Crebilly hearings nearing a close

What might have been the next to last session of the conditional use hearing for the proposed development of Crebilly Farm had some technical issues in which some people were knocked offline, but at least one rebuttal witness had been able to testify.

Toll Bros. wants to build a development of 317 new homes on the 320-plus acre site in Westtown T0wnship. The property is situated between Routes 202 and 926 on the east and south, and S. New Street and W. Pleasant Grove Road in the west and north.

Before the technical problems, civil engineer Jeff Madden was called as a rebuttal witness by Gregg Adelman, the attorney representing Toll in the matter.

Adelman had Madden review and rebut some of the testimony from township engineer Robert Flinchbough, and traffic engineer Al Federico. Among the issues under review were the density of the development and roadway sightlines — whether some existing roads would need to be widened or reprofiled. Reprofiling, Madden said, referred to regrading the road surface to make the road lower, decreasing its rise, to improve the vertical curvature.

Madden said the density was well within what's allowed by township code, saying the proposed135-townhome section density was 7.2 units per acre. He said the area for those townhouses is 23.58 acres. However, netting out common open space and rights of way yields 18.7 acres.

"The 7.2 dwelling units per acre is less than the maximum of 10 dwelling units per acre," he said.

On further questioning, Madden said the impervious coverage of the townhome section was also within allowable limits, based on a gross area of the townhome section of 38.8 acres. The total impervious area of that section — including roads, driveways, and sidewalks — is 13.4 acres of impervious coverage. That calculates to be just less than 35 percent, he said, adding that up 45 percent is allowable.

Other testimony included a discussion of stormwater management, but most of that is a matter for the land development phase of the application, not as part of the conditional use proceedings.

The questions then moved to internal road design issues, which Madden also said is also more a matter for final land development because that ties in with designing final sewer installation and the grading of the residential lots. He said preliminary road design concepts were submitted to show how the roads could conform with natural features, site analysis, and conservation design process.

Among internal roads — which are not yet named, referred to only by letter — Madden said some had been redrawn with proposed lengthening to improve sightlines.

Madden said proper sight distances can be achieved regarding existing roads, some with changes, and some without. He said adequate sight distance is doable at the intersection of W. Pleasant Grove Road and the proposed collector road near Westminster Presbyterian Church. He added later, however, that W. Pleasant Grove Road does not need to be reprofiled but needs to be widened its full length on the side of the proposed development.

On the south side of the development, adequate sight distance is met at Street Road (Route 926) and the collector road, but that Route 926 does need to be reprofiled.

Madden added that proper sight distances can be achieved at all four of the development's access intersections, three along W. Pleasant Grove Road and the one along Route 296.

The next hearing date is scheduled to be in person at 7 p.m. on July 12, at Bayard Rustin High School, according to township solicitor Patrick McKenna.

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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