ZBA Testimony, Dranoff, November 22, 1999

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        1                  CITY OF PHILADELPHIA

        2               ZONING BOARD OF ADJUSTMENT

        3   ------------------------------x
            APPLICANT:                    : Calendar
        4                                 : No. 99-1284
            DRANOFF PROPERTIES, INC.      : No. 99-1285
        5                                 :
            IN RE:                        :
        6   4601-45 Flat Rock Road and    :
            4700 Flat Rock Road           :
        7   ------------------------------x
                        Monday, November 22, 1999
        8               Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
                                  - - -
                         Hearing of the ZONING BOARD OF
       10   ADJUSTMENT, held at 1515 Arch Street, 18th Floor,
            on the above date, beginning at approximately 2:20
       11   p.m., before Angela C. Buonantuono, Court Reporter
            and Commissioner of Deeds.

       13   APPEARANCES:

       14   BOARD MEMBERS:

       15          Thomas J. Kelly, Chairman
                   David L. Auspitz
       16          Susan O.W. Jaffe
                   Rosalie M. Leonard
       17          Thomas D. Logan

       18   Martin T. Gregorski, City Planner


                                  - - -

                    Registered Professional Reporters
       23             Suite 636 - 1801 Market Street
                    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania   19103
       24                     (215) 568-2211

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1   APPEARANCES (Continued):

        2          BLANK ROME COMISKY & McCAULEY, LLP
                   BY:   PETER F. KELSEN, ESQUIRE
        3          One Logan Square
                   Philadelphia, Pennsylvania  19103-6998
                         Counsel for Applicants, Dranoff
        5                Properties, Inc.


        7          KRAKOWER & MASON
                   BY:   STANLEY R. KRAKOWER, ESQUIRE
        8          2300 Aramark Tower
                   1101 Market Street
        9          Philadelphia, Pennsylvania  19107

       10                Counsel for Friends of Manayunk Canal


       12          O'BRIEN AND ASSOCIATES
                   BY:   WILLIAM J. O'BRIEN, II, ESQUIRE
       13          4322 Main Street
                   Philadelphia, Pennsylvania  19127
                         Counsel for Manayunk Neighborhood
       15          Council and Wissahickon Neighbors Civic









                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Calendar

        2          99-1284 and 1285.  4601-45 and 4700 Flat

        3          Rock Road.

        4                      MR. KELSEN:  Good afternoon,

        5          Mr. Chairman and Members of the Board.

        6          Peter Kelsen for the Applicant, Dranoff

        7          Properties, for both of these cases.

        8                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  On 4601-45

        9          Flat Rock Road the application is for the

       10          relocation of lot lines to create one lot

       11          from two lots, and for the demolition of

       12          four portions of an existing building, and

       13          demolition of a one-story structure with

       14          the erection of a six-story addition and

       15          two and four-story addition to the

       16          remaining structure with conversion of

       17          Building E-1 to be used as a fitness area

       18          for residents and apartment units.

       19                      In E-2 residential storage

       20          facility and apartment units.  E-3

       21          residential activities facility and

       22          apartment units.  E-4 to remain vacant.

       23                      P-1 residential apartments.

       24          P-2A lobby and management office and

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          apartment units.  P-2B apartment units for

        2          a total of 160 residential units proposing

        3          160 parking spaces, five of which are

        4          accessible spaces and 55 are compact

        5          spaces.  (17 of those compact spaces are

        6          crossing the existing property lines and

        7          require either an easement, agreement or

        8          proof of ownership of the abutting

        9          property).

       10                      This construction is within the

       11          floodway and no new construction or

       12          development is permitted.

       13                      These structures must be flood

       14          proofed to 40.3 City datum.  Whereas

       15          residences are prohibited in the District,

       16          it is required to provide six accessible

       17          spaces for 160 parking spaces.  The

       18          required size of a parking space is nine by

       19          18, and accessible spaces are required to

       20          be 13 by 18.  Compact spaces are not

       21          permitted in the District.  Stack parking

       22          is not permitted.  It is required to

       23          provide an area equal to 25 percent of the

       24          parking spaces for aisles and driveways as

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          access to the parking spaces.

        2                      One zoning refusal.  Five use

        3          refusals.

        4                      The Board approved the

        5          manufacture and storage of cleaning

        6          products and specialty chemicals in 1988

        7          at 4647-61 Flat Rock Road.

        8                      The Board approved an addition

        9          to a soap and detergent manufacturing plant

       10          in 84 at 4601 Flat Rock Road.

       11                      The Board granted a variance

       12          for the erection of an addition as part of

       13          the manufacturing and storage of soap in

       14          1980.

       15                      Note to the Zoning Board of

       16          Adjustments, See Section 14-1802(3)(a).

       17          Issuance of a permit is pending approval

       18          through appropriate agencies and an

       19          engineering study to support the fact that

       20          there will be no net rise or negative

       21          impact.

       22                      I want to read the other

       23          refusal into the record before we get

       24          started.  This is 4700 Flat Rock Road.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      The application is for the

        2          relocation of lot lines to create one lot

        3          from three, erection of an eight-foot high

        4          fence, and the creation of a private

        5          parking lot having a total of 54 spaces

        6          with sizes as follows:  44 at 8'6" by 18,

        7          and seven at 8 and 18, and three at 8'6" by

        8          20.  Two handicapped accessible will be

        9          required.

       10                      This private parking lot is to

       11          be used by the property located at 4601

       12          Flat Rock Road whereas in this District the

       13          required minimum size of a parking space is

       14          9 by 18 will not be met, and the two

       15          handicapped accessible spaces will not be

       16          provided.

       17                      One use refusal.  Sir...

       18                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Chairman,

       19          members of the Board, let me give a little

       20          introduction if I will, and then I will

       21          turn the testimony over to our expert

       22          witnesses.

       23                      There are two separate cases,

       24          although they're companion cases, and I

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          would ask the Board to hear and decide them

        2          on a combined basis.

        3                      The subject property as

        4          indicated by the photographs and the site

        5          plan and survey consist of a series of

        6          obsolete, deteriorated and blighted

        7          industrial buildings which had previously

        8          been used for the manufacture of soap

        9          products by the Namico Company.  The

       10          property is now vacant.  Namico has shut

       11          down their operations at this location.

       12                      The property is located on

       13          Venice Island in the Manayunk section of

       14          Philadelphia.  It is bordered on one side

       15          by the Schuylkill River on its southerly

       16          side, and the Manayunk Canal on its

       17          northerly edge, on its opposite edge.

       18                      The property as indicated on

       19          zoning map 6-4, a copy of which I have

       20          given the Board, is zoned G-2 industrial.

       21          Both parcels are G-2 industrial.

       22                      And if the Board looks at the

       23          zoning map, you will note that all of the

       24          properties located on Flat Rock Road are,

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          in fact, zoned G-2 industrial, as are

        2          virtually all of the properties that are

        3          directly adjacent to the site across the

        4          Manayunk Canal.

        5                      Venice Island was formerly and

        6          is predominantly an industrial island.

        7          It's the home of many heavy industrial

        8          uses, or former heavier industrial uses.

        9                      The two properties front along

       10          Flat Rock Road and the application before

       11          the Board includes both of these parcels.

       12                      The main development parcel, as

       13          indicated on this plan, which is

       14          immediately adjacent to Leverington Road as

       15          well as Flat Rock Road, and a small parcel

       16          which is directly across Flat Rock Road

       17          budding up against the Schuylkill River.

       18                      This will be the main

       19          development site, and we will convert this

       20          property into a high-end residential use.

       21                      And this property here across

       22          Flat Rock Road will be used for private

       23          parking for the residents and will be

       24          basically accessory to this application.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      There are several variances

        2          required from the Zoning Board in order to

        3          allow this reuse of the property.

        4                      The property is located within

        5          the floodway of the Schuylkill River and

        6          the Manayunk Canal and therefore the

        7          proposed development will require a

        8          variance to permit improvements to be

        9          placed within the floodway.

