BOROUGH OF HATBORO
TUESDAY JUNE 7, 2022
PRESENT – Chairman McMenamin, Vice Chair Kline, Member Farnen, Member Hegele, Member Shay, Mayor Shultz, Borough Manager Hegele, Borough Planner Kennedy, and Secretary Stremme were present.
CALL TO ORDER – Chairman McMenamin called the July 12, 2022, Planning Commission Meeting to order at 7:05 P.M.
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE – Chairman McMenamin led the Pledge of Allegiance.
VOTING ITEMS –
APPROVAL OF JUNE 7, 2022, MEETING MINUTES – All in favor. LuAnn would like the print of minutes to be bigger.
UNION LIBRARY HISTORIC RESOURCE NOMINATION – Diane stated this was similar to the Borough Hall building nomination. Background information is in the packet along with pictures for everyone to review. Library board Mr. Hegele said the memo says it all. Especially the last paragraph: On May 8, 1978, the building was placed on the State Registry of Historical Buildings. On November 27, 1979, it was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.
All in favor.
REVISITING PLANNER KENNEDY’S UPDATE – RC-2 Retail Zoning Amendment – Planner Kennedy recalled the draft from last month and advised that changes were made on the discussed suggestion from the last meeting. He sent out copies Mr. Tulio and Mr. Petrucci. He received their recommendations on the changes and about 90-95% of changes incorporated. Additional changes were made by him to clarify some of the updates that were requested.
PUBLIC PARKING SPACES: Chairman McMenamin and LuAnn Kline had some questions in regard to the public parking spaces with the projects. Chairman McMenamin requested Planner Kennedy to provide a short version on how the parking spaces would work. Specifically, the bonus provision (page 7) for public parking spaces.
- Spaces could be given back to the borough for public use.
- These spaces would be in excess of what is needed by each complex.
- One example would be for the CVS property.
- For 36 units
,the parking regulation states 1–2-bedroom units would require 1.5 spaces per unit, so they would need 54 parking spaces.
- For the 2,365 sq ft of commercial it would require 1 space for 200 sq ft of customer space 2,128 would be reduced. That would require 11 spaces for the commercial parking.
- Total of 65 spaces would be needed for property.
- CVS had a 1992 parking agreement, that has been examined by the Attorney’s.
- 147 parking spaces available, the Borough would be entitled to 50% and the property would be entitled to 50%.
NOTE: The 8 spaces were not included that exist on the side of the building as that is where the new complex will be.
- Since 147 is an odd number, 74 parking spots would go to the Borough 73 parking spots to the CVS applicant.
- This is more spaces than the complex would need so they could give them back to the Borough.
- All would be done through a modified parking arrangement, but they would be in conformist with zoning with what was being proposed.
- If the CVS applicant is interested in the Bonus Feature for the Public Parking Spaces the numbers would have to updated in regard to the Public Parking Spaces bonus feature, Bonus Feature Standards and Bonus Heights. (25 off-street public parking spots = 10 ft bonus space / 15 off-street public parking spots = 5 ft). Change if between 10-15 spaces created you could go with 5ft bonus.
NOTE: This would relate to public parking areas for other properties and for future opportunities for other public parking area’s to be created. This calculation could go towards extra height (going above 3 stories) in the future.
- Goal of entire process is to rewrite the parking agreement and have it reviewed by Rebecca.
- Chairman McMenamin expressed that if the municipal lot was split it’s that good it does fit in with the way the bonus structure is written out. It seems reasonable to him.
- Planner Kennedy asked Mike Tulio if that is what they were thinking. Mr. Tulio said it would be worked out with Rob Gundlach. Mr. Tulio had a question about the 8 spaces on the side of the CVS. These were not included in the 147 spaces as they will not be there after they build the new complex. After application received Planner Kennedy said they would go through it thoroughly.
AMENDEMENT TO CODE: Mr. Hegele had a question in section 4.B on page 3.
He asked who came up with the distance to the train station? Planner Kennedy said he came up with the number. He used town standards to determine this distance, then used a straight simple radius from the train station building to the properties. The 1500 ft is based off of that. He feels that is a reasonable walking distance and number. However, members of the Planning Commission committee feel that we need to define ‘the property’ so it will not be interpretive. Using the verbiage any portion of the property is within the distance might clear it up and not be interpretive. The section will be updated to read the distance to train station building.
YORK ROAD STREETSCAPE AMENITIES: Chairman McMenamin had a question in section 4, Table 12-1 on page 7.
Should we be more specific about the standards for putting in a bus station, bike rack, etc? Do we get specific for each amenity that is able to be put in town? Planner Kennedy suggested that you put in minimum standards/numbers so it does not come back to hurt the Borough as every property will come with different issues.
