Borough of Old Forge, PA
Lackawanna County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
A. 
The procedures established in this article are intended to define the steps by which a developer shall design, make an application for approval of, record plats for and construct improvements and by which the municipality may review, make recommendations, approve plans and otherwise administer these regulations and this chapter.
B. 
From the date of passage of this chapter, the following procedures shall be observed by all developers. All plots shall be reviewed and approved by the municipality. Any approval not processed as required hereinafter shall be deemed null and void unless such approval was given prior to the adoption of this chapter.
C. 
For those subdivisions hereinafter classified as minor subdivisions, a sketch plan and abbreviated final plan procedure is established. For all others which are classified as major subdivisions or land developments, a preliminary plan and final plat procedure is established. See the Appendix for sample plans.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: The sample plans are on file and available for inspection in the office of the Borough Secretary.
A. 
Grubbing and grading. No developer or landowner in the Borough of Old Forge shall proceed with any significant grubbing and/or grading of land before obtaining approval of a preliminary development plan for such from the municipality. (See §§ 305-23 and 305-24 of this chapter for specific grading requirements.)
B. 
Access, drainage, geology and topography.
(1) 
No land shall be subdivided for residential use unless adequate access to such land exists or will be provided by the subdivider over improved public streets or thoroughfares which are consistent with the design standards hereinafter set forth. In no event shall land be subdivided for residential use if such land is considered by the municipality to be harmful to the health and safety of possible residents and the community as a whole for such use by reason of flooding, mine fires, mine subsidence, toxic waste site, improper drainage, objectionable earth and rock formations, topography or any other geological hazard or like feature.
(2) 
Where any area within the proposed subdivision is known to be subject to flooding, such area shall be clearly marked "Subject to Periodic Flooding" on the development plan and shall not be plotted in the streets and lots. Land which normally will be inundated less frequently than once in five years may be used for recreational areas or for recreational residential lots. In any event, easements must be reserved from the normal flow line to the annual high-water flow line of any watercourse or lake.
(3) 
Where any area within the proposed subdivision is known to be subject to mine subsidence, such area shall be clearly marked "Subject to Mine Subsidence" on the development plan and shall not be plotted in the streets and lots except in accordance with the provisions of § 305-20O.
C. 
Recording of deeds.
(1) 
No lots shall be delivered and no agreements for sale shall be made for lots in any subdivision prior to the approval by the municipality of the final plan for the proposed subdivision.
(2) 
The municipality will work with the County Recorder of Deeds, with local title insurance agencies and with the County Bar Association, in accordance with Act 247,[1] to prevent the recording of deeds resulting from unapproved subdivisions of land in the Borough.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10101 et seq.
A. 
The municipality shall make available to developers, upon request and for a reasonable fee, copies of this chapter, Chapter 350, Zoning, other adopted plans, street maps and other information which may affect the development of the property under consideration. Applications for approval of a subdivision or land development shall, in any case, be in accord with these regulations, other codes and plans, as adopted.
B. 
Prior to the formal submission of a subdivision or land development plan for review and approval, the subdivider is urged to submit a sketch plan to the municipality for advice on the requirements necessary to achieve conformity with the standards of these regulations as well as to alert the subdivider as early as possible to factors which must be considered in the design of a subdivision, such as pertinent elements of any county or municipal land use, thoroughfare or other community plans. Review of a sketch plan is an informal, advisory process to guide the subdivider in the eventual preparation of a more easily and readily accepted formal preliminary or final plan. In any case, the submission of a sketch plan is not required by the procedures of this chapter.
C. 
Sketch plans and subsequent official minor and major subdivision and land development plans should be accompanied by any letters of transmittal or development details necessary to explain existing or proposed site conditions which are not self-explanatory on the actual sketch or minor or major subdivision or land development plan.
D. 
Developers are also advised to consult early in the development planning process with such other regulatory bodies as may have jurisdiction over the development and whose approval is required prior to obtaining municipality approval of plans. These may include but are not limited to the Borough Sewage Enforcement Officer, the municipal and/or regional sewer authority, the Borough Zoning Officer and Code Enforcement Officer, PennDEP, the Lackawanna County Conservation District and PennDOT.
A. 
Classification.