       10                      The evidence before you will be

       11          extensive as to why this application will

       12          constitute a betterment of the flood

       13          situation as opposed to a detriment.

       14                      In addition, Members of the

       15          Board, a variance is required to use the

       16          G-2 zone property for residential use.

       17          That's a variance you have seen before,

       18          especially in cases where we come before

       19          obsolete buildings and ask to convert them

       20          to residential development.

       21                      And, finally, there will be

       22          variances required for parking space or

       23          parking lot configuration.  They are di

       24          minimus and dimensional in nature.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          Basically they deal with the issue of the

        2          slot size as well as a stacking component.

        3                      What we propose to do, Members

        4          of the Board, is an extensive demolition

        5          and reconstruction of the former Namico

        6          site to convert it to 160 residential

        7          apartments with an accessory fitness center

        8          for residents use, services and facilities.

        9          It will be entirely a residential

       10          development.

       11                      The majority of the

       12          development, as Mr. Thrower will describe,

       13          will make reuse of the former industrial

       14          building.  Many of the buildings are

       15          historic, we will rehab them, we will reuse

       16          them, bring them back and add vitality to

       17          the site.

       18                      We will also create new

       19          construction keeping with the scale and

       20          scope of the property, as well as the

       21          property, it's along Manayunk, in terms of

       22          size and configuration, and allow us to

       23          reuse this obsolete structure.

       24                      We will provide 214 car parking

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          on this property and this property

        2          (indicating), on-site basically, to

        3          accommodate the parking needs of our

        4          residents.

        5                      I will have the Board note that

        6          the new structures will all be constructed,

        7          as will the existing structure in full

        8          accordance with the floodway regulations as

        9          governed by the City of Philadelphia's

       10          building code, the BOCA code, FEMA

       11          regulations, Army Corp regulations, and

       12          Planning Commission regulations.

       13                      In essence, Members of the

       14          Board, there will be no residential

       15          occupancy above the -- below rather or at

       16          the 100-year flood elevation.  Everything

       17          will begin at the second-floor level

       18          basically and will be built at least 14

       19          feet above so that we will be at least a

       20          foot and a half above the mean 100-year

       21          flood elevation.

       22                      Members of the Board, the

       23          testimony and evidence will demonstrate

       24          that the proposed application not only

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          fulfills the requirements for the grant of

        2          the variance as I've described, but

        3          actually would result in a situation where

        4          if the Board denies the variances at issue,

        5          the result will be a negative impact on the

        6          community and surrounding properties

        7          because without this variance and without

        8          this redevelopment, the property will

        9          continue to be deteriorated and blighted

       10          with no hope for any industrial reuse, and

       11          it will prevent a betterment of the

       12          floodway situation.

       13                      With that, let me call my first

       14          witness.

       15                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Before you do,

       16          councilman requests to read a letter into

       17          the record.

       18                      MALE SPEAKER:  Mr. Chairman and

       19          Members of the Board and the applicant, I

       20          appreciate the opportunity to speak out of

       21          turn, but I need to get back into the

       22          office.

       23                      Mr. Chairman, if I can I will

       24          hand up a letter and I would like to read

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          it into the record, and I have copies for

        2          the Members of the Board.

        3                      It's a letter to Mr. Thomas J.

        4          Kelly, Chairman, Zoning Board of

        5          Adjustment, Municipal Services Building on

        6          these two particular items dated today.

        7                      "Dear Chairman Kelly:  The

        8          above-referenced matter is scheduled for a

        9          zoning hearing on Monday, November 22nd,

       10          1999 at 2 o'clock p.m..  The applications

       11          are for the relocation of lot lines,

       12          demolition of existing buildings, an

       13          erection of structures for conversion to a

       14          160-unit apartment building with 160

       15          parking spaces, fitness area, lobby,

       16          management office, and for an additional

       17          private parking lot with 54 spaces and a

       18          fence.

       19                      "The site in question is the

       20          former Namico Soap Factory located on a

       21          part of Venice Island in Manayunk and is

       22          currently zoned G-2 industrial.

       23                      The Manayunk area community

       24          organizations have requested" -- this

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          letter was obviously written before, right

        2          before this moment -- "requested a

        3          continuance be granted to allow further

        4          discussion with the applicant".  I think

        5          the Board has heard discussion about that.

        6                      "I support the community in

        7          this request and would encourage the

        8          applicant to request of the Board to grant

        9          a continuance.

       10                      "If, however, the Board

       11          proceeds to hear the case, then I am

       12          stating my opposition to the application.

       13                      "Members of the Zoning Board

       14          are probably familiar with the events of

       15          September 16th, 1999 when the City

       16          experienced an extremely heavy rainfall

       17          resulting from Hurricane Floyd.

       18                      "This lead to severe flooding

       19          in many locations in Philadelphia and

       20          especially in the vicinity of Venice Island

       21          and Main Street in Manayunk.

       22                      "The application before you was

       23          a site which suffered serious flooding and

       24          which is located within the floodway.  I,

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          therefore, question the wisdom in

        2          converting this former factory building

        3          into apartment units.

        4                      "Local, state and federal laws

        5          and regulations prohibit certain structures

        6          and expansions of existing structures

        7          located in floodways.

        8                      "Further, these laws and

        9          regulations specifically encourage actions

       10          which reduce flood loss and minimize the

       11          impact on health, safety and welfare if

       12          flooding occurs.

       13                      "Given the most recent event

       14          and location of this property, the Board

       15          should deny the application.

       16                      "If this Board, after full

       17          review of the testimony, decides to grant

       18          the request of variances, however, then I

       19          would strongly recommend that the Board

       20          consider including the following provisos.

       21                      "Number 1, applicant should

       22          prepare engineering studies which

       23          demonstrate that the proposed development

       24          will not result in any increase in the

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          flood levels and will not increase the

        2          danger of flooding.  Such studies shall be

        3          submitted to the Planning Commission for

        4          its review and approval prior to

        5          construction.

        6                      "Number 2, applicant shall

        7          secure any and all permits or

        8          authorizations required by the Federal

        9          Emergency Management Agency, and the

       10          Pennsylvania Department of Environmental

       11          Protection for the proposed development

       12          prior to construction.

       13                      "Number 3, applicant shall

       14          prepare in consultation with the City's

       15          emergency management office, police and

       16          fire department, an emergency evacuation

       17          plan prior to occupancy.

       18                      "In summary, I encourage the

       19          Board to refuse the application.  If the

       20          Board should approve the application, I am

       21          requesting that my suggested provisos,

       22          along with any other reasonable provisos

       23          offered by representatives of those

       24          neighborhood organizations adjacent to this

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          site be conditions of your approval.

        2                      "Thank you for your attention

        3          to this matter.  Please do not hesitate to

        4          contact me" -- blah, blah, blah --

        5          "Sincerely, Councilman Nutter, Fourth

        6          Council, Manayunk District."

        7                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Thank you,

        8          sir.

        9                      MR. KELSEN:  I have no

       10          questions of the councilman.

       11                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Please

       12          proceed.

       13                      MR. KELSEN:  I would like to

       14          call Jack Thrower as our first witness.

       15                      MR. THROWER:  John E. Thrower,

       16          T-h-r-o-w-e-r, 7209 Cresheim Road,

       17          Philadelphia, 19119.

       18                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, you

       19          were previously sworn in by the Board.

       20                      Is that correct?

       21                      MR. THROWER:  That's correct.

       22                      MR. KELSEN:  And you are

       23          continuing to be under oath.

       24                      Is that correct?

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      MR. THROWER:  That's correct.

        2                      MR. KELSEN:  Would you state

        3          your address, your local address for the

        4          record?

        5                      MR. THROWER:  My home address

        6          is 7209 Cresheim Road, Philadelphia.

        7                      MR. KELSEN:  And your business

        8          address?

