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Planning Commission
1/9/2018 7:30 PM


JANUARY 9, 2018



Members Present

Edward Ingle

Steve Saddlemire

Andrew Gannon

Michelle Druding

Dr. Arthur Friedman

Patrick McGuigan

Mark Shapiro


Others Present

Barry Moore, BOS Liaison

Amanda Fuller, Township Engineer

Craig Bryson, RLA, Township Planner

Mike Solomon, Director of Planning and Zoning


Dr. Friedman called the meeting to order at 7:30 PM and led the Pledge of Allegiance. There was also a moment of silence for those in our armed forces. 




A motion was made to elect the following as officers for 2018:  Ed Ingle - Chair (Gannon/Friedman); Steve Saddlemire – Vice Chair (Ingle/Friedman); and Andrew Gannon - Secretary (Druding/McGuigan).


Approved - 7-0




A motion (Friedman/McGuigan) was made to approve the minutes from the November 14, 2017 meeting.


Approved - 7-0


A motion (Gannon/Druding) was made to approve the minutes from the December 12, 2017 meeting.


Approved - 7-0


Consideration of Sketch Plan - H.E. Properties, LLC, 355 W. Bristol Road,

Sketch 14-5


Jason Smeland, PE was present along with the property owner, Josh Ritchey.  Mr. Smeland gave an overview of the project noting that one flag lot is to be created with this project.  The subject property is located in the R-2 zoning district and consists of approximately 4.6 acres.


Mr. Smeland discussed the plan with the Commission and noted the septic system that is proposed.  He stated a variance is due for impervious surface coverage, which is primarily the result of the length of the flag being excluded from the calculation.  He further discussed the narrow width of the current lot and the need for the proposed configuration.


Mr. Smeland noted that he will be able to conform to the review letters and touched on the requested waivers, including curb and sidewalks, road widening, and driveway width.


Dr. Friedman inquired with the consultants and Ms. Fuller noted that there are some minor items that applicant will need to address.  Mr. Bryson noted the one variance that is requested.


In response to the variance request, Mr. Saddlemire inquired if the impervious surface could be reduced.  Mr. Smeland noted that it could not.  In response to Mr. Ingle, the applicant noted that he intends to construct a new house.


Ms. Druding inquired about septic and it was noted that it depends on soils.  In response to Mr. Gannon, Mr. Ritchey noted that the wells were tested in light of the recent contamination issues.  Mr. Moore noted that DEP should be contacted as the test is more detailed than a standard well test.


Mr. Saddlemire noted the restriction against further subdivision of the property.


There being no comment from the public, the Planning Commission made the following motion:


I move to recommend to the Board of Supervisors approval of the sketch plan for a flag lot layout for 355 W. Bristol Road for H.E. Properties, LLC subject to review and approval by the Township staff and consultants.  


Approved - 7-0

Motion – Gannon    Second - Shapiro


Consideration of Sketch Plan - Strobinski Subdivision, 48 East Holland Road,

Sketch 17-4


Doug Maloney, Esq. and Vince Fiorvanti, PE were present on behalf of the applicant.  Mr. Maloney provided an overview of the plan, which consists of 5 lots on a corner.  Mr. Maloney noted that a watercourse transverses the property as well.


Mr. Fiorvanti began by discussing the existing features plan. He noted the area of the wetlands that were delineated.  He noted the subject property is zoned R-2 and is adjacent to a kennel and inactive railroad.


In response to the initial reviews, he provided an overview of the revised plan and noted that the number of driveways is being reduced.  He explained the DEP permitting process as well.


With respect to waivers, Mr. Fiorvanti noted that road widening, width, curb, and sidewalks were the items that required relief.  He further discussed the sewers on East Holland Road.


Dr. Friedman inquired about the sanitary system on lot 1 and the DEP encroachment.  Mr. Bryson further addressed the issue and Mr. Fiorvanti noted that the process will take time.


Mr. McGuigan inquired about the waiver requests and Mr. Saddlemire raised the issue of stormwater management.  Mr. Fiorvanti noted that the stormwater management system is not fully engineered and will be reviewed the Township engineer.


Mr. Ingle stated that traffic in this area will increase if Richboro Middle School is closed and the curve is a major issue already.  He added that reforestation may also be a requirement for this property.


Mr. Saddlemire stated that he has concerns with traffic piling up if there are stop signs at the intersection.


Mr. Gannon added that he would like to see the driveway for Lot 1 moved and traffic minimized.  He added that he is not in support of the plan.  Mr. Bryson stated that it is possible to have 5 lots with only one additional driveway. 


Mr. Moore stated that the final determination by the DEP must be known for this project to move forward. 


Mr. Maloney added that the plan should also be reviewed by the Township's traffic engineer, McMahon Associates.      


With no further discussion from the Commission, this matter was tabled until more information can be obtained from the applicant.                     


Discussion - Northampton Township Comprehensive Plan and Richboro Master Plan


Prior to a public hearing being set for the Supervisors to approve the Comprehensive and Richboro Plans, Mr. Solomon noted that it would be helpful to solicit all comments from the Commission so a final draft could be compiled.  He stated that revisions later in the process will complicate adoption of the plans.


Dr. Friedman stated that there is really nothing in the plans to object.  Mr. Moore added that the plans provide a document to pursue grant funding.


Mr. Gannon raised concerns about the roundabout and the extension to Township Road.  Mr. Ingle also raised concerns about the Township Road extension.


Mr. Ingle added that he would like to see the improvements by Dreher implemented at Newtown-Richboro Road.


Mr. Saddlemire added that he would like to see traffic dispersed off the main roadways of the Township.  Mr. Ingle added that he has a comfort level that the plan is in conjunction with the current Township initiatives.


Mr. McGuigan stated that the roundabout creates an identity and he is in support of initiatives that support small business.


Ms. Druding stated that she has concerns about traffic backing up.


Mr. Gannon reiterated that resources could be better spent as opposed to those outlined in the plan.


Mr. Moore state that he relies on experts regarding the effectiveness of road improvements, including the proposed roundabout.  He added that adoption of the plan is necessary to keep the process moving along as every aspect can be constantly debated. He added reaction to the plan has been positive.


There being no comment from the public, the Planning Commission made the following motion:


I move to recommend to the Board of Supervisors approval of the Northampton Township Comprehensive Plan Update of 2018, including the Richboro Master Plan. 


Approved - 7-0

Motion – Friedman    Second - Saddlemire


Other Business


There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned.


Respectfully Submitted:

Michael T. Solomon

Director of Planning and Zoning


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