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Jolly/Union/Township Industrial Parcel
These parcels, surrounded by Township Line (south), Penllyn Pike, Jolly Road, and Union Meeting are a key piece of land within Whitpain Township. The property was once owned by Unisys (formerly Sperry Univac) but was sold in the 80's to COPT, a real estate investment firm. As Unisys' business has changed over the years, they shrank from three buildings to one. Merck now leases Building C and in 2010 Unisys moved from Building A to the newly renovated Building B. (Note: Unisys occupies 75% of Building B; the rest is currently vacant).
COPT is in the process of renovating Building A and will then look for a new tenant.
Design considerations within these parcels are complicated because the area contains multiple developed and undeveloped lots as well as buildings undergoing renovations. In addition, the zoning is not consistent across the lots; some are R&E (research and engineering) and other I (industrial).
In 2005/2006, Albert Einstein Healthcare Network and Montgomery Health System planned to close Montgomery Hospital in Norristown and build a new hospital complex in Whitpain Township. Einstein applied to Whitpain Township for zoning changes needed to build the hospital and additional office space on the COPT/Unisys site. The proposed zoning changes would affect all four parcels of the property
In October of 2005, the Whitpain Board of Supervisors held a public hearing on the needed zoning changes and, despite many unanswered questions form a large crowd, the BOS voted in favor of the change. In 2006, a grassroots effort, led by the newly formed Whitpainresidents.org, resulted in the reversal of the change and the termination of Einstein’s plans in Whitpain.
See the “Regional Hospital” pages for more information on this topic.
Currently in 2010:
Parcel/Lot A has ACTIVE application (LD3-08)
· Arborcrest –Blue Bell Investment Co.
· LP 2008 Renovation of 422,417 sq ft of office space (54.5 acres)
Parcel/Lot B has ACTIVE application (LD-1-09) realted to the recent renovatoin of Building B
· Arborcrest –Lakeside 1 building
· Renovation of 218,653 sq ft of office space (54.5 acres)
· Unisys has recently occiupied 75% of Building B (In the summer of 2010, Unisys applied for, and was granted, a waiver to signage restrictions in order to allow two proportionally visible signs on the building)
Parcel/Lot C has one bldg with one current tenant, Merck
Parcel/Lot D is current open space with a PENDING application (LD-3-09)
· Proposed 4-story building with surrounding open parking (see plan here) (This plan is currently on hold while the Township tries to create a comprehensive plan for the entire site.