The Van Wyck News

Volume 6 Number 21
A Voice for Freedom      30 September 2014
Lennar Treetops
     Lennar Homes has submitted both a request for rezoning of the Treetops property from PDD6 to R30P and a proposed Development Agreement to put an age restricted cluster subdivision on the property. These are being rushed through the system in an obvious attempt to get this development approved by the current County Council before this Council dies on 31 December 2014. 
     It should be noted that this pressure to get things done in a hurry is coming not from County Council but from the property owner, Thompson Family Focus, and the developer, Lennar Homes. Apparently when Mattamy Homes abandoned its Treetops project last summer,  Thompson accepted bids from developers for the right to propose developments on the Treetops property, and selected Lennar as the next builder.
     Thompson, a nonprofit corporation, is under some pressure because SCDOR revoked its tax exemption on the property last year, ruling that real estate speculation was not a suitable activity for a nonprofit. Thompson is thus looking at $75k in real estate taxes each year on the property.
     There are many reasons that County Council should not approve this project on an accelerated schedule, including that the County's Comprehensive Plan is changing this year and the criteria for approval will be different next year. It would not be reasonable for County Council to approve this project using current criteria and to simultaneously approve different criteria that would cause approval to fail next year. This project should be left for the new County Council to deal with after 1 January 2015.   


Dave Lyle Extension
     The Dave Lyle Extension has been     resurrected by York County, which aims to find $215MM to build it into Lancaster County. For fifteen years Lancaster County officials have greeting this projects with the big Ho-Hum, which is why it has yet to be built. Anyone who looks at a map can easily see that this shortcut to I-77 and the commercial development that it will bring are critical to Lancaster County. Why Lancaster County officials insist on building more houses and refuse to seek the transportation infrastructure to support those houses is the mystery.   
     Twelve years ago when the Dave Lyle project was first proposed Lancaster County responded by building Sun City squarely across the best path for the highway. Now the project comes up again and the same developer who built Sun City in the path of the best path for the Dave Lyle Extension is preparing to build a second development directly in the path to the last remaining option for the road.
     The only acceptable response for Lancaster County Officials to the Dave Lyle proposal is "Thanks for doing this. How an we help?" Beginning by building a housing development in the way is not appropriate. See Map.

JRWilt
J.R. Wilt, Editor
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Betty George Retires
     Betty George, longtime mistress of the Van Wyck Post Office and active and beloved member of the Van Wyck Community, will retire on Tuesday 30 September. There will be a celebration honoring Betty at the Community Center on 30 September from 5 to 7 PM. Light refreshments will be served.   
Community Development Club Meeting
     The Community Development Club will meet on 7 October at 7:00 PM for CrimeWatch and 7:30 PM for the CDC meeting. Both Treetops and Incorporation will be on the agenda.   

Lennar Treetops Meeting
     There will be a community meeting regarding Treetops, Incorporation and the Future of Van Wyck on 13 October 2014 at 7:00 PM at Trinity Baptist Church, 1519 Steele Hill Road in Van Wyck. Mr. Jon Hardy, President of the local Lennar Homes operation which is proposing to build an age restricted cluster subdivision on the Treetops property, will present his vision for the Treetops property and discuss why he thinks this is the most appropriate use of the land.
     Lennar Homes has a proposal in the works to change the zoning of the Treetops property from PDD6 to R30P with Cluster Development. This proposal will be heard by the Planning Commission on 21 October and by County Council for first reading conceivably 27 October but more likely on 10 November. The obvious attempt is to get the rezoning approved before this Council ceases to exist on 31 December.
     We have been strongly opposing this development. It will be in the way of the badly needed Dave Lyle Extension transportation corridor and we do not have and are not likely to get the roads required to support a large development in this location. Without the Dave Lyle Extension northbound traffic will have no where to go but into the traffic jam that is Indian Land.
     We would make the point that Thompson, the present owners of the Treetops property, acquired the property as an operating camp. There is a market for camps; there is no reason that the property could not be sold as a camp. Used as a camp the property would have no negative impact on the available infrastructure and would be, as it was before, a valuable asset to the community.