Borough of Downingtown, PA
Chester County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Downingtown 4-12-1989 by Ord. No. 89-7. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Shade Tree Commission — See Ch. 80.
Park and playground regulations — See Ch. 203, Art. I.
Peace and good order — See Ch. 207.
Subdivision of land — See Ch. 256.
Cable television franchise — See Appendix Ch. A291.

§ 270-1 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
PERMIT
A permit, in writing, as issued by the Director of Administration and Finance or such other person as the Director of Administration and Finance shall designate.
[Amended 2-12-1992 by Ord. No. 92-1; 2-12-1992 by Ord. No. 92-2]
PERSON
Includes individuals, corporations, groups of individuals, firms, associations and their servants, agents or employees.
TREE
Any tree, shrub, ornamental growth or woody plant grown in or upon any public street, highway, avenue, park, sidewalk or other public area or that part of any tree, shrub, ornamental growth or woody plant which extends within the lines of any public street, highway, avenue, park, parkway, sidewalk or other public area in the Borough of Downingtown.

§ 270-2 Permit required.

[Amended 2-12-1992 by Ord. No. 92-1; 2-12-1992 by Ord. No. 92-2]
No tree, as defined in § 270-1 of this chapter, shall be planted or removed in or upon any public street, highway, avenue, park, parkway, sidewalk or any other public area without a written permit. Said permit shall designate the type of tree and the location where the tree is to be planted or removed. The Borough Council shall have the authority to designate a suitable type of tree and may refuse a permit to plant any type of tree which, in its opinion, is not deemed suitable to that location. No tree that bears fruit or nuts shall be planted in any public way. All persons shall first obtain a written permit from the Director of Administration and Finance before doing or having done any work for the care, pruning or trimming of any tree in or upon the public streets, highways, avenues, parks, parkways, sidewalks and other public areas, and such work shall be done to the satisfaction of the Borough.

§ 270-3 Location restrictions.

No tree, as defined in § 270-1 of this chapter, shall be planted in or upon the public streets, highways, avenues, parks, parkways, sidewalks or other public areas of the Borough within five feet of any driveway, nor shall any tree on private property adjacent to the sidewalk be planted within three feet therefrom. No tree shall be planted nearer to the intersection of any two or more streets than 25 feet from the point of intersection of any two public right-of-way lines.

§ 270-4 Trimming required.

[Amended 8-3-1994 by Ord. No. 94-11]
All trees, as defined in § 270-1 of this chapter, shall be kept trimmed so that the minimum clearance where they overhang any public walk shall be nine feet, and the minimum clearance where they overhang any public street or highway shall be 15 feet. However, the Borough reserves the right to designate a higher clearance on certain streets or highways where heavy traffic or other conditions make it expedient. All trees standing on private property and having branches projecting over a public highway shall be kept trimmed by the owner of such private property so that the lowest branches shall have the minimum clearance specified above or such other clearance as may be specified by the Borough. In the event that the owner of such property shall neglect or refuse to trim such trees upon notification, in writing, by the Borough to do so, the Borough may, after the expiration of the date specified in said notification, cause such trimming to be done at the expense of the owner, and the entire cost thereof shall be a lien upon said premises and shall be filed and collected by the Borough in the same manner as municipal claims are filed and collected.

§ 270-4.1 Removal required.

[Added 8-3-1994 by Ord. No. 94-11]
All trees, as defined in § 270-1 of this chapter, which are dead or decayed to such an extent that they become a public nuisance or threaten the health, safety and welfare of the public, shall be removed by the owner of the property upon which such trees exists. In the event that such property owner fails to remove the offending tree within 30 days after written notice from the Borough to do so, then the Borough may remove the tree, and the entire cost of removal shall be assessed and collected from the property owner. The Borough's cost of removal shall be a lien upon the property until such cost is paid.

§ 270-5 Permit application; conditions.

A. 
The application for any permit required hereunder shall be made, in writing, to the Director of Administration and Finance upon forms furnished by him and shall specify the particular kind of work or operation the applicant desires to perform thereunder and shall state the exact location and species of any tree or trees affected.
[Amended 2-12-1992 by Ord. No. 92-1; 2-12-1992 by Ord. No. 92-2]
B. 
It shall be the duty of the Director of Administration and Finance to submit every such application promptly to the Borough Council or to such other person as the Borough Council shall so designate for this purpose for approval or disapproval.
[Amended 2-12-1992 by Ord. No. 92-1; 2-12-1992 by Ord. No. 92-2]
C. 
The permit shall be effective for such length of time as the Borough Council shall, in each case, determine, which shall be indicated on the permit. Such permit may be revoked at any time at the discretion of the Borough Council upon satisfactory proof that the terms and conditions upon which the permit was issued are being or have been violated.

§ 270-6 Mass planting by Borough.

Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to deny to the Borough the right to engage in mass planting of trees, shrubs or other planting for the purpose of landscaping public areas or for the beautification of streets or parks, at the discretion of the Borough Council.

§ 270-7 Violations and penalties.

[Amended 10-10-1990 by Ord. No. 90-16]
Any person who shall violate or fail to comply with any of the provisions of this chapter shall be liable, upon conviction thereof, for a fine or penalty of not to exceed $600 and costs of prosecution and, in default of payment of such fine and costs, to imprisonment for a period of not more than 30 days, for each and every offense, and whenever such person shall have been notified by the Borough by service or summons in prosecution or by any other means that he is committing such violation, each day which he shall continue such violation after any such notification shall constitute a separate offense, punishable by like fine or penalty. Such fines or penalties shall be collected as prescribed by law.