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© 2021 Newtown Crossing
Community Association



 

 

 

Welcome to newtowncrossing.info, the official website for the Newtown Crossing Community Association.

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Important Update on Arcadia Development

REGISTER TO PARTICIPATE
in the Newtown Twp. Supervisors Meeting
2/24/21 7pm

Read the latest version of the
Settlement Agreement including exhibits.

To the residents of Newtown Crossing: 

The following is an update on activity relative to the undeveloped property between the Newtown Bypass, Newtown Crossing and Eagle Ridge developments:

Background:  As many of you are probably aware, the Arcadia III development application for 76 residences (23 single family homes and 53 townhomes) at Rt. 532 and the bypass has been before the Newtown Township (NTT) supervisors for hearings for years, beginning in 2018. The potential developer, Arcadia Holdings, has made separate applications to develop the property for residential housing in 2015 and 2017 as well, and each time your Board of Directors has vigorously opposed the development (including through legal representation) for its adverse impact on safety, traffic and quality of life to our residents.

The potential development has significant traffic impact and control issues at the intersection of Rt. 532 and the Newtown by-pass along with expected effects of increased cut-through or U-turn traffic on Mill Pond Road, as well.

As discussed in our last update to you, despite the denial of the proposed development plan by the supervisors, as a result of improper notice alleged by the developer and appealed to the Bucks County Court of Common Pleas, the Court of Common Pleas in Doylestown has found the lawsuit properly filed and ruled in favor of the developer.  As it s a result, the court has given the development a “Deemed Approval”.  As such, the Arcadia developer is entitled to construct its housing project.

NTT has appealed the decision and the Eagle Ridge Community Association (ERCA) joined the appeal as an intervener. This and other appeals for earlier Arcadia proposals are currently pending.  As we discussed in the last update and Zoom call with the community, we became aware

that both ERCA and NTT were, in an attempt to resolve all the pending court cases regarding the development of this property, considering entering into a settlement agreement with Arcadia to reduce the number of units to 60 single family homes (no townhomes), improve stormwater control, provide additional buffer areas between their development and ERCA properties, and provide direct access to the Bypass for traffic exiting the development to mitigate impact to Buck Rd and Millpond Rd.  

The ERCA-Arcadia settlement that was signed by the ERCA board as well as a SA between the township and Arcadia were taken up for consideration by the NTT supervisors at their meeting on 12/19, but they decided to not act on the settlement agreement. As we explained in our last update and on our Zoom call with the community, where this leaves the matter is that there is a deemed approval for Arcadia III—and the 76 homes that are a part of this development plan.  

Steve Harris, our counsel for previous versions of  Arcadia, and the counsel representing ERCA in their appeal, has indicated that he feels NTT has a very low probability of prevailing in their appeal since it is a matter of record that they did not notify the builder of their decision in a timely manner, and since the court has already decided the development was “Deemed Approved”. As such, the appeal decision would be based on the record and any additional facts that ERCA can present in the brief associated with their appeal. While he feels ERCA has a ‘decent’ chance to prevail, he suggested one option to pursue, to avoid a very likely outcome of the 76 home plan being enacted, is for ERCA, Liberty Square, Crown Point and Newtown Crossing developments to ask the NTT supervisors to work towards creating a settlement agreement that address the communities concerns and will resolve the litigation, including the Deemed Approval. In our counsel’s opinion, based on the facts of this case and his previous experience with matters of this kind, the appeal is unlikely to be successful.

With this in mind, and your input from our last community call, your NCCA board has been working with the NTT Supervisors and the other community association boards to negotiate a Settlement Agreement between the township and Arcadia that addresses our concerns.  In addition to the provisions of the original agreement, we have secured wording that:

  1. Permanently prevents any consideration of an ingress/egress road through our woods, Eagle Ridge’s woods or any of the adjacent Newtown Crossing development properties on High Street that abut the Arcadia development

  2. Secured a 100’ buffer along the three (3) Newtown Crossing properties on High St that abut the Arcadia property. This buffer will preserve the treed area between these homes and the proposed new homes and will prevent clearing  for any reason other than those necessary for Arcadia to complete the perimeter walking trail that they have proposed as part of their plan.

  3. Secured a covenant that prevents the development of the Newtown Reformed Church into homes, should the church ever close and attempt to sell the property for residential use.