        9                      MR. THROWER:  1216 Arch Street,

       10          Philadelphia.

       11                      MR. KELSEN:  By whom are you

       12          employed, Mr. Thrower?

       13                      MR. THROWER:  I'm

       14          self-employed.  I'm a principal in an

       15          architectural firm.

       16                      MR. KELSEN:  What is the name

       17          of the architectural firm?

       18                      MR. THROWER:  Bower, Lewis,

       19          Thrower Architects.

       20                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, would

       21          you briefly describe to the Board your

       22          qualifications and your work experience?

       23                      MR. THROWER:  I've been

       24          practicing in Philadelphia as a registered

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          architect for over 30 years.

        2                      I was educated here, a master

        3          of architecture.  I taught for 25 years in

        4          the Graduate School at the University of

        5          Pennsylvania.

        6                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, are

        7          you experienced in historic rehabilitation

        8          projects for former industrial properties?

        9                      MR. THROWER:  Yes, our firm and

       10          I have specifically done quite a number of

       11          similar projects.

       12                      MR. KELSEN:  Have you ever been

       13          involved in a project involving the

       14          restoration of an industrial building that

       15          is located in a floodway?

       16                      MR. THROWER:  Yes, in

       17          Minneapolis, St. Paul in the floodway of

       18          the Mississippi River.

       19                      MR. KELSEN:  Have you ever been

       20          involved in a project located at 24th and

       21          Chestnut Street in Philadelphia?

       22                      MR. THROWER:  Yes, I have, most

       23          recently.

       24                      MR. KELSEN:  And is that

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          project the old National Publishing

        2          Building.

        3                      Is that correct?

        4                      MR. THROWER:  Yes, sir.

        5                      MR. KELSEN:  Is that property

        6          located in the floodway?

        7                      MR. THROWER:  It is in the

        8          floodway of the Schuylkill River also.

        9                      MR. KELSEN:  And did that

       10          project involve a restoration of the

       11          building for residential use?

       12                      MR. THROWER:  It was

       13          restoration for residential use.

       14                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, would

       15          you please describe to the Board and to the

       16          members of the community the existing site

       17          condition of what we'll call the Namico

       18          site.

       19                      MR. THROWER:  The site, as has

       20          been previously described briefly, is

       21          approximately three acres including the

       22          small out parcel across the road.

       23                      A number of industrial

       24          buildings built over quite a period of

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          time.  Those buildings that are color-coded

        2          green are the ones considered most

        3          historic.  They are on the National

        4          Register of historic places, and they are

        5          to be retained.

        6                      Over the years several dozen

        7          miscellaneous buildings have been added in

        8          an ad hoc fashion, having to do with the

        9          conditions required for the manufacturing

       10          process there.

       11                      We are proposing to remove all

       12          of those late additions and to maintain the

       13          green historic buildings and restore them

       14          to their former condition to be reused for

       15          residential use.

       16                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, what

       17          is the present condition of the

       18          improvements, if you will, that are located

       19          on the property?

       20                      MR. THROWER:  All of the

       21          buildings are in rapidly deteriorating

       22          condition.  They haven't been upgraded or

       23          repaired in some time and are, quite

       24          frankly, unsightly.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      MR. KELSEN:  Is there any

        2          likelihood that they are in a condition to

        3          be rehabilitated for industrial use?

        4                      MR. THROWER:  Not without a

        5          great deal of effort, and it's difficult to

        6          imagine another industrial use that would

        7          find the site such as this appropriate for

        8          its activity.

        9                      MR. KELSEN:  What's the

       10          approximate age of the original

       11          construction, the structures that we're

       12          going to retain as part of this

       13          development?

       14                      MR. THROWER:  The original

       15          buildings were built beginning in

       16          approximately 1850, built during the last

       17          half of the 19th Century.

       18                      MR. KELSEN:  Would you describe

       19          in detail the proposed redevelopment plan

       20          for this property, please?

       21                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Objection.  I'm

       22          going to object to that because I'm not

       23          aware of any redevelopment plan that has

       24          been presented to City Council as of yet.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      MR. KELSEN:  Well, I was using

        2          redevelopment plan with a lower case R, but

        3          I'll happily say the proposed development

        4          that's before the Board.

        5                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Objection so

        6          noted.

        7                      Please continue, sir.

        8                      MR. THROWER:  The plan is to

        9          prune out, if you will, in this diagram all

       10          of the gray buildings.  These are the

       11          miscellaneous ad hoc additions done

       12          primarily during this century.

       13                      To leave the green buildings,

       14          which are historic and quite beautiful in

       15          their basic structure.  To rehabilitate

       16          them, to restore them to meet the

       17          requirements for the Department of Interior

       18          so that the buildings can maintain their

       19          status, and to add to those buildings

       20          additional new construction -- these are

       21          the areas that are toned in pink -- for

       22          residential use.

       23                      The new construction along with

       24          the old will bring the total residential

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          density on the parcel up to 160 units.  We

        2          are removing approximately 60 percent of

        3          the structures on the property.

        4                      Presently the buildings toned

        5          both green and gray occupy about 52,000

        6          square feet.  When we are completed with

        7          our restoration of the green structures,

        8          our construction of the new construction,

        9          the pink ones that are lifted above the

       10          floodways so that water can flow underneath

       11          them, the solid building area on the site,

       12          if you will, that one might consider an

       13          obstruction to the floodway, will be

       14          reduced from about 52,000 square feet to

       15          about 23.

       16                      MR. KELSEN:  So approximately

       17          one-half?

       18                      MR. THROWER:  A little less

       19          than one-half of the present building

       20          volume will be on the site at grade within

       21          the floodway when our improvements are

       22          completed.

       23                      MR. KELSEN:  Now, Mr. Thrower,

       24          there are a number of tanks that are placed

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          on the property now.  And you've seen the

        2          pictures of the property, and you've been

        3          to the property.

        4                      Is that correct?

        5                      MR. THROWER:  Of course.

        6                      MR. KELSEN:  Are those tanks

        7          going to be removed from the site?

        8                      MR. THROWER:  They will all be

        9          removed, yes.

       10                      MR. KELSEN:  And will that also

       11          open area up for floodway control?

       12                      MR. THROWER:  Yes, sir, that's

       13          true.

       14                      MR. KELSEN:  And what will the

       15          new construction -- you indicated that

       16          there will be new construction and there

       17          will be a configuration of the new

       18          construction above grade.

       19                      I would like you to spend some

       20          time and describe that to the Board, if you

       21          will.

       22                      MR. THROWER:  The new

       23          construction, as you can see, is adding

       24          onto the additional -- onto the existing

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          historic buildings.  They are shaped in

        2          this kind of C configuration with the

        3          courtyard in the middle.

        4                      Our intention is to end up with

        5          a total building complex that maintains the

        6          character of what is there.

        7                      We're not intending to mimic

        8          the historic style, but we are building in

        9          a similar height, similar materials,

       10          similar textures and rhythms, if you will,

       11          of windows, so as to maintain all of the

       12          charm and character of the historic

       13          buildings.

       14                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, what

       15          will be the total height of the existing

       16          buildings as well as the new construction

       17          when completed?

       18                      MR. THROWER:  We are proposing

       19          to add five floors of new construction.

       20                      There are presently four floors

       21          of the historic buildings, but the

       22          floor-to-floor heights are considerably

       23          higher.

       24                      MS. JAFFE:  Can I ask you a

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          question.

        2                      The historical buildings that

        3          you're restoring, are they already within

        4          the floodway?

        5                      MR. THROWER:  Yes, they are.

        6                      MS. JAFFE:  Can you point that

        7          out to us?

        8                      MR. THROWER:  That is the

        9          buildings that are toned green and the

       10          whole site area is within the floodway.

       11                      And the point I wanted to make

       12          earlier was that once we prune out all of

       13          the existing additions, the buildings at

       14          grade within the floodway will be less than

       15          half of the volume of what there is there

       16          today.

