The purpose of EFCC's Zoning Committee is to protect & improve the quality of life within East Falls, a community of Philadelphia Pennsylvania, through the cooperative actions of East Falls residents.
UPCOMING Zoning MeetingS:
SEPTEMBER 21 & OCTOBER 19 @ 7pm
EFCC zoning meetings take place on the third Wednesday of every month. Use the Zoom button below at the start of the meeting to connect with those who share your concerns.
AGENDA - SEPTEMBER 21st:
2683 Roberts Avenue
Proposal is for a two-family dwelling and roof deck.
1. A two-family dwelling in the RSA-5 Zoning District which allows for only single family homes.
AGENDA - OCTOBER 19th:
3000 W. Schoolhouse Lane (Penn Charter School)
The updated master plan and design of the new lower school will be re-presented. A new and updated traffic study will also be reviewed.
1. Educational use in a Residential District.
2. Required parking is 488 Spaces, 319 are proposed.
EFCC is a Registered Community Organization (RCO) with a Zoning Committee made up of volunteers. Members include:
Hilary Langer, (Chair) , Emily Nichols (EFCC President), Bill Epstein, Glynis Tart, Todd Baylson, Stan Sherman, LB Young, Paul Elia, Thomas Flynn, Jim O'Toole, Bruce Weitz, Matt McClure, Linda Norris.
All members abide by the zoning rules and regulations provided by the ZBA and the EFCC's procedures and bylaws, which can be reviewed in the EFCC's Archives.
School House Lane
Please note this attached Traffic Access Study for William Penn Charter Schools' Master Plan is being updated to include review comments from neighbors per the July 20th meeting.
See below link for the RCO July 17th presentation by CEO Hal Davidow and EwingCole Architects. This presentation is also in the process of being updated.
Masterplan & Lower School Presentation PDF HERE
3504 Ainslie Street
Re: RCO Meeting Calendar No: MI-2021-003662
Zoning Application No: ZP-2021-007889
Project Address: 3504 Ainslie Street
For the erection of 2 new homes on an existing single lot with one existing home to be subdivided into three lots. Open lots have existed for 147 years between these homes.
Zoning Committee Meeting: 09/15/21 & Neighbor Site Meeting: 10/11/21.
Neighbor position: OPPOSE
ZBA Hearing Date - 11/02/21: continued at request of the 11th hour hiring of an attorney by the Owner.
ZBA Hearing Date - 03/09/22: Continued.
Zoning Appeal Application Withdrawn by Owner: 04/07/22.
Owner has submitted for subdivision of the Lot into two lots which was approved. The zoning for the single family home has also been approved by the L & I and is now by-right.
Re: RCO Meeting Calendar No: MI-2021-002538
Zoning Application No: ZP-2021-003150
Project Address: 3549 Sunnyside Avenue
The owner of 3549 Sunnyside Ave. seeks to change the ‘use’ to (4) dwelling units in an existing building with an existing granted ‘use’ of one (1) commercial unit and three (3) dwelling units.
Community Zoning Meetings: 10/20/21 & 11/17/21.
Neighbor Position: SUPPORT
ZBA Hearing Date: 03/23/2022 - Variance Granted.
2783 Roberts Avenue
Re: RCO Meeting Calendar No: MI-2021-002538
Zoning Application No: ZP-2021-0000765
Project Address: 2783 Roberts Avenue
This is an application for an Assembly and Entertainment use on the 1st floor limited to 49 people. There is an existing office use on the upper level which is currently vacant. The assembly and Entertainment use is not allowed in this zoning district (I2).
ZBA Appeal date of 01/26/22 was continued as there had been no community review at that time or representation by Counsel.
ZBA Appeal Date of 06/22/22 was continued due to lack of community review.
ZBA appeal date is now 11/09/22. No community meeting has been applied for by the owner and or their representative.
