tigue farm in west chester to bite the dust

At 945 Tigue Road, West Chester, PA just below the Stadium at West Chester University -between the stadium and Route 52 – actually the other side of the stadium- is this gorgeous farm you see in courtesy photos from my friend Robin Ashby.

And it’s yet another farm which will soon be plowed under for yet another development of plastic houses. I am told the actual farm is on the northeast portion of the parcel. The open land is Tigue Road and Route 52 looking north.

According to information found on the Internet at RealtyTrac.com:

945 Tigue Rd is a farm, crops located in West Chester, PA 19382. Built in 1750, this property features 7 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, 58 acres lot, and 3,999 sq ft of living space.

This is East Bradford Township. And oh yeah, it’s Toll Brothers….again:

TOLL BROTHERS SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT

During their Regular Meeting on December 12, 2017, the Board of Supervisors approved a settlement agreement with Toll PA VI, L.P. for the development of the Tigue Farm (Tigue Road and Lenape Road) to be known as “Darlington Ridge at West Chester.”  Minutes from this meeting are available on the Board and Commissions page.  The next phase of the development will involve submission of land development plans and Township review during 2018. This application may be prominent on the Township Planning Commission agenda during 2018.

Does everyone realize that acre by acre, what made Chester County Chester County will literally cease to exist at some point in the not too distant future?

How is this crazed thirst for development sustainable? How many times can we expand our schools and/or redistrict until we’re out of room?

It’s time for the residents of Chester County to have their eyes on the prize that is our home county and not just the developers.

Our agricultural and equine heritage are about to be lost forever along with the architectural heritage of Chester County farm houses, outbuildings, and barns. Once the farms are gone, they are gone forever.

Also don’t forget, that a lot of these farms were also proven or potential battle sites during the Revolutionary War. So in a lot of cases our nation’s very history is getting plowed under. And well Tigue Farm dates to the 18th century, doesn’t it?

Are we all to have “green roofs” and grow our food and put animals out to pasture that way? I find that doubtful since all these developments come with homeowners association’s and lots of rules don’t you?

Farming is often a brutally hard life. When did we stop caring about our farmers in this country? We must’ve stopped caring because they’re all selling to developers, right?

I don’t pretend to have all the answers other than restating the obvious which I keep saying, and that is the pace of development must slow down.

12 thoughts on “tigue farm in west chester to bite the dust

  1. I so agree- what is torn down and plowed under can never be reclaimed! Surely some creative contractor and architect could re-purpose the barn and walls and house so as to preserve them! As you said, more “plastic” houses are not what we need. Do these meetings happen in secret or do people just not attend and speak out?

    • Oh no the meetings are done very much in public. But more people have to speak out and in a lot of cases these developers are doing plans that are allowed within current zoning.

  2. Personally, I am praying that someone starts a group like the very successful one that stopped development of Crebilly Farm…Also, at what point will our ELECTED TOWNSHIP OFFICIALS AND COUNTY SUPERVISORS deicde that existing infrastructure does not always support such development (not to mention public opinion, but I guess that only counts at the ballot box)? Drilling down on your point above, Carla, please keep posting zoning and other meetings that are often the “root” of decisions about development. Also, I hope Chester County’s Conservancy groups will get more directly involved in this issue–doesn’t such a coalition to “save Chester County” have a certain ring to it?

    • Sadly, Crebilly is not anything yet. That development is not dead there.

      But yes, if we keep electing those whom do not see the value in preservation and moderation in development, nothing will ever change.

  3. It is indeed sad to see farms disappearing in Chester County. There are many reasons why this is happening.

    Unfortunately, many elderly farmers have no one to pass the farm onto because the next generation isn’t interested in farming. They are instead going to college to get an education and make better lives for themselves. Let’s face it, farming is very hard work.

    More often than not, elderly farmers have to sell out in order to survive. Rising health care and nursing home costs are exorbitant and often unaffordable. Sometimes selling the farm that has long been paid for and is worth more than enough to see the farmer through his/her last stretch of life, is the only option. Sometimes it’s even more complicated than that.

    It is a huge dilemma. Conservancies would be a nice alternative to development, but don’t provide enough funds. What is the answer?

    • I do not know. But we have to think outside the box here. More farming cooperatives? More conservation? Tax breaks? Farming is brutally hard work but farmers are a necessary part of our world.

  4. Many concerned neighbors attended township meetings for months . Toll brothers have a very slick team and pretty much steam rolled any objections. Completely bogus traffic study accepted by the township hook line and sinker. Ordinary residents who don’t have funds laying around to hire lawyers have no chance against them. Our elected officials didn’t care about the negative impact this will have on the folks living in the far southeast corner of the township.

    • Hi Martha:
      Yes, many people have seen exactly that same scenario play out throughout Chester County from various developers–I was born in southern CA and saw development overtake any beauty it once had. All I can mention is that forming an effective opposition group–the larger the better, the more articulate and vocal (not to be confused with angry or disrespectful, even though there is righteous anger), and the more willing to REMAIN IN SIGHT AT ALL MEETINGS, TOWNSHIP HEARINGS, even CHESTER COUNTY SUPERVISORS MEETINGS, ETC, the better AND DON’T STOP! Find effective leadership who will reach out to those who opposed Crebilly Farm development, or who opposed development of the former Bishop Tube site in East Whiteland. In over 30 years living in Chester County, this is the only type of oppostion that I have seen that works. There are plenty of us throughout Chesco who would sign a petition to stop/more thoughtfully SLOW development in Chesco!

  5. Let’s start a group to stop this! Once development starts, it spreads like a virus – at first there is the promise of beautiful houses and landscaping but what you usually get are shoddy buildings put up much too quickly and cookie cutter lots. Lost is the wild beauty and space for natural fauna and flora to thrive. Once this is gone, you will never get it back and the community ends up regretting what it lost after it is much too late…

  6. It is mostly the folks that already live in “plastic homes” that complain when another family farm is bought by Toll Brothers. The solution is a simple one…the family is selling for the money and Toll has the money. Toll Brothers are buying not to just build houses but to make money. You don’t want more development….out bid Toll. They don’t care as long as they make the money they would have made from selling the houses. They pay 5mil for the ground another 2mil for planning and infrastructure and profit on 50 houses @ anther 2mil offer them $10,000,000.00 and I bet they would be glad to sell and move on. Your Township just needs to raise everyone’s property taxes and you can get started…..

    • That is your opinion except well I don’t live in a plastic box. Also, there are always options to developers – plenty of real estate professionals who deal in more specialized properties including farms and country estates

      • People are certainly free to sell property and others are free to buy it. But when do we reach the point that genuine public well-being needs to be more ACTIVELY considered in the process? Where are our County Commissioners and Township officials–and their concern for “quality of life”–when infrastructure becomes over-taxed, green space becomes a premium, and schools become too filled by over-development to provide the high quality education that Chester County touts? Do we all just pay those higher taxes and hope for better? Maybe I missed something, but I haven’t seen that work anywhere else…

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