NEWTOWN TOWNSHIP ZONING HEARING BOARD

MUNICIPAL BUILDING - 100 MUNICIPAL DRIVE

NEWTOWN, PA 18940

THURSDAY, APRIL 1, 2004

7:30 PM


Approval of Minutes: Mr. Lionetti noted that on page 1 of the minutes of April 7, 2004, “S” in solicitor should be capitalized. He also asked that on page 3 references to “confirmed with” be changed to “confirmed to”.

Mr. Lionetti moved to accept the minutes of April 7, 2004, as amended. Mr. Lenihan seconded and the motion passed unanimously.


The Newtown Township Zoning Hearing Board met on Thursday, April 1, 2004, in the Newtown Township Building. In attendance and voting were Mario Lionetti, Chairman; John Lenihan, Vice-Chairman; Gail Laughlin, Secretary; Franklin Carver and Victoria Bowe, members. Also in attendance were James J. Auchinleck, Jr., Esq., Solicitor, Thomas Harwood, Zoning Officer; and John McHugh, Stenographer.

Call to Order

Mr. Lionetti called the meeting to order at 7:30PM.

The Agenda was reviewed.

Continued Applications of Stonehouse Holdings, LLC

Continued Application of J. Loew and Associates

Application of Jeffrey Jenkins

Approval of Minutes

Mrs. Laughlin moved to accept the minutes of March 4, 2004. Mrs. Bowe seconded and the motion passed unanimously.

Continued Applications of Stonehouse Holdings, LLC

Mr. Auchinleck advised the Board that he had received a fax from Mr. Coopman, attorney for the applicant, explaining that his clients were in the process of resolving this matter with the Township. He said that he has also spoken to Mr. Keyser, the party to the application and Mr. Sander, Township solicitor, who confirmed that there is an agreement being drafted, and that when it is signed the applications will be withdrawn. Mr. Coopman requested that the applications be continued to the May meeting.

Mr. Lionetti moved to continue the applications of Stonehouse Holdings, LLC to May 6, 2004. Mr. Carver seconded and the motion passed unanimously.

Continued Application of J. Loew and Associates

Mr. Auchinleck advised the Board that he had received a request from Timberlake Townes of J. Loew and Associates to continue this application to the May meeting. J. Loew and Associates is working to resolve this matter with the Township.

Mr. Lionetti moved to continue the application of J. Loew and Associates to May 6, 2004. Mr. Carver seconded and the motion passed unanimously.

Application of Jeffrey Jenkins

Mrs. Laughlin read into the record the application of Jeffrey Jenkins by Metcalfe Architecture, Jeffrey Jenkins, owner, requesting a variance from Section 401B of the Joint Municipal Zoning Ordinance of 1983 (Rosefield Final Plan) to permit construction of a two-story residential addition, three car garage and barn reconstruction resulting in 14,700 square feet of impervious surface, or an impervious surface ratio of 24.69% where 10,700 square feet is permitted by Rosefield Plan and 20% is permitted by the ordinance. The subject property is 18 Susanna Way in the CM Conservation Management Zoning District.

Mr. Alan Hecker of Metcalfe Architecture and Mr. Jeffrey Jenkins were sworn in.

Mr. Lionetti asked if anyone present wished to be party to the application.

Ms. Eileen Bradley, Administrator of Wrightstown Township was sworn in.

Mr. Hecker explained that this property is on a non-conforming lot. He said that Mr. Jenkins plans to resurface the driveway with crushed stone, restore the existing barn, put an addition on the house, and add a patio and some additional sidewalk.

Mr. Lenihan said that he had visited the site. He asked if Mr. Jenkins intended to pave the path leading from the house to the parking area, which is currently covered by a plank

Mr. Jenkins said that he would have a paved patio, but otherwise use crushed stone, with the intention of keeping the improvements as pervious as possible.

Mr. Lenihan asked if Mr. Jenkins intended to rebuild the barn over the existing footprint, and if he intended the barn to be a living area.

Mr. Jenkins said that he lives in the house, and will rebuild the barn to work on cars, which is his hobby. He said that the barn would be heated and would have a utility sink, but would not be suitable as a residence.

Mrs. Laughlin asked if HARB had provided photographs to help with restoration of the barn.

Mr. Jenkins said that he has been in touch with HARB, however, they do not have any photographs of the barn. He said that he intends to work with HARB on the restoration; however, at this point his plans are not firm. He said that HARB has asked very specific questions about such things as color, and he is not at that point in the planning yet. He said that the Rosefield Homeowners Association has asked similar questions.

Mr. Hecker said that the barn dates back to the late 1800’s but he does not know the exact age. Although the design for the layout of the barn has not been completed, the intention is to have a large open design.

Mr. Carver asked how much of the non-historic portion of the house is to be removed.

Mr. Jenkins said that a kitchen addition, a lean to and porch, added in the 1950’s would be removed; a total area of about 500 square feet.

Mr. Auchinleck explained that a portion of this lot is within Wrightstown Township.

Ms. Bradley asked whether the square footage of the addition is 3500 square feet.

Mr. Hecker said that the total size of the existing home and addition is 3500 square feet. He said that the addition and 15% of the additional impervious surface are on the Wrightstown portion of the property.

Mr. Auchinleck asked if Wrightstown Township would be conceding jurisdiction on this parcel.

Ms. Bradley said that Wrightstown does not have a tax map parcel number for this property and Newtown collects the taxes. There is no way for Wrightstown to follow up on this project. She said that the plans submitted are not bending any existing Wrightstown ordinance. Wrightstown will concede all approvals to Newtown.

Mr. Lionetti asked that Wrightstown confirm this with Mr. Jenkins in writing.

Mr. Harwood asked that this also be confirmed with Newtown Township.

Ms. Bradley said that she would confirm this agreement with Mr. Jenkins, and with the Newtown Township manager in writing.

Mrs. Laughlin asked if approval of the Rosefield Homeowners Association should be made a condition of approval.

Mr. Lionetti said that the applicants are reminded that such approval is needed, however it is not this Board’s practice to make it a condition of the variance.

Mr. Lenihan moved to grant a variance from Section 401B of the Joint Municipal Zoning Ordinance of 1983 (Rosefield Final Plan) to permit construction of a two-story residential addition, three car garage and barn reconstruction resulting in 14,700 square feet of impervious surface, or an impervious surface ratio of 24.69% where 10,700 square feet is permitted by Rosefield Plan and 20% is permitted by the ordinance. Mrs. Laughlin seconded, and the motion passed unanimously.

Mr. Lenihan moved to adjourn at 8:45 PM. Mr. Carver seconded and the motion passed unanimously.

 

Respectfully submitted

 

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Mary Donaldson, Recording Secretary