Ideas From Monday Night Meeting

Environmental issues should help to drive the reuse plan

Base should be able to be a key location to manage storm water for the township

Possible alternate energy generation

Solar FarmTake a look at the base for alternate Energy Generation. The exposure on the base is wonderful for solar generation.
Can the base and the area become a point for energy development?
Some kind of a laboratory area for alternate energy development

Manufacturing

Encourage some kind of manufacturing in the township, sustainable, long term friendly to the community and the general reigon

Improvements to road infrastructure

Relocation of existing business to the base property in order to improve the road system should be free of charge

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10 Responses to Ideas From Monday Night Meeting

  1. JoeHeffernan says:

    It’s been about a week since the site is up and running. I have not heard much discussion in my circles of travel just yet. Please post your input to this site, it was created for people to share their voice, concerns and ideas in order the steer the Land Reuse Authority…. The next meeting of the RLA is on a Wednesday afternoon, I will be attending that meeting ready to share what ideas and input I get from this site, so speak up please! Tag post friend or dislike too on Facebook and Twitter

  2. Pam Bojanoski says:

    I like the idea of a solar powered field but that sure does take up alot of space. Maybe a solar array can go on the rooftop of any and every business that gets planted there?? I am a Warrington, Bucks County resident. I see no reason why any town in Bucks county deserves to have land that is not in Bucks County. I personally think the politicians in Warrington hear ‘free’ and get excited.
    I would LOVE to be able to travel THROUGH the Willow Grove Air station land on my way home from work and not travel around it through heavily congested roads, sitting in traffic and generating more pollution. Horsham’s idea of road improvements including adding roads through the air base land is a terrific idea.
    Electric bus/trolly depot anyone? Having an electric trolley system along the rt 611 corridor would be an improvement and would rival the dirty Septa busses currently around. I’m sure many peole would take the trolley up/down rt 611 from PATurnpike to Doylestown then switch to rt 202 into Peddler’s Village for work and for entertainment. Revenue generator, air quality improver, minimal expense to ride.
    Can be used for transport to Fireworks Displays in Peddler’s Village or for tourism.

  3. Bill Rothert says:

    MEMO FOR THE RECORD April 19, 2011

    SUBJ: Airfield Proposal for HLRA

    I support continued operation of an airfield, using the existing runway.
    Pros:
    1. This would place the property adjacent to the runway as prime real-estate for aviation related industrial development. Examples are aircraft modification, avionics upgrade, flight training businesses etc. In addition to other industrial, office and commercial development opportunities, Horsham would have unique airfield industrial opportunities, which would not be in direct competition with other business campuses in southeastern Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware region.
    Cons:
    1. Flying would continue at the base. However, flying would be general aviation and not scheduled flying activities. Flying could be limited and quiet hours could be imposed.

    General comment: Since the Navy stopped flying at the base, in March 2011, general aviation, commuter aircraft, fixed wing and helicopter, has steadily increased over Horsham. Further the aircraft have been flying at lower altitudes than before. Closing of flying at the airfield has not reduced aircraft traffic over Horsham, but has increased it.

    • Hatboro Mike says:

      Seriously? Horsham residents should be more concerned about increased helicoter and commuter traffic OVER Horsham since the airbaae closed?!?

      Let them keep flying OVER Horsham, as opposed to landing IN Horsham!

      There is no need for Horsham residents to support commercial development on the property above and beyond what is needed to maintain the open space many of us want to see there and the infrastructure for whatever LOW PROFILE business development we can attract.

      No one can put a positive spin on what a GROWING COMMERCIAL AIR BUSINESS will do to property values and the quality of life in Horsham. But you can get a real-life approximation by looking at what’s happening in Tinicum Township (i.e. Philadelphia exercising eminent domain evictions of Tinicum homes for a relocated UPS facility). But Tinicum has it better than Horsham would because most of Tinicum does not lie beneath the takeoff and landing flight paths.

      That would be the future for Horsham, because there is no way you can keep the cork in the genie’s bottle once you open up that facility to commercial air operations. Eventually you will see either or both cargo and expanded air passenger operations, including the largest commercial aircraft because the length of the runway will accomodate them.

      Do not listen to those who would compare NE Philly Airport to Willow Grove. The existing neighborhoods (I lived there until 1997.) restricted any possibility to expand the runways there to accomodate larger aircraft. You will not have that restriction at WG, since the runway is ALREADY LONG ENOUGH to handle them!