(1) 
A division of land to facilitate a lot addition or a land exchange or a division of land which adjoins an existing public street and does not involve the opening, widening, extension or improvement of any street or the installation of any public utility outside the frontage road and does not involve more than four lots or dwelling units (except that subdivision of lots from a property after five or more lots have been previously subdivided is a major subdivision) shall be deemed to be a minor subdivision or land development.
(2) 
Dedication or establishment of an unimproved right-of-way or easement shall be a minor subdivision or land development. Replatting, resubdivision or revision of four lots or fewer shall also be considered a minor subdivision or land development. Construction or conversion of multifamily housing on a division of land which adjoins an existing public street and does not involve the opening, widening, extension or improvement of any street or the installation of any public utility outside the frontage road and does not involve more than four dwelling units shall also be considered a minor subdivision or land development. Any other multifamily housing, including all group living facilities, and all commercial, industrial and mobile home park development shall be a major, not minor, subdivision or land development, regardless of the number of lots or units created, if any.
B. 
Application.
(1) 
A final plat complying with the requirements set forth in this chapter shall be prepared for each minor subdivision or land development, and an application for approval of said plat shall be filed with the municipality.
(2) 
When filing an application for approval of a minor subdivision or land development, the subdivider shall submit to the municipality one Mylar or original and 11 blue-line paper prints of the proposal on sheets no larger than 18 inches by 24 inches.
(3) 
Application and review fees, as set forth in Article IX of this chapter, shall be paid to the Borough Secretary concurrent with the submission of an application for the approval of minor subdivision or land development plans to the municipality for consideration. The date on the developer's receipt from the Borough Secretary for fees paid for an application shall also be the date marking the time periods for action on said application by the municipality. Certification to the municipality that such fees have been paid shall also form part of the developer's application.
(4) 
In order to streamline the review process, a copy of an application for final approval of a minor subdivision or land development may be sent by the applicant directly to the Lackawanna County Regional Planning Commission with the required fee. Such a submission, properly documented with an application, will trigger the timetable for the County Planning Commission's mandatory review of the application.
C. 
Review.
(1) 
Upon receipt of a complete application for a minor subdivision or land development plan, the Borough Secretary shall transmit the application documents to the Borough Planning Commission, which shall begin to review the plan for compliance with this chapter and study the practicability of the plan, taking into consideration the requirement, location and width of streets, their relation to the topography of the land, the preservation of natural features, sewage disposal, water supply, drainage, lot sizes and arrangements, the future development of adjoining lands and the requirements of the development plan.
(2) 
A copy of the plan will also be forwarded by the Borough Secretary to the Lackawanna County Regional Planning Commission for its review and comment. Where applicable, the plan may also be forwarded to the Borough Engineer, the Borough planning consultant, the Natural Resources Conservation Service, the municipal and/or regional sewer authority, PennDEP, PennDOT or other agencies for review and comment. Review comments may be used as substantiation for plan approval or disapproval.
(3) 
Review of the minor subdivision or land development plan by the Borough Engineer, when requested by the municipality, may help the municipality in determining the adaptability of the proposed development to the engineering design standards and criteria currently required by the Borough. In reviewing the project plan, the Engineer shall apply such judgment and specification interpretation as may be necessary to clarify the intent of the engineering requirements.
(4) 
A report shall be made to the Borough Secretary for distribution to the Borough Planning Commission and, in the case of a major subdivision or land development, to the Borough Council within 30 days after a referral, unless the Engineer is actively engaged in collecting data not supplied by the developer. The cost of any required engineering review work shall be paid by the developer to the Borough in accordance with the fee schedule set forth in Article IX of this chapter. Prior to authorizing a project review by the Engineer which would require the collection of extensive new data, the Borough shall provide the developer 30 days to furnish the required information to the Borough Engineer in sufficient depth and suitable form.
(5) 
Review of the minor subdivision or land development plan by the Borough planning consultant, when requested, may help the municipality in determining the adaptability of the proposed development to the planning and urban design standards and criteria currently required by the Borough. In reviewing the project plan, the planning consultant shall apply such judgment and specification interpretation as may be necessary to clarify the intent of the planning and urban design requirements.
