City of Troy, NY
Rensselaer County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Adopted by the City Council of the City of Troy 3-1-1973 as Ch. 25 of the 1973 Code; amended in its entirety at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I). Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Property maintenance — See Ch. 176.
Loitering — See Ch. 195.
Zoning — See Ch. 285.

§ 251-1 Title.

This chapter shall be known as the "Public Street Ordinance."

§ 251-2 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following words have the meanings indicated:
STREET
All public streets, avenues, highways, squares, alleys, lanes, public grounds and sidewalks in the City.

§ 251-3 Obstructions.

A. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to place or maintain, or permit to be placed or maintained, upon the street or sidewalk opposite to any lot, store or building owned or occupied by him/her, in whole or in part, or upon any street in the City, any article, thing, case, box, fence, counter or structure, which shall in any manner encumber or obstruct such street or sidewalk or in any way impede, restrict or interrupt the full and free use thereof, except as otherwise expressly provided in this chapter.
B. 
Portable signs, objects, banners, installations or outdoor seating/dining, which are freestanding, which are usually displayed at or in the sidewalk area and which are periodically moved onto the site, must meet the following criteria:[1]
[Amended 5-7-2015 by Ord. No. 46]
(1) 
No portable sign shall be permitted after daylight hours.
(2) 
No portable sign shall be internally or externally illuminated.
(3) 
No portable sign shall obstruct any public right-of-way or private property other than that on which it is located.
(4) 
No more than one portable sign shall exist for each establishment.
(5) 
With the exception of menu/sandwich board signs, and A- or T-frame signs, no portable sign shall be displayed for more than 30 days.
(6) 
No menu/sandwich board sign nor A- or T-frame sign shall exceed a height of three feet nor a width of two feet without express permission of the Historic Review Committee and/or City of Troy Planning Commission.
(7) 
Signage which is to be displayed in a historic district shall be subject to approval by the Historic Review Committee and/or the City of Troy Planning Commission.
(8) 
Items other than signs may be permitted after dark, but may not obstruct any public right-of-way to the degree that public passage is not allowed. Public passage must be maintained to a minimum of 36 inches in width.
(9) 
Any person wishing to display a sign, object, banner, or installation or utilize outdoor seating/dining shall apply for a sidewalk use/outdoor dining permit to the City's Bureau of Code Enforcement. Upon completion of the application and receipt of necessary approvals, the applicant shall pay an annual fee of $25, submitted with a certificate of liability insurance naming the City of Troy, New York, as an additional insured prior to the permit being issued. Said permit shall expire on December 31 of the year of issuance.
(10) 
Issuance of said permit shall not relieve the applicant of responsibility for adhering to the other applicable sections of this Code.
(11) 
This section of the Code does not apply to signs which are part of one- or two-day events, such as parades, fairs, festivals, sidewalk sales and meetings or other similar activities; however, no such sign shall be displayed on more than four occasions during the calendar year.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 285, Zoning, of this Code for regulations regarding signs.

§ 251-4 Keeping sidewalks and gutters in good repair.

It shall be the duty of the owner or occupant, in whole or in part, of any lot or part of a lot fronting upon any street in the City to at all times keep the gutter and sidewalk in front of the same cleaned and in good order and condition and to the true grade thereof and to repair the flagging and bricks or other materials of such sidewalk and the curbstone or other materials to such gutter and not to permit any stagnant or filthy water to remain in such gutter, and also to observe and obey any lawful resolution which may be passed by the City Council with reference thereto, and also to observe and obey any notice, printed or written, which may be served upon him/her by the Commissioner of Public Works or by any member of the police force of the City, directing him/her to put such sidewalk and gutter in good order and condition and to repair the same. Nothing contained in this section shall be construed to prevent the City Council from ordering such repairs to be made and the expense thereof to be assessed according to law.

§ 251-5 Awnings.

It shall be unlawful for any person to construct or maintain over any street or sidewalk any covering or awning of wood, iron or other materials, except an awning of cloth; but such awning of cloth shall not be constructed or maintained at a less elevation than seven feet from the surface of the sidewalk, nor extend out more than six feet in width from the building to which the same shall be attached, and it must be drawn up at sunset; nor shall any person construct or maintain any post or pillar upon any sidewalk for the purpose of supporting any awning.

§ 251-6 Telephones and enclosures.

