A New Beginning for Providence Church

A New Beginning for Providence Church

After several months of working with West Chester Borough, Providence Church finally received Land Development approval and now construction is ready to begin. The project began to take shape in the late spring of 2018 when the Church made a presentation to the Borough with some conceptual drawings. The Church then approached D.L. Howell to prepare a sketch plan and attend a Planning Commission Meeting. While working with the Borough the plan incorporated changes to the “West End” of town by incorporating improvements to the streetscape with new sidewalk, landscaping and decorative streetlights. As the plan developed, the Church was required to amend their Special Exception approval allowing them to expand the assembly area within their new addition. D. L. Howell finalized the Land Development Plans and worked with the Borough and their Consultants to resolve all review comments. After working through the Planning Commission and Smart Growth Council, approval was granted by Borough Council on May 15th and the project received Final approval.

D.L. Howell worked closely with the project team including; Rob Fenza and Tony Stancato of Providence Church, Don Turner of Unruh, Turner, Burke & Frees Attorneys, Paul Sgroi of Bernardon Architecture, and Patrick Stuart of Orsatti & Stuart Landscape Architects, to refine the plans throughout the approval process. The project plans include detailed grading, utilities, erosion control, storm water management, site details, site lighting, landscaping and PADOT Highway Occupancy drawings. D. L. Howell is fortunate to be selected as the Civil Engineer on this project.

Frazer Lanes Redevelopment Receives Conditional Use Approval

Frazer Lanes Redevelopment Receives Conditional Use Approval

After months of working through East Whiteland Township, Frazer Lanes finally received Conditional Use Approval. The Frazer Lanes project began to take shape back in March of 2016 when GMH Partners began preparing sketches for a 5-story apartment building with an attached parking garage on the properties currently occupied by the Norcini Trailer Park and Frazer Lanes Bowling Alley. GMH was working with land planner Bob Heuser to develop a conceptual layout when they approached D.L. Howell to provide civil engineering including conceptual storm water management design. At the same time GMH was also working with East Whiteland Township to develop a Multifamily Route 30 Overlay District within the Frontage Commercial District that would allow for this type of development. GMH continued to negotiate with other adjoining property owners and was able to acquire a total of 4 parcels totaling 5.105 acres. The result of all this planning became development for a 4-story apartment complex with 227 units, 4-story parking garage with 257 parking spaces and 73 exterior surface parking spaces.

D.L. Howell worked closely with the project team including; Riley Riper Hollin and Colagreco Attorneys, Lessard Design Group Architects, Orsatti & Stuart Landscape Architects, and Traffic Planning & Design Traffic Engineers to refine the site layout and renderings after review and approval from East Whiteland Township Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors. Some of the challenges with the project were incorporating the Route 30 Corridor improvements into the design that included; widening along the property frontage, adding site amenities, bike lane and drainage improvements. The project required extensive geotechnical subsurface exploration and testing due to the presence of sinkholes within Karst soil. This soil condition resulted in a network of underground storm-water management piping systems contained within impervious liners.

Upon receiving Conditional Use approval, Final Land Development Plans have been prepared and submitted to the Township for review. Those plans include detailed grading, utilities, erosion control, storm water management, site lighting, landscaping and PADOT Highway Occupancy drawings. The project also requires an Individual NPDES Permit since it is in an Exceptional Value Watershed. We anticipate all approvals to be secured in the mid-summer and construction will commence before the fall.

Construction is nearly completed on the Villa Maria Academy Circulation Improvements

D.L. Howell was contracted by the Villa Maria Academy to provide civil engineering services to their main campus located on Central Avenue in Malvern.  The project entails the design of an internal circulation driveway to facilitate student drop-off and pick-up. This will allow vehicles to stage within the campus property and eliminate them from blocking Central Avenue. The new driveway will also improve access to Central Avenue by removing an existing driveway and realigning another driveway from across the street.

Villa Maria School Entrance

Another design element was designed for handicapped parking in front of the cafeteria. The design created a new appearance that enhances the street view by relocating the trash enclosure and adding landscaping. The last component of the design was an expansive underground stormwater management pipe storage and infiltration system between the new driveway and existing tennis courts. The design of this system required a network of new stormwater piping and relocation of some existing utilities.

D.L. Howell worked closely with the Director of Campus Operations, Zeke Spillane, to refine the site layout and renderings after review and approval from Willistown Township Planning Commission and Board of Commissioners. The project received approval in May and construction commenced at the end of June. Benchmark Site Development was awarded the contract, with an aggressive schedule, and did a spectacular job completing their work before the opening of school.

 

Bed Installation Photos showing Before and After

Villa Maria

Villa Maria Bed Before Instillation

 

Villa Maria

Villa Maria Bed After Installation

 

 

Villa Maria

Villa Maria Bed Before Installation

Villa Maria Bed After Installation

Villa Maria Bed After Installation

 The challenges associated with the project was; integrating new design elements into a historic campus to achieve a unified appearance; incorporate an internal driveway that provided a safe and convenient drop-off and pickup area while maintaining the character of the campus and provide stormwater management meeting all the current design standards. D. L. Howell is honored to be considered as part of the design team for Villa Maria Academy and looks forward to other projects as the campus continues to expand.

Construction is Underway for the Town Walk at Church and Dean Streets in West Chester

Construction is Underway for the Town Walk at Church and Dean Streets in West Chester

D.L. Howell & Associates, Inc. was contracted by Francis Iacobucci Properties, LLC to provide civil engineering services for this residential project in the heart of West Chester Borough. The project is for the construction of 5 single-family attached luxury carriage homes on a site that was formerly the residence of Claude Raines located at 400 South Church Street. D. L. Howell worked closely with Fran Iacobucci and his professional design team including; Frone Crawford, legal counselor, and Tom Bello, architect, to refine the site layout and architectural renderings after review and approval from the Planning Commission and Borough Council. The project started with involvement from the neighborhood association who reviewed the conceptual design.

The neighbors’ concerns promoted the development of a façade easement to protect the existing manor home. The new development focused on preservation of some existing features including; a stone retaining wall, brick sidewalks, and gated entry. These were used to create an entry into a central courtyard between the existing manor home and new carriage homes. The overall project resulted in a total of 5 new units with 2-car garages, and private driveway access to South Church Street. The existing manor home is also included and has a 2-car garage with access onto Dean Street. The entire community is furnished with extensive landscaping and privacy fence along the perimeter. It is also connected to public utilities and has a large underground stormwater infiltration and detention facility.

400 South Church Street West Chester PA

Construction for the project started in December of 2017 and is expected for completion by December of 2018. D.L. Howell is privileged to be considered as part of the design team with Francis Iacobucci Properties, LLC and looks forward to another successful project.

 

Renderings provided by Orsatti & Stuart Associates.
Orsatti Stuart Associates

What’s D.L. Howell & Associates Working on Now?

What’s D.L. Howell & Associates Working on Now?

DL Howell has been contracted by the Westover Companies for site design for leasing offices and fitness centers at their apartment complexes in Pennsylvania and Delaware. The Westover Companies is headquartered in King of Prussia and was founded in 1965. Since then they have grown to own approximately 12,000 apartments in counties throughout the Philadelphia region including; South Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland. They provide their residents with comfortable and affordable choices in apartment living including convenience to public transportation. While most of their apartment complexes are existing, they continue to follow the industry to provide their residents with the most current amenities. The latest trend is providing residents with a standalone rental office with an attached fitness center. They plan these buildings close to a pool or central location within the complex. This provides residents the convenience of a fitness center included with the rent which eliminates the need to drive elsewhere. The leasing office also provides a convenient location to conduct apartment business while offering new residents a private place to meet and evaluate the complex. The latest trend is to provide a secure area within the office for delivered packages. A locker with a code is provided to the resident when a package arrives. They can pick it up 24 hours a day without relying on the office manager to be there or having the package left in the open.

DL Howell has designed five of these buildings within the past year and has just been awarded five more. The challenge with designing these buildings is fitting them within existing site constraints so we work closely with Westover Companies and their Architect, C E Hough. We layout the building to maximize visibility, design parking, handicapped accessibility, utility connections and storm water management. We also work with the Township, Government agencies and Utility companies to secure all the necessary permits for approval. Depending on each Municipality and area of disturbance, approvals range from Land Development to just a simple Grading Permit meaning the difference between several months and several weeks. The Westover Companies rely on DL Howell’s expertise for engineering and approving these buildings in a timely manner and we appreciate their trust and look forward to five more successful projects.