"A Unified Voice is the Strength of a Community"
So much has happened since this website was last updated.  It will take a while to get everything tidied up.  In the meantime, here's the quick summary from the top:

BACKGROUND: 

-- Kardon park is a 50-acre public park.  It includes 1st Lake at the southern end (with the fountain), but 1st Lake is not part of the litigation.  The developer would like to fill the public park area with 320+ housing units and 20,000 sq. ft. of commercial space.
-- About 20 acres of the park (at the northern end) cross over into East Caln (but the Borough is still the owner).  Seven of those acres aren't involved in the litigation, and could be sold to the developer.  The developer would like to fill the seven acres with a 70-unit housing development.

THE FIGHT:

Once upon a time, there was one lawsuit against the Borough of Downingtown for entering into an illegal Agreement of Sale to sell the popular public park, Kardon Park.

Soon after, another lawsuit was filed against East Caln for granting a Conditional Use permit to the developers AND the Borough of Downingtown allowing the public park to be used for storm water management, easements, and "open space" as part of the proposed 70-unit housing in East Caln.

There were arguments, decisions, appeals, decisions, remands, more arguments, more decisions, more appeals, multiple case numbers, and it all became very confusing.  Everything is now consolidated into one VERY LARGE pile that the Pa Supreme Court will hopefully sort out.

But, just to make things a bit more interesting, another attempt was made by the developer to use the park up in East Caln.  As a result, another lawsuit was filed.  Will it move forward or wait until the Supreme Court weighs in?  We'll have to wait and see.

STATUS OF LAWSUIT AGAINST THE BOROUGH:
-- Friends of Kardon Park sued the Borough for selling Kardon Park.
-- Friends of Kardon Park won in Orphans' Court!  Excellent Opinion by Judge Platt.
-- The Borough and developers appealed to Commonwealth Court
-- Commonwealth Court vacated the decision and remanded it back to Orphans' Court (basically, it's a "do-over").  The Commonwealth Court's decision was confusing.
-- Friends of Kardon Park appealed to the Supreme Court 662 MAL 2012 
-- Kim Manufacturing also appealed to the Supreme Court 663 MAL 2012 
-- The Pa Supreme Court would not grant our petition for appeal, so the case was remanded as the Commonwealth Court directed
-- Multiple cases were consolidated and argued in Orphans' Court again.
-- The Nov 2013 decision by Judge Platt of Orphans' Court was a mixed bag.
-- Both sides appealed to the Commonwealth Court, and arguments were heard Sept 10, 2014.
-- The Commonwealth Court "split the baby" with (1) some of the park protected for the public, (2) some of the park released for sale, and (3) some of the park sort of protected for the public but still available for use by the developer for storm water management, utility/construction easements, and to meet "open space" requirements.
-- Friends of Kardon Park filed another appeal to the Pa Supreme Court in May 2015.
-- We're waiting for the Supreme Court fo (a) decide if they'll hear the case, and (b) set a date for the hearing. 

STATUS OF LAWSUIT AGAINST EAST CALN:
-- East Caln Supervisor's granted a conditional use permit after many days of hearings.
-- Ann Feldman appealed their decision to Common Pleas Court (Judge Nagle).
-- East Caln Supervisors won.
-- Ann Feldman appealed to the Commonwealth Court.
-- Commonwealth Court overturned the lower court's decision.
-- The Borough and developers appealed to the Supreme Court 629 MAL 2012
-- Ann Feldman responded to their petition to appeal.
-- East Caln was consolidated with the other cases (continued above "Multiple cases were consolidated")

-- The developer and borough applied to East Caln AGAIN for a Conditional Use permit.  This time the plan was a bit different, but it still relied upon using Kardon Park.
-- The East Caln supervisors granted the CU Permit.
-- Ann Feldman filed an appeal to the Common Pleas Court.
-- A hearing date has not been set, yet.

LEGISLATION:
-- HB2224 (changing the Donated and Dedicated Property Act) was close to being passed into law in Oct 2012 but did not get voted on, thanks to a HUGE effort by Pa Lands Trust, Penn Enviro, Scenic Philadelphia, other organizations, and YOU!!!
-- Unfortunately, HB1884 was snuck by everyone by our own "Mr. Open Space" Andy Dinniman.  It was signed into law and became Act 162.  This law removes the Project 70 deed restrictions from the remainder of Kardon Park (the East Caln portion) in trade for "park improvements", which are really just things the developer has to do anyways as part of the East Caln housing development.
-- In anticipation of a challenge to Act 162 because of some fatal flaws, the General Assembly acted quickly to rescind part of Act 162 and enact Act 60. 
-- Act 60 goes into more detail and requires specific "park improvements" to be made in exchange for the State removing Project 70 deed restrictions from the public parkland.

WHAT'S NEXT???
-- We wait to see if the Pa Supreme Court will grant our appeal.
-- If our appeal is granted, then we'll argue to protect the future of many, many public parks across PA.
-- If our appeal is NOT granted, then public parks acquired through condemnation will be safe, but parks acquired using State-provided Project 70 funds will not be safe.
-- If our appeal is NOT granted, then all public parks could be used by private developers for utility easements, construction easements, storm water management, and to meet "open space" requirements.


NOW IS THE TIME TO 
MAKE A DONATION TO FRIENDS OF KARDON PARK!