east whiteland zoning alert: malvern issues

abandoned house on morsteinI have been waiting for East Whiteland’s CubeSmart drama to pop up again, and it is…on Monday. Remember the last meeting on Cube Smart this summer? The one where one of the board members fell asleep? The zoning hearing board agenda for Monday is posted, check it out.

Appeal No. 13-15 Application of Old Lancaster Venture, LP, c/o CubeSmart (continuation of the hearing commenced at the July 22nd meeting of the Board).

I say this is a meeting worth attending for CubeSmart alone.

Of course while I was perusing the agenda (which I have loaded for you here: East Whiteland Zoning Hearing Board Agenda Aug 26 ), something else caught my eye that people anywhere near (or on) Morstein Road or Collegeview in Malvern should sit up and take note.

You know that derelict to the point of abandoned home on Morstein just before Collegeview (if you are coming up Morstein from King Road – grainy photo above)? The driveway is overgrown and trees have fallen down, yet if you look closely when you go by it appears it is still full of stuff although obviously not inhabited? Well apparently the property is in play and up for subdivision:

Appeal No. 13-17 Application of Pennfield Properties, LP as equitable owner, and the Estate of George F. Donahue as the title owner, for a variance from the minimum lot width at the street right-of-way line (75 feet required) in order to reduce the lot width at the street line to 49 feet, in conjunction with a proposed two-lot subdivision of property located at 1535 Morstein Road (tax parcel 42-6-51) in an R-1 zoning district.

I would say given the verbiage that the sale might be contingent upon zoning approval. If you live near this home or merely care about residential zoning in East Whiteland, I think this is an important thing – if this applicant gets approval for a variance in minimum lot width the barn door is WIDE open to questionable development where a lot more gets crammed onto a lot less space than used to be allowed.

The word of the day is precedence. As in you do not want it happening with this application.

Being allowed to go from 75 feet to 49 feet is a very big deal. Trust me, I came off the Main Line where no one is happy until every nook and cranny is developed and people are squished into neighborhoods like lemmings. (Which of course leads to other issues with things like infrastructure, roads, traffic, and so on and so forth.)

I figured from the first time I saw that house that the lot was just a goner and someone was waiting for a developer to put jingle in their pocket. However, I think if a developer overpays for land it is their personal issue. That being said, yeah ok, a developer bought it, but East Whiteland can say no to what they are requesting and have these applicants stick to developing more along the size and scale of other homes in the neighborhood. This property has a lot of woods. Once a neighborhood eco system is changed and open space is obliterated, it is not coming back. Please, if you are going to go to this meeting ask East Whiteland to deny the variance request. Preserve a very pretty stretch of road and neighborhood.

Pennfield Properties was unknown to me, so I looked them up:

pennfield 1