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Township of West Whiteland, PA
Chester County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
The Unified Development Area (UDA) District has been established for the following purposes:
A. 
To provide an opportunity for integrated development of a variety of uses according to a master development plan ("plan").
B. 
To establish an open space amenity for conservation and recreation.
C. 
To provide opportunities for site design that conserves the natural and cultural resources of the tract.
D. 
To provide opportunities for stormwater and wastewater management facilities which promote groundwater recharge.
E. 
To provide flexibility in design and use of larger tracts of land within the Township consistent with the goals and objectives of the Township Comprehensive Plan.
F. 
To implement protection of historic resources.
G. 
To provide an opportunity for unified and harmonious development in order to establish continuity between uses in terms of character, scale, building massing, internal circulation patterns and open space.
A. 
The UDA District of West Whiteland Township shall be deemed an overlay district on the otherwise applicable zoning districts as delineated on the Township Zoning Map. Said overlay, and the subdistricts as are designated in the approved plan, shall become affixed to the land as the base zoning for the tract (and the Official Zoning Map of the Township shall be amended accordingly) upon the approval of the plan by the Board of Supervisors; provided, however, that in the event that the common open space is not finally restricted, dedicated or conveyed as provided in the plan and as required by § 325-48C within three years of the approval of the UDA District, or if the applicant or its successor notifies the Township in writing that it does not intend to so restrict, dedicate or convey the common open space, the zoning of the tract shall revert to the zoning that existed immediately prior to the approval of the UDA District and the UDA District shall be of no further force or effect.
B. 
Development within the subdistricts of the approved UDA District shall be in accordance with the zoning regulations applicable to each underlying subdistrict, except as modified by the covenants, restrictions and development standards of the approved plan which shall supersede the zoning regulations (including, but not limited to, use, area, and bulk limitations) applicable to the underlying subdistricts.
The following conditions shall serve as the minimum criteria for an application to be considered eligible for consideration under this article:
A. 
The tract shall be planned and developed according to a plan, which shall be submitted with the application.
B. 
The tract shall have a contiguous area of not less than 400 acres having frontage along a minor collector, major collector or arterial road as designated by the Township Comprehensive Plan.
C. 
Not less than 50% of the total tract (without regard to netting for steep slopes, floodplains or wetlands) shall be designated as common open space, which shall be designed to link proposed zoning subdistricts, conserve sensitive environmental and cultural resources and provide opportunity for active and/or passive recreation. Lands designated as common open space shall be held and maintained in private ownership or dedicated or conveyed (including a conveyance for consideration) to the Township or other public or private organization or governmental entity qualified to manage open space. In the event that lands are dedicated or conveyed to the Township or other governmental entity, the restriction as common open space need not be permanent, but shall be for a minimum period of not less than 20 years. The common open space requirement of this section shall supersede and be in lieu of all other Township ordinances requiring the designation of open space or community facilities, including but not limited to § 281-43 of Chapter 281, Subdivision and Land Development, of the Code of the Township of West Whiteland.
D. 
If the tract is not held in single ownership all of the owners of the tract must join in the application and the tract shall be developed under a single plan with common authority and responsibility.
Applications for a UDA District shall meet all procedural requirements for a Zoning Map amendment as required by the MPC and this Chapter 325, Zoning, of the Code of the Township of West Whiteland and shall include the submission of a plan and accompanying support data for the affected tract, as follows:
A. 
Plan. The plan shall be drawn at a scale of not less than one inch equals 400 feet and shall contain information sufficient to assess the impact of future development of the tract including, but not limited to, the following:
(1) 
The boundaries of each of the proposed subdistricts within the entire tract including, but not limited to:
(a) 
The location and type of land uses proposed in each subdistrict.
(b) 
Total building area being proposed, represented by the total square footage of buildings within office and commercial subdistricts and total dwelling units within residential districts.
(2) 
The general vehicular and nonvehicular circulation pattern for the entire tract, including points of access to the tract and the location, dimensions and rights-of-way of the major road network that will link subdistricts.
(3) 
The source of and general methods by which water shall be supplied and sewage shall be treated and disposed.
(4) 
The location and proposed use and disposition to be made of common open space and other common areas and facilities, including the proposed schedule for the dedication and/or imposition of restrictions upon the common open space in accordance with § 325-50.
B. 
Accompanying data. The following documentation shall accompany the plan and be made part of the application:
(1) 
Traffic and fiscal impact studies.
(2) 
A narrative describing how the proposed application complies with each of the purpose statements under § 325-46.
(3) 
A narrative generally describing proposed covenants, restrictions and development standards for the Unified Development.
(4) 
A narrative description of existing zoning and land uses on, and adjacent to, the tract.
(5) 
A narrative description of the tract's natural and man-made features and any restrictions created thereby.
(6) 
An inventory of historical resources and existing open space and recreation areas on the tract.
The following procedures shall apply to the designation of a UDA District and the underlying subdistricts:
A. 