  4. Secured a permanent “No Trucks- Local Delivery Only” signage at all entrances to Millpond from Buck Rd and Richboro Rd, to prevent cut-through traffic by trucks.

  5. Secures a temporary “No construction vehicles allowed” signage to be erected by Arcadia for the duration of the construction of the development

  6. Secured a commitment in writing by Arcadia to only construct 60 single family homes (versus the option to consider some mix of singles and townhomes)

  7. Secured a commitment that there will be no additional runoff from the Arcadia property entering our stormwater management system than we get today.

  8. Secured the commitment by Arcadia to pursue a direct-access egress road to the Newtown bypass and other options on Buck Rd to minimize southbound traffic out of the development, and guaranteeing that the intersection at Buck/Millpond/Diamond Drive will be improved to handle the increased traffic resulting from the development of the Arcadia property.

Your board is considering next steps regarding this development and while our first preference would be the permanent preservation of the Arcadia property as open space, Arcadia has placed an estimated value of $8.5M on the property and the township has indicated that they do not have the funding to acquire the land.  Based on that fact, the majority of the directors feel that:

  • Development of this site, given its zoning and the sunk costs for this parcel by the developer, is inevitable, even if NTT and ERCA prevail in their appeal.

  • The settlement plan is a better alternative than the current approved plan since it has fewer homes, bigger buffers between our community and the new community, and the potential (although unlikely)  direct exit to the bypass which should significantly reduce traffic from Arcadia on Buck Rd and Millpond

  • Joining ERCA in their appeal will be costly (estimates for litigation exceed $15,000 for the appeal with an undetermined amount of additional litigation cost for representation for the most certain next appeal and development proposals from the developer if their current application is denied.


Thank you,
NCCA Board of Directors



Friendly Reminder:
Residents are responsible for clearing their sidewalks within 24 hours of a snowfall or ice storm and are subject to Township fine if not cleared.

Assessments Increase to $35 in 2021

Welcome our newest NCCA Board of Directors member: Michael McFarland.
Michael accepted the position at the November meeting, having received 75% of 39 votes. Yes, only 39 votes were received. Thanks to those of you who took the trouble to vote.

Pretzels and Popsicles at the Playground
Kids had a bit of Labor Day Weekend fun at the Candy Scramble in the Newtown Crossing playground. Thanks to Lori Strange and Freda Gowin.
CANDYSCRAMBLE

JULY 5 BIKE & STROLLER PARADE

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The Pool is Closed for the Season due to COVID-19
See the letter below from the board of supervisors for details.

Alert: while the playground remains open during the pandemic, parents should be aware that the equipment is NOT being cleaned.

Reminder: Ball playing, hockey, etc. is NOT permitted in the playground area or parking lot due to dangers to playground users and personal property in the area. This type of recreation should be done in grass areas away from the playground and personal property to avoid injuries for property damage.

Information on Voting by Mail in PA

Dog Walkers Alert!
It gets dark early these days. We remind those of you who chose to walk your dogs in the street instead of on the sidewalks to wear light colored or reflective clothing. Keep you and your pet safe!

NO PETS IN THE PLAYGROUND
The area has been posted to make clear that all pets (except service dogs) are banned. Thank you for your cooperation.

NOPETS

Help Stop Illegal Dumping
There has been dumping of trash in the area along the NE side of Millpond between the exercise trail behind Eagle Ridge (basically York St. intersection) and the start of the townhomes.Obviously this is not only unneighborly, but also, now that it has been posted, illegal and subject to fines. If you see anyone ignoring the signs, please call the police.

HOA Billing Address Change

Your HOA quarterly fee envelope will no longer say “Dunlap & Associates” which could be mistaken for junk mail and accidentally discarded.

The return address on both the outer envelope and the statement has been changed to:
Newtown Crossing Community Association
PO Box 793
Souderton, PA, 18964-0793.

Payments are to be made to this address. If you make electronic payments, please check to make sure you are using the above address.

The Newtown Fire Association NEEDS YOUR HELP!!

Newtown-FA-17-Recruit-Poster
Facing added responsibilities caused by world events and local demographics, as well as an ever increasing populous, the Newtown Fire Association needs more volunteer members to suplement its staffing to better protect YOU and YOUR FAMILY. No experience is required for new members, as all needed training will be provided by the NFA. While the hours are less than desirable (24/7), and the work is hard, the feeling of accomplishment and pride make it all worth it. But to add to that, the NFA offers a number of other benefits to its members including life insurance, training classes in most lines of emergency services, a paid per call system, and an in house fitness center. So, if you think you can make a difference, join your friends, neighbors, and local businessmen and women in protecting all you and your family have worked for. JOIN THE NEWTOWN FIRE ASSOCIATION!