Chairman McMenamin asked what is the best way to make sure that we give the proper expectation on the specifics? Planner Kennedy said we could write it to provide minimal standards/numbers for some of the items. Might want to take the bike rack out of the ordinance as it overlays with our parking standards. Chairman McMenamin expressed how some of the amenities would be challenging for the pedestrians and parking. Planner Kennedy thought we could concentrate on easements and passageways and include standards for a public plaza type space. This would comply with streetscape section and the setbacks. Could be broken down into two bonuses.
Mr. Garrity made a suggestion that since this is set up for condition use, make the building height a bonus: All the conditional use where the Planning Commission or Borough Council needs to approve if it works on the site. Planner Kennedy agreed it was a good suggestion.
Planner Kennedy is looking for flexibility as the set-back for the buildings we currently have are all different for properties.
Chairman McMenamin agrees that it makes sense to make it for conditional use. Planner Kennedy will add a cavoite for a condition that it would be at the approval of Borough Council, subject to a recommendation. Would be updated for the whole category.
Mr. Garrity did not want to see the plaza requirement. Planner Kennedy explained that it is not required only if builders want it.
You would want some kind of allowance for the plaza you would have a minimum and maximum due to landscaping or utilities.
Planner Kennedy will add a clause to the entire section that: It is with the Approval of Borough Council.
DISCUSSION ON PARKING – VARIOUS TOPICS
Parking Agreements: Chairman McMenamin had a question on Parking Agreements, page 9, parts 7 & 8. He interpreted it that if there was a parking agreement from a long time ago whatever is written in that agreement is ‘gold’ or is there flexibility to change it going forward? He is referencing parking studies from the past. They seem fully open to interpretation as they are written. Planner Kennedy said these are two different topics. The parking easements are really a legal question/document. The Planning Commission needs to be specific how they want the parking agreement structured. Would be hard to regulate in the Ordinance as these are usually written in the developer’s document and legal documents. The CVS valid parking easement and agreement with the Borough will be rewritten and more specific the next time around.
How do you enforce who parks in an easement? Signs? Permit parking? The parking will need to be enforced.
It was requested that he make the parking agreement format clearer, so it does not have to be interpreted going forward and can be a reference for folks to view and will be understood. Make sure percentages are written in so Borough, developers, etc understand the number which will in turn make it easier for Borough to manage it.
A parking report, per Planner Kennedy, would be a separate conditional use. Page 9, #8. A traffic engineer would have to put together a report. Not sure how much to put in, other than you want it prepared by a professional engineer. They still need to come to Borough as a separate conditional use. Already getting a break on parking by using this option
LuAnn Kline asked that would it require a ‘new lease’ if any part of the parking agreement was changed. They could ask to use less spaces. Would it then require a new contract?
Why Planner Kennedy made this a separate conditional use is so you can request additional information for the conditional use. Request a seasonable breakdown for example. Borough parking touchy subject.
Pete with Core Construction: They are interested in potentially doing something in Hatboro. He stated that other projects they have done the parking was one to one parking. Parking is biggest complaint. Can make or break proceeding with a build.
Deciding to reduce or strike section 4, #8: Parking may be reduced by conditional use up to 20%.
- Do we reduce from 20% to 10% or strike?
- More difficult in small borough like ours.
- We don’t have amenities like city so not able to walk to places for all needs.
- Most likely will not build under building due to cost and height restrictions.
- Hatboro requires surface parking.
- If you lose units to parking the new complex makes less money.
- This would deter future interest in building in Hatboro, especially if they can’t park residents.
- Taxes and parking are what the expense comes down to for builders to show interest.
- Figure out how to give more flexibility for future projects.
- Fear the gray area’s so we do not end up in court.
- Could be subjective.
- Nature of zoning is not gray and white. There will be gray areas. You cannot get too specific as that can come back to bite the Borough.
- Is a reduction warranted? Will it have a negative impact on the area?
- Conditions can be imposed.
- Keep the way it is as cost of installation are going down
- Developers might have to manage installation
- Solar companies install
- Tie the # of charging station to # of units
- Commercial charging number is 6. Keep this number as it could benefit public.
MOTION TO ADOPT CHANGES: Chairman McMenamin & Bob Hegele recommend approval to draft changes.
Planner Kennedy will make changes and get them to Diane.
- Change section 4, #1, I, Table 12-1, York Road Streetscape Amenities: Planner Kennedy will add a clause to the entire section that: It is with the Approval of Borough Council with the recommendation of Borough Planning Commission.
- Change section 4, #8: Reduce from 20% to 10%.
- Change section 4: Section B under Development Regulations to read the distance to train station building.
- Change was added for a maximum side yard into the ordinance (with an exception to existing driveways) and the addition of a “building design” section that is very general and will eventually be supplemented with a future SALDO update.
PUBLIC COMMENT – There was no public comment.
OLD BUSINESS – There was no old business.
ADJOURNMENT – Chairman McMenamin adjourned the July 12, 2022, Planning Commission Meeting at 8:34 P.M.
Respectfully Submitted by:
Diane C. Hegele, Borough Manager
Transcribed by Lea Stremme