       17                      MS. JAFFE:  And when those are

       18          taken down, they will be reconstructed both

       19          on that land and land further away?

       20                      Will be they overlaid on what

       21          was taken down?

       22                      MR. THROWER:  The new

       23          construction will be built up on columns,

       24          if you will, above the floodplain, on the

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          existing site where we removed other

        2          buildings.

        3                      MS. JAFFE:  Okay.

        4                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower,

        5          that's an important question Ms. Jaffe

        6          asked.

        7                      There will be no new

        8          construction IN any location other than

        9          that which currently has structure.

       10                      Is that correct?

       11                      MR. THROWER:  I would have to

       12          say that our new construction is

       13          approximately over the footprint of the

       14          existing buildings.

       15                      It's difficult to mimic inch

       16          for inch the exact location.

       17                      MR. KELSEN:  But predominantly?

       18                      MR. THROWER:  That's correct.

       19                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Sir, you said

       20          that you were going to take all of the

       21          tanks and vessels out of the property?

       22                      MR. THROWER:  Yes.

       23                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Has this

       24          property -- how long has it been vacant as

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          a soap manufacturer?

        2                      MR. THROWER:  About six months.

        3                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Six months.

        4          Was there a discharge from this property

        5          into the Schuylkill with waste?

        6                      MR. THROWER:  Not that I'm

        7          aware of.

        8                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Thank you.

        9                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, is

       10          the entire property and, in fact, is not

       11          all of Venice Island within a floodway?

       12                      MR. THROWER:  To the best of my

       13          knowledge, all of the island is in the

       14          floodway.

       15                      MR. KELSEN:  And to the best of

       16          your knowledge is all of this property

       17          that's before the Board within the floodway

       18          currently?

       19                      MR. THROWER:  Yes, sir.

       20                      MR. KELSEN:  I would like you

       21          to describe to the Board and to the members

       22          of the audience our parking configuration

       23          and the parking areas, if you would.

       24                      MR. THROWER:  Parking is being

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          provided in two locations on the site.

        2          Most of it on the main site proper, 54

        3          spaces on the site across the way.

        4                      I believe the requirement for

        5          parking is one automobile per dwelling unit

        6          for this location.

        7                      We're providing more than that,

        8          we're providing one automobile for every

        9          bedroom within the development, recognizing

       10          the possibility that a two-bedroom

       11          apartment might conceivably be rented to

       12          two people with their own automobiles.

       13                      We are providing approximately

       14          a little less than 25 percent compact cars,

       15          we're providing all of the required

       16          handicap spots.

       17                      The only thing that is slightly

       18          unusual about our parking lot configuration

       19          is that for those apartments where we're

       20          providing two automobiles for one dwelling

       21          unit, those automobiles are parked in

       22          stacked fashion one behind the other,

       23          presuming that that household has control

       24          over both sets of the keys, and this

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          minimizes the amount of access way and

        2          driveways we have to provide on the site.

        3                      Our parking spots are eight and

        4          a half by 18, which are perfectly adequate

        5          for residential use as opposed to ten by 20

        6          which I believe are required for industrial

        7          use.

        8                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, could

        9          you describe for the Board the unit mix

       10          that we propose for this development?

       11                      MR. THROWER:  It's a small

       12          number of studio apartments, approximately

       13          4 studio units, 103 one-bedroom units, and

       14          53 two-bedroom units.

       15                      So approximately two-thirds of

       16          the apartments are one bedrooms, one-third

       17          are two bedroom units, and those

       18          two-bedroom units, as I said, will each

       19          have two parking spots.

       20                      MS. JAFFE:  Do you know the

       21          square footage or will they vary?

       22                      MR. THROWER:  They will vary.

       23                      MS. JAFFE:  What's the smallest

       24          and what would be the largest?

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      MR. THROWER:  The one-bedroom

        2          apartments are typically in the 750 to 800

        3          square foot range.  The two-bedroom

        4          apartments about 1100.  That is where we're

        5          in control of it in new construction.

        6                      In the historic buildings very

        7          often the apartments are somewhat larger

        8          than that because we have to make use of

        9          the building fabric as we find it, of

       10          course.

       11                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, will

       12          the construction comply with the

       13          Philadelphia Fire Code?

       14                      MR. THROWER:  It will, of

       15          course, comply with all requirements of the

       16          Philadelphia codes.

       17                      MR. KELSEN:  That includes the

       18          Building Code?

       19                      MR. THROWER:  Building Code,

       20          yes.

       21                      MR. KELSEN:  As well as any

       22          other development code governing this type

       23          of construction?

       24                      MR. THROWER:  Yes, sir.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      MR. KELSEN:  Could you describe

        2          to the Board the provisions for garbage and

        3          trash disposal.

        4                      Will there be a garbage

        5          disposal unit in each apartment?

        6                      MR. THROWER:  Each apartment,

        7          as a part of its appliance package, will

        8          have its own garbage disposal unit.

        9                      In addition, there will be

       10          either one or two central trash chutes

       11          where residents can bring their trash on a

       12          regular daily basis.

       13                      Trash will then go in these

       14          locations down to a trash storage room

       15          where there's a compactor which shall

       16          compact it, and then there will be a

       17          contractor trash pick up probably twice

       18          weekly.

       19                      MR. KELSEN:  And that's a

       20          commercial trash pick up.

       21                      Is that correct?

       22                      MR. THROWER:  That's correct.

       23                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, are

       24          you familiar with the surrounding land uses

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          and the streetscape of the Manayunk area

        2          adjacent to the parcel?

        3                      MR. THROWER:  Yes, I am.

        4                      MR. KELSEN:  In your expert

        5          opinion will this development be consistent

        6          with the surrounding land uses?

        7                      MR. THROWER:  As those land

        8          uses exist today and as they develop, there

        9          is, of course, immediately east of us a

       10          large industrial use that for the present

       11          is continuing, but immediately to the other

       12          side of the canal, new housing is being

       13          proposed, planning is underway for a new

       14          housing development on the other side of

       15          Leverington Road.

       16                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Note my

       17          objection only because you're talking about

       18          things that are proposed, that are planned

       19          but do not exist, and may never exist.

       20                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Objection so

       21          noted.

       22                      Please continue, sir.

       23                      MR. THROWER:  We are at the end

       24          of Main Street of course, and it's

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          commercial activity is completed at this

        2          point.

        3                      Manayunk rises on the hillside

        4          then, immediately on the other side of the

        5          canal, and is quite a charming complex of

        6          old and historic residential uses.

        7                      MR. KELSEN:  In terms of the

        8          development of the Manayunk Canal tow path

        9          how does this development fit in with that

       10          restoration project and that development

       11          project?

       12                      MR. THROWER:  Well, we believe

       13          it's quite consistent and is going to

       14          certainly add to the charm and character of

       15          the canal by helping to restore the

       16          historic building fabric along the canal.

       17                      So I think the picturesque

       18          quality of the canal is going to be very

       19          much improved.

       20                      MR. KELSEN:  In terms of an

       21          architectural and planning standpoint, its

       22          conversion into a residential development,

       23          would that be in keeping with the

       24          development scale of Manayunk and the

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          surrounding area?

        2                      MR. THROWER:  Oh, most

        3          certainly.

        4                      These buildings are quite

        5          charming and historic in scale now despite

        6          their industrial use.  They aren't massive,

        7          overpowering buildings.

        8                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, from

        9          an architectural and planning standpoint,

       10          do you believe that this project represents

       11          the highest and best use for reuse of this

       12          property?

       13                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Objection.  Note

       14          my objection to that question.

       15                      I don't think Mr. Thrower has

       16          been qualified as a real estate expert,

       17          only as an architect.

       18                      MR. KELSEN:  I think he can

       19          answer the question from an architectural

       20          standpoint.

       21                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Objection so

       22          noted.  From an architectural point of

       23          view, sir.

       24                      MR. THROWER:  In my opinion it

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          is far and away the best use for these

        2          buildings.