4401 Ridge Avenue
Re: RCO Meeting Calendar No: MI-2021-000336
Zoning Application No: ZP-2020-009878
Project Address: 4401 Ridge Avenue
185 Apartments, 179 parking spaces, 179,000 SF. This ATAPCO of Baltimore Project was reviewed twice at the Community Design Review. The developer made improvements adding balconies & stoops and increased length of frontage on Ridge with building setbacks on Merrick Rd. Materials were changed from grey/black metal panels to more traditional masonry.
The issues discussed through the Civic design review process and community meetings consistently comprised of high-density adding cars and congestion, the overdevelopment of the site building on steep slope and green space, the height and size of the building on the higher rear portion of the site opposite the 2 story height of the adjacent homes, and the high number of one bedroom apartments.
Residents & members of EFCC opposed the development by a vote of 55-7.
ZBA Appeal Date: 10/19/21
ZBA Decision date: 11/03/21 - Vote of 3-1 SUPPORT.
EFCC Notice of Appeal to Common Pleas registered: 12/16/21
Government Agency (ZBA) did not meet record filing deadline of 04/04/22.
New Recording deadline for ZBA is set for 07/15/22
Fundraising for legal fees for ZBA & Common Pleas Appeal is complete.
Current STATUS OF GRANTED Variance Requests
For the erection of 3 new town homes with parking spaces in rear under the town homes accessed by a shared driveway. There is included 12 parking spaces dedicated to 3515 Midvale on the rear section of the site zoned CMX2.5. To review the submission going before the ZBA click here.
Zoning Committee Meeting: 11/17/21
ZBA Appeal date: 01/12/22
Applying for Building Permits
This is for an accessory roof deck and exit stair for what will be Mike Murphy's Taqueria Cresta and bar on Midvale right next to Black Squirrel. See application here.
Zoning Committee Meeting: 10/20/21
ZBA Appeal date: 12/15/21
EFCC Zoning Committee: SUPPORT
Building permits obtained and under construction.
UPDATE EXISTING APPLICATIONS:
This is for the legalization of a dwelling structure above garage on the rear portion of a double lot. The owner has progressively enlarged the existing building as we have met with no effort to remove, alter or reduce the size of the structure. EFCC has opposed the variance. Finally, on August 25th, the ZBA denied the variance. See ZBA Notice of Decision. (NOD)
3445 Division Street
This application for 2 small but tall homes of 900 SF each on an 1800 SF site was denied by the ZBA. The owner has appealed the decision which will take it to the Court of Common Pleas. The neighbors have agreed to fund the legal costs of the intervention and representation giving the neighbors and EFCC standing at the appeal to continue to oppose this development.
The developer withdrew the appeal and has now successfully applied for a single family home on the lot.
4300-26 Ridge Avenue - GRASSO Project
Yes the day finally arrived when we will see this forever vacant and blighted lot with a building! Groundbreaking took place on Friday September 10th 2021. Foundation, lower parking levels and 1st floor reinforced concrete building base is completed with 4 floors of apartments under construction above.
4440-2 Ridge Avenue - HOW Project.
Ground Floor Steel and deck above retail ground floor complete. 5 levels of apartment framing and sheathing completed to date.
Current Proposal & Variance Request Updates as of September 14th 2021
1. 4401 Ridge Avenue - former PHA site (Parcel 3 or III) - Ridge and Merrick - review of developer proposal with notified stakeholders. 185 rental units, 180 cars and 179,000 SF overall development. 90' tall at its high point. To see the ATAPCO proposal Click here for the layout and design of the project presented at the 2nd Civic design Review.
Please click here for community input following the community design review at City Planning.
Following the course of of two civic design reviews with City Planning and the EFCC Zoning group, the ATAPCO developers from Baltimore Maryland made some minor cosmetic changes namely the addition of balconies to some of the apartments and more significantly, an increase in the footprint of the corner retail at Ridge & Merrick. The green roof area was increased and a second loading bay added. The number of apartments remains unchanged but parking spaces have been reduced to 180 (going forward to the ZBA appeal process) The overall footprint of the project places a long unbroken high rise block at the back of the site, which has been described as reminiscent of the original towers demolished.