(6) 
A report shall be made to the Borough Secretary for distribution to the Borough Planning Commission and to the Borough Council within 30 days after a referral, unless the planning consultant is actively engaged in collecting data not supplied by the developer. The cost of any required planning consultant review work shall be paid by the developer to the Borough in accordance with the fee schedule set forth in Article IX of this chapter. Prior to authorizing a project review by the planning consultant which would require the collection of extensive new data, the Borough shall provide the developer 30 days to furnish the required information to the Borough planning consultant in sufficient depth and suitable form.
(7) 
Review and report of plans by the County Planning Commission shall be completed and forwarded to the municipality within 30 days from the date the application was forwarded to the County Planning Commission. The municipality shall not approve such applications until the County Planning Commission report is received or until the expiration of 30 days from the date the application was forwarded to the County Planning Commission.
(8) 
After completion of its review process, the Borough Planning Commission shall vote to recommend approval or disapproval of the application by the Borough Council. If the Planning Commission's evaluation of an application resulted in recommendations of approval pending changes to the proposed plan, such changes shall be included in the Planning Commission's recommendation of approval to the Borough Council and shall be in the format provided for in Subsection D below. Should the Planning Commission vote to recommend denying approval of an application, then the reasons for recommending a denial should also be included in the Planning Commission's recommendation to Borough Council.
(9) 
The Old Forge Borough Council shall have the authority to determine the municipality's approval or disapproval of any final plan for a minor subdivision or land development that may come before the municipality.
D. 
Approval or disapproval.
(1) 
After an application for approval of a plat of a minor subdivision or land development has been filed with the Borough Secretary, together with all maps, necessary data and fees, the plan shall be reviewed and processed. The subdivider or developer shall pay required review fees to the Borough Secretary at the time of official submission of the application for plat approval, and official submission shall not be deemed to have been made until written certification of receipt by the Borough of all the required review fees.
(2) 
Before acting on any minor subdivision or land development plan, the Planning Commission may, at its sole discretion, arrange for a public hearing thereon, after giving at least seven days' notice of such hearing.
(3) 
The Borough Council, on its own or upon recommendation by the Borough Planning Commission, may alter any subdivision or land development plan and specify changes or modifications therein which it deems necessary and may make its approval subject to such alterations, changes or modifications.
(4) 
The municipality shall complete the review and either approve or disapprove the plat not later than 90 days after the date of the regular meeting of the Planning Commission next following the date of the official submission of the application, provided that, should said next regular meeting occur more than 30 days following the official submission and filing of an application, said ninety-day period shall be measured from the 30th day following the day that such application submission is officially submitted and filed. Where practical, the Borough Planning Commission shall complete its review and vote its recommendation at its meeting which precedes the last regular meeting of Borough Council prior to the expiration of the ninety-day review period for a given application. The decision of the Borough Council shall be in writing and shall be communicated to the applicant personally or mailed to him or her at his or her last known address not later than 15 days following the decision.
(5) 
The decision shall state:
(a) 
The specific changes, if any, it will require in the plan.
(b) 
The character and extent of the required public improvements.
(c) 
The amount of construction or improvements.
(d) 
The amount and terms of the performance bonds or other security which the municipality may require, among other conditions in the public interest, and prerequisite to the approval of the final plan to be submitted subsequently.
(6) 
The written recommendation of the Borough Planning Commission to the Borough Council shall follow this same format and shall be meant to serve as the basis for the written decision of the Borough Council approving or disapproving the plan, as required above.
(7) 
Approval of the minor subdivision or land development plan shall constitute approval of the subdivision or land development as to the character and intensity of development and the arrangement and dimensions of streets, lots and other planned features but shall not authorize the sale of lots until the approved plan is recorded and the municipality is in receipt of the Recorder's certificate in a timely fashion as provided for below in Subsection F.
(8) 
When the application is approved, it shall be appropriately signed and dated, and copies shall be distributed according to Subsection G of this section. When the application is disapproved, the decision shall specify the defects found in the application and describe the requirements which have not been met and shall, in each case, cite the provisions of this chapter relied upon. A disapproved copy of the subdivision or land development plan shall be retained by the municipality, one copy shall be sent to the County Planning Commission, and the remaining copies shall be returned to the subdivider, developer and/or his or her agent.
