Fight over height at Chesco high school
EAST MARLBOROUGH TWP., Pa. - May 20, 2011 (WPVI) -- "We have worked very closely with the township in the past and on this project to get approvals," said Unionville High School Communications Director Rich Hug.
Then how is it possible that in a place where township codes specify the maximum height for ANY building is 35 feet, that the new Unionville High School auditorium stands just over 60 feet tall? That's 25 feet higher than what is allowed by law.
For taxpayers in the Unionville-Chadds Ford School District, that is the $71 million question.
"This disconnect is something I can't put a finger on," said Leonard Beiberbach of East Marlborough Township.
"I think it's kind of stupid," said Ron Hoopes of Unionville. "It's 25 feet higher than it should be. I think they should have thought it out a little bit before they built it."
School officials say they did think it out, and the township was fully aware of the construction plans.
But the local Board of Supervisors says that's not the case.
In a written statement sent to Action News, board member Cuyler Walker wrote, "Had the school district informed the township that the building would be higher than 35 feet, the district would have been required to obtain a variance from the township's Zoning Hearing Board before approval."
So, what now?
"We're not focusing on demolition at all. We are focusing on getting a nice amicable solution to this issue," said Hug.
And they will try to find that solution at the next Zoning Board meeting. School officials will be there either to prove they had the proper clearance, or to apply for a variance after the fact.
The meeting is scheduled for Tuesday May 24th.
pennsylvania, education, construction spending, chester county, local/state, walter perez
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