Expansion in the works for Warriors Mark funeral home

Warriors Mark Township supervisors held a conditional use hearing earlier this month regarding plans for the expansion of the Bruce E. Cox Funeral Home at the intersection of Ridge Road and Route 350.
The hearing was required under the township’s zoning ordinance because the funeral home is considered a non-conforming use and because of the dimensions of the expansion. Cox’s plan calls for an expansion of 10 percent or more of its current size.
The property is located in the township’s rural-residential zoning district. Solicitor Larry Clapper explained the use that is non-conforming is that the building is a funeral home. Funeral homes are not permitted in the zoning district where it is located.
However, the building pre-dates the zoning ordinance that was adopted last year. A funeral home has existed on the property since 1857.
The zoning ordinance permits supervisors to grant a conditional use to expand a non-conforming dimension by more than 10 percent. According to Clapper, the ordinance allows the board of supervisors to grant a conditional use if the board finds the proposed use is in harmony with appropriate development in the zone.
He said the supervisors could also grant the use if it has proper access to streets and will not create traffic congestion or cause industrial or commercial traffic to use residential streets.
The use must also meet certain conditions for water supply, sewage disposal, storm drainage and fire and police protection. Additionally, the use must not affect property values of adjacent land or buildings adversely.
During the hearing, Cox reviewed his plan with supervisors, the solicitor, a representative from the township’s consulting engineer and the township’s zoning officer.
The supervisors ultimately granted Cox’s request provided he receive approval for a couple of variances from the township’s zoning board.
One variance involves the amount of impervious area on the property. Consulting engineer Mark Haefner said an “impervious” area referred to “anything that wouldn’t infiltrate water.” Haefner said Cox’s property was already over the percentage allowed by the zoning ordinance for “impervious” space.
The other variance involves the stream protection overlay district.
Cox said he has been considering expansion for at least a year-and-a-half. He said the funeral home needs “updated space.” Cox said the current building has been on the property since 1937.