      Kudos to the Horsham Township Council in moving forward with re-zoning plans that would curtail the potential for future commercial us of the Willow Grove property!

  4. Bill Rothert says:

    MEMO FOR THE RECORD April 19, 2011

    SUBJ: Road Proposal for HLRA

    Reference: Horsham Township Notice of Interest (NOI), continuation of roads (Privet Road, Precision Rd, Norristown Rd and Maple Ave.) between Horsham Rd. and Rt 611, Easton Rd.
    across the runway to Rt 611. The purpose is to provide roads and alleviate traffic in Horsham.

    My recommendations (2):

    A. Connect Norristown Rd. to Maple Av. from the intersection Norristown Rd. and Horsham Rd. to intersection Rt 611 and Maple Av. Sweep the road right-of-way south/southeast of the south end of the runway. See attached sketch.
    PROS:
    1. This would expedite traffic across Horsham by providing a straight drive through Horsham Township from the SW side, Welsh Rd., across and intersecting Rt 611 to the NW side, County Line Rd.
    2. Traffic lights exist at the intersection of Norristown Rd. and Horsham Rd. and at the intersection of Rt 611 and Maple Av.
    3. Traffic would be reduced on the current stretch of Maple Av. Located below the base and connecting Horsham Rd and Rt. 611. Consideration could be given to eliminating the traffic light and intersection of Maple Av and Rt 611 at the southeast corner of the airfield.
    CONS:
    1. This might limit the length of the runway slightly.

    B. Connect Tournament Rd, or connect Babylon Rd to main gate Rt 611
    PROS:
    1. Would cut through the runway thus eliminating use of runway and possible runway connected commercial development.
    2. Babylon Rd or Tournament Rd, very close to Babylon Rd on Horsham Rd, would facilitate traffic getting from Babylon Rd to Rt 611, ie crossing across Horsham Township.
    CONS:
    1. Would cut through the runway thus eliminating use of runway and possible runway connected commercial development.
    2. Would require crossing Commonwealth Golf Course, Babylon extension or acquisition of Tournament Rd, which may be private business campus property, Tournament Rd extension.

    Comments on the Horsham Township NOI: referenced above.

    A. Connect Privet Rd and Precision Rd to the Main Gate on Rt 611.
    PROS:
    1. Would cut through the runway thus eliminating use of runway and possible runway connected commercial development.
    CONS:
    1. Would cut through the runway thus eliminating use of runway and possible runway connected commercial development.
    2. Privet Rd and its connection to Norristown Rd via Jarrett Rd are residential development and connecting them to the main gate on Rt 611 would increase traffic on these secondary roads. These roads are not built for heavy traffic and would ultimately require road improvements and increased right of ways at Horsham taxpayer expense..
    3. Traffic lights would be required at intersection of Horsham Rd and privet Rd. and at intersection of Jarrett Rd. and Norristown Rd.
    4. Precision Rd is a dead end road west of Horsham Rd. It is approximately 3,000 yd. long and serves a small industrial park. Connection of this Precision Rd to the main gate would have insignificant improvement in cross traffic flow in Horsham as there is minimal traffic coming into and out of Precision Rd.
    5. Connections of both Privet Rd and Precision Rd is redundant as these roads are adjacent and very close to each other
    6. Connection of either or both roads would not significantly alleviate traffic; Horsham Rd to Rt 611. They do not pick-up traffic from either Norristown Rd or Babylon Rd, the two existing cross Horsham traffic routes in the vicinity of the former Navy Base..

    B. Connect Norristown Rd. to Moreland Av. On Rt 611.
    PROS:
    1. Would cut through the runway thus eliminating use of runway and possible runway connected commercial development.
    CONS:
    1. Would cut through the runway thus eliminating use of runway and possible runway connected commercial development.
    2. Would require traffic light installation at Moreland Av and Rt 611
    3. Would connect Norristown Rd. a east/west road to Moreland Av a north/south road thus not improve traffic flow across Horsham Township. See recommendation A above.

    C. Connect Maple Av. From Horsham Rd intersection to Maple Ave intersection and Rt 611 at Lancer’s Diner.
    PROS:
    1. This would allow elimination of Maple Av and Rt 611-intersection southeast corner of the airfield.
    2. This would allow elimination of a traffic light on Rt 611.
    CONS:
    1. The facilitation of traffic across Horsham Township would be enhanced only marginally and would not justify the additional road construction cost.

