The Nether Providence Township held its usual Board of Commissioners meeting on May 11th. The video is available online. Unusually no agenda was posted, I’m not sure what happened. I’ve tried to piece together the order as best I could.
Bob Linn (the township’s de facto architect) gave a presentation about the proposed new public works garage. There are 4 bid categories for the general contractor, plumbing, HVAC and electric. The lowest bid total comes to $1.1 million with an additional $130k for the proposed driveway loop for resident drop-offs when the yard is closed. These numbers seem to be higher than was expected. Bob Linn presented that the existing structure is at-risk of collapse, not suited to purpose (too short and not deep enough) and that the utilities running to it are all in poor condition and need to be replaced. The new structure will be built next to the existing structure and then it will be torn down. Hopefully this new structure will be of better build quality than the current structure, which I think they said was only 20 or so years old.
There was a presentation by a developer seeking to develop the Oak Valley subdivision. This was approved in 2005, but didn’t happen until now. Since then new township ordinances have been passed that the subdivision needs to comply with. The ones discussed regard sidewalks, riparian buffers and tree replacement. It was noted that the sidewalk wouldn’t go anywhere as there’s no other sidewalks on the street and walking along Beatty is ill-advised. The riparian buffer requirement is not practical, but the developer gave estimates of what adjustments could be done to come as close as possible to the requirements. And the site is forested, so tree replacement is impractical on the site. The development would also result in road improvements and connect the other properties along the street to the township sewer system. In situations like this the board usually requests payments for sidewalks and trees elsewhere in the township in lieu of these items, but the developer seemed reluctant. They also seemed disappointed that the board wanted further discussions and to allow a chance for the 4th ward commissioner to weigh in on the development (this is her ward and she was absent). The board will set up a meeting with the developer with hopes that something can be approved at the next board meeting.
Minutes were approved.
The engineer reported that street paving was ahead of schedule.
No updates from PECO. The township is trying to set up a public meeting, but no progress.
The county wants the township to continue to participate in HUD’s CBDG program (the county manages it), which has provided recent paving in Garden City Manor as well as improvements at Hepford. There seemed to be a consensus to do so.
The county health department is taking over on site sewage inspection (septic tanks). The township currently has a contractor provide this service, so that contract will not be renewed after the next reorganization.
Parks & Open Space
The Creekside Swim Club and DelCo Dills are in discussion about an easement to redevelop the swim club’s tennis courts into pickleball courts that’d be publicly accessible. Kind of weird I haven’t heard anything from Creekside about this.
NPAA’s baseball program is applying for a Greenways grant for further ballfield and dugout improvements at Hepford and Bullens Ln. parks.
The township’s still waiting for the MOU from the school district.
The warrant analysis for a traffic signal at Turner and Baltimore Pike is underway for a future ARLE grant application.
The guide rail on Avondale was recently damaged by a vehicle and needs to be replaced. This is an urgent need and so will not go out for bid. A Costars vendor will be used if possible and hopefully the driver’s insurance will cover some of the cost.
An Eagle Scout project in Furness Park was recently vandalized with graffiti, and there’s frustration with this repeatedly happening in the township lately. This project was pretty recent, so its disappointing to see it defaced already. The township will clean it up soon.
Community Health and Environment
The summer camp registration is still open, but spots are almost filled up.
The township is waiting for bids on the Park Ridge sewer repair.
The Watershed Restoration grant program with a 15% match is open until May 31st. There was a discussion of which MS4 project to fund (MS4 are runoff reductions the township is required to undertake), with a focus on projects in Furness Park or continuing the planned work in Houston Park. I think they decided on Houston Park. The proposal will be fleshed out to be passed as a resolution at the next board meeting.
There was a discussion of whether to take out a loan for the new public works garage. The rates from the Delaware Valley Regional Financing Authority are around 3.5% for a 20 year loan. But the board was unsure of how much of the American Recovery Act money they’ll have to put toward the garage. Some of the ARA money will be used for MS4 projects and the township building improvements. I think the board decided to wait to see how those expenses line up and what’s left for the garage before deciding to take out a loan. Interest rates seem unlikely to rise in the near future.
Building and Zoning
The ground solar array ordinance is still before the county planning commission.
The special exception variance expiration ordinance was reviewed by the county who had a suggestion to tweak the start timing for land development projects. This ordinance would increase the window in which work can start on a project with an approved variance to 18 months. It was pointed out that making the recommended change would be cumbersome and require the township to restart the ordinance review process, so the board decided to move forward with it as is.
There will be a hearing at the May 25th board meeting for the rezoning of 424 Wallingford and 702 Forrest from commercial to residential at the request of the homeowners. The locations are currently used as residential housing.
The board will meet once a month in the summer: June 15th, July 13th, August 10th.
The CAT club rescheduled its Waterville cleanup with the next one probably in June. They did some work along Bullens Ln. recently.
The county has a Medicare cost sharing extra help zoom program, details are available on the township website.
Delaware county is continuing the land bank survey, which was mentioned in a recent board meeting. There was some offhand discussion of a property near Houston Park that was recently purchased in a judicial sale and will likely be developed but currently is not being mowed according to township ordinances.
Williamson Trade School is helping out at Leiper House with a week of service doing painting, landscaping and repairs.
The county is recycling campaign signs on May 19th and 20th. There will be a bin to collect them at the public works yard between Election Day on the 16th and the 19th.
Categories: Government, NPTownship