Preserve ancient woods at 1800 Montgomery Avenue and 1835 County Line Rd in Villanova.

Preserve ancient woods at 1800 Montgomery Avenue and 1835 County Line Rd in Villanova.

March 18, 2021
Petition to
Lower Merion Township and School Board
Signatures: 4,227Next Goal: 5,000
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Why this petition matters


Lower Merion Township is facing a great challenge which must be addressed with urgency:  the Township is under tremendous development pressure which is being allowed to continue under old building and development and land use codes that do not protect and preserve the Township’s shrinking remaining environmental assets.  This is a matter of grave concern:  our tree canopy is under attack.  Our waterways, already polluted, are being further compromised.   Our cost to correct the adverse impacts of this type of development may greatly exceed whatever short term benefits may be derived.  

An environmental tragedy is unfolding. Over 482 trees over 6” in diameter (which probably understates the number of mature trees) including 26 giant oaks, a magnificent oak savannah, and a densely treed mature woodland are slated for removal according to a proposal before the Township for their approval.  It would be hard for this proposal to be enacted under the current zoning code, but this proposal is sadly grandfathered under old rules.  

Due to an unfortunate set of events that occurred a few years ago, a wooded parcel was acquired by the School District for playing field development.  This parcel is located at 1800 Montgomery Avenue and 1835 County Line Rd in Villanova.  The plan involves an almost complete deforestation of the parcel including a clearcutting of vast swaths of trees. Neighbors say it is a stopover for migrating birds including snowy owls.

At the same time that this project is moving forward, the Township is in a planning process to write and implement a Sustainability/Greenhouse Gas Reduction plan and is considering adopting a Net Zero Carbon Emission resolution.  The destruction of the woodland would be a self-inflicted wound making it far more difficult and costly to achieve the sustainability and carbon reduction we so desperately need.  In addition, the children cannot walk to the proposed playing fields.  They will have to be bussed.  So we hope another site could be equally viable.

We are simply asking the Township authorities and the School district to work together to exhaustively and completely explore all other options.  We must be stewards for our children and our children’s children.  We can do the right thing, its not too late.

Please email all Lower Merion School Board Directors to express your concerns about LM’s shrinking tree canopy and the benefit of trees to our kids’ fresh air.

LMSD Board of Directors,  Email all board members at once:


Superintendent Dr. Khalid Mumin
Lucy Klain, President
Peter Lee, Vice President
Kimberly Garrison
Shayna Kalish
Shawn Mooring
Subha Robinson
Kerry Sautner
Melanie Schafmeister
Anna Shurak

Please contact your LM commissioner:

Please contact Scott Houchins, LM Twp Zoning hearing officer.


Support now
Signatures: 4,227Next Goal: 5,000
Support now

Decision Makers

  • Lower Merion Township and School Board