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Antrim wants to simplify zoning

February 12, 2009|By KATE S. ALEXANDER

GREENCASTLE, Pa. - The 13 zoning districts in Antrim Township will be under review by the Board of Supervisors in 2009 as the board seeks to simplify its zoning ordinance and evaluate whether Conservation by Design is an effective framework for future residential development.

Board Chairman Curtis Myers said that starting in February, the board will hold as many workshops as needed to make its zoning and development regulation more user-friendly.

Zoning and Code Enforcement Officer Sylvia House said it could take as long as a year to fix the problems with the Conservation by Design ordinance. As for the 13 zoning districts, she said using fewer districts would do wonders for making the ordinance more user-friendly.

House said when the Conservation by Design ordinance was adopted in 2006, the township could not have anticipated all of the problems that it would bring for developers and engineers.

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At its first workshop Feb. 3, the board asked the engineers and surveyors who have been working with the ordinance to give insight into the problems they have run across.

Lee Royer of R. Lee Royer and Associates in Waynesboro, Pa., said Conservation by Design in particular is a difficult ordinance to work under.

"One of the main problems with Conservation by Design is the steps your ordinances make you (engineers) go through," he said. Royer cited the variety of plans, including soil plans and infrastructure plans, that Antrim Township requires be submitted for a Conservation by Design development.

"I am totally against Conservation by Design," he said.

Tim Cormany of Martin & Martin Inc. in Chambersburg, Pa., said the intent of Conservation by Design was to offer the same densities of conventional ordinances but without affecting natural resources.

After much discussion, the board said it wants to find a way to conserve its natural resources without the complexities of Conservation by Design and that it will start by looking at the current draft comprehensive plan to get a sense of where it is and where it wants to go with development.

House said she has spent the last week reading and researching the comprehensive plan to help the board continue working on the ordinance at its next workshop on Feb. 17.

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