Collier residents angered over developer violating stop-work order
By Doug Gulasy
Published: Wednesday, March 6, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Residents of the Villages of Neville Park told Collier commissioners last week that the developer of the area is violating a stop-work order issued last summer for grading work.
About a dozen Marigold Court residents came to the commissioners meeting Feb. 27 to voice their frustrations with Collier Development Co. Inc. and seek assistance from the township.
Susan Keefer told commissioners that the developer is “literally moving mountains” of dirt and rocks, in violation of a stop-work order issued by the township. She and the others who spoke at the meeting say they are worried about water runoff and landslides.
“This is a weekly — almost daily — (occurrence),” Keefer said. “It's constant, but definitely on the weekends, when nobody else is around.”
But Collier Development project manager John Quigley said he wasn't aware of any work going on, and township Manager Sal Sirabella said on Monday that there have been no official reports of violations.
“At this point, we haven't gotten any proof or been able to inspect actual visual (evidence) that there's been grading at the top,” he said. “We've been told, and we have been watching it and monitoring it.”
Quigley also said Collier Development is working to address residents' concerns.
The area that Marigold Court resident say concerns them begins with a hillside behind the homes on the cul-de-sac, flattens to a “bench” area and then continues up to another bench. That is where the next phase of Villages of Neville Park is to be built, featuring houses to be constructed by Ryan Homes.
Grading started in the summer but began without proper permits, Sirabella has said. The township in August issued a stop-work permit to Collier Development, owned by former township commissioner Jack Cargnoni.
“He did move dirt,” Sirabella said. “He was stopped until such time as he produces the grading ordinances.”
Marigold Court residents complained in the summer to the township about water runoff, and a landslide developed in late January on two residents' properties. Township engineer Larry Souleret said runoff from above may have caused the soil on the hillside to shift.
Richard Goodman of Marigold Court told commissioners at the Feb. 27 meeting that after dirt slid onto his property, someone from Collier Development dug a hole in his yard to investigate the landslide.
Goodman filed a police report in response, claiming trespass and damage. No charges were filed.
“I think that there's been grand theft because he took the topsoil off my property without my permission,” he said.
Souleret said at the commissioners' meeting that digging a hole to examine soil is a “legitimate” way of investigating the landslide, but the developer should have notified the township and obtained permission from Goodman.
Quigley said Collier Development sent revised grading plans to the township before the meeting Feb. 27. The grading plans include remediation for the landslide problems. Souleret said he would review the plans, but ultimate approval for the remediation lies with the property owners.
“If the engineering information is satisfactory, then we will proceed to meet with the residents (and) get their understanding and agreement with the work to be done — the portion of it that would be done on their property,” Quigley said. “And then (we would) complete the work in the spring.”
Doug Gulasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-380-8527 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Township residents call foul on wayward fowl in Scott Park
- Carnegie youth going to the dogs with his Eagle Scout project
- Two local photographers cover all the age groups
- Work to shut down span between Carnegie, Scott for six months
- Heidelberg project nears completion
- No make-up snow days needed for Chartiers Valley schools
- Artist produces high-quality records of contemporary scenes
- Kotik: Protecting PACE/PACENET eligibility for senior citizens