The Residents of Schuylkill Township oppose rezoning the 47 acre Conference Center located at 1485 Valley Forge Rd. from the present Low Density housing R-1 to a High Density housing classification. The property is presently owned by University of Valley Forge (UVF).
To see entire petition letter, please click on "read petition letter" below.
6 March 2017
To: Schuylkill Township Board of Supervisors
From: Concerned Residents of Schuylkill Township
Re: Proposed Rezoning of 1485 Valley Forge Road
We, the undersigned, are writing to inform you of our opposition to the rezoning of 1485 Valley Forge Road, a 47 acre parcel formerly owned by and known as National Christian Conference Center.
Background: The present owner, the University of Valley Forge, has recently submitted two proposals to the Planning Commission and Township Supervisors which require a change of zoning from its present R-1 low density residential classification to a C (commercial), APO (apartment, professional office) or some hybrid zoning classification.
We respectfully ask these proposals be rejected due to the negative effect on the health, welfare and safety of the community and adverse effect on the aesthetics, neighborhood character, and natural resources of the township.
Other major concerns:
Our property owners care deeply about their neighborhoods, the surroundings, and about what is happening in our community as a whole. Considering the potential of a rental type community being developed, traditionally, these communities do not share this vision. This is a great concern to property owners in our area.
Homeowners in the nearby neighborhoods purchased their homes with the understanding the conference center property was designated Low Density use. To rezone this property now would be unfair to these property owners.
Additionally, there are many unknowns surrounding this proposed zoning change. The University of Valley Forge is asking for a rezoning to an unspecified mixed use. The development company, Endeavor Property Group, has little experience in this type of residential community development. There also has been little neighborhood engagement to gather feedback from the whole community. This entire process must be transparent and include full public participation and approval.
The Phoenixville Regional Planning Committee including Schuylkill Township has stated that it will work to preserve open space, natural resources and agriculture in the region and that it will address the specific needs and unique conditions of each municipality in the region.
The Phoenixville Regional Planning Committee Comprehensive Plan adopted in 2008 states the following about the conference center parcel of land:
The Township Supervisors as well as the Planning Commission appear to have skipped over these points and have encouraged UVF to pursue their expansive land development plans for the 47 acre parcel. The neighbors do not support any change in zoning and believe that the UVF proposals are NOT in the best interest of the neighbors of Schuylkill Township or its environment and any proposed changes should not come at the expense of the good, long-standing, hard working residents of Schuylkill Township.
The homeowners of Flintlock Lane, McKinney Lane, Valley Forge Rd, Sunwood Farm and Weyhill along with Schuylkill Township have significant financial investment in their homes, properties and neighborhoods. We are all fully invested in Schuylkill Township and have much skin in the game. UVF made no investment in the purchase of this property, having received it as a gift from the Hobby Lobby Stores Company.
We, the people, feel strongly that these proposals must be rejected and the Supervisors should only consider proposals which will create designated open space and retain the R-1 zoning classification. We encourage the Board of Supervisors to utilize the tax dollars collected for acquisition of lands for Open Space in Schuylkill Township. We ask you to act on Behalf of the Residents of Schuylkill Township as our Fiduciary and not in some group's special interests.
Thank you for your attention to this matter.
Concerned Neighbors of Schuylkill Township
We welcome your comments and questions to stimulate and clarify our opposition to these proposals.
Let's get the word out!