NEWTOWN TOWNSHIP HISTORICAL ARCHITECTURAL REVIEW BOARD

Minutes of the meeting held on December 9, 2008

 

The Newtown Township Historical Architectural Review Board met on Tuesday, December 9, 2008, at 1:30 P.M. in the Meeting Room of the Newtown Township Administration Building, 100 Municipal Drive, Newtown, PA.

Members present were Frank Tyrol, Doug Terry, Melva Vitoriano, Vincent Lombardi, Joseph McKernan, Jr. and Building Inspector Frank Orfe. Also present were Patty Powers, Codes Department Administrative Assistant; Mike Galla, KMS; Jane Kovacs, Corners at Newtown Place and Susan Nydick, Corners at Newtown Place.

Call to Order:

Vice Chairman McKernan called the meeting to order at 1:34 P.M.

Nomination of a new Chairman:

Mr. Terry made a motion to nominate Mr. McKernan as Chairman. The motion was seconded by Mr. Tyrol and passed unanimously (5-0).

Mr. Lombardi was not present for the motion.

Minutes of November 11, 2008:

Mr. Tyrol made a motion to approve the minutes of November 11, 2008. The motion was seconded by Mr. Terry and passed unanimously (5-0).

Mr. Lombardi was not present for the motion.

New Business

Certificates of Appropriateness:

Corners at Newtown Place – Cambridge Lane/Richboro Road

The Board discussed the Certificate of Appropriateness application completed by the Corners at Newtown Place with regards to three (3) new signs being erected within the retail/professional center to identify locations of shops and services. The proposed signs would not be illuminated.

Ms. Kovacs advised that the areas where the signs are to be located were marked with an “X” on the map. The signs would be made from aluminum and the colors used would be beige and blue.

Mr. Tyrol commented on the applicant following the recommendations that HARB had given them at a prior meeting. He advised that he likes the paint colors and feels that what is being proposed is an improvement.

Mr. Lombardi arrived.

Mr. Terry questioned if the address numbers would be on the signs and the doors of the business. Ms. Kovacs advised that the address numbers would be on the signs and next to their doors.

Mr. McKernan advised that the Board would need the brand/number for the paints being proposed. Ms. Nydick advised that she would get that information to Ms. Powers and she could forward it to the members.

Mr. Terry made a motion to recommend approval of the Corners at Newtown Place’s Certificate of appropriateness for three (3) new signs to be erected within the retail/professional center to identify locations of shops and services. The proposed signs would not be illuminated and would be made from aluminum. The colors used would be DuPont Blue (BS535) and DuPont Beige (YS317). The motion was seconded by Mr. Lombardi and passed unanimously (6-0).

Chairman McKernan advised the applicant that this Board only makes recommendations to the Board of Supervisors and that they give the final approval. He advised the applicant that the matter would be discussed at the Board of Supervisors meeting on December 17, 2008. The meeting starts at 7:30 P.M. and a representative should be present.

The Board thanked Ms. Kovacs and Ms. Nydick for their time.

The Board signed the Corners at Newtown Place’s Certificate of Appropriateness.

Discuss application for “Moveable Sidewalk Signs”

The members received a draft copy of the application for their review/comment. Ms. Powers advised that the Interim Zoning Officer drafted the application being reviewed and that the only criteria is that the application in no longer than one (1) page.

Mr. Lombardi updated the members on past discussions with regards to the matter. He discussed the need to have a standard for the appearance of the sign but still allowing for creativity.

The members discussed there currently being a moratorium with regards to enforcing Ordinance #2008-0-10 until a standard is in place.

The members discussed the Codes Enforcement Officer enforcing the standard.

Mr. Lombardi advised that the Sycamore Street Association would be holding a meeting to inform businesses of what the standards are.

Chairman McKernan questioned if the Code’s Department had any issues with regards to the moveable signs being ADA complainant. Mr. Orfe updated the members on the research he did and advised that he sees no issues with regards to being ADA complainant. The application does address the location of the moveable sign.

The members discussed the application and agreed that the following information should be added:

  • Business name, address and or phone number needs to be on the sign.
  • The sign colors must be the same as the existing signs’ colors approved by HARB.
  • The space for the interchangeable message should be approximately 2/3 of the sign.

Mr. Lombardi requested for the Recording Secretary to email the above information to the members for further discussions at the meeting in January.

Ms. Powers commented with regards to the application and the work done by the Codes Department.

The members discussed Ordinance #2008-0-10 and agreed that the signs meeting the standard do not have to appear before HARB.

The members discussed Ms. Vittoriano’s moveable sign. It was recommended for members to take a look at her sign.

The members discussed the need for the message to be readable from the Street.

Mr. Lombardi updated the members on another proposed ordinance being drafted by the Planning Commission with regards to moveable sidewalk signs for areas not located in the Historic District.

The members discussed the areas in the Township that are zoned Planned Commercial (PC).

Ms. Powers reported that Ordinance #2008-0-10 will expire in 2009.

The members discussed the application with regards to relocating/removing/adding information.

Ms. Powers advised that she would email the members a copy of the application for them to work on before the meeting in January. She requested them to email her their suggested changes prior to the January’s meeting so that she could revise the application.

The members agreed to review the application and summary of information recommended to appear on the sign for discussions at the meeting in January.

Old Business

Certificate of Appropriateness

 First Federal of Bucks County – correspondence to the Supervisors regarding the “V” shaped identification sign

The members discussed their recommendation to approve First Federal of Bucks County’s Certificate of Appropriateness at the October 22, 2008 meeting and agreed that they did not have a problem with the “V” shaped sign.

Mr. Terry made a motion to reaffirm HARB’s recommendation to approve First Federal of Bucks County’s Certificate of Appropriateness to install a “V” Shaped monument wood cut sign, raised letters w/3x3 posts & finial with two (2) landscaping bullyte lights. The paint colors are Tricorn Black (SW6258), Loyal Blue (SW6510) and Obstinate Orange (SW6884). The motion was seconded by Mr. Tyrol and passed unanimously (6-0).

The members agreed to forward the memo dated December 9, 2008 to the Board of Supervisors.

Privilege of the Floor

The members discussed the presentation to the Supervisors on December 17, 2008. Mr. Tyrol that he would make that presentation.

Adjournment

There being no further business to come before the Board, the meeting was duly adjourned at 2:37 P.M.

The next meeting is schedule for January 13, 2009 at 1:30 P.M.

 

Respectfully Submitted,

 

Christy Holley-Flaherty, Recording Secretary