Zoning change OKs assisted living in CF

Chadds Ford Township supervisors unanimously agreed to allow assisted living residences in the township. They voted 3-0 on Wednesday, Aug. 5, to amend the zoning code to allow the residences in the B-Business district with conditional-use approval.

The change to the code came at the request of Ed Morris, who wants to build such a facility at 1170-1778 Wilmington West Chester Pike (Route 202), the site of the former C Harry B 4 U Buy.

Morris has been working with the township for more than a year to iron out the wording of the text amendment. A hearing was opened in July, but that was continued until August for some final touches. Those last modifications changed some of the wording from “assisted living facility” to “assisted living residence.”

According to the new ordinance, No. 201-134, an assisted living residence is a facility that provides residents “the assistance to age in place.” Residents will receive daily help with dress, bathing, diet and medication.

The amended zoning code requires that locations used for such a residence be at least two acres and contain not less than 750 square feet of lot area for each living unit within the facility.

Supervisor Samantha Reiner said code enforcement officer Brian Swift believes 16 properties within the township would qualify, but no other sites are being considered.

The Route 202 location at Summit Drive is 2.3 acres, and while there are no actual plans on the table yet, Morris said he’s considering a three-story structure with 80 to 90 living units. Each unit would have 0.5 parking space, plus one space for each employee on the largest shift, likely the day shift from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. And while specific staffing requirements haven’t yet been worked out, Morris said he thinks there would be 15 to 23 employees.

While indoor recreational and exercise facilities are permitted, there may be no such outdoor ancillary facilities, according to the ordinance. Morris said there might be an outdoor walking path through a garden area and some possible “porch activities,” but nothing beyond that.

About Rich Schwartzman

Rich Schwartzman has been reporting on events in the greater Chadds Ford area since September 2001 when he became the founding editor of The Chadds Ford Post. In April 2009 he became managing editor of ChaddsFordLive. He is also an award-winning photographer.



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