NEWTOWN TOWNSHIP

ZONING HEARING BOARD

MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF DECEMBER 2, 2010

The Newtown Township Zoning Hearing Board met on Thursday, December 2, 2010 in the Newtown Township Building. In attendance and voting were: David Katz, Chairman; Karen Doorley, Vice-Chairman, Mario Lionetti, Secretary, William Wall and Brandon Wind, members. Also in attendance were: James J. Auchinleck, Jr., Esq., Solicitor and John Boyle, Code Enforcement Officer and Justine Gregor, Stenographer.

Call to Order

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

The Pledge of Allegiance

Approval of Minutes

Mr. Wind moved to approve the minutes of August 5, 2010. Mr. Wall seconded and the motion passed 4-0-1, with Mr. Lionetti abstaining.

Mrs. Doorley moved to approve the minutes of November 4, 2010. Mr. Lionetti seconded and the motion passed 4-0-1, with Mr. Wall abstaining.

The Agenda was reviewed:

Application of Joseph Jenci – 63 Harmony Way

Application of Julianna Merback Burdo – 3 Ainsley Court

Application of Infinity Building Group – 11 Cloverlee Way

Application of Joseph Jenci

Mr. Lionetti read into the record the application of Dr. Joseph Jenci, owner, requesting a variance from the Joint Municipal Zoning Ordinance of 2007 as affected by the Lakeview Estates Record Plan to permit conversion of a 9 feet by 12 feet roofed porch into a 3-season room with a 2.5 feet by 9 feet extension resulting in a 24.2 feet rear yard setback where 30 feet is required. The subject property is 63 Harmony Way, Newtown, in the CM Conservation Management Zoning District, being further known as Tax Map Parcel #29-23-154.

Dr. Joseph Jenci was sworn in.

Mr. Katz asked in anyone present wished to be party to the application. There was no response.

Dr. Jenci explained that he would like to enclose an existing deck, making it a three season room. He would also be extending the deck 2.5 feet by 9 feet and adding a circular staircase from the raised deck to the backyard. The staircase would serve as an emergency exit, as his home only has a front door. This is the only exit to the rear of the house. Dr. Jenci entered two photographs of the rear of his home as Exhibit A-1. He entered letters from his adjacent neighbor as Exhibit A-2, from 62 Harmony Way and Exhibit A-3 from 65 Harmony Way. He said that he had concerns that the advertisement for his application did not accurately state his plans.

Mr. Auchinleck reminded the Board that the only issue of concern to the Zoning Hearing Board is the rear yard setback.

Mrs. Doorley asked if he needed approval from his homeowners association.

Dr. Jenci said that he did have a letter of approval but he thought he might have left it at the Codes Office or at the Planning Commission meeting.

Mrs. Doorley asked Dr. Jenci to provide a copy of the letter for the Zoning record.

Mrs. Doorley moved to grant a variance from the Joint Municipal Zoning Ordinance of 2007 as affected by the Lakeview Estates Record Plan to permit conversion of a 9 feet by 12 feet roofed porch into a 3-season room with a 2.5 feet by 9 feet extension resulting in a 24.2 feet rear yard setback where 30 feet is required, subject to the condition that a letter of approval from the Lakeview Estates homeowners association be submitted to the Township. Mr. Wind seconded.

Discussion of motion: Mr. Wall asked if the letter of approval from the Homeowners Association is necessary.

Mrs. Doorley said that she would like it to be part of the record since the variance changes the Lakeview Estates record plan.

The motion passed 5-0.

Application of Julianna Merback Burdo

Mr. Lionetti read into the record the application of Julianna Merback Burdo, owner, requesting a variance from the Joint Municipal Zoning Ordinance of 2007 as affected by the Linton Hill Chases Record Plan to permit construction of a 30 feet by 28 feet patio and 18 feet by 24.5 feet deck resulting in a 16.31 feet rear yard set back for the deck and 7.31 feet for the patio where 30 feet is required. The subject property is 3 Ainsley Court, in the CM conservation Management Zoning District, being known as tax parcel number 29-20-49.

Julianna Merback Burdo and Greg Burdo were sworn in.

Mr. Katz asked if anyone present wished to be party to the application. There was no response.

Mrs. Burdo explained that she would like setback relief to build a patio and deck at the rear of her property. Without a variance, there is only seven feet of setback for any outdoor amenities.

