#City & Town Planning
Jenkintown Borough Council and Zoning Hearing Board
United States of America

Petition in Opposition to Fourteen Zoning Variances for Taco Bell
459/471 York Road, Jenkintown, PA 19046

Taco Bell has submitted an application to the Zoning Hearing Board (ZHB) and requested to be placed on the next scheduled ZHB hearing, 7:00 PM, Thursday, June 28, 2018 at the Jenkintown School (location to be determined). Please be present and make your views known at the hearing.

The Taco Bell development project will raze the current beautiful, occupied building and construct a drive-through Taco Bell. The application includes a non-negotiable provision that the drive-through will be open until 2 am. The following Jenkintown Zoning Code provisions explicitly prohibit 14 elements of the project, with the following five major variances:

1) Drive-throughs are prohibited uses (§ 181-49);
2) Front yard setbacks may only be for a plaza, square, courtyard, recessed entrance, or outdoor dining; Taco Bell’s site plan includes a lateral, front driveway for the drive-through exit (§ 181-49);
3) New buildings must be at least two stories tall; the Taco Bell is only one story (§ 181-50);
4) Vehicular access shall be from an alley or side street, where possible; and it is possible at this site, from both Cherry and Johnson Streets (§ 181-51); and
5) No sale of food is permitted between 1:01 AM and 4:59 AM (§ 181-92).

There are numerous other negative elements to a drive-through, including lighting and smells adjacent to a residential neighborhood, and hours of food delivery prohibited after normal hours.

The Jenkintown Borough Zoning Code exists to preserve our town, its historic quality, and pedestrian character. Granting a zoning variance for any single provision should be very difficult; granting variances for seven exceptions would be unprecedented and a violation of the public trust.

We the undersigned residents and business owners of Jenkintown Borough urge the Zoning Hearing Board to deny the application for 14 zoning variances and permit for Taco Bell, 459/471 York Road, Jenkintown, PA 19046. A Taco Bell drive-through, open until 2 am every night in the middle of Jenkintown Borough, is not in the best interests of the community. The attached Community Resolution describes the project and why we oppose it.

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The Petition in Opposition to Fourteen Zoning Variances for Taco Bell petition to Jenkintown Borough Council and Zoning Hearing Board was written by Tim Dibble and is in the category City & Town Planning at GoPetition.