A. 
Notwithstanding § 251-3 of this chapter, the Commissioner of Public Works may designate sites on City sidewalks for which permits may be issued to provide for the erection, placement and maintenance of telephones and enclosures therefor for public use. The Commissioner of Public Works shall consult with the Commissioner of Public Safety prior to the designation of each such site. The designation of such sites shall be consistent with public health, safety and welfare. The Commissioner of Public Works may rescind such designations upon a finding that the erection, placement or maintenance of a telephone or enclosure therefor upon such site is inconsistent with public health, safety or welfare.
B. 
The Commissioner of Public Works shall provide for the issuance of permits for the erection, placement and maintenance of telephones and enclosures therefor at sites designated for such purpose pursuant to this section.
C. 
The Commissioner of Public Works may impose such conditions as are reasonable and necessary to protect public health, safety and welfare, upon the issuance of each such permit.
D. 
Such permits shall be issued for a period of one year and are renewable for a period of one year upon application to the Commissioner of Public Works. The fee for the issuance and annual renewal of each such permit shall be $100 per location, per year.
E. 
A bond or policy providing indemnity to the City against any and all liability associated with the erection, placement, maintenance, use or removal of such telephones and enclosures therefor, in a sum satisfactory to the Commissioner of Public Works and the Corporation Counsel, shall be filed with the Corporation Counsel as a condition precedent to the issuance of such permits.

§ 251-7 Playing ball in streets.

No person shall play ball in any of the streets of the City.

§ 251-8 Injuring trees.

It shall be unlawful for any person to cut, mutilate, or in any manner to injure any of the shade or ornamental trees standing in any public street, unless with the consent of the owner of such trees or by direction of the City Council or the Commissioner of Public Works of the City.

§ 251-9 Permits required for excavations.

A. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to make any opening or excavation for any purpose whatever in or through any public street without making application for and obtaining permission so to do from the Commissioner of Public Works of the City and giving a bond and making a deposit of money, as herein provided. Such application must be in writing, signed by the person desiring to make such excavation, or by an agent duly authorized in writing, and upon a form, stating such details as shall be prescribed by the Commissioner of Public Works. It must be accompanied by a bond to the City executed by such applicant or agent and by a surety or sureties, who shall be responsible householders or freeholders and one of whom at least shall make affidavit that he/she is worth the sum of $1,000 over all his/her debts and liabilities, which bond shall be conditioned to indemnify and save harmless the City of and from all loss, cost and damage on account of the granting of such permit and the making of such excavation and also to provide for the restoration of the street and pavement to proper condition and grade, and such bond shall be filed in the office of the Commissioner of Public Works. As additional security for the restoration of the street, the pavement and its foundation where excavated to proper condition and grade, the applicant for such permit shall at the same time deposit with the Commissioner of Public Works the following sums of money: If the street where the excavation is to be made is paved with brick, $10; if with granite blocks, $6; if with asphalt, $20; if with cobblestones, $5 and if unpaved, $5; but the Commissioner of Public Works may exact an additional sum in any case where the excavation is of unusual length or character.
B. 
Upon the execution and filing of such bond and the deposit of such moneys, the Commissioner of Public Works may issue the permit applied for. Within three days after the receipt of such moneys, he/she shall pay over the same to the Treasurer of the City, who shall open a special account of such moneys and set them aside as a special fund. When the party to whom such permit was granted shall cause the street, pavement and foundation thereof to be fully restored to proper condition and repair to the satisfaction of the Commissioner of Public Works, he/she shall be entitled to the return of such moneys upon the same being audited and allowed to him/her by the City Council. If the work of restoration shall not be done within the time prescribed by the Commissioner of Public Works, the Commissioner may give an order for the doing of such work and the expense thereof, when certified by him/her and pursuant to the direction of the City Council, a draft therefor shall be paid by the Treasurer out of the money deposited by the applicant. If the deposit shall exceed such expense, the applicant shall be entitled to the difference, when the draft is audited and allowed as aforesaid. If the Commissioner of Public Works shall not be at his/her office when any such application shall be made, it shall be the duty of the City Engineer to receive such application and issue such permit, when the conditions above described shall have been complied with.
