Salisbury Press

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

SALISBURY TOWNSHIP board of commissioners

Wednesday, September 12, 2012 by PAUL WILLISTEIN pwillistein@tnonline.com in Local News

Vote on new Comprehensive Plan tops meeting agenda

A vote to accept or reject adopting the Salisbury Township Comprehensive Plan is expected to be on the agenda of the township Board of Commissioners' first monthly meeting, 7 p.m. Sept. 13, Salisbury Township Municipal Building, 2900 South Pike Avenue.

The township Planning Commission has voted to recommend adoption of the plan by the BOC.

Planners, as well as Salisbury Township Manager Randy Soriano, Salisbury Township Director of Planning and Zoning Cynthia Sopka, Township Consulting Engineer David J. Tettemer of Keystone Consulting Engineers, Inc., members of the Salisbury Township Environmental Advisory Committee, Wildlands Conservancy officials and plan consultant Charlie Schmehl, vice president, Urban Research and Development Corp., have been working on updating the plan for approximately two years.

Township planners and officials are still working on the update of the township zoning ordinance.

The Comprehensive Plan is seen as a philosophical statement providing direction for township officials, residents, developers, businesses and nonprofits.

The plan sets overall policies for preservation and development during the next 10 to 15 years in the township.

The plan addresses:

Natural Features Conservation;

Land Uses;

Housing;

Transportation;

Community Facilities and Services;

Community Development; and

Ways to implement the plan.

The plan looks at these areas, as well as township resources, recreation, endangered flora and fauna, water resources and other matters pertaining to township quality of life issues, with hopes of improving life for township residents.

The goal of the plan is to provide a vision for the township's future. The zoning ordinance is intended to provide the "teeth," or enforcement mechanism, to make the plan a reality.

"You should look at it [the plan]," Soriano urged commissioners at the most recent BOC meeting, Aug. 23. "Do you feel confident adopting it?" he asked them.

The plan's final draft was completed in April. However, revised sheets of corrections, inserts and updates were completed and distributed to commissioners Aug. 22.

"I think they [the planners] did a good job at putting this plan together," Commissioner Debra Brinton said during the approximate 30-minute discussion of the plan at the Aug. 23 meeting.

Soriano said if commissioners have confidence in the plan, they should vote to adopt it at the Sept. 13 township meeting.

"It's a way to look at what we want the township to look like in 10 years," Soriano said.

Soriano noted to commissioners the wording of the Health Care Overlay District in the vicinity of Lehigh Valley Hospital - Cedar Crest was made more general at the request of planners and Tettemer.

The changes were made after a two-hour public hearing on the plan held July 26.

A copy of the comprehensive plan is available for review at the township Municipal Building and may be downloaded at the township website, salisburytownshippa.org.

The plan may be reviewed at the Municipal Building 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Copies of the plan or portions of the plan will be made available for a cost.

To purchase a complete paper copy of the plan, contact Cynthia Sopka at 610-797-4000.