Review of plan. The plan shall be submitted to the Board of Supervisors which shall, review the plan, conduct a hearing and make a decision in accordance with the requirements for a Zoning Map amendment as set forth in § 325-125A and C and the MPC.
[Amended 8-8-2000 by Ord. No. 291]
(1) 
Grant approval to the plan as submitted.
(2) 
Grant approval to the plan, subject to specified conditions not included in the plan as submitted.
(3) 
Deny approval to the plan.
B. 
Criteria for plan review. The following criteria shall be considered by the Board of Supervisors when evaluating plan applications submitted under the provisions of this article:
(1) 
The natural environments of the tract, with particular reference to preservation of streams, wetlands, PNDI sites, woodlands and slopes in excess of 25%, protection against soil erosion and water contamination and provision for flood- and surface water runoff control.
(2) 
Location of subdistricts, infrastructure and open space shall take into account the following:
(a) 
Suitability with respect to topography and drainage.
(b) 
Compatibility with surrounding land use.
(c) 
Preservation of significant natural features and vegetation.
(3) 
Consideration of traffic improvements designed to alleviate vehicular traffic congestion, including any off-site improvements demonstrated to be required as a result of the UDA development.
(4) 
Provision for the ownership and restrictions of the proposed open space which will secure proper maintenance and preservation thereof for open space purposes.
(5) 
Preservation of historic sites and structures.
(6) 
Determination of compliance with each of the purpose statements under § 325-46.
C. 
Submission of subdivision and land development plan. Approval of the plan shall not effect a subdivision or land development of any part of the tract. The developer, or any successor to the developer, for all or any portion of the unified development, shall comply with Chapter 281, Subdivision and Land Development, of the Code of the Township of West Whiteland for the unified development. The application may include a subdivision and/or land development plan for the first phase of the unified development.
D. 
Vested right to proceed. The applicant, or any successor to the applicant, for all or any portion of the unified development, shall have a vested right to proceed according to the plan, and no subsequent change or amendment to this Chapter 325, Zoning, Chapter 281, Subdivision and Land Development, or other governing ordinance or regulation, shall be applied to affect adversely the right of the applicant, or any successor, to commence or complete any aspect of the approved plan or materially increase the amount of site improvements or the projected cost of construction of buildings and site improvements, for a period of 20 years from the date of approval of the plan.
E. 
Amendment of plan. The Board of Supervisors may permit amendment of the plan upon application for amendment by a legal or equitable owner of the entirety of an original subdistrict shown on the plan, by following the procedures outlined in Subsection A. Any such amendment shall be subject to the criteria set forth in Subsection B(1) applicable to the plan and to the criteria and conditions set forth below:
(1) 
The purpose and intention of such amendment shall be to encourage and promote ingenuity in the layout and design of the original subdistrict, to more effectively improve and enhance environmental areas and open space and to protect ridgelines and viewsheds.
(2) 
The Board of Supervisors may permit the transfer of development rights from one original subdistrict to another original subdistrict and amend the area and bulk requirements applicable to the original subdistrict that is the recipient of such rights including, but not limited to, minimum lot area, minimum setbacks and maximum building height, if the following specific criteria are met:
(a) 
The applicant for amendment must be the legal or equitable owner of a minimum of 175 acres located in one or more original subdistricts.
(b) 
The applicant must present a plan for the overall development for the entirety of the original subdistrict that is the subject of the application for amendment.
(c) 
The maximum impervious coverage is reduced substantially, but in any case by not less than 10%.
(d) 
The natural grade and terrain of the property is such that permitting taller buildings in certain portions of the property would not substantially affect the viewsheds from public roads and other public areas adjacent to the property compared to buildings permitted by applicable height regulations anywhere on the property. In no event, however, shall the maximum building height in the original subdistrict exceed the otherwise applicable building height requirement by more than two stories or 27 feet, whichever is greater. Further, a maximum of 20% of the total number of buildings proposed by the plan may be five stories or 67 1/2 feet, whichever is greater.
(e) 
Any building that exceeds the maximum building height regulation must be setback a minimum of 100 feet from all arterial streets as defined by Chapter 281, Subdivision and Land Development, of the Code of the Township of West Whiteland.
(f) 
All proposed four story buildings shall be set back from the property perimeter a minimum of 150 feet and from any residentially zoned district in the Township a minimum of 250 feet, all proposed five-story buildings shall be set back from the property perimeter a minimum of 250 feet and from any residentially zoned district in the Township a minimum of 400 feet. (For purposes of this subsection, "property perimeter" shall mean the outside legal boundary line and perimeter of the entirety of the original subdistrict.)
(g) 
Special landscaping treatments and other open space enhancement areas must be incorporated into the original subdistrict including, but not limited to, an increase in the quantity, size and height and an upgrade in quality of plants and trees and the creation or enhance of unique landscape and/or habitat areas.
(3) 
The term "original subdistrict" as used in this article of this chapter shall mean and refer to the original subdistricts designated and identified in the plan approved by the Board of Supervisors by order dated January 31, 1995.
[Amended 8-8-2000 by Ord. No. 291]