Mr. Lionetti asked what is at the rear of the property.

Mr. Burdo said there are about 5 acres of open space belonging to the homeowners association of Linton Hill Chase, then Stoopville Road.

Mr. Katz asked if the homeowners association has approved the application.

Mrs. Burdo said that approval is not required. She presented a letter stating approval signed by her surrounding neighbors as Exhibit A-1.

Mr. wind asked if any relief is needed for impervious surface.

Mr. Katz noted that the plans show the project to be within the maximum impervious surface ratio.

Mr. Wall moved to grant a variance from the Joint Municipal Zoning Ordinance of 2007 as affected by the Linton Hill Chases Record Plan to permit construction of a 30 feet by 28 feet patio and 18 feet by 24.5 feet deck resulting in a 16.31 feet rear yard set back for the deck and 7.31 feet for the patio where 30 feet is required. Mr. Lionetti seconded and the motion passed 5-0.

Application of Infinity Building Group

Mr. Lionetti read into the record the application of Infinity Building Group LLC, owner, by Edward F. Murphy, Esquire. requesting a variance from section 404(C) the Joint Municipal Zoning Ordinance of 2007 to permit construction of a single family detached dwelling on a 39,568 square feet lot with driveway access off Cloverlee Lane resulting in a 38.75 feet front yard setback where 60 feet is required. The subject property is 11 Cloverlee Lane, Newtown, in the R-1 Medium Density Residential Zoning District, being further known as Tax Map Parcel #29-4-31.

Attorney Ed Murphy represented the applicant.

Luis Gomes was sworn in.

Mr. Katz asked if anyone wished to be party to this application. There was no response.

Mr. Murphy explained that this is a vacant lot at the corner of Cloverlee Lane and Durham Road. Mr. Gomes plans to build a single family house on the lot. Because it is the corner lot, it will have two front yards although the front of the home would face Cloverlee Lane. The house would require a 60 foot setback from Durham Road. Prior to completing purchase of the lot, Mr. Gomes brought plans to the Township for review. The plans shows a 60 foot setback from the legal right of way. Mr. Murphy entered as Exhibit A-1, a letter from CKS Engineers with attached plan. The letter states that the plan “meets the requirements of the Newtown Zoning Ordinance,” and the plan was stamped “Approved – CKS Engineers, Inc.” Based on this letter, Mr. Gomes authorized his client to purchase the lot.

Mr. Murphy said that it was later learned that the permit was in error as the setback should have been measured from the ultimate right-of-way. The home will be 73.75 feet from the curb along the Durham Road side, and 63.75 feet from the legal right-of-way, but only 38.75 feet from the ultimate right-of-way.

Mr. Murphy entered as Exhibit A-2, an aerial photograph of the area surrounding the property. The Planning Commission had asked the applicant how the proposed home would align with the other buildings on both Durham and Cloverlee. The photograph has the proposed house, with side entry garage, outlined in red. Mr. Murphy noted that it aligns on both streets with the existing homes.

Mr. Gomes affirmed Mr. Murphy’s summary.

Mr. Wind asked how large the proposed house will be and how it compares with surrounding homes.

Mr. Gomes said that it will be 3700 square feet, with walk out basement. It will have four bedrooms, 3.5 bathrooms a sunroom and a three car garage. Other houses in the area are between 3500 and 4500 square feet. There are a few smaller homes at the far end of Cloverlee Lane. This house has been sold.

Mr. Katz asked whether the building will interfere with the sight distances from the Tyler Walk entrance.

Mr. Gomes said that this has already been researched. The sight distance will be adequate.

Mr. Wall moved to grant a variance from section 404(C) the Joint Municipal Zoning Ordinance of 2007 to permit construction of a single family detached dwelling on a 39,568 square feet lot with driveway access off Cloverlee Lane resulting in a 38.75 feet front yard setback where 60 feet is required. Mrs. Doorley seconded and the motion passed 5-0.

Other Business

Mr. Katz said that his term on the Board will expire at the end of the year. He has asked to be re-appointed. It has been a pleasure working with the other members and he hopes to see them in the new year.

Mr. Wind moved to adjourn at 8:15 PM. Mr. Katz seconded and the motion passed 5-0.


Respectfully Submitted:

 

Mary Donaldson, Recording Secretary