(9) 
Failure of the municipality to render a decision and communicate it to the applicant within the time and in the manner required herein shall be deemed approval of the application in the terms as presented, unless the applicant has agreed, in writing, to an extension of time or change in the prescribed manner of presentation of communication of the decision, in which case failure to meet the extended time or change in manner of presentation of communication shall have like effect.
E. 
Application withdrawal.
(1) 
Removal or withdrawal of the subdivision or land development plan from the approval process by the subdivider, developer and/or his or her agent shall be considered withdrawal of the plan application, shall not obligate the municipality to approve or disapprove the plan within the herein-described timetable and shall not result in a deemed approval when 90 days have elapsed.
(2) 
Upon knowledge of plan withdrawal, the municipality shall notify, in writing, the subdivider or land developer that plan withdrawal has disrupted the approval process, and no approval or disapproval will be rendered unless the subdivision or land development plan is resubmitted as a new application.
F. 
Recording.
(1) 
After approval of a minor subdivision or land development plan by the municipality, the Mylar copy shall be placed on record in the Planning Commission office and the clothback print shall be filed and recorded by the developer in the office of the County Recorder of Deeds, said recording to occur within 90 days of the final or deemed approval date of the plan or the approval shall be null and void. Within 10 days thereafter, the developer shall furnish the municipality and the Lackawanna County Regional Planning Commission with a Recorder's certificate that said plan is properly recorded.
(2) 
Whenever such plat approval is required by this chapter, the Recorder of Deeds shall not accept any plat for recording unless such plat officially notes the approval of the municipality. Likewise, whenever plan review and comment by the County Planning Commission is required by municipal ordinance (§ 305-11C), the Recorder of Deeds shall not accept any plat for recording unless such plat officially notes the review of the County Planning Commission.
G. 
Distribution of approved plats. Copies of an approved plat shall be sent to the applicant and to the Lackawanna County Regional Planning Commission. Additional copies may be distributed to PennDOT, the County Emergency Management Agency, Borough Fire Companies, County Assessment Office, Pennsylvania Gas and Water Company, Pennsylvania Power and Light Company, Bell of Pennsylvania or other utility or related agency making timely request for copies.
H. 
Expiration of approval. After a period of two years, if the development proposed and approved in a minor subdivision plan has not been completed, the approval shall expire, unless a formal extension of approval is requested of the municipality in writing at least 90 days prior to its expiration and is approved by the municipality during that ninety-day period. No such extension of the expiration of approval of a minor subdivision plan shall be for more than 12 additional months.
A. 
Classification. Any subdivision or land development involving more than four lots or dwelling units; or any subdivision or land development on a property after four or more lots or dwelling units have previously been subdivided from that property; or any subdivision or land development proposing the opening, widening, extension or improvement of a street shall be deemed to be a major subdivision or land development. Multifamily housing of five or more units, a group living facility, mobile home park, or commercial and/or industrial development shall be considered a major subdivision or land development, regardless of the number of units created or whether or not such development includes the subdivision of land.
B. 
Application.
(1) 
A preliminary plat complying with the requirements set forth in this chapter shall be prepared for each major subdivision or land development and an application for approval of said preliminary plan filed with the municipality.
(2) 
When filing an application for preliminary approval of a major subdivision or land development, the subdivider shall submit to the municipality one Mylar or original and 11 blue-line prints of the proposal. As part of the submission, the subdivider shall also submit 11 sets of the written improvement plan (if not contained on the blue-line sheets) containing detailed written descriptions of the physical site improvements (roadways, utilities, etc.) proposed for the subdivision or land development. All blue-line sheets shall be 18 inches by 24 inches or 24 inches by 36 inches. In order to streamline the review process, a copy of an application for preliminary approval of a major subdivision or land development may be sent by the applicant directly to the Lackawanna County Regional Planning Commission with the required fee. Such a submission, properly documented with an application, will trigger the timetable for the County Planning Commission's mandatory review of the application.
C. 
Review.
(1) 
Upon receipt of the application for preliminary approval of a major subdivision or land development plan, the Borough Secretary shall transmit the application documents to the Borough Planning Commission, which shall begin to review the plan for compliance with this chapter. A copy of the plan will also be forwarded to the Lackawanna County Regional Planning Commission for its review and