        3                      It is unlikely that industrial

        4          uses would be attracted back to such a

        5          site, nor is it desirable in my estimation,

        6          and I don't believe there are any

        7          commercial uses that are appropriate here.

        8                      Residential use is the most

        9          benign from the standpoint of the impact on

       10          the neighboring community, and the activity

       11          is very appropriate given the architectural

       12          character of the buildings.

       13                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, in

       14          your expert opinion as an architect, does

       15          the building have any utility value without

       16          extensive renovation and reconstruction?

       17                      MR. THROWER:  Not in my

       18          opinion, it has absolutely no value.  It

       19          requires a great deal of work.

       20                      MR. KELSEN:  What would happen

       21          if the property was not redeveloped at this

       22          time?

       23                      What would happen to the

       24          property?

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      MR. KRAKOWER:  I'm going to

        2          object.  That's speculative.

        3                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  So noted.  It

        4          is what it is.

        5                      Answer the question.

        6                      MR. THROWER:  In my opinion, if

        7          the buildings are not renovated now and if

        8          they are not converted to residential uses,

        9          they will lie empty and gradually

       10          deteriorate over the coming years.

       11                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, let's

       12          focus on the flood aspects affecting the

       13          property.

       14                      And would you describe to the

       15          Board in detail the steps that will be

       16          undertaken to minimize, and, in fact,

       17          better the floodway situation as a result

       18          of this new development?

       19                      MR. THROWER:  Well, one of the

       20          primary points I made earlier is that we

       21          are dramatically reducing, that is more

       22          than half the amount of building volume

       23          within the floodway.

       24                      We are constructing all of our

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          new apartments as well as those within the

        2          historic buildings completely above the

        3          floodplain.  That is a minimum of one and a

        4          half feet.

        5                      MR. KELSEN:  And, Mr. Thrower,

        6          let me ask you then how high is that?

        7                      What's the dimension that

        8          you're going to --

        9                      MR. THROWER:  That's

       10          approximately 14 feet above grade.

       11                      MR. KELSEN:  Is it fair to say

       12          there will be no residential occupancy or

       13          no new construction anywhere between the

       14          grade and 14 feet in height?

       15                      MR. THROWER:  There will be no

       16          new construction for residential use.

       17                      Of course there will be new

       18          construction for access ways, the bottoms

       19          of emergency stairs, and the entry lobbies.

       20                      In addition to building above

       21          the floodplain, we are providing at the

       22          second-floor level an emergency egress

       23          bridge over to the Leverington Avenue

       24          bridge, so that in the case of flooding

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          residents have a way of walking out of the

        2          building onto higher ground.

        3                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, are

        4          you aware that the development of this

        5          project will comply with Federal Emergency

        6          Management Agency codes and regulations in

        7          order to permit its new construction and

        8          redevelopment?

        9                      MR. THROWER:  It absolutely

       10          will.  We haven't developed that in detail

       11          of course at this point, but we certainly

       12          will.

       13                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Thrower, in

       14          your expert opinion as an architect, do you

       15          feel that the parking configuration is

       16          appropriate for the type of development

       17          that we're describing before the Board

       18          today?

       19                      MR. THROWER:  Most appropriate.

       20          It is sometimes considered unusual to

       21          double-stack automobiles, but we think it

       22          is completely appropriate for residential

       23          use where both of those automobiles are

       24          under the control of one household.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      MR. KELSEN:  Do you feel that

        2          there is any basis, from an engineering and

        3          architectural standpoint, to have lot sizes

        4          that are 10 by 20 as required in the G-2

        5          industrial code?

        6                      MR. THROWER:  None whatsoever.

        7          For people who drive their own automobiles

        8          and control them on a daily basis, eight

        9          and a half by 18 is the acceptable standard

       10          throughout Philadelphia for residential

       11          use.

       12                      MR. KELSEN:  In fact, Mr.

       13          Thrower, if you had to put larger spaces on

       14          the site and more aisle ways, would you, in

       15          fact, create more impervious coverage on

       16          the property?

       17                      MR. THROWER:  You would, and it

       18          would certainly reduce the amount of any

       19          green buffer that could be provided.

       20                      MR. KELSEN:  Would that have

       21          any impact on floodway conditions, having

       22          more impervious coverage?

       23                      MR. THROWER:  Of course it

       24          will.  It's got to impact it negatively.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      MR. KELSEN:  I have no further

        2          questions of Mr. Thrower.

        3                      MR. KRAKOWER:  I do.  I have

        4          some.

        5                      Mr. Thrower, I'm Stanley

        6          Krakower.  I represent some of the

        7          community people around, including the

        8          Friends of Manayunk Canal.

        9                      With respect to -- first of

       10          all, with respect to your qualifications,

       11          do you by any chance have a written

       12          curriculum vitae that you could submit?

       13                      MR. THROWER:  I certainly

       14          could.  I don't have it with me.

       15                      MR. KRAKOWER:  I wonder if we

       16          could ask if we could get that?

       17                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Please submit

       18          that to the Board, sir, at your earliest

       19          convenience.

       20                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Thank you.

       21          Now, you talked about having experience

       22          with a similar project.

       23                      Could you identify specifically

       24          what projects you consider to be similar to

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          this and its most important aspects that

        2          you've engineered or that you've been the

        3          architect on?

        4                      MR. THROWER:  We have recently

        5          completed for the same development company

        6          the old National Publishing Building at

        7          24th and Locust.

        8                      That was an industrial building

        9          which was renovated for residential use as

       10          well as parking.

       11                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Can I ask you,

       12          Mr. Thrower, is that building in the

       13          floodway or the fringe of the floodway, or

       14          is it actually in the floodway as

       15          distinguished from the fringe?

       16                      MR. THROWER:  It is in the

       17          floodplain which cuts, I believe,

       18          diagonally across the site so that the

       19          upper corner of the site is not in the

       20          floodplain but the lower corner is.

       21                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Now are you

       22          familiar with what I mean when I say the

       23          fringe of the floodplain?

       24                      Are you sure it's not in the

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          fringe?

        2                      I just want to make sure that

        3          we're talking about the difference

        4          between --

        5                      MR. THROWER:  Well, I guess I

        6          would have to know how you're using that

        7          word.

        8                      MR. KRAKOWER:  You're in the

        9          floodplain?

       10                      MR. THROWER:  In the 100-year

       11          floodplain.

       12                      MR. KRAKOWER:  How much of that

       13          24th and Chestnut Street building is in the

       14          floodplain?

       15                      MR. THROWER:  About 50 percent.

       16                      MR. KRAKOWER:  And would I be

       17          correct that with this project, just about

       18          all of it is in the floodplain?

       19                      MR. THROWER:  That's correct,

       20          sir.

       21                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Now, you

       22          indicated that the buildings that are on

       23          the site now have not been repaired for

       24          some time?

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      MR. THROWER:  Well, they appear

        2          that way.  I don't really have the repair

        3          history.

        4                      MR. KRAKOWER:  That's what I

        5          was going to ask you.

        6                      Do you know, do you have any

        7          knowledge as to when they were last

        8          repaired or maintained?

        9                      MR. THROWER:  No, sir, I do

       10          not.  I'm just going by visual appearance.

       11                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Am I not correct

       12          that these were in use for industrial

       13          purposes as recently as six months ago?

       14                      MR. THROWER:  That's correct,

       15          but all of the buildings were not in use.

       16                      I believe only a portion were

       17          at the end of the company's operation.

       18                      I couldn't tell you exactly

       19          what portion.

       20                      MR. KRAKOWER:  I was going to

       21          ask do you know what portion.  You don't?

       22                      MR. THROWER:  No.

       23                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Now, you talked

       24          about you're going to be reducing some of

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          the buildings.

        2                      Have you done a study of the

        3          weight or bearing factors of the buildings

        4          you're going to reduce compared to the

        5          weight and bearing capacities of the

        6          buildings that you'll be replacing them

        7          with?