C. 
The Commissioner of Public Works may give a general permit to any corporation having franchise rights in the public streets to make openings and excavations in the public streets, from time to time, as may become necessary or proper for the purpose of making any repairs of any kind to its system or for laying laterals, but a company before such permit is issued to it shall first execute and deliver to the City its bond, in the sum of $10,000, with two responsible sureties, who shall be residents and freeholders in the City, conditioned to indemnify and save harmless the City of and from all loss, cost and damage arising on account of the making of such openings or excavations and also to provide for the restoration of any street in which such openings or excavations shall be made and the pavement therein and the foundation thereof to proper condition and grade; such bond shall be approved as to form by the Corporation Counsel and shall be filed in the office of the City Comptroller and shall be renewed at the full amount whenever a payment thereon shall be made. The City, acting through its Mayor, City Council or Comptroller, may require a new bond on the part of such company, whenever any of the sureties upon the existing bond shall die or become insolvent or shall remove from the City. The company shall not be required to make the application or deposit of moneys hereinbefore provided for, but it shall be the duty of such company, by its superintendent or secretary, to make a weekly report, in writing, to the Commissioner of Public Works by mailing to or leaving the same at his/her office, of all excavations or openings made for any of the purposes in the preceding week, and such notice shall specify the times when and the particular places where such openings or excavations were made. If such company shall fail to restore any street or pavement, or the foundation thereto, which shall have been disturbed or taken up by it in the making of any such openings or excavations, to proper condition and grade within a reasonable time, the Commissioner of Public Works shall give notice to such company requiring it to do such work and, if the company shall neglect so to do, the Commissioner shall be at liberty to do such work, and the expense thereof shall be paid by such company and an action for the recovery of such expense may be maintained by the City; and successive actions for that purpose may be maintained upon the bond, but the recovery shall be limited in each case to the amount of such expense and the costs of the action. The Commissioner of Public Works shall file all such notices in a book to be kept for that purpose.
D. 
The Commissioner of Public Works may revoke any permit given at any time by notifying the company holding the same that the permit is recalled and revoked. After the recall of such general permit, the company shall be required to make the special application and deposit of moneys hereinbefore provided for whenever such company is to make any particular excavation in any of the public streets or alleys of the City.
E. 
This section shall not apply to the Waterworks Department of the City where any such work of excavation is to be made by that Department; but it shall be the duty of the Commissioner of Public Utilities to notify the City Engineer of all cases where such excavation is to be made by that Department in streets which are paved with asphalt or brick, and it shall also be the duty of the Commissioner to see that the streets and pavements which have been disturbed are promptly restored to their proper condition at the expense of such Department. If the work of excavation by the Waterworks Department is done at the instance and request of another party, or if any work of excavation for waterworks purposes is to be done by any person, the applicant must, in addition to complying with this Code, make deposit with the City Engineer of the proper sum specified in this section as the case may be, and it shall be unlawful to carry on any such work under any permit issued pursuant to this Code until such deposit shall have been made. Such deposit shall be held, disposed of or returned as hereinabove provided.

