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Hearing held on Moss Spring Estates

September 05, 2007|By ASHLEY HARTMAN

GREENCASTLE, Pa. - A step forward was made in a conflict that began earlier this year between the developer of Moss Spring Estates in Greencastle and the owner of one of the single-family home lots in the development.

The Antrim Township Board of Supervisors held a public hearing Tuesday night to receive testimony about a modification to screening requirements for the development. Although the supervisors made no motion to deny or accept the modification, they did ask Supervisor Scott Diffenderfer to investigate the best size and type of trees for the easement.

The supervisors also decided to give a temporary occupancy permit to Billy Lyon, who bought the residence on lot 136 three months ago, but has not been able to move in due to the Moss Spring screening issues.

When Dale Angle, owner of single-family lot 21, bought his property on April 27, 1999, he bought it before the Moss Spring Planned Residential Development (PRD) had a 35-foot easement approved that would require a screen of trees between single-family lots and multifamily (villa) lots.

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"The plan for the PRD was approved May 11, 1999, and was put on record three days later, but lot 21 had already been sold so it was sold free and clear of the screening easement," said attorney Ed Wine of Greencastle, who represented developer Frank Plessinger.

Angle was supposed to have 25 feet of that easement on his property and the remaining 10 feet would be in the backyard of villa units 136, 137 and 138.

However, after the villas were built, it was discovered that villa lots 135 and 136 were built slightly over the boundary line of the common area between Angle's lot and the villas.

"Plessinger knew if he moved the screening where it needs to be, he wouldn't have sufficient footage for that last building (of villas)," said Angle, who was represented by attorney Clint Barkdoll.

The modification to the screen requirement that Wine presented proposed that the screening be placed entirely in the backyard of the villas.

"Certainly, the Angles are pleased that the easement would be now moved off their property," Barkdoll said. "One of their concerns is they paid a premium for this lot ... (and) with the easement, there won't be as much open space as there was originally believed."

"Unit 138 shouldn't even be there - it's just squeezing everything in there," Angle said, adding that either screening proposal would diminish the value of his property.

Diffenderfer plans to meet with Angle on Saturday to discuss the size and type of trees that would be appropriate for the screening requirement.

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