SALISBURY TOWNSHIP PLANNING COMMISSION
On the recommendation of the Salisbury Township Planning Commission, the Salisbury Township Board of Commissioners has approved a new soccer field, amphitheater and rain garden at The Swain School, 1100 S. 24th St., Salisbury Township.
Commissioners approved several other resolutions and had a surprise visit from Lehigh County Executive Phillips Armstrong at the March 22 meeting.
Armstrong said he’s making the rounds of municipal meetings in the county.
Armstrong, a former member of the Whitehall Township Board of Commissioners where he served as president, and a retired Whitehall High School social studies teacher and basketball coach, was elected Lehigh County executive in the November 2017 general election.
Armstrong said to Salisbury commissioners he was attending the board meeting “just to listen and watch.
“I’m here if you need me,” Armstrong added.
“I served on the Whitehall board. And I know we all have the same problems,” Armstrong said.
Salisbury Township commissioners voted unanimously 5-0 to approve a resolution to conditionally approve the grading plan for The Swain School, which is expected to clear the way for construction of a soccer field, amphitheater and rain garden on the South 24th Street campus.
Commissioner Joanne Ackerman made the motion to bring the resolution to a vote, seconded by Commissioner Rodney Conn.
The new soccer field will allow for developmental-level teams for grades two, three and four at Swain. Two soccer fields at the back or westernmost side of Swain are utilized by grades five through eight.
The Swain School is fundraising for its “Field of Dreams” project, which will place the soccer field in the front, or east side, of The Swain School.
The field is to be named Werner Field in honor of Maggie Werner.
“We’ll be able to start a new program because the other fields are taken up,” Shannan Boyle Schuster, Ed.D., head of school, The Swain School, said after the March 13 planners’ meeting.
The Ella Kovats-Bernat Ampitheatre will be a space for performances. The Barbara Schuster Memorial Learning Garden will be an environmental classroom.
“This is actually just a grading plan,” Salisbury Township Engineer David J. Tettemer of Keystone Consulting Engineers, Inc., explained to commissioners. “They [Swain] needed a couple of SALDO [Subdivision And Land Develoment Plan] waivers.
“They are required by the DEP [Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection] to put in a rain garden. A rain garden is a detention basin and it needs a fence around it,” Tettemer continued.
Waivers were granted by township planners for fencing, with the condition it be provided on the side facing the soccer field; minimum slope and basin liner.
“This [the rain garden] is intended to infiltrate. It’s being required and approved by the DEP,” Tettemer said of the rain garden.
“The planners thought it would be a good idea to have a fence between the soccer field and the rain garden to prevent balls from rolling into the rain garden, and children chasing them,” Tettemer said. A split-rail fence with wire mesh is to be put in place.
“From our end, we’re ready to get started so that we can start work and get playing by spring 2019,” Joe Landrigan, AIA, LEED AP, said to commissioners. Landrigan, who is on the board of directors of The Swain School, is president of SAGE Design-Build, Inc., Allentown, which did the design work for the Swain project.
Salisbury Township Director Planning and Zoning Cynthia Sopka said, “The planning commission recommended the board of commissioners accept the waivers.”
In other business at the March 22 meeting:
Commissioners voted 5-0 to approve a resolution to revise the township sewage facilities plan, also known as Act 537, for the land development plan of Aaron Roche, for Roche Painting, LLC, to construct an approximate 2,000 square foot building on a 1.135-acre tract at 2686 S. Fourth St. (South Pike Avenue). Ackerman made the motion to bring the resolution to a vote, seconded by Commissioner Vice President Debra Brinton.
“Because there is a sewer extension, we have to modify our plan,” Salisbury Township Manager Cathy Bonaskiewich said.
At the Feb. 13 Salisbury Township Planning Commission meeting, the Roche project was tabled for consideration of stormwater runoff concerns. Planners agreed to wait for a Pennsylvania Department of Transportation review of the plan, required because the entrance driveway will access South Pike Avenue, which is a PennDOT jurisdiction highway.
In other business, Salisbury Township Chief of Police Allen W. Stiles reported testing is expected to begin in April for patrol officer job openings in the township and the police department has received 170 job applications for the administration assistant position following a resignation.
Bonaskiewich said bids are expected to be reviewed in April for the final phases of construction for the Lindberg Park improvement project.
Sopka announced the spotted lanternfly workshop was postponed from March 21, when the Salisbury Township Environmental Advisory Council meeting was canceled because of a snowstorm, until 7 p.m. April 18, the next meeting of the advisory council in the township municipal building.
Tettemer reported bid requests are underway for a waterline replacement project in the vicinity of the streets of Paxinosa, Maumee and Montgomery and also for a cured-in-place pipe project, the latter a shared-bid project with area municipalities.
Salisbury Township Director of Public Works John Andreas was thanked by Salisbury Township Board of Commissioners President Robert Martucci Jr. for the March 21 snowstorm cleanup.
“Hopefully, spring is really here. Nor’Easter: I hope that is the last time we’ve heard that word until next year,” Andreas said.
Commissioners held an executive session following the March 22 meeting.