Important Sidewalk Notice
Members of the Board of Directors have, over the summer months, received complaints from residents about the condition of sidewalks in front of houses throughout the development.

You should be aware that the homeowner is solely responsible for maintenance of the sidewalk that is in front of their home. Neither the Newtown Crossing Community Association nor Newtown Township has any duty to maintain sidewalks that pass in front of any house. The maintenance duty is not just snow removal.

The duty is to permit safe travel on the sidewalk. So, if your sidewalk is crumbling or has buckled due to tree roots or is just in bad shape, you have the duty to fix it. You have the duty to keep it clean, level, and smooth enough for foot travel.

If you choose not to believe this free legal advice, you can check with your homeowner's insurance carrier. If someone trips or falls and is injured by reason of a defect in your sidewalk, you can face serious financial consequences.

Safety First for Runners
Just a reminder for those who like to run on the streets during the early or late hours when visibility is poor: Wear something either reflective or light colored. While it is true that, as a pedestrian, you always have the right of way, it only makes sense to give drivers the best opportunity possible to see and avoid you.

Newtown Township Tree Ordinance
§101. Tree Trimming. All trees in Newtown Township shall be kept trimmed so that the minimum clearance where they overhang any public walk shall be nine (9) feet and the minimum clearance where they overhang or project into any public street or highway right-of-way shall be eleven (11) feet. However, the Township is hereby given the right to designate a higher clearance on certain highways, where heavy traffic or other conditions make it expedient. All trees, plants or shrubs standing on private property and having branches projecting into or over a public highway or right-of-way, shall be kept trimmed by the owner of such private property so that no portion thereof shall extend into or over a sidewalk or right-of-way below the minimum clearance specified above, or such other clearance as may be specified by the Township. In case the owner of such property shall neglect or refuse to trim such trees, plants or shrubs upon being notified in writing by the Township to do so, the Township may, after the expiration of the date specified in said notice, cause such trimming to be done at the expense of the owner, and the entire cost thereof shall be a lien upon said premises and shall be filed and collected by Newtown Township in the same manner as municipal claims are filed and collected. (Ord. 2004-O-25, 11/17/2004, §I)

Important Notice
U S Postal Service no longer delivers NCCA mail to treasurer Bob Donatelli's home—they deliver it to the 206 Hidden Valley Lane mail box. Because it is against US Postal regulations to put unstamped mail in a postal mail box—and, because the mail carriers will remove it—please do not put unstamped mail in that box.

Snow Plowing
Newtown Township is responsible for snow removal on the streets of Newtown Crossing, including the cul-de-sacs.
If your street or cul-de-sac has not been cleared, call 215-968-2800.

Public Safety Alert
No Parking on Cul-de-sac Islands!
Residents (and their guests) that live on cul-de-sac streets with islands are reminded that parking on the islands is not allowed. Several weeks ago, while responding to a carbon monoxide call on King Charles West, the Newtown Fire Department was unable to get trucks to the house because of cars parked on the cul-de-sac island. This happened a number of years ago when a small fire on a Churchill Lane residents deck, spread to the house because fire equipment could not get close enough due to cars blocking the cul-de-sac.

The Fire Department and the NCCA board will be requesting that the township post the islands as no parking so that cars parked on cul-de-sac islands can be ticketed by the police.

In the meantime, it is in everyone's best interest to keep the islands clear in case of an emergency. Thank you.

Newtown Crossing Then & Now

Newtown Crossing Needs Volunteers
From playground maintenance to repainting the entrance signs at 532 and 332, our community saves money every time we can do the work ourselves. If you are willing to be put on a list of potential volunteers for odd jobs please send your contact information to this address. and put the word "Volunteer" in the subject field.
THANKS!

A Friendly Reminder About Common Areas in Newtown Crossing
In plain English, it is not permitted to sell anything—like your car, for instance—using the common areas. You can read the official legalese here under "Use of Common Areas". Please note that neither you nor your realtor may place any signage on any common ground. Doing so will result in a $100 fine and who needs that?