All uses, structures, lots, and signs that do not conform to the regulations of the district in which they are located, but were in lawful existence prior to the effective date of this chapter shall be known and regarded as nonconforming and the following regulations shall apply to them.
The lawful use of a structure, land or sign existing at the time of adoption of this chapter or authorized by a building permit issued prior thereto may be continued in the form evident at the time of adoption of this chapter although such use does not conform to the provisions of this chapter.
Change of use. A nonconforming use may be changed to another nonconforming use by grant of conditional use only upon determination by the Board of Supervisors, after public hearing, that the proposed new use will be similar to or less detrimental to its neighborhood and surroundings than is the use it is to replace. In determining relative detriment, the Board of Supervisors shall take into consideration, among other things traffic generated, nuisance characteristics (such as emission of noise, dust, glare and smoke), fire hazards and hours and manner of operation. Once changed to a conforming use, no structure or land shall be permitted to revert to a nonconforming use.
Extension or enlargement. The nonconforming use of a structure or of a lot shall not be extended or enlarged, so as to use other portions of the structure or lot and a nonconforming structure housing a nonconforming or permitted use shall not be extended or structurally altered, except insofar as is required by law to assure the structural safety of the structure, unless the Board of Supervisors shall, by conditional use as hereinafter provided, authorize the extension or enlargement of such use or structure. The Board of Supervisors, upon proper application, may grant such conditional use; provided that:
It is clear that such extension is not materially detrimental to the character of the surrounding area or the interest of the Township.
The area devoted to the nonconforming use shall in no case be increased by more than 50%. This increase by 50% shall occur only once per nonconforming use.
Any extension of a structure having a nonconforming use shall conform to the area and bulk regulations of the district in which it is situated and to all regulations applicable to such a use in the district or districts in which the use is now permitted.
Any lawful nonconforming use of land exclusive of a structure and the use contained therein, may be extended upon the lot existing at the time of adoption of this chapter, but such extension shall conform to the area and bulk regulations and to the design standards of this chapter. Such extension of a nonconforming use shall be limited to the lot which was in existence at the time of adoption of this chapter.
Restoration. A structure containing a nonconforming use destroyed by 75% or less of its value by fire, explosion, flood or other phenomenon, or legally condemned, may be reconstructed and used for the same nonconforming use; provided, that, reconstruction of the structure shall be commenced within one year from the date the structure was destroyed or condemned and shall be completed within one year of the date commenced.
Discontinuance. If a nonconforming use is discontinued with intent or otherwise totally ceases for a continuous period of one year or more, subsequent use of such structure or land shall conform to the provisions of this chapter.
Extension or enlargement.
Nonconforming structures may be altered, renovated or enlarged provided that such alteration, renovation or enlargement does not increase the floor area of the nonconforming structure by more than 50% of the floor area of the structure as it existed on the date when the structure became nonconforming; provided, that such alteration, renovation or enlargement does not increase any existing nonconformity, and provided that the portion of the structure constituting the enlargement complies with all area and bulk regulations. In the case of a nonconforming structure which is occupied by a nonconforming use, such alteration, renovation or enlargement shall also meet the requirements of § 325-105B of this article. In the case of a nonconforming structure which is located on a nonconforming lot such alteration, renovation or enlargement shall also meet the requirements of § 325-105C of this article.
Any structural alteration, extension or addition to existing structures shall conform with all area, height, width, yard and coverage requirements for the district in which it is located as well as building code regulations currently in effect.
Restoration. Any lawful nonconforming structure which has been involuntarily damaged or destroyed by fire, explosion, windstorms or other adverse cause may be reconstructed in the same location; provided that:
Reconstruction shall begin within one year from the date of damage or destruction and shall be completed without interruption.
A building may be constructed on a nonconforming lot of record if it will comply with all applicable area and bulk regulations other than the minimum lot size requirement. If the building does not comply with all applicable area and bulk regulations, variance(s) must be obtained from the Zoning Hearing Board. Contiguous nonconforming lots under common ownership shall be considered one lot.
[Amended 5-30-2012 by Ord. No. 399]
No lot area shall be reduced so that the area or width of the lot or the applicable setback dimensions shall be smaller than herein prescribed.
Editor’s Note: Former Subsection C, pertaining to permitted uses for existing structures, which immediately followed this subsection, was repealed 5-30-2012 by Ord. No. 399.
Any existing nonconforming signs, signboards, billboards or advertising devices may be continued, subject to the following:
Moving. No nonconforming sign shall be moved to another position on the structure or lot on which it is located after the effective date of this chapter or amendment thereto, unless permitted by conditional use.
Area. The total area of all such signs relating to a single use at the effective date of this chapter, or at the effective date of any amendment of this chapter by which any sign shall be made nonconforming, shall not be increased.
Replacement. No such sign shall be physically altered or replaced unless authorized as a conditional use by the Board of Supervisors. Nonconforming signs, once removed, may be replaced only by conforming signs.
Discontinuance. Whenever any nonconforming use of building use of building, structure or land, or of a combination of buildings, structure and land ceases as prescribed in § 325-105D, all signs accessory to such use shall be deemed to become nonconforming and shall be removed within three calendar months from the date such use terminates.