UPPER DUBLIN >> A resolution to support construction of 500 miles of circuit trails in the region by 2025 was approved by the township board of commissioners Tuesday night — the only action item on the agenda.
The Pennsylvania Environmental Council has asked municipalities to consider it, Township Manager Paul Leonard said, adding he thought Upper Dublin was the first to vote.
“There is no cost involved in joining the initiative,” Commissioner Liz Ferry said.
The continuation of a conditional use hearing for the Mattison Estate scheduled to begin prior to the board’s stated meeting was postponed to April 18, due to the inclement weather. The hearing will be held prior to the board’s April meeting, now scheduled for the same date.
The greater discussion, however, revolved around a new hearing on a zoning amendment to permit mixed-use as a conditional use in areas zoned Office Center District.
The amendment, which would permit BT Dreshertown’s proposed Promenade at Upper Dublin by conditional use — a mix of apartments and retail space on 25 acres at Welsh, Dreshertown and Dryden roads — was approved in a 5-2 vote by the board of commissioners Dec. 6.
A citizens group comprising nine property owners, most from the nearby luxury home Dawesfield community, filed an appeal Jan. 5 in Montgomery County Court of Common Pleas asking that the ordinance be declared null and void. The appeal “challenges the validity” of the ordinance, “raising procedural questions or alleged defects in the process and enactment and adoption” of it.
Following the appeal, the board voted last month to hold a new hearing on the ordinance at 6:30 p.m. March 28. Residents opposed to the Promenade previously indicated they might want to bring in their own experts regarding traffic and fiscal impact.
The conditional use application and preliminary land development plan for the Promenade at Upper Dublin is slated for review by the township planning commission March 21. Commissioner Ron Feldman asked if that was still scheduled to occur before the rehearing on the ordinance.
Township Solicitor David Brooman explained the developer could apply for a conditional use and submit land development plans under the ordinance approved in December, as it is still valid. March 28 the board will accept additional comment on the ordinance and can vote to readopt the ordinance after rescinding the existing ordinance, both of which are exactly the same, he said.
If the board does not readopt the ordinance or rescind it, it would be left to the court to decide whether or not to grant the appeal, Brooman said. Should the board readopt the ordinance, the appeal would be moot, he said.
It would then be up to the citizens group to decide if it wanted to take further action, Brooman said.
On a different topic, Leonard noted that a Fort Washington Community Vision Plan has been posted on the township’s website. The plan provides a vision for the commercial overlay district on Pennsylvania Avenue from Commerce Drive to Bethlehem Pike, he said.
Two of the commissioners met with about 40 to 45 residents who live near the commercial stretch, he said, adding, “We know the neighbors’ issues.”
Redevelopment plans at North Hills Manor are expected to move forward soon, the township’s engineer, Tom Fountain, said in his monthly report, and LuLu Country Club has submitted plans for its new clubhouse, which he expects “to be under construction in the next few weeks.”
In addition, plans may be forthcoming for an age-restricted or assisted living facility on a 5-acre parcel owned by Brandolini Companies on Dreshertown Road at the edge of the Dreshertown Plaza, he said.