§ 251-10 Removal of snow and ice

A. 
The owner or occupant of any lot or part of a lot adjoining any public street, alley, highway or avenue in the City, the gutter of which street, alley, highway or avenue is formed or paved with brick or stone adjoining such lot or part of a lot, or the gutter or sidewalk of which street, alley, highway or avenue adjoining such lot or part of a lot shall hereafter be formed, paved or flagged, and every person having the charge of any church, schoolhouse or any other public building in the City shall, before the hour of 10:00 a.m. next following any day or night in which any snow shall have fallen or ice formed in the City, cause all snow and ice to be cleaned and removed from the sidewalk of the street, alley, highway or avenue adjoining such lot, part of a lot or a church, schoolhouse or other public building, from the entire width of such sidewalk, and to such distance as to free and keep open the gutter of the street, alley, highway or avenue in front of and adjoining such lot, church, schoolhouse or public building; provided, however, in case the snow or ice on any portion of such sidewalk cannot with reasonable diligence be removed, the owner or occupant or person having the charge of the lot or part of the lot adjoining the portion of such sidewalk where the snow or ice cannot be removed within the time above provided shall sprinkle such sidewalk with ashes or sand so as to make the same safe for traveling and keep the same so sprinkled with ashes or sand until the snow or ice can be removed therefrom. The owner or occupant of any such lot, part of a lot, and any person having the charge of any such church, schoolhouse or other public building, who shall violate, neglect or refuse to comply with the requirements of this section shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by a fine of $75 for each violation. For each 72 hours following the initial violation in which the original violation is not remedied a new ticket will be issued for the infraction with an additional penalty of $75.
[Amended 7-9-2015 by Ord. No. 66]
B. 
No person shall place, throw, erect or cause to be placed, thrown or erected in any public street, square, alley, highway or avenue in the City any pile of dirt, snow, ice, rubbish or refuse material of any kind, which shall or may obstruct or endanger the ordinary travel upon such street, square, alley, highway or avenue; nor shall any owner or occupant of any house or lot adjoining any street, square, alley, highway or avenue in the City permit any accumulation of ice on the sidewalk in front of the house or lot owned or occupied by him/her, which may be caused by water from the house gutter or conductor from such house or lot running to or across such sidewalk. Every person violating the prohibitions in this section contained, shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by a fine of $75 for each violation. For each 72 hours following the initial violation in which the original violation is not remedied a new ticket will be issued for the infraction with an additional penalty of $75.
[Amended 7-9-2015 by Ord. No. 66]
C. 
This section shall not be construed to prevent any person from shoveling snow from the sidewalk to the street, provided that it is done in such manner as not to create piles and obstructions that may endanger the public use of such streets.
D. 
If the owner or occupant of the abutting premises and property shall violate, neglect or refuse to comply with the requirements of Subsections A and B, and refuse and neglect to remove from the sidewalk in front of his/her premises ice, snow, rubbish or refuse materials of any kind within 48 hours after written notice to do so has been served on him/her by the Commissioner of Public Works, either personally or by leaving the same at his/her residence or, if he/she be a nonresident, by mailing the same to him/her at his/her last known place of residence, then and thereupon the Commissioner of Public Works may proceed to remove such ice, snow, rubbish or refuse materials. A bill for the expense incurred in making such removal shall be presented to the owner personally, or by leaving the same at his/her residence, or if he/she be a nonresident, by mailing the same to him/her at his/her last place of residence; and if he/she shall fail to pay the same within 10 days thereafter, the Commissioner of Public Works shall file his/her affidavit of the actual cost of the work, together with a statement as to the premises and property in front of which the removal was made, with the assessors of the City, and they shall thereupon assess such amount of expense upon such property, and shall file their assessment with the City Clerk, and the amount assessed shall be enforced and collected in the same manner as other assessments for local improvements in the City.

§ 251-11 Fees for permits.

A. 
The fees for permits for repairs to sidewalks and water/sewer lines with the erection of barricades shall be $75 for an initial fee and $50 per month thereafter.
[Amended 9-8-2016 by Ord. No. 62]
B. 
Permit fees for excavation of public streets shall be based upon the following schedule: $2.50 per square foot of final excavation up to 100 square feet, plus $1.50 per square foot of final excavation over 100 square feet.
[Amended 9-8-2016 by Ord. No. 62]
C. 
Dumpster permits.
[Added 6-7-2012 by Ord. No. 3]
(1) 
A dumpster permit is required of any dumpster or portable storage unit placed on residential or commercial property in the city right of way. This includes permanent dumpsters for businesses, temporary roll off dumpsters, and portable storage pods. If a temporary or roll-off dumpster is placed as part of a long-term remodeling project, it should be kept clean, in good repair and free of offensive odors. It should be cleaned a minimum of two times a year. (Additional cleaning may be required by the City.) Cleaning dumpsters on the street or sidewalk is not permitted.
(2) 
The permit fee for residential buildings with three or less units will be $100 a month. All other residential and commercial buildings will be $200 a month.
[Amended 9-8-2016 by Ord. No. 62]
(3) 
The dumper permit must be prominently displayed.
(4) 
If a dumpster company places a dumpster on a property where there is no visible permit authorizing its placement, the dumpster company will be fined $500. Dumpster companies will receive notification in writing, from the Director of Code Enforcement upon passage of this law. A list of notified companies will be kept.

§ 251-12 Numbering properties.

The City Engineer is hereby authorized to number and renumber the various properties in the City abutting upon the various streets of the City, the same to be carried out in accordance with a comprehensive system and he/she is directed to keep appropriate records and maps to indicate the allocation of street numbers to such properties.

§ 251-13 Poles and wires.

A. 
No poles or fixtures for the carrying of aerial wires or cables shall hereinafter be erected in any of the public places, squares, streets, alleys or public grounds of the City without the permit in writing of the Commissioner of Public Works, approved in writing by the Mayor.
B. 
No aerial wires or cables shall hereafter be erected or strung upon any poles or fixtures now or hereafter erected, in or over any of the public places, squares, streets, alleys or public grounds of the City, without the permit in writing of the Commissioner of Public Works, approved in writing by the Mayor.

§ 251-14 Selling and soliciting on City streets.

No person shall stand in or otherwise occupy that portion of a City street normally used by vehicular traffic for the purpose of soliciting from or selling to an occupant of any vehicle.