    GENERAL COMMENT: any road crossing the runway could be tunneled under the runway thus allowing a flying operation to continue while alleviating traffic in Horsham.

  5. Bill Rothert says:

    Here are some ideas for the Base.
    1. LEASE OUT THE EXISTING BUILDINGS AND REALESTATE. This would be interim use pending the approval of a master plan by the HLRA. The leases could continue until developers/investors could be engaged to develop in accordance with the approved master plan. The lease profit would go to the DOD. The leased property & structures could be taxed by Horsham Township.
    PROS:
    1. Revenue would be generated to DOD to offset their costs of maintenance of the property ie. mow the grass and security.
    2. Horsham would receive tax revenue to offset their costs for fire and police protection and a revenue source to invest in infrastructure on the site to support future development.
    3. Revenue could go to the DOD that could be used to address environmental cleanup and demolition of those structures deemed not economically viable for continued use or outside of the master plan.
    4. Structures could be placed in use and thus avoid the deterioration that is going to occur between the Navy pickling them and having them ultimately being converted into other uses by developers.
    5. You could try to attract lessors for a variety of uses which would “test the water” as to the economic viability of attracting that use. We may find lessors coming forward with uses that we haven’t even thought of but are agreeable to.
    CONS:
    1. DOD would have management costs of the leases.
    2. A way would have to be found to alloy Federal property to be taxed by a local community.
    2. The lessor would have investments in the structures to convert into their use: fencing of sites, furnaces to separate facilities on the central heating plant and adaptation to their use.
    3. Leases would have to be attractive enough in price and length of term to be attractive to lessor.
    POSSIBLE LESSORS:
    – Area auto dealers could store inventory either on paved lots or in hangers
    – Area heavy construction firms could store heavy equipment.
    – Housing units and Navy Lodge could be placed in service as requested in NOI
    – The Township could take over areas for open space and recreational use, ball fields, gym, the perimeter road for walking and running use, the lake for fishing and picnicking.

    A second idea for an industrial user:
    Construction of a trash to steam plant with gas fired electric co-generation plant.

  6. Bill Rothert says:

    MEMO FOR THE RECORD April 19, 2011

    SUBJ: Residential Development Proposal for HLRA

    I do not support residential development on former Navy property in Horsham.

    1. Horsham has adequate land within the township suitable for residential development.
    2. Residential taxes do not cover cost to the township of schools, roads, parks, police, fire protection, public safety etc.
    3. Before you can have a need for residential development you need a place for residents to work. Therefore, you need commercial and/or business development land before you have residential land set aside for development.
    4. Commercial and/or business development pays more than their share in taxes and covers the shortfall in residential real-estate taxes.
    5. Commercial and/or business development would serve to raise property values elsewhere in the township.

    General comment: I feel that priority should be given to business campus, commercial, and industrial development. The base property proximity to major highways, the PA turnpike, Horsham Road and Rt 611 also lends itself to this type of development over residential development. A portion of this development could be general aviation which would attract aviation related commercial and industrial development and give Horsham a significant edge that adjacent communities could not compete with.

  7. Brian says:

    I am for the use of the land and runway to support the operation of a samll general avivation airport with size limatations on aircraft to the size no bigger than that of a Gulfstream V. Also I agree that there should be limations in place so that ther will no flying during restricted hours. I do think that by opening the base land to use of specialized businesses that New Jersey Delaware or Pa currently have would generate a sizable income and taxes for the townships that surround all sides of the base land in both counties of Montgomery and Bucks.
    The small general avivation airport concept greatly reduces the nosie and pollution that have exsisted there as a result of the military flying operations. The land could also hold some more localy owned resturants and small bussinesses as well. we need look at something from the stand point of what will bring in and attract such companies that will be able to put more of out work citizens back to work for good companies that are going to stay in the area for the long run. If the runway is used in this type of capacity it will attract the right types of business ot build a grow here.

    I also support the use of the base land as some type of mixed green environmental use land such as mybe some solar and or wind generated producer. I am fully behind any type of open space and park plan as well. I just have one suggestion that there be some sort of memorial built to the men and women that served on the base thru out the course of the life of the base.

  8. Hatboro Mike says:

    As promised, Tom, my vision for the airbase sans an airport!
    http://crankymanslawn.com/2011/06/09/the-greens-of-horsham/

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