        8                      MR. THROWER:  No, we have not

        9          done that specific study you're talking

       10          about.

       11                      Since we're removing one and

       12          two-story structures and adding five

       13          stories of structure, it's likely that the

       14          pure dead weight of the new construction

       15          will be greater than that of the existing

       16          buildings.

       17                      MR. KRAKOWER:  So that in terms

       18          of the capacity of the ground, it's going

       19          to be expected to hold perhaps more weight

       20          than the weight of the buildings you're

       21          eliminating?

       22                      MR. THROWER:  Well, we don't

       23          bear on the top of the ground so it's

       24          really not a terribly important issue.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      We will go down to appropriate

        2          bearing.  Whether that's done through

        3          friction piles or down to rock, it matters

        4          little what the buildings weigh.

        5                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Have you done

        6          studies with regard to the soil and the

        7          earth that comprises Venice Island; what

        8          it's made up of in its structure and its

        9          capacity?

       10                      MR. THROWER:  We have not to

       11          date.  We will, of course.

       12                      MR. KRAKOWER:  So are you

       13          saying that you don't know what depth

       14          pilings, for example, you might need in

       15          order to have a firm under footing?

       16                      MR. THROWER:  I don't.  Perhaps

       17          Mr. Dranoff does.

       18                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  You can only

       19          answer for yourself.  If you don't know,

       20          you don't know.

       21                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Well, I'm asking

       22          you.  Mr. Dranoff may testify later.

       23                      I'm asking you, Mr. Thrower, do

       24          you have any knowledge as to -- or

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          engineering that's been done as to the

        2          depth of pilings or the number of pilings

        3          or any other engineering regarding what's

        4          necessary to hold up these five-story

        5          buildings?

        6                      MR. KELSEN:  Before you answer,

        7          Mr. Thrower, I'm going to object because

        8          now we're starting to get into building

        9          permit and excavation and shoring issues.

       10          Normally that's not an issue for the Zoning

       11          Board.

       12                      It has to meet the Philadelphia

       13          code, it has to be approved by a

       14          Philadelphia construction engineer, and

       15          normally, once you get through a zoning

       16          process, you start to engineer your project

       17          for bearings.

       18                      So I would submit that that's

       19          not an appropriate question for today.

       20                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Objection so

       21          noted.

       22                      If he can answer the question,

       23          you can answer.  If you can't, you can't.

       24                      MR. THROWER:  We have not taken

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          our studies to that degree of detail yet.

        2                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Now, you

        3          indicated that you intend to comply with

        4          federal requirements that deal with

        5          building in a floodplain and state

        6          requirements.

        7                      Is that correct?

        8                      MR. THROWER:  That's our

        9          intention, yes.

       10                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Have you

       11          undertaken studies with respect to what

       12          those requirements are and how you intend

       13          to satisfy them?

       14                      MR. THROWER:  Only in the broad

       15          brush, and that is that we must build above

       16          the floodplain and that is what we're going

       17          to do.

       18                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Other than that,

       19          with respect to, for example, how to

       20          maintain the distance between the ground

       21          and the -- I think you said 14 feet?

       22                      MR. THROWER:  Approximately.

       23                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Approximately 14

       24          feet, and then above the 14 feet you're

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          going to have a five-story building.

        2                      Is that correct?

        3                      MR. THROWER:  That's correct.

        4                      MR. KRAKOWER:  And have you

        5          taken into consideration and engineered the

        6          effect on -- strike that.  Let me go back.

        7                      What are the five-story

        8          buildings going to stand on?  Pilings?

        9                      MR. THROWER:  They'll stand on

       10          columns.  Whether they're steel or concrete

       11          we don't know at this point.

       12                      We're doing cost investigations

       13          to determine the most advantageous

       14          construction technique.

       15                      MR. KRAKOWER:  So at this point

       16          you don't know whether they're going to

       17          stand on concrete, steel, wood?

       18                      MR. THROWER:  Well certainly

       19          not on wood.

       20                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Do you know what

       21          size you'll need, the width of them?

       22                      MR. THROWER:  No, sir, not yet.

       23                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  He's already

       24          answered that it's not that far into the

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          job yet.

        2                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Do you know how

        3          many of them you'll need?

        4                      MR. THROWER:  No, sir.

        5                      MR. KRAKOWER:  How far apart

        6          you'll have to have them, whether you'll

        7          need one every 3 feet --

        8                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Sir, he said

        9          that they haven't been that far into the

       10          job yet.

       11                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Now, you

       12          indicated that you intend to comply with

       13          the Building Code.

       14                      Are you familiar with Building

       15          Code provisions that say there should be no

       16          new development or construction in a

       17          floodway or in a floodplain?

       18                      MR. THROWER:  Of habitable

       19          space as I understand it, and we are not

       20          providing habitable space in the floodplain

       21          or floodway.

       22                      MR. KRAKOWER:  But all of this

       23          is in the floodplain or floodway.

       24                      MR. THROWER:  The existing

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          buildings are.  We are not going to reuse

        2          any of the first floor of the existing

        3          buildings.  They will be empty or used for

        4          dead storage.

        5                      We're only going to occupy the

        6          second floor and above so as to comply with

        7          that requirement.

        8                      MR. KRAKOWER:  So you're just

        9          going to leave them empty?

       10                      MR. THROWER:  Essentially, that

       11          is correct.

       12                      MR. KRAKOWER:  So that if you

       13          get a flood, they can be filled up with

       14          water?

       15                      MR. THROWER:  That's possible

       16          if we were to get a flood.

       17                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Have you

       18          examined the traffic situation with regard

       19          to how the 214 cars -- is that what you're

       20          planning, 214 spaces -- will get off and on

       21          the island?

       22                      I believe there are just the

       23          limited bridges.

       24                      Do you know where the bridges

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          are and their capacity?

        2                      MR. THROWER:  I'm not a traffic

        3          engineer so I can't answer that in great

        4          detail.

        5                      I can only say anecdotally, if

        6          you will, from my observation, that most

        7          traffic is likely to go down Main Street

        8          and disburse.

        9                      MR. KRAKOWER:  I'm talking

       10          about the traffic at, say, 5 o'clock or

       11          5:30 going to these apartments on Venice

       12          Island.

       13                      MR. THROWER:  No, sir.  As I

       14          said, I'm not a traffic engineer.

       15                      MR. KELSEN:  We will have a

       16          traffic engineer in a few minutes.

       17                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Now, in the

       18          event of flooding -- this is in the

       19          floodplain of the Schuylkill River; you

       20          acknowledge that?

       21                      MR. THROWER:  Yes, sir.

       22                      MR. KRAKOWER:  You indicated

       23          that the plans include some sort of escape

       24          route for the residents to escape to high

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          ground in case of flooding?

        2                      There's a walkway or something?

        3                      MR. THROWER:  We're providing a

        4          bridge from our second floor over to

        5          Leverington Avenue, which connects with the

        6          high-side sidewalk on Main Street.

        7                      MR. KRAKOWER:  How do you plan

        8          to monitor that the people will get to that

        9          bridge on time before the floods inundate

       10          them?

       11                      MR. THROWER:  As an architect I

       12          won't monitor it.  That will be a building

       13          management issue.

       14                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Now, you talked

       15          about the Federal and State requirements.

       16                      Have you prepared any

       17          compliance studies as to what it will take

       18          to comply with those?

       19                      MR. THROWER:  No, sir, not to

       20          date.

       21                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Are you at all

       22          involved with policy regarding insurance

       23          problems that the renters will have?

       24                      MR. THROWER:  No, sir.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      MR. KELSEN:  Objection.  It's

        2          irrelevant to this line of questioning.

        3                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Have you done a

        4          study as to the effect on the surrounding

        5          properties, on Main Street and the

        6          properties just on the opposite side of the

        7          Canal, of flooding on Venice Island?

        8                      MR. THROWER:  No, sir.  I'm not

        9          a civil engineer.

