Township of Lower Gwynedd, PA
Montgomery County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of Lower Gwynedd 4-12-2011 by Ord. No. 479.[1] Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Establishment — See Ch. 1254, Section 1254.01.
Signs — See Ch. 1292.
Off-street parking and loading — See Ch. 1294.
Nonconforming uses — See Ch. 1296.
General provisions and definitions — See Ch. 1298.
[1]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also repealed former Ch. 1285, D-3 Special Business District, adopted 3-17-1987 by Ord. No. 233, as amended.

§ 1285.01 Application of chapter.

In a "D-3" Special Business District, the regulations set forth in this chapter shall apply.

§ 1285.02 Permitted uses.

In a "D-3" Special Business District, a building may be erected or used, and a lot may be used or occupied, for any of the following purposes and no other:
(a) 
Branch bank.
(b) 
Professional office.
(c) 
Medical office.
(d) 
Real estate office.
(e) 
Municipal use.
(f) 
Gasoline service station.
(g) 
The following combination of uses when authorized as a special exception by the Zoning Hearing Board, which uses shall be subject to the area requirements set forth below:
Combination Use
Minimum Lot Area
(acres)
Gasoline service station and sale of food and/or convenience items
2
Gasoline service station and public garage
1

§ 1285.03 Lot area and width.

(a) 
Minimum Lot Area. A lot area of not less than 20,000 square feet shall be provided for every building or use.
(b) 
Minimum Lot Width. A lot width of not less than 100 feet shall be provided for every building or use, at the ultimate right-of-way along both frontages of the corner lot.

§ 1285.04 Yards.

(a) 
Front Yard. There shall be a front yard on each lot which shall not be less than 10 feet; however, the front yard for any property containing a gasoline service station use shall not be less than 30 feet.
(b) 
Side Yards. There shall be two side yards on each lot, neither of which shall be less than five feet, with an aggregate width of 30 feet; however, any property containing a gasoline service station use shall have two side yards, neither of which shall be less than 30 feet.
(c) 
Rear Yard. There shall be a rear yard on each lot which shall not be less than 30 feet; however, the rear yard for any property containing a gasoline service station use shall not be less than 50 feet.
(d) 
District Yard. A side yard or a rear yard adjacent to a residential district shall not be less than 50 feet; however, for any property containing a gasoline service station use, the district yard shall not be less than 100 feet.

§ 1285.05 Lot coverage.

(a) 
Building Coverage. In a "D-3" Special Business District, the total building coverage shall not exceed 30%; however, the building coverage for any property containing a gasoline service station use shall not exceed 20%.
(b) 
Impervious Coverage. The total impervious coverage shall not exceed 65%; however, the impervious coverage for any property containing a gasoline service station use shall not exceed 50%.

§ 1285.06 Building height.

The maximum height for buildings or other structures erected or enlarged in a "D-3" Special Business District shall be 30 feet, not exceeding two stories.

§ 1285.07 Off-street parking and loading.

(a) 
Parking and Loading. All-weather parking and loading facilities shall be provided in accordance with Chapter 1294.
(b) 
Setbacks. No parking, loading or driveway area shall be located closer than five feet to any front, side or rear property line; however, the parking, loading, and driveway setback for any property containing a gasoline service station use shall not be less than 20 feet from side or rear property lines, and 25 feet from any front property line.

§ 1285.08 Special requirements.

(a) 
Signs. Signs shall be permitted in accordance with Chapter 1292.
(b) 
Gross Building Floor Area. No building, whether containing single or several uses, shall contain a gross area greater than 4,000 square feet of floor area, including unoccupied basements. No request for a variance from this subsection shall be granted without a proportionate or equivalent increase in the yard areas, as determined by the Zoning Hearing Board.
(c) 
Landscaping. All development in the "D-3" Special Business District shall be designed and maintained in accordance with Sections 1234.05, 1238.16 and 1238.17(f) of the Lower Gwynedd Township Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance.[1] In addition, there shall be a suitable and effective landscape buffer at the edge of the property adjacent to any public street. Such buffer strip shall be at least five feet wide and shall channel motor vehicle ingress and egress from the property, providing a maximum of one access road per 200 feet of frontage and in no case more than two access roads per property. In the case of a property containing a gasoline service station use, the landscape buffer shall not be less than 10 feet in width.
[1]
Editor's Note: Chapters 1234 and 1238 were repealed 6-24-2008 by Ord. No. 458. For current provisions, see Ch. 1230, Subdivision and Land Development.
(d) 
Utilities. All development in the "D-3" Special Business District shall be served by public sewer and water. All utilities serving a permitted use in this district shall be underground.
(e) 
Outdoor Land Use. There shall be no outdoor storage or display of goods or materials for marketing, storage or any other purpose. The outdoor storage of trash shall be designed and maintained to be completely screened from view by a landscape buffer.
(f) 
Hazardous Uses. No building may be erected, altered or maintained and no lot shall be used for any purpose, trade or business that is noxious, offensive or potentially injurious to health by reason of odor, noise, dust, smoke, heat, gas, radiation or vibration. No hazardous materials, defined as all materials listed as hazardous by the Environmental Protection Agency, or its successor, shall be permitted on the site.
(g) 
Site Lighting. Exterior lighting provided in conjunction with any building or use shall be placed not higher than 14 feet above grade and shall be screened so as not to permit the source of illumination to be seen from off premises. Only incandescent or color-corrected types of illumination shall be used. The hours of operation of such lights shall be limited to normal business hours, and in no case shall such lights remain illuminated between 12:00 midnight and 6:00 a.m., prevailing time.
(h) 
Distance Between Structures; Slope of Roofs. If there is more than one structure on a site, the minimum distance between structures shall be 30 feet. For the purpose of this section, any open canopy-type structure or roof overhang shall be considered in the same manner as an enclosed building. Further, no more than 1/4 of the total roof area of all structures shall have a slope of less than 6/12.
(i) 
Soffit Lighting. Notwithstanding the above lighting regulation, soffit lighting may be installed in roof overhangs and in canopies, including canopies over a gasoline pump island, not in excess of 16 feet in height.
(j) 
Redevelopment of Properties for Permitted Uses Other than Gasoline Service Station by Conditional Use.
(1) 
A property in the "D-3" District may be permitted by conditional use to retain any existing nonconforming dimensional or lot coverage characteristics even though the property is to be completely redeveloped. Notwithstanding the foregoing, any property in the "D-3" District which is completely redeveloped shall provide a setback from any adjacent public street of at least five feet.
(2) 
Shared parking and shared ingress and egress shall be permitted by conditional use, provided that easements acceptable to the Township are entered into by adjacent property owners. Such adjacent properties shall only be located in a nonresidential zoning district.
A. 
When shared parking is allowed, the total parking requirement for both sites may be reduced by 10%.
B. 
When shared ingress and egress is allowed, the additional impervious coverage connecting any shared facilities on one property with the other property sharing such facilities shall be used in the calculation of coverage requirements applicable to either property as determined by the applicant. In addition, with regard to such shared parking facilities, the five-foot parking setback shall not apply, and the rear yard requirement may be reduced to five feet.
(3) 
An applicant for conditional use approval shall demonstrate architectural continuity with the neighboring properties as reasonably determined by the Board of Supervisors.