The ZBA appeal hearing (required because of the steep slope refusal) was held on June 9th and was continued to August 17th at 9.30 am. Zoning notices were improperly posted around the site, but more significantly an additional meeting was requested by Councilman Jones and Kelvin Jeremiah of PHA to learn more of the concerns of near neighbors to the development . This meeting was held by zoom on Tuesday June 29th.
The August 17th ZBA hearing was resumed to September 8th at 3.30 pm due to the length presentation and testimony of the applicant. At this time the protestants and close neighbors in opposition to the development to the development in its current form will be able to be heard.
2. 3445 Division Street - proposal for 2 homes with garages on undersized lots of 908 SF (1440 SF is minimum requirement). As of March 10th after the 3rd attempt to reach a vote, the ZBA unanimously gave a NO vote to the Zoning Variance Appeal in the favor of the neighbors. The developer NUBO Group has subsequently filed an appeal at Court of Common Pleas to overturn the ZBA vote. EFCC and neighbors have intervened so we may continue to uphold the position of the Zoning Board and the neighborhood.
3. 3018 Midvale Avenue - the owner is seeking legalization of an existing recently built structure in rear lot. The variance hearing of 01/27/21 was continued due to an incorrect application for accessory storage, when in fact the owner was applying for an accessory residential unit above a garage. The owner has since proposed to make significant alterations to the existing structure but the ZBA has still issued 2 refusals which brought the owner and community back to a hearing on August 3rd. The ZBA did not hear testimony of neighbors at this meeting or meet the EFCC request for continuance as the most recent proposal had not been reviewed. They decided that a letter of support/opposition will be read on August 25th and the board will take their vote after the reading. Fortunately the ZBA agreed with the neighbors and denied the variance and legalization of the property.
4. 4440-42 Ridge Avenue - Construction has started on this 136 unit 96 parking space apartment building. The lower level is retail space which is isolated and disconnected from other retail on Ridge Avenue. The lower parking level and foundation excavation is well underway.
Here is the CDR presentation of the apartment project.
5. 3515 Midvale Avenue - Construction has started on this 33 unit apartment building on the former site of Chucks garage. The large bill board has come down and the existing garage building is demolished. Site remediation and removal of fill is complete and foundation and foundation walls have come up to grade level.
6. 3570-74 Calumet Street - David Ross of Argos development is proposing 3 townhomes fronting onto Calumet with parking in the rear. Parking via a common driveway is also proposed for 12 parking spaces dedicated for 3515 Midvale Avenue. Access to the rear of 3515 Midvale Appts would be provided via restricted access to steps down the steep slope. Originally the proposal for this site was for 22 cars to address concerns of parking on Midvale. However, Calumet neighbors rightly did not want parking issues on Midvale to become their congestion issue. Two meetings of neighbors at the project site came to the census that townhomes and limited parking for Midvale might be a reasonable compromise..
7. 3227-43 Stokley - an existing event facility with an outside deck and entertainment applying for a restaurant and full kitchen. This is a non-conforming use in the zoning for the site. This is a shared neighborhood project with RAH Ridge Allegheny Hunting Park Civic Association. The project location is close to the Bakers Center shopping center. This project is supported by EFCC after a July 21st meeting was held with the owner and RAH and due to the strong support voiced in the meeting. the ZBA approved the variance and the project on August 25th.
8. 2783 Roberts Avenue - an existing corner building with some mixed uses including daycare. There appears to be some maintenance work shop space in the lower level. They are proposing to apply for restaurant use which is not allowed in the zoning for the building. This is a shared neighborhood project with RAH Ridge Allegheny Hunting Park Civic Association. The project location is close to the Bakers Center shopping center.
As always, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions, ideas or concerns.
We make every effort to post the upcoming meeting agenda as soon as is possible and will also post on Next Door. The best way to get the agenda is by signing up for the weekly EFCC newsletter by emailing email@example.com
EFCC zoning meetings are held the third Wednesday of every month, unless otherwise noted here. Meetings are public and all are welcome. Neighbors living close to projects on the Agenda are strongly encouraged to participate.
Additional Zoning Related Resources