       10                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Fair enough.

       11          The automobiles themselves, they're not

       12          going to be 14 feet up in the air, are

       13          they; they're going to be on the ground?

       14                      MR. THROWER:  That's correct.

       15                      MR. KRAKOWER:  So they will be

       16          within the floodplain?

       17                      MR. THROWER:  That's correct.

       18                      MR. KRAKOWER:  And in the event

       19          of flooding, what will keep great numbers

       20          of automobiles from floating down the

       21          Schuylkill River?

       22                      MR. THROWER:  I guess what

       23          keeps it in any parking lot in the

       24          floodplain, people move their cars.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Have you ever

        2          seen some of the photographs from last

        3          summer, when remnants of Hurricane Floyd

        4          hit here and cars and trucks were floating

        5          down the Schuylkill River to the East Falls

        6          Bridge?

        7                      Have you seen any of those

        8          photographs?

        9                      MR. THROWER:  I have, yes.

       10                      MR. KRAKOWER:  What will

       11          prevent similar instances from happening

       12          here?

       13                      MR. THROWER:  Only poor

       14          building management, and that's not the

       15          case with this developer.

       16                      All the residents will be

       17          alerted.

       18                      MR. KRAKOWER:  How will they be

       19          alerted?

       20                      MR. THROWER:  I can't answer

       21          that specifically.

       22                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Do you know when

       23          they'll be alerted?

       24                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Dranoff is

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          here and he can answer those questions,

        2          Stan.

        3                      MR. KRAKOWER:  I'm just

        4          wondering the extent to which --

        5                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  He can't

        6          answer the question, sir.

        7                      MR. KRAKOWER:  -- those

        8          elements have been architected(sic), if

        9          there's such a word.

       10                      Finally, have you as the

       11          architect examined requirements of the

       12          Pennsylvania Emergency Management Council,

       13          Pennsylvania Environmental Council, Federal

       14          Emergency Management, those kinds of

       15          organizations?

       16                      MR. THROWER:  No, sir.

       17                      MR. KRAKOWER:  In terms of how

       18          this project is in or out of compliance

       19          with those requirements?

       20                      MR. THROWER:  I have not.

       21                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Isn't it part of

       22          the requirements for the City of

       23          Philadelphia that the project be in

       24          compliance with Federal and State

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          regulations?

        2                      MR. THROWER:  It will be in

        3          compliance when the project is completely

        4          designed and engineered.

        5                      MR. KRAKOWER:  But at this

        6          point you don't know how?

        7                      I mean you don't know how

        8          you're going to do that?

        9                      MR. THROWER:  We haven't gotten

       10          into the detail other than establish the

       11          building configuration totally up and out

       12          of the floodway.

       13                      MR. KELSEN:  I would point out,

       14          if I may, that the note to the Zoning Board

       15          that was issued by L & I requires that the

       16          engineering studies be produced to the

       17          satisfaction of the Planning Commission

       18          before a zoning permit and building permit

       19          is issued, and I think the record should

       20          reflect that.

       21                      MR. KRAKOWER:  At this moment,

       22          though, those are not available?

       23                      MR. KELSEN:  We haven't

       24          engineered the project yet.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      MR. KRAKOWER:  One last thing,

        2          I don't think we, the Protestants group,

        3          have a copy of this plan.

        4                      Can we get that?

        5                      MR. KELSEN:  Absolutely.  We'll

        6          give you an extra copy.

        7                      MR. KRAKOWER:  At this moment I

        8          have no further questions of Mr. Thrower.

        9                      MR. O'BRIEN:  I have three or

       10          four questions of Mr. Thrower.

       11                      Mr. Thrower, my name is William

       12          O'Brien.

       13                      The existing structure is

       14          four-stories high?

       15                      MR. THROWER:  That's correct.

       16                      MR. O'BRIEN:  And how many feet

       17          high is the existing structure?

       18                      MR. THROWER:  About 80 feet.

       19                      MR. O'BRIEN:  And how high is

       20          the proposed structure with the 14 feet and

       21          then five stories?

       22                      MR. THROWER:  About 95 feet.

       23                      MR. O'BRIEN:  So you're

       24          proposing a structure that will be 15 feet

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          higher than the current structure?

        2                      MR. THROWER:  Approximately,

        3          that's correct.

        4                      And I was talking about the

        5          existing structures, the basic floor

        6          levels -- actually, I stand corrected, the

        7          roofs and penthouses and various

        8          supertinences(ph) are probably 85 feet in

        9          the existing building, so we're maybe ten

       10          feet higher.

       11                      MR. O'BRIEN:  Let me be more

       12          specific, then.

       13                      What is the height of the green

       14          buildings depicted in this drawing that you

       15          intend to keep on this site?

       16                      MR. THROWER:  I'm going by

       17          scale here, approximately 85 feet.  And

       18          we're, with new construction, about 95.

       19                      You must understand, though,

       20          the roofs jump all over the place, so a

       21          ten-foot differential in that kind of

       22          dimension is very compatible.

       23                      MR. O'BRIEN:  Now, the foot

       24          bridge you described earlier, is that going

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          to be available for the residents for

        2          routine use or just emergency use?

        3                      MR. THROWER:  As we're planning

        4          it now, just for emergency use.

        5                      MR. O'BRIEN:  If it was

        6          approved, could it be available for

        7          everyday use?

        8                      MR. THROWER:  Probably not.  It

        9          would complicate security and access to the

       10          building.

       11                      MR. O'BRIEN:  And will all 160

       12          units have access to that foot bridge?

       13                      MR. THROWER:  Yes, sir.

       14                      MR. O'BRIEN:  Have you

       15          estimated the cost of construction per unit

       16          for these 160 units?

       17                      MR. THROWER:  We have studies

       18          along those lines in the works now.  We

       19          don't have any final number to talk about

       20          now.

       21                      MR. O'BRIEN:  When would you

       22          have that number?

       23                      MR. THROWER:  I don't have a

       24          date I can give you at this point.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      MR. O'BRIEN:  Can you

        2          estimate -- let me ask this, then.

        3                      Does the cost of creating these

        4          160 units, could you compare the cost to

        5          create 160 units in a building that you

        6          don't have to comply with FEMA regulations?

        7                      MR. KELSEN:  Objection to

        8          relevancy.

        9                      MR. O'BRIEN:  Well, we're going

       10          to find out -- the applicant has alleged a

       11          hardship, I presume, so I want to find out

       12          the cost to create these 160 units and

       13          comply with FEMA as opposed to creating 160

       14          new units where you don't have to comply

       15          with that requirement.

       16                      MR. KELSEN:  But that's not the

       17          hardship that we're demonstrating.  We're

       18          demonstrating physical hardship.  There's

       19          been no testimony of economic hardship.

       20                      MR. O'BRIEN:  I would still

       21          like an answer to the question.

       22                      MR. KELSEN:  We're happy to

       23          provide -- I think Mr. Dranoff, when he

       24          steps up, will tell you what his estimated

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          cost of overall construction is.

        2                      MR. O'BRIEN:  Okay.

        3          And what would the cost be from your

        4          experience as an architect to construct 160

        5          units where you don't have to comply with

        6          floodway issues?

        7                      MR. THROWER:  Minimally less

        8          than this.  The only additional burden are

        9          the columns that bring us up above grade.

       10                      But all of the actual

       11          construction of the apartments and all of

       12          their setback, the roof, the wall, floors,

       13          is all exactly the same.

       14                      MR. O'BRIEN:  And lastly, your

       15          experience on 24th Street was the

       16          renovation of a historic structure and the

       17          rededication of that structure to a

       18          residential use, and that is similar to

       19          this project.

       20                      The difference, from what I

       21          understand you described, is that half of

       22          the 24th Street structure was in the

       23          floodplain, and that all of this site is in

       24          the floodway.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      Would you please describe for

        2          the Board the difference between the

        3          floodplain and the floodway?

        4                      MR. THROWER:  Well, the

        5          floodway is where the waters are actually

        6          moving and rushing during the flood, as I

        7          understand it.

        8                      And we have an obligation not

        9          to impede the flow of water anymore than

       10          what is there now.  Technically we're

       11          grandfathered, if you will, for what exists

       12          on the site.

       13                      But as I said, when we leave

       14          the site there will be less than half of

       15          the structural volume on the site as what

       16          there is there today to impede water flow.

       17                      MR. O'BRIEN:  So you are

       18          proposing a development that will create --

       19          when you are fished, not compared to what

       20          is there today, but when you are finished

       21          with this project there will be about

       22          23,000 square feet to impediment to that

       23          rushing water?

       24                      MR. THROWER:  The lion's share

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          of that, all of the green buildings, are

        2          historic buildings on the national register

        3          that, yes, we are proposing to leave in

        4          place.  We don't plan to demolish them.

        5                      MR. O'BRIEN:  No further

        6          questions.

        7                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Can I ask one

        8          other question, if I may.  Correct me if

        9          I'm wrong.

       10                      Would it be fair to say that

       11          your estimate of the volume of what will be

       12          impediments in the floodway after you're

       13          finished does not include the volume of the

       14          columns on which the buildings stand

       15          themselves?

       16                      MR. THROWER:  Yes, it does.

       17                      MR. KRAKOWER:  It does.

       18          How can you do that if you don't know the

       19          number or the size of the columns?

       20                      MR. THROWER:  We made an

       21          educated guess based on typical residential

       22          base of about 25 feet.

       23                      The columns are absolutely

       24          minimal in terms of the big issue.  They

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          represent almost none of the volume.

        2                      MR. KRAKOWER:  How can you say

        3          that if you don't know what the columns

        4          stand on, and you testified you don't know

        5          the number or the size or the dimensions or

        6          the material of those columns?

        7                      MR. THROWER:  I don't know them

        8          from a finally engineered point of view.

        9                      I do know the columns are

       10          approximately two feet by two feet.

       11          They're not 20 feet by 20 feet.

       12                      So that's a reasonable educated

       13          guess.

       14                      MS. JAFFE:  Are they here on

       15          the plan?

       16                      MR. THROWER:  Yes, ma'am, they

       17          are.  They can be counted.

       18                      MS. JAFFE:  And are they the

       19          square dark marks?

       20                      MR. THROWER:  That's correct.

       21                      MS. JAFFE:  So if you look at

       22          it you can get an idea of the scale of

       23          those.

       24                      MR. KRAKOWER:  My question is,

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          how could we know that that is what the

        2          size and the number of columns that are

        3          ultimately going to be required until

        4          you've done the engineering on the soil on

        5          which those columns will be embedded?

        6                      MR. THROWER:  I can't know,

        7          until the engineering is completed,

        8          precisely.

        9                      But I do know from 30 years of

       10          practice that this is within 10 percent of

       11          what those columns will be, and that

       12          represents just a negligible amount of

       13          building volume.

       14                      MR. KRAKOWER:  And that's based

       15          on what; within 10 percent is based on

       16          what?

       17                      MR. THROWER:  Typical

       18          residential structural base.

       19                      MR. KRAKOWER:  But you don't

       20          know if this earth or this fill, whatever

       21          it's on Venice Island, is typical, do you?

       22                      MR. THROWER:  That will not

       23          impact the column size.

       24                      That will impact the

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          foundations below grade, whether they be

        2          spread footings or caissons or piles or

        3          whatever.  We don't know that yet.

        4                      But we will go down to

        5          appropriate bearing.

        6                      MR. KRAKOWER:  You have no idea

        7          where that is?

        8                      MR. THROWER:  We don't yet.

        9                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Any other

       10          questions of this witness, sir?

       11                      MR. KELSEN:  I have nothing

       12          more for this witness.

       13                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Okay.  Thank

       14          you, Mr. Thrower.

       15                      We're going to adjourn this

       16          hearing now.

       17                      How many more witnesses do you

       18          intend to call?

       19                      MR. KELSEN:  I have a civil

       20          engineer and a flood expert, a traffic

       21          expert and Mr. Dranoff, so I think

       22          basically, at the most, three more

       23          witnesses.

       24                      I know the Planning Commission

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          will offer a Statement of Recommendation.

        2          I think they'll do that by letter.

        3                      I would like to hand in, if I

        4          could, since we're going to break, some

        5          letters of non-opposition that I have, so

        6          we have that in the record, if you don't

        7          mind, and maybe now is a good time to do

        8          that.

        9                      I would like to introduce and

       10          incorporate in the record a letter which is

       11          dated November 12th, 1999 from the Manayunk

       12          Development Corporation signed by Kay

       13          Smith, Executive Director addressed to

       14          Thomas Kelly.

       15                      I would ask that we incorporate

       16          it into the record indicating their

       17          non-opposition to this development project.

       18          And to the application before the Board.

       19                      In addition, I would like to

       20          hand up and ask to have incorporated into

       21          the record a letter dated November 19th,

       22          1999 from the Central Manayunk Council

       23          signed by John Teague, T-e-a-g-u-e,

       24          President, informing Mr. Dranoff -- it is

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1          addressed to Mr. Dranoff, that Central

        2          Manayunk Council is not opposed to the

        3          plans to develop the site of the Namico

        4          soap factory, providing that we conform

        5          with the recommendations set forth by the

        6          Philadelphia Planning Commission, which, of

        7          course, we would.

        8                      And I would ask to have that

        9          submitted and introduced as well into the

       10          record.

       11                      And, Mr. Chairman, if you want,

       12          we can break at this point our testimony.

       13                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  I would like

       14          you to meet with these others neighbors

       15          that are here --

       16                      MR. KELSEN:  Mr. Chairman, with

       17          all due respect, I've met with them.  I've

       18          met with them over six months, and I don't

       19          think --

       20                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  -- and if you

       21          could come to terms...

       22                      MR. KELSEN:  I would love to.

       23          I will endeavor to do it again, Mr.

       24          Chairman.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  Whatever

        2          objections you have, settle them.

        3                      MR. KRAKOWER:  I greatly doubt,

        4          considering the health and safety issues

        5          that we see here, I greatly doubt it can be

        6          done, Mr. Chairman.

        7                      We also have some experts we'll

        8          be presenting.

        9                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  How many?

       10                      MR. KRAKOWER:  Two at least,

       11          possibly a third.  Who are geologists and

       12          engineers and will testify to -- in a

       13          manner very contrary to that of Mr. Thrower

       14          with regard to the safety factors that are

       15          involved in the proposed development in the

       16          floodway.

       17                      So this is, I would say, we'll

       18          have maybe an hour and a half altogether

       19          for our case.

       20                      MR. KELSEN:  I figure we'll

       21          have about an hour, also.

       22                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  You, sir?

       23                      MR. O'BRIEN:  Three witnesses,

       24          probably about 20, 25 minutes.

                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                      CHAIRMAN KELLY:  We'll notify

        2          you as quickly as possible about the

        3          hearing.

        4                      (Hearing adjourned.)





















                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello


        1                  REPORTER CERTIFICATE


        3          I, ANGELA C. BUONANTUONO, a Shorthand

        4   Reporter and Foreign Commissioner of Deeds for the

        5   Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, certify that the

        6   foregoing is a true and accurate transcript of the

        7   hearing of said witness(es) who were first duly

        8   sworn on the date and place hereinbefore set

        9   forth.

       10          I FURTHER CERTIFY that I am neither

       11   attorney nor counsel for, nor related to or

       12   employed by, any of the parties to the action in

       13   which this hearing was taken, and further that I

       14   am not a relative or employee of any attorney or

       15   counsel employed in this action, nor am I

       16   financially interested in this case.




       21                      ANGELA C. SILVESTRE-BUONANTUONO
                                   Shorthand Reporter



                   DelCasale, Casey, Martin & Manchello