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  • December 05, 2019 1:52 PM | Brian Bamberger (Administrator)

    Help shape the future of Abington Township!

    The comprehensive plan is a document that guides future initiatives, policies, projects and growth within the Township including land use, transportation of people and goods, housing, township facilities and utilities, and natural and historical resources. Your participation is critical in helping develop the plan and ensuring it is reflective of our community's needs and wants; not only for the Township as a whole but the individual communities that comprise it. 

    What do you want for the future of Abington? What aspects of Abington do you hope continue for years to come? How has your neighborhood evolved and where can it be improved? Come to a meeting or share your thoughts and ideas online! 

    • Date: December 9, 2019
    • Time: 6:30 - 8:30 PM (arrive/depart when convenient for you)
    • Location: Rydal EAST Elementary School (1160 Huntingdon Pike, Huntingdon Valley, PA 19006)

    More information is here:

    https://www.abingtonpa.gov/government/board-of-commissioners/board-of-commissioners-intiatives/vision-2035-abington-s-comprehensive-plan-update


                                                                          

  • September 05, 2019 4:22 PM | Daniel Shmilovich (Administrator)

    Rydal Meadowbrook Civic Assn board was invited to join a meeting with immediate neighbors of Penn State Abington College for a planning meeting for a possible new academic building on the campus.  Dr. Damian Fernandez, the Chancellor, presented the rationale for the new building.  The per-student square feet of space is far below the average for four-year satellite campuses of Penn State.  (74 sq ft per student compared to the average of 134 sq ft.)  Enrollment at the college has declined slightly over  the last few years from a high of 3966 to about 3400 today.  There are more full-time students in the mix today and about 200 nursing students don’t use the campus for classes.

    A review of existing buildings and potential sites for the new building resulted in the conclusion that one of the older and out of code buildings will be replaced with a new academic building to consist of classrooms, special learning spaces, and faculty offices.  Architechs at the meeting presented preliminary exterior design and an extensive initial landscape plan to screen views of the building from neighbors.

    The college has also conducted a traffic study and summary results were followed with a general Q&A.  About 75-80% of students drive to the college parking onsite or at offsite lots.  Offsite lot and SEPTA riders use shuttles to arrive on campus.  The college operates 6 shuttles and 2 yellow buses, running about every half hour or more if there is demand.  Peak travel times noted from attendees was 8:15 am while the study showed 9 am.  Dr Fernandez also noted that class schedules are optimized for the use of classroom space and parking.  A previous meeting held over a year ago included requests to reduce the number of cars circling looking for parking and the flows in any new design will try to relieve circulation issues.

    As a first step, the college is planning to ask for a ‘map amendment’ for 3 properties the college owns inside Cloverly Lane (which includes two properties with home).  They plan to request a zoning change from R1 to Community Service.  They also plan to submit a text amendment to classify colleges separate from other educations institutions.  The reason for this is the current zoning treats all CS schools the same including elementary, middle school and high school.  The township has two colleges, Penn State Abington and Manor College that would be impacted by the text amendment.  The college also plans to document and seek approval on their planned use of two residential properties the college owns on the outside of Cloverly Lane.  These properties will remain R1 zoning.  Those properties will face the proposed site of the academic building location and include a walkway through to Memorial Field.

    The meeting included comments from Commissioner Kline who stepped attendees through the process of an ordinance review by the board of commissioners and then the planning commission meetings.  Several concerns were raised by residents, in particular about construction traffic and calming measures for student traffic.  Several suggestions offered by the neighbors and the college will respond as plans develop further.

    Overall, RMCA is supporting the effort to ensure that Rydal-Meadowbrook residents are satisfied and that any accommodations needed to keep the character of our neighborhood while allowing for improved facilities at the college as a valuable community asset.

    We will work to keep our members updated as more information becomes available.  The presentation materials are not yet available for distribution.  We anticipate there will be more meetings, both informal and formal, as the dialogue continues.


  • April 27, 2019 7:48 AM | Brian Bamberger (Administrator)

    There was a brief meeting April 24 about a new direction for the YMCA redevelopment.  The following are our notes:

    •  BET stated CHOP had approached them after the zoning amendment was approved by the Board of Commissioners. From BET’s perspective, the new proposed project addressed the majority of the concerns of residents with the Abington Terrace project (“90-98%”) and so they felt that this project was a better fit for the site.
    • This will be an expansion of a current specialty care clinic on the campus of Abington Hospital with, my impression but may be mistaken, a larger scope of services. Once this opens, they expect the current location to close. CHOP noted that there are a large number of patients that travel to the University City campus for specialty care services from the Abington (and I am assuming surrounding) areas and they wanted to better serve that population by providing care closer to home. Some of the outpatient services will include pediatric cardiology, audiology, neurology, and orthopedics.
    • Part of the project includes a pediatric urgent care that will operate on the weekends and during the week. Expected hours would be from 2:00 pm to 10:00 pm (during the week).
    • This project addresses many of the concerns of residents compared to the Abington Terrace project:
    o   Building height will be 32’, similar to the YMCA’s current height of 30’
    o   Setbacks from the property line are larger than the previously proposed project. It appeared there was landscaping that would shield the parking lot from adjacent residents.o   There will be more green space and slightly less impervious coverage –mainly due to parkingo   While BET is still in discussion with the YMCA, the current older building is expected to be maintained with the Y continuing to operate a daycare out of it. The rest of the current building will be demolished
    o   A residence on the SE corner will be retained as a house with BET likely purchasing the property and then reselling it as a residence (as opposed to being demolished).
    • This use is allowed under the current AO zoning and will go through the land-use process. I believe they said next steps were to go before the County Planning Commission before bringing it to the township. They’re hoping to get on the County agenda next month.
    •  BET will own the building with CHOP entering into a long-term lease (specifics not disclosed but 10+ years)
    • Direct economic benefit to the township (through taxes) will be significantly reduced from the Abington Terrace project.

    We will provide updates as we are made aware.

  • April 16, 2019 1:09 PM | Brian Bamberger (Administrator)

    High Five Fridays is a new initiative by the Abington Township Police Department. Every Friday, police officers will be at as many schools and/or bus stops as possible to greet bus riders and walkers with a “high five” and wish them a good day. This is a great opportunity for members of the police department to increase positive relationships with the youth of our community, as well as provide increased security through their presence at bus stops and the schools.

    We salute the ongoing partnership between Abington School District and the Abington Township Police Department and encourage all community members to acknowledge this program.  You may even see an officer on a corner bus stop some Friday morning! 


  • January 18, 2019 8:16 AM | Brian Bamberger (Administrator)

    Thursday, February 7, 2019  7:00-9:00 pm at Abington Township Building

    Public meeting with our State Senators and Representatives to find out their plans and priorities for the coming year. State Senators for Districts 4 and 7 and State Representatives for Districts 151, 152, 153, 154 and 172 are invited. All constituents are encouraged to attend. Enter parking lot from Horace Road; meeting room is on second floor. Snow date: Thu., Feb. 21, 7:00-9:00 PM.



  • January 18, 2019 8:01 AM | Brian Bamberger (Administrator)

    Two contaminants – Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and Perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS), known as a part of the PFAS family of chemicals – in drinking water supplies, have become a concern across the country, Montgomery County and now in Abington Township, where groundwater contamination from PFAS is believed to originate from nearby military bases (the Naval Air Warfare Center in Warminster and Naval Air Station in Willow Grove).  PFAS were widely used at U.S. military bases in firefighting foam and have been found in hundreds of public and private drinking-water systems near bases across the country since 2014.  PFAS spread through underground plumes into groundwater, which means other parts of the Township could also be effected. The RMCA recommends that all citizens get involved by submitting comments.

    Through January 31, 2019, the PFAS Action Team is taking public comment through the DEP eComment tool - https://www.ahs.dep.pa.gov/eComment/ ~ look for “PFAS Public Input” and then under Actions click on View comments to read submitted comments and click on Submit comments to submit your comment.  Please note these public comments may be sorted by city and name. We highly recommend you read Abington Township Commissioner Spiegelman’s comments and also urge your Township Commissioner, neighbors, family, and all associates to submit similar comments.

    Some facts:

    1. Groundwater supplies drinking water for 51% of the total U.S. population and 99% of total rural population.
    2. Groundwater helps grow our food. 64% of groundwater is used for irrigation to grow crops.
    3. Groundwater is an important component in many industrial processes.
    4. Groundwater is a source of recharge for lakes, rivers, and wetlands.
    5. All Abington Township public water is supplied through Aqua PA groundwater wells!

    Background: Last July, local and state public officials asked Aqua PA to take a well offline that serves the North Hills section of Abington and Upper Dublin. While the PFAS contaminants were below the levels specified as dangerous by the EPA, a very recent CDC draft report recommended a much lower level for PFAS contaminants, which led to the offline request.  In August, the Township’s Board of Commissioners approved a resolution to support House Bill 705 to provide safe drinking water and support for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Environmental Quality Board to set lower limits of contaminants and for higher standards for safe drinking water in Abington Township.  In response to this and other municipal, legislator and citizen advocacy, Governor Wolf established the PFAS Action Team to address PFAS contaminants and protect Pennsylvania residents. The Action Team is charged with developing a comprehensive response to identify and eliminate sources of contamination, ensure drinking water is safe, and manage environmental contamination. Through January 31, 2019, the State PFAS Action Team is taking public comment through the DEP eComment tool at https://www.ahs.dep.pa.gov/eComment/ ~ look for “PFAS Public Input” and then under “Actions,” click on View comments to read submitted comments.  Click on Submit comments to submit your comment.  Please note these public comments may be sorted by city and name. The RMCA highly recommends you read Commissioner Spiegelman’s comments and also urge your Township Commissioner, neighbors, family, and all associates to submit comments. The deadline to submit comments is January 31, 2019.

    The RMCA and Abington Environmental Advisory Council urges you to take these additional actions:

    Oppose Aqua PA’s proposed 16% rate hike until the problem is corrected through GAC-filters, by filing a complaint at http://www.puc.state.pa.us/filing_resources/filing_complaints.aspx

    Join the Upper Dublin and Neighboring Areas Water Updates Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/groups/1637510903232402/ to stay informed (e.g. some dental flosses contain PFAS) and lobby for your interests.

    Support legislation introduced by state legislators Rep. Thomas Murt and Sen. Maria Collett to protect us from PFAS contaminants.

    Below is the text of Commissioner Spiegelman’s stellar online comments which he has given us permission to publish :

    The dramatic down-regulation of the EPA's PFAS HAL over the last decade, coupled with the striking conclusions of the ATSDR/CDC report, makes it alarmingly clear that (1) using the EPA's HAL as the Commonwealth standard is effectively useless and meaningless; and (2) PFAS molecules have no business being in Pennsylvanians' drinking water. The longterm solution is for the Department of Defense to undertake a large-scale groundwater cleansing project similar to the innovative one that is being successfully executed at the former Pease Base in Portsmouth, NH (which was declared a Superfund site). But Pennsylvanians cannot afford to, and should not have to, wait for such a solution to come about at the glacial pace of federal government action. Therefore, the shortest and most immediate distance between the people of our Commonwealth and the clean, safe drinking water that is our right under the PA Constitution is for the state's water providers, including Aqua PA, to be compelled to GAC-filter the water they sell us to the point where PFAS chemicals are at nondetectable levels at our faucets. Aqua has been thusly compelled in New Jersey and have complied, and they have stated that they are prepared to comply similarly in Pennsylvania if they are (in their words) "given the proper guidance." In other words, they will continue to shield themselves with the current 70ppt EPA HAL until either the EPA lowers that figure or they are otherwise compelled by the Commonwealth. Since the former is not going to happen any time in the foreseeable future, it is incumbent upon the Commonwealth to force water providers to GAC-filter ASAP.


  • January 18, 2019 7:58 AM | Brian Bamberger (Administrator)

    LA Film Festival Winner and a New York Times Critics Pick, Catching the Sun is inspiring communities across the country to have new conversations about clean energy access and catalyzing change locally.  Montco Ready for 100 and the Cheltenham EAC are hosting the screening on

    Wednesday, January 23rd at 7 PM

    Keneseth Israel Chapel, 8339 Old York Rd, Elkins Park, PA

    For more information or to RSVP, visit the link below.

    https://www.sierraclub.org/pennsylvania/southeastern/ready-for-100-montgomery-county


  • January 18, 2019 7:47 AM | Brian Bamberger (Administrator)

    January 21, 2019 10:00 am - 3:00 pm  This event is free.

    Location: Murphy Hall click here for location

    More information is click here

  • January 17, 2019 1:21 PM | Brian Bamberger (Administrator)

    Township website: Information for BET Investments Abington Terrace

    Meeting Agenda: http://www.abington.org/home/showdocument?id=13438

    BET Investment’s proposed zoning text and map amendments to rezone the current YMCA site and surrounding area for 130+ Senior Housing rental units to be known as “Abington Terrace.” BET is proposing to raze the existing YMCA, the Helweg and Rowland Funeral Home next door, and two residential properties on nearby Huntingdon Road, to increase the lot size to over five acres. The proposal seeks to rezone this whole area by creating a new use category, H-12 Senior Apartment Use within the Apartment/Office District of Abington’s Zoning Ordinance. 

    BET has revised their December text amendment for another Planning Commission Public Hearing on January 22 at 7:30 PM.

  • January 17, 2019 7:29 AM | Brian Bamberger (Administrator)

    Township of Abington in honoring DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.

    Date & Time: Monday January 21, 2019 at 12pm

    Location: Abington Senior High School Auditorium (900 Highland Avenue, Abington, PA 19001).

    Tributes by: Rydal & Overlook Elementary Schools and Abington Junior High

    Award Recipients:

    • 34th Annual Memorial Award: Honorable Kelly B. Hodge, Esq. (First African American Female District Attorney in Philadelphia County)
    • Special Recognition: Bernard Griggs, Jr. (Business Representative, Building Trades Council)


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