Charlestown Township, Chester County, PA

 
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Established June 2, 1997
by citizens for citizens

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March 16, 1998

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August 13, 1997
  
A beautiful part of southeastern Pennsylvania
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Past news of events in and around Charlestown
News for June, July & August, 1997

Coyote News - Wednesday, August 27, 1997  (From Cathy DiFilippo)

"The latest sighting on the neighborhood coyote is that he was seen by a Charlestown resident on Thursday night at 11:00 PM under the train tracks, eating a dead animal, then sauntered off toward the Seafood Shanty. Another friend saw one on Jug Hollow Road this past Monday. I believe we have more than one here."
Monday, August 24, 1997   (From Ellen Behrle, Charlestown Green, Inc.)
Charlestown Township Board of Supervisors Meeting
Monday, August 18, 1997

On Monday August.18, the Charlestown Board of supervisors held their second regularly scheduled meeting for the month of August 1997. All members of the board were present
There were three announcements. First, the press release announcing the Charlestown Township web site was read. There was discussion among the Supervisors on a possible liability to the Township because of the web site's name. They were encouraged by two residents to view the site before making any judgments. They agreed. Second, both silver and beige Coyotes are still being sighted in the areas of Charlestown Hunt, Sycamore Lane, and Pikeland and Swedesford Roads. And third, due to lengthy previous meetings, a curfew was imposed. Meetings will run from 7:30 to 10:30 PM. Any matter already in process at 10:30 may continue to no later than 11:00 PM. A motion was made to accept this curfew as the new policy. It was adopted by a vote, 2 to l. The policy change will be properly advertised.
The Carr's application to move their driveway was approved. The Lyons' conditional use hearing to construct a dwelling, pool and garage on lot 12 of the Eastwick subdivision was continued. A conditional use hearing on lots 28 and 45 of Charlestown Brae (Whitehorse), which was continued from the last meeting, was held and approved. Also, the owner of that development was seeking permission to amend a stipulation agreement entered into during the subdivision process years back. The amendment would allow them to build a sand mound system on lot 47. Approval was given.
A conditional use hearing and H.A.R.B. application for a certificate of appropriateness was held on the Naylor property, which is located in the "village" section of the township. The Supervisors "agreed to agree". Documents are being drafted and a formal decision is to be rendered at the next meeting. Somerset Conditional use Application Decision was approved conditioned on the comments of the Township Engineer and the Land Planner being incorporated. Somerset Final plan was approved.
Additionally, the road bids to pave Blackberry Lane and Pickering Road and Spur were discussed, and two (2) escrow's were released for the Charlestown Brae (Whitehorse) project.
At the citizens forum, a resident was told that the Township's bid to purchase 20 acres of the Pyle farm was accepted with two (2) comments. One concerned the Rapp house and the other applied to the School District's acquisition of the 54 acres they are purchasing. Both concerns are being addressed.
The meeting was adjourned at 11:30 PM
August 23, 1997 (exerpts from Cathy Difilippo)
We apologize for this being so late. This is a report on the Charlestown coyote, and we hope no follow-up story is required. Quoting from email received from Cathy Difilippo -
"He was at my property and there was an absolute slaughter here. Had I known there was one in the area, I could have protected my chickens. I went to the township meeting to report the incident at the August meeting. Since then the situation has been in four papers, including the past Sunday Inquirer. The Pennsylvania Game Commission has been here all last week with leg traps, to no avail, as he was seen last Monday night crossing Swedesford Road, between Cedar Hollow and Church Road. He will be back though. It is just a matter of time as they have a 25 mile range. He was here for a solid three weeks as 6 of my neighbors saw him. You will also notice that there are no more geese at Three Ponds. That is the first time in my 20 years of living here. He has taken out all the wildlife here on Pikeland Road. Any road kill is gone the very next day."
Clearly, anyone with small domestic animals should keep a close watch on them until the coyote has been removed from the area.

August 6, 1997   (From Kevin Kuhn, Charlestown Green, Inc.)
Charlestown Township Board of Supervisors Meeting
Monday, August 4, 1997

While numerous items were on the agenda, the key issue of discussion was the purchase by the Township of 20 acres of open space from the Pyle family whose 134 acre farm is up for sale with an asking price of 3.3 million dollars. The property, located at the corner of Yellow Springs and Hollow Roads would provide the Residents with recreation space in that area of the Township and at the same time provide additional buffering around the historic Wisner Rapp house.
The meeting was attended by approximately 50 residents. Some in attendance were opposed to the purchase, while others supported the preservation of open space but felt the Supervisors should have involved the public in the decision. Supervisors Kohn and Ewald explained that real estate purchases are dealt with in Executive Session for the protection of the property owner and are not in violation of the Sunshine Laws. The offer, which was less than $25,000 per acre, was presented to the Pyle family by township solicitor James E. McErlane, who also represented the Great Valley School District in their bid for an additional 55 acres. The combined offer will preserve a total of 75 contiguous acres for the benefit of the community. Presently the school district would also like to utilize some of their space for the construction of additional playing fields. The purchase was approved by a vote of two to one with Supervisor Chairman John Sauser opposed to the purchase. While substantially all the funds necessary are already in the township coffers for the purchase, the Supervisors said they would likely seek advice from consultants to determine the best way to structure the purchase so as to have the least impact on township residents.
The Township Supervisors expressed their continued concern in keeping the road maintenance costs in line with the budget. Costs year to date have been substantially higher than in previous years. Roadmaster James Thompson was thanked for his continuing efforts in working with the Supervisors and the new road contractor, Rittenbaugh Construction, to keep these costs down.
A Conditional Use Hearing was held for proposed additions and alterations to the Naylor property (former home of John Garvin) in the Charlestown Village Historic District on Church Road, just off Charlestown Road. The applicant was seeking to make additions and alterations to the existing home in steep slope and high groundwater areas. No decision was reached.
A Conditional Use Hearing was held for alterations to three new septic systems in the Whitehorse development (formerly Charlestown Brae). The applicant, Rouse/Chamberlin, is requesting to be allowed to construct two septic systems partially in a steep slope area and a third system to be constructed utilizing a sand mound design. A condition of the original sub-division approval was that no sand mound systems would be constructed. No decision was reached.
It was announced that PennDot agreed to place a Four-way Stop Sign at the intersection of Union Hill, Reese and Whitehorse Roads. The signs were in place the following day.
The Supervisors agreed to request that PennDot perform a traffic study to determine if the large truck traffic can be diverted from Charlestown Road.
A number of items were carried over to the next scheduled Board of Supervisors meeting to be held at the Charlestown Elementary School on Monday, August 18, at 8:00pm [UPDATED]. Click here to review the preliminary agenda for the next meeting.
The meeting was adjourned at 12:30am.

July 26, 1997   (From Ellen Behrle, Charlestown Green, Inc.)
Sharon Shoemaker of Sycamore Lane was recently appointed to the Board of Directors of Charlestown Green, Inc. Sharon has been a resident of the Township for the last 8 years and comes with an extensive background in special education. Currently, she is employed by the Chester County Intermediate Unit. Sharon will be following the Great Valley School District meetings, so the Green will begin reporting on the District in the next issue of the Green's Newsletter. Stayed tuned.
Residents gathered recently at the Rapp House, an Historical structure donated by the Pyle family of Yellow Springs Road to the Historical Society some time back, to remember Polly J. Quigley with the planting of a pear tree. Polly, a life long resident, was judge of elections for 8 years and served on the board of the Charlestown Historical Society. Township Supervisors Irene Ewald and Robin Kohn elected to replace a tree which was lost at that location with this tree in Polly's honor.
July 25, 1997
The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that Phoenixville Pike will be closed from Yellow Springs Road to Rt 401 (the section in front of the High School) until the middle of September for sewer installation.
Due to cancellations, summer scheduling and the Labor Day holiday, the next two Board of Supervisor meetings are scheduled for August 4th and September 8th. The next Planning Commission meeting will be September 9th. See our Regular Meeting Schedule for time and place of future meetings.
July 20, 1997



Cutting Oats at Brightside Farm - Is this the last time?


Here is Ed Scott, of West Chester, harvesting oats today at Brightside Farm, on Yellow Springs Road, near Valley Hill road. Brightside Farm has been owned and operated by the Pyle family since 1894, and the family is now offering the farm for sale. Therefore, it seems likely this is the last time anyone will see a combine running in these fields.
By a two to one margin, the Charlestown Township Board of Supervisors has voted to negotiate with the Pyles to purchase 20 acres of the 154 acre farm. That parcel would be at the corner of Yellow Springs Rd and Hollow Rd, and surrounds the Jacob Wisner House (also known as the "Rapp House"), which was donated to the Charlestown Historical Society by the Pyles in 1977.
The balance of the portion of the farm on the north side of Yellow Springs Road (approximately 55 acres) is being considered by the Great Valley School District as a site for future athletic fields. The portion of Brightside Farm to the south of Yellow Springs Road is also for sale.
We have a small album of photos of today's harvesting, including a view "from the cockpit". To see them, click here.

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