John Rock, Inc. received final approval from the Sadsbury Township Board of Supervisors to construct an 88,000 S.F. building. John Rock is one of the five largest pallet manufacturing plants in the United States. They are located just off the Route 30 bypass in West Caln Township and have been there since 2004. D.L Howell & Associates, Inc. assisted them through the Land Development process to obtain all the required approvals to expand their business onto the adjacent property which is located just over the Township line. DL Howell worked closely with John Rock, Inc., D. Howe & Sons Construction Co., Orsatti & Stuart Associates, Inc., and Gawthrop Greenwood, PC to secure the various approvals. These approvals were obtained from Sadsbury Township (for a Lot Line Change, Land Development, and Zoning Variance), West Caln Township for a Grading Permit, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) due to its proximity to the Chester County Airport and the Chester County Conservation District. Construction is slated to begin very soon and is expected to be completed by November of this year. DL Howell is very appreciative to have had the opportunity to assist “America’s Premier Pallet Manufacturer” in expanding their business.
Yes, you do if you own a farm in Pennsylvania that applies manure or agricultural process wastewater to the land. If you don’t mechanically apply the manure yourself, it is still required if your farm contains pastures or Animal Concentration Areas (ACAs).
A pasture is defined as an area of land used for grazing animals while maintaining dense vegetation during the growing season. An ACA, aka Animal Heavy Use Area, is defined as an area of land used for grazing animals that do not maintain dense vegetation. These areas would include barnyards, feedlots, loafing areas and exercise lots. It is very important that you properly differentiate the two because the ACA requires that you fill out additional forms as part of the Manure Management Plan (MMP) and requires that you propose a method to divert clean water around the ACA. In addition, you may have to implement a Best Management Practice (BMP) downstream of the ACA to prevent pollution of nearby streams.
A Nutrient Management Plan (NMP) is required in lieu of the MMP if the animal density on your farm is substantial. The density calculation takes into account the maximum number, type, and weight of all animals that are on the property for any given year. Due to its complexity, an NMP will have to be prepared by a Certified Nutrient Management Specialist.
The MMP will have to be submitted to your local County Conservation District for approval and will have to be kept at the farm at all times in case a representative from the county or state visits. Unlike the NMP, a certified specialist is not required to prepare an MMP, which means that you can do it yourself. If you don’t have time or prefer not to prepare it yourself, feel free to contact DL Howell. We will gladly prepare a Manure Management Plan so that your farm complies with the state’s regulations.
Triple Fresh Market recently received approval to amend a prior special exception approved by the Zoning Hearing Board in June of 1999. This amendment allows them to slightly expand the building by constructing coolers and freezers over an existing paved surface and to convert an existing gift shop into a place to sell wine. The wine sales will operate under 47 P.S. §5-505.2 of the Liquor Code which allows markets, such as Triple Fresh, to work with local wineries through their licenses to offer their products for sale. The wine sales are expected to occur between 12:00 noon and 8:00 p.m., seven days a week.
D.L. Howell was hired by Triple Fresh Market to prepare the plan depicting the improvements and to provide expert testimony for the amendment to the special exception. Riley Riper Hollin & Colagreco Attorneys at Law was also involved and played a significant role in obtaining the approval.
Triple Fresh Market is located at 801 Doe Run Road which is at the corner of Doe Run Road (Route 82) and Buck Run Road. The store brings a lot of history to the area by being one of the oldest continually operated food establishments in the country. The original building was built in 1818. The store was purchased by the current owner, Jim Petro in 1987. I have a lot of history with this store since I grew up right down the road. Just about every day, I would walk to the store just to pick up some groceries. I had the privilege of being hired by Mr. Petro when I was still in High School for my very first job. Things have come full circle with me having the opportunity to help return the favor by assisting my first employer in making a change that could drastically improve their business in the long run.
Triple Fresh is currently in the process of acquiring a building permit from the Township and anticipates selling wine this fall. The major hurdle has been cleared and it is only a matter of time until wine will be available at the popular market in East Fallowfield.
Did you recently buy a property with a significant erosion issue in your yard? If you did and you’re thinking about having it repaired, then it would be wise to contact DL Howell. The erosion issue could consist of a long eroded channel that may have been caused by a pipe upstream that is conveying a high velocity of water through your yard. This becomes a complicated situation because the eroded channel could be classified as a stream per The Pennsylvania Code. A stream is defined as a channel or conveyance of surface water having a defined bed and banks, whether natural or artificial, with a perennial or intermittent flow. If the eroded channel in your yard only conveys water during a storm event, it may still be classified as a stream per this definition.
An eroded channel in your yard can be a nuisance. It may be displeasing to look at and could pose major safety risks for children and even animals. If the channel has a defined bed and bank, then it will most likely be deemed as a stream. Typically, whenever earth disturbance is proposed within a stream as defined above, general permits are required. However, there is a stipulation that allows a water obstruction in a stream or floodway without having to be reported to the state as long as it satisfies the proper criteria. A water obstruction is defined as a dike, bridge, culvert, wall, wing wall, fill, pier, wharf, embankment, abutment or other structure located in, along or across or projecting into a watercourse, floodway or body of water. A permit for a water obstruction can be waived as long as the drainage area is 100 acres or less and no wetlands are located within the floodway. This waived activity is classified as a Waiver 2.
In addition to the waiver of permit requirements stipulated in the PA Code, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers also requires that there be no more than 250 linear feet of stream disturbance and a Pennsylvania Natural Diversity Inventory (PNDI) search receipt dated May 4, 2015, or later, that states “No Known Impact, No Further Review Required” for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) for it to be a non-reporting activity. However, there are some exceptions to the PNDI requirement which would still allow the work to be a non-reporting activity. In addition, even if the project satisfies all of the above criteria, the local municipality will most likely require a plan review to ensure that the work complies with their code.
Please keep in mind that a water obstruction can still be constructed if any of the aforementioned requirements aren’t met. However, a general permit would then have to be applied for with the state and/or with the USACE. Please contact us if you need assistance or guidance in addressing your erosion issue.
It is that time of year again where the temperatures are dropping and the leaves are falling, indicating winter is fast approaching. If you have stormwater inlets in your yard, now may be a very good time for you to inspect them. These inlets are likely to have an outlet pipe with a diameter as small as four to six inches. If the inlets aren’t maintained properly, the pipes could easily clog, resulting in an inundation of your property. Remove the inlet grate and look inside. The inlet should have a sump that is 12 inches deep to allow leaves, sediment, and other debris to accumulate. If the sump is six inches full of debris, then the debris should be removed. If there appears to be any blockages in the pipe, then utilize a high powered pressure washer to flush it. The PADEP (Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection) recommends that a vacuum truck be utilized to remove the debris and to dispose of it per their regulations.
In addition to checking your inlets, make sure to also inspect the roof gutters especially if you have a significant number of trees surrounding your house. The fallen leaves may clog your gutters, resulting in ponding around your house’s foundation which could lead to a wet basement. The leaves could also create blockages in underground stormwater piping if the downspouts go underground. Once all the aforementioned items are cleaned out and your yard is still inundated after a rain event, then please give us a call here at D.L. Howell and we’ll be glad to assist you. (610) 918-9002