No Route 10 Warehouse
Our mission - NorthPoint Development is planning to build a 738,000 sq ft warehouse (click to read more).......
Over the past 18 months Cumru commissioners have quietly been planning with developers to approve the rezoning of 170 acres along Rt 10 as industrial, agreed to install a traffic light on Rt 10 for the coming barrage of 18 wheelers, and gave assurance of no taxes to the developer.
All of this in the peaceful communities of Flying Hills, Heritage Senior Living, neighbors and other local businesses and health care providers. Big trucks will be choking traffic in the area 24 hours a day and creating huge backups because trucks won’t be able to make it up the hills on Rt 10 any faster than 10mph. Residents will not sleep because of the continuous roar of their brake retarders, and black smoke will stain the buildings from their diesel exhausts. And we get to pay for all the fire, police, infrastructure and utility improvements through our taxes.
Please help to support our legal efforts to stop this warehouse!
********The Wheels are in Motion*********
Update: Our Community, in partnership with Penske, have filed a validity challenge against the township to revert the rezoning to Rural Conservation. We are told by the township that this now Stays any further consideration of the NorthPoint plan until the challenge is resolved.
The validity challenge is filed with the Cumru Zoning Hearing Board (ZHB) against Cumru Township Board of Commissioners with regard to Spot Zoning based on the 2018 zoning change from Rural Conservation to General Industrial. The ZHB is the Judicial arm of the township government with initial jurisdiction. Depending on the outcome, next steps would be the Berks County civil courts then appeal courts.
Please keep checking back, this is the beginning of a long legal process but circumstances can change quickly. It will be in NorthPoint's best interest to pack up and go away, but we still need to correct the zoning so this cannot happen again.
Here are the Board's email addresses
Township Manager Jeanne Johnston <email@example.com> (paid position, not a voting member)
Cumru Planning Commission votes to Reject the NorthPoint Plan!
At the September 12 meeting the Planning Commission determined there was no further action possible by the commission and voted to recommend rejection of the plan due to safety and traffic issues. The plan now goes to the Township Board of Commissioners for their final vote. The Board still has the ability to accept the Planning Commission recommendation and reject or they could approve regardless of the recommendation. So we need to keep up the pressure to oppose this plan.
The next Board of Commissioners meeting is scheduled for Sept 20 where this topic will be on the agenda. The Board stated they are not able to arrange an alternate location for the meeting and the Township can only accommodate 80 people in the room, including the Township members. So public attendance will be limited. Our team contacted the Township to offer assistance to arrange for space at Governor Mifflin but were shot down. Click here to see the Township's response
Latest Updates - September 3
Northpoint submitted a few new planning documents as required by Township ordinances in advance of the Sept 12 Planning Committee meeting. These check a few boxes in their hopes of getting Township approval for the warehouse plan. Still no Traffic Impact Study.
Please be sure to attend the Planning Committee meeting Monday Sept 12 6PM at the Governor Mifflin Intermediate School Cafeteria where these plans will be discussed.
Update - August 16
The next important Cumru Planning Committee meeting is planned for Monday Sept 12 at 6PM in the Governor Mifflin Intermediate School Commons Area. This is the meeting where we expect the planning committee to discuss the waiver requests from NorthPoint. We need to fill the room again to continue to show the township that the community is united in opposition to the NorthPoint plan.
Our attorney, Matthew J. Creme, will be there to speak on our behalf so the best thing we can do is show our strength by attending but let the attorney do the talking this time. Our hope is that the committee sticks to the ordinance requirements as much as reasonably possible and not grant waivers that NorthPoint requested at the August meeting. Mr. Creme described that some waivers for minor items are commonly granted if the developer can reach the same results with an alternate process so it would not be unexpected for some of the requests to be granted.
But the waiver requests to skip the Environmental Impact Analysis, the Community Resource Impact Assessment, and the Traffic Impact Study are very significant and the committee should required these as per ordinance. It is good planning to require these studies and make sure all issues are covered and not just "trust" the developer to do the right thing.
There are other legal challenges in process behind the scenes, but the Planning Committee actions regarding the waivers are the most important to focus on now. The Planning Committee must make a recommendation to the Board of Commissioners before the November 30 deadline. The Planning Committee has the job to review the developer's plan ,determine compliance with ordinances (or issue waivers), and make a recommendation to the Board of Commissioners to approve or reject.