroaching into the setbacks, setting forth variance requirements with the Township. Mr. McKitish stated that Lot #6 is locked into that size because the property narrows, Lot #4’s septic system will have to be downhill from the house unless the sewage will be pumped upwards, Lot #3 may give a 10 ft. leeway, and Lot #2 and Lot #5 are the only two that could possibly be altered.    

Discussion continued and Mr. McKitish stated that they are trying to anticipate the impact to downstream property relative to a future property owner’s purchase; the anticipation of a larger home; and realizing there is no space for a larger drainage system. He indicated that this turns into a hardship that puts the Township in a situation that creates an unacceptable building condition for the lot. By having the calculations represent larger homes there is clarification that smaller homes can fit without question. By having calculations based on smaller footprint verses larger footprint and what will happen downstream, it will put the Township and property owners in a bad situation. Mr. McKitish stated that it is very important to anticipate everything when it comes to the drainage system.   

Mr. Beck opened the floor for public comment.  Mr. Wayne DeAngelis of 2839 Dewalt Street stated that most of his property is located below the proposed development. Mr. DeAngelis inquired if the Plan will require Deed restrictions and expressed his concern of the rear yard setbacks, the possible blasting, and damage to the springs on his property. He inquired if a Hydro geologist was hired for proper testing. He stated that he is trying to protect his property and went as far has hiring Mr. Bruce Hay, an Engineer and Ms. Cynthia Barton, an Environmental Consultant. He stated that he would not approve an easement off his property because he does not want the springs on his property harmed as they feed the Rodale/ Wildlands Conservancy.

He also addressed his concern about where the septic systems will be located because one of the pipes will only be 60 feet away from his septic drain field and home. He questioned the overflow pipe lying in the pits which will become polluted because the water is not filtered or purified and it will overflow and end up going into the surrounding springs with pollutant water. Mr. DeAngelis offered that he would make available any reports that the Planning Commission would like to review.

Mr. DeAngelis continued to offer that a scientist from the Conservancy came to his property to look at the springs, vernal pools, and seeps, located on his property and was amazed at the extent of the environmentally sensitive area. Mr. Beck inquired if the person from the Conservancy, whom visited his property, would provide a letter on the natural features for verification purposes.  Mr. DeAngelis stated that they will be processing a written report and once he receives it, he will provide this to the Planning Commission.

Mr. DeAngelis asked if the developer has received any hydrogeologist reports because he would like to review them in regards to the natural features.

Mr. DeAngelis also noted that his property is half agriculture and wants it to remain that way. Mr. DeAngelis inquired if the Planning Commission reviewed the LVPC letter regarding this development and why they did not approve it. He offered that it was because of the wetlands and its proximity of the Rodale Conservancy.  He invited the Planning Commission to visit his property to see these natural features.   

Mr. McKitish expressed great concern regarding the springs and impact from the underground vaults that will be percolating into the soil because this development will add more water volume. In turn, the water will gush out of the springs because it is an exit and due to the pressure of the vaults, it will ruin the springs in their natural state. Mr. Beck requested Mr. DeAngelis to produce documentation. Mr. DeAngelis stated that he would and that he is waiting on the hydrogeology report. Mr. McKitish inquired if the Conservancy would provide a short report showing and specifying areas of concern because of the time frame.

Discussion continued about the concern of the areas past the property lines. Mr. McKitish stated that due to the expiration date of June 7, 2010, either a recommendation must be addressed or an extension must be granted on behalf of the applicant. Mr. McKitish stated that for all items to be addressed, he would suggest an extension to July 31, 2010. The developer granted and documented the time extension as suggested.

A motion was made by Mr. McKitish, seconded by Mr. Schreiter, the Planning commission voted 6-0 to accept the time extension to July 31, 2010. Mr. Snyder was not present for vote.

A motion was made by Mr. McKitish, seconded by Dr. Licht, the Planning Commission voted 6-0 to table the Plan.  Mr. Snyder was not present for vote.

1860 East Emmaus Avenue – Crossroads Baptist Church
Review request for time extension of Preliminary/Final Plan from 90-day review period May 12, 2010.

A motion was made by Mr. McKitish, seconded by Mr. Beck , the Planning Commission voted 6-0 to accept the developer’s 90-day time extension granted to the Planning Commission relative to Crossroad Baptist Church, based on the May 2010 letter from Hoppes Engineering, to August 11, 2010.

432 East Emmaus Avenue – Felton & Egan Minor Subdivision
Preliminary/Final Minor Subdivision of parcel #640692491840 equal to 1.186 acres to be divided into three Single-Family Residential lots.
An inquiry was made to the 90-day time extension. Ms. Sopka stated that when the extension was granted, the developer was waiting on a response from Penn Dot but since have been received; therefore, the extension is beyond the 90-day existing expiration date until August 3, 2010.

A motion was made by Mr. McKitish, seconded by Mr. Beck, the Planning Commission voted 6-0 to accept the offered 90-day extension from Martin Schuler for the Felton & Egan Minor Subdivision to August 3, 2010.


On motion of Mr. McKitish, the Planning Commission voted to adjourn the meeting.

Meeting adjourned.