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Chester County Press

East Marlborough supervisors lay groundwork for weight-limit ordinance

10/06/2015 12:22PM ● By J. Chambless

By John Chambless
Staff Writer

The East Marlborough Township Board of Supervisors took a step towards keeping heavy trucks off of East Doe Run Road at their Oct. 5 meeting.

The road is not built to handle the loaded tractor trailers that use it, resulting in cracks and dents. At last month's supervisors meeting, Police Chief Robert Clarke told the board he has spoken to one of the drivers for Diamond State Recycling, one of the companies whose trucks are frequently seen driving through the area. “They run three trucks carrying two loads of scrap metal a day out of Wilmington.” Clarke said. “One of the drivers said that when they come up 926, they can't make the turn at Landhope if there's two sets of cars there. It's too tight to turn a tractor trailer. So they go down East Doe Run Road.”

Suggestions from the board included imposing a weight limit on East Doe Run Road that would keep the trucks on routes 1 and 82, which are built to handle heavier loads. At the Oct. 5 meeting, township solicitor Frone Crawford said he had drafted a proposed ordinance to ban vehicles over a certain weight from using East Doe Run Road, but that a traffic study was needed first. Any restriction would have to allow buses, trash trucks or emergency vehicles, and the board was unsure what weight should be posted as the upper limit. Township manager Jane Laslo said she would contact Traffic Planning and Development to study the roadway and suggest a weight limit to the township.

At the beginning of the Oct. 5 meeting, Jeff Groves, a trustee of the Po-Mar-Lin Fire Company, presented the long-delayed 2014 audit of the fire company, apologizing for the delay. The audit, which was performed for the first time by a professional CPA, was due June 1. Searching for documents for the rigorous audit took longer because this was the first time, Groves said, but the process should be easier going forward.

“It's a fairly good audit,” he told the board. “I don't think you'll find anything out of place – at least the auditor didn't find anything. There are a couple of things that we could work on, and we're working on those now,” he said. The board had not seen the audit until Monday night, so details are not yet available.

A settlement was announced with the Regis Company, which is building the Walnut Walk townhouse community on Walnut Road. The company had balked at paying $1,000 per unit to the township for open space and recreation fees, especially since there will be an on-site recreation trail with exercise stations, a volleyball court and a children's play area at the townhouse community. A settlement will allow Regis to pay $500 per unit to the township for Phase Two of the development. “That will still give $26,000 to the township's open space funds,” Frone Crawford told the board, “on top of providing recreational facilities at Walnut Walk.” The board unanimously approved the settlement.

Ongoing drainage problems in the Belrose community were addressed by Linda Edmondson of the homeowner's association. One homeowner has had repeated water infiltration into his basement despite several attempted fixes. The problem, Edmondson said, is improper grading outside the unit, which allows rainwater to pool and drain into the basement. The homeowner's association was seeking board support for pressuring the developer, Woodstone Homes, to regrade the area around the home. The homeowner, who has since moved elsewhere in the township, cannot sell the home with its current problem.

Township engineer Jim Hatfield said “the swale was not graded according to the lot plan when approved. This should have been picked up prior to the walk-through, but for whatever reason, it wasn't.”

Even if the area is regraded, Hatfield said, “I cannot represent to the homeowner and this board that regrading will definitely solve all the water issues in this unit,” but that regrading is the best solution available.

Board president Cuyler Walker said the board will seek to meet with the developer at the site to see what the solution could be. “This board would like to bring pressure on the builder. The way to do that is to meet at the site and try to get everyone on the same page,” Walker said. “We will certainly do whatever we can to rectify this situation.”

The board also approved a request for traffic modifications on Greenwood Road if available parking fills up for the holiday display at Longwood Gardens, whose peak days are Nov. 27 to Dec. 10. There is satellite parking with a shuttle bus that runs from the Exelon Company parking lot in Kennett Square if the Longwood lot is full and its auxiliary field parking is too wet to use, said Longwood representative Greg Papiernik. If the plan has to be used, the southbound ramp to Longwood is closed, and signs advise visitors to continue to the Exelon lot. Fire and police block the north entrance to Greenwood Road and help guide cars to the parking area. “If we use it, it only lasts about 45 minutes,” Papiernik said. The request was unanimously approved.

The board also agreed to close Green Valley Road during the ToughMudder run near Plantation Field on Oct. 17 and 18. The road had previously been scheduled to close on only one day, but the organizers and Police Chief Clarke said it would be safer to close the roadway during the race on both days.

To contact Staff Writer John Chambless, email [email protected].