NEWTOWN TOWNSHIP

ZONING HEARING BOARD

MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF September 6, 2012

The Newtown Township Zoning Hearing Board met on Thursday, September 6, 2012 in the Newtown Township Building. In attendance and voting were: Vice Chairman Brandon Wind, Secretary Mario Lionetti and members Timothy Potero and Michael Iapalucci. Also in attendance were: James J. Auchinleck, Jr., Esq., Solicitor, Martin Vogt, Code Enforcement Officer and Justine Gregor, Stenographer.

Call to Order: Brandon Wind, Acting as Chairman, called the meeting to order at 7:34 PM.

Approval of Minutes:Mr. Iapalucci moved to accept the minutes of August 2, 2012. Mr. Potero seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

The agenda was reviewed:

Continued Application of David and Geraldine Platt, 761 Newtown Yardley Road

Continued Application of Rothman Institute, 2700 South Eagle Road

Continued Application of 15 Swamp Road LTD (Meglio’s), 15 Swamp Road

Continued Application of S&H Security, LLC, 74 Richboro Road

Application of Newtown Artesian Water Company, 554 Washington Crossing Road

Application of Frank Agabiti, 100 Brandywine Blvd.

Application of Newtown Artesian Water Company

Mr. Auchinleck informed the Board that this application has been withdrawn by the applicant.

Continued Application of David and Geraldine Platt

Mr. Auchinleck informed the Board that Attorney Don Marshall has requested that this application be continued until next month.

Mr. Lionetti moved to continue the application of David and Geraldine Platt to October 4, 2012. Mr. Wind seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Continued Application of 15 Swamp Road LTD (Meglio’s)

Mr. Auchinleck informed the Board that Attorney Ed Murphy has requested that this application be continued until next month. The applicant is attempting to work with the adjoining property owner for access to the property.

Mr. Lionetti moved to continue the application of 15 Swamp Road, LTD., to October 4, 2012. Mr. Wind seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Continued Application of S&H Security, LLC

Mr. Auchinleck informed the Board that Attorney Murphy has requested that this application be continued to next month.

Mr. Lionetti moved to continue the application of S&H Security, LLC, to October 4, 2012. Mr. Wind seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Application of Frank Agabiti

Mr. Lionetti read into the record the application of Frank Agabiti, sub-lessee, Flynn Company, owners, requesting a variance from section 803(E-5)&(E-6) of the Joint Municipal Zoning Ordinance of 2007 to permit conversion of an existing 4.730 square feet cafeteria use to a catering use. The subject property is 100 Brandywine Boulevard, in the OR Office Research Zoning District, being known as tax parcel number 29-10-81.

Mr. Auchinleck informed the Board that Attorney Marshall has requested that this application be continued to next month.

Mr. Potero moved to continue the application of Frank Agabiti to October 4, 2012. Mr. Wind seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Continued Application of The Rothman Institute

Mr. Auchinleck reminded the Board that at the August meeting, it had suggested that it would consider allowing the two roof-top signs and three directional signs if the applicant eliminated the two free standing monument signs and if the rooftop sign variance were restricted to medical uses, only. To agree to these conditions would require permission of the property owner. Mr. Auchinleck entered as Exhibit A-2 a letter from Robert Shasha, owner, dated August 3, 2012, agreeing to the conditions, provided any variance include language that signs are to be removed at the applicant’s expense.

Mr. Auchinleck also accepted as Exhibit A-3, an 8 page packet of drawings and photographs of the location and as Exhibit A-4, a packet of photographs of other signs in the Village at Newtown and Newtown Shopping Centers.

Mr. Auchinleck confirmed that he has spoken to Jacqueline Freiling of Rothman Institute regarding the acceptable language for the letter from the shopping center owner to be acceptable to the Zoning Hearing Board, the applicant and the property owner.

Mr. Auchinleck reminded Ms. Freiling that she was still under oath.

Mr. Wind asked about proposed hours of operation for the Institute.

Ms. Freiling said that the facility would be open 7:00 AM with the last appointment of the day at 7:00 PM, Monday through Friday. She expected that everyone would leave by 8:00 PM.

Mr. Iapalucci asked whether the lights on the signs could be extinguished by 7:30 PM on weekday evenings and no lighting on weekends.

Ms. Freiling agreed to this.

Mr. Iapalucci asked about the proposed height for the rooftop signs.

Ms. Freiling said she was not certain of the exact height, but it would be as depicted on page #4 of Exhibit A-3.

Mr. Vogt said that he thought the correct height would be 204 inches from grade.

Ms. Freiling said that she would be present at the time of installation and would be sure the sign is 204 inches from the ground.

Mr. Wind said that he would like a condition of approval to be that all of the signs are located as depicted in Exhibit A-3, including the directional signs.

Mr. Auchinleck explained that according to the letter from Mr. Shasha, The Rothman Institute would remove its signs if it moves from this location. Only a new medical use could install the same signage; any other use would require a new variance. The variance for the two monument signs is extinguished.

Mr. Lionetti moved to grant variances from:

  • JMZO Section 1106(H)(4)(a), to permit two roof mounted signs , one at the rear and one at the side, both facing South Eagle Road;
  • JMZO Section 1106(H)(4)(b), to permit two roof mounted signs where such signs are not permitted;
  • JMZO Section 1106(H)(4)(C)(2)(a), to allow roof mounted signs to be approximately 54 square feet each;
  • JMZO Section 1106(H)(4)(D)(2), to allow roof mounted signs to exceed 9 feet in height as depicted in Exhibit A-3;
  • JMZO Section 1106(F)(7), to allow three directional signs of 8.5 square feet each, to be located as depicted in Exhibit A-3;

Subject to the following conditions:

  • Two existing monument signs are to be removed at applicant’s expense and prior variance permitting monument signs is extinguished;
  • Variance for roof mounted signs is for medical uses of the building, only;
  • Roof mounting is to be constructed as depicted in Exhibit A-3;
  • Sign lighting is to be extinguished at 7:30 PM, Monday through Friday, with no lighting permitted on Saturday or Sunday;
  • Roof mounted signs are to be removed by applicant at applicant’s expense when applicant vacates the building;

Mr. Wind seconded.

Discussion of Motion: Mr. Iapalucci said that he would also like a condition that no additional signage would be permitted in the windows, or elsewhere on the building. He is concerned that signage for certain products or services would be added.

Ms. Freiling said that Rothman does not place product signs outside. There would be signage stating hours of operation on the door. This is required be Medicare.

Mr. Vogt said that hours of operation on doors are not prohibited, nor are special temporary signs for events.

Ms. Freiling said that the upper level door has an awning. Would it be prohibited to write “Physical Therapy” on the awning.

Mr. Iapalucci said that this is an additional sign.

Mr. Lionetti amended his motion, adding as a sixth condition that no additional signage would be permitted.

Mr. Wind amended his second.

The amendment passed 4-0, and the motion passed 4-0.

Mr. Lionetti moved to adjourn at 8:50 PM. Mr. Potero seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Respectfully Submitted:

 

Mary Donaldson, Recording Secretary