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Villas At Linfield Residents Air Concerns

Limerick Board also hears from developer on planned housing development on Lewis Road

About a dozen residents of the Villas at Linfield attended Tuesday night's Limerick Township Board of Supervisors meeting to see if the board could be of any assistance with ongoing problems in their development.

The Villas, a gated community for active seniors, is currently unfinished due to the developer's financial issues.

According to residents, McGrath Homes, a Newtown, Pa. company, developed the property but left it unfinished. There are two partially-framed units in the community and several homes that are closed in but unfinished. 

"There's standing water, trash, dangerous animals including rodents, construction trash, rebar and wire everywhere," said one resident.

Resident Sylvia Cheney said there is a sinkhole in the street in front of her house and in her home's yard.

Cindy Freeburn, also a resident, said that she had seen a letter saying that the township still had funds held in escrow for McGrath and questioned whether those funds could be used to help the residents.

Solicitor Joseph McGrory explained that the funds held by the township are solely to complete public improvements, including roadwork, curbs, and sewer and stormwater work.

While the sinkhole in front of Cheney's home is an example of something that could be repaired with those funds, McGrory said, the rest of the issues are a private matter between the residents, their homeowners' association and the developer.

Township Manager Dan Kerr also spoke about the problems in the Villas neighborhood, saying they had spoken to the developer repeatedly. 

"We want to reassure residents that we do hear you," Kerr said.

The board voted on a new ordinance involving warrantless arrests. Police Chief Bill Albany said that the ordinance was simply a bit of housekeeping that would relieve the township of liability in some arrest situations.

"In situations where someone is a danger, like blocking a road, public drunkenness, underage drinking, this just allows us to take them into custody for safety reasons," Albany said.

Albany also said that Officer Kevin McGuigan and K9 officer Flynn are completing their training and will be graduating from their program in April.

The board also saw plans for a new residential development at Lewis Road and Cherry Lane.

Project manager Nick Feola of Bursich Associates, representing the developer, showed the board a plan for 168 apartments and 36 townhomes on the property, located at the corner of East Cherry Lane and Lewis Road.

The developer's plans show East Cherry Lane and West Cherry Lane connecting at a four-way intersection.

Supervisor Ken Sperring asked Feola if there would be a traffic light at that intersection, pointing out that adding 200 homes with an average of 2 cars each would significantly impact the traffic on Lewis Road.

"If it's warranted, certainly," Feola said.

The plan is still in preliminary stages and still requires engineering and planning, Feola said.

Supervisor Kara Shuler was positive about the addition of more residential property to the area and how the developer is planning the homes. 

"The big thing is how it incorporates Cherry Lane into a four-way," Shuler said.

Hipster Kitty February 22, 2012 at 07:28 PM
This is not the first time McGrath and this development has been in the news. http://www.montgomerynews.com/articles/2011/08/07/springford_reporter_valley_item/news/doc4e380c44b43d8543727165.txt
Tim February 23, 2012 at 09:05 PM
Sign of the times. Hopefully starting to improve.
Resident February 24, 2012 at 03:58 AM
Sad but true, the Builder has taken thousands of dollars from folks who put deposits on houses in our lovely community. He's left us with a dump at the back entrance, a sinkhole in our road, sidewalk and lawn, a stickhouse on one lot and a flapp'n Tyvek monstrosity on another lot. Thank goodness our neighbors are great!
John April 05, 2012 at 05:01 PM
I am a real estate appraiser presently working on an appraisal within the Villas @ Linfield. I would appreciate anyone willing to speak to me regarding the issues within the development. I would love to hear from the builder and any HOA members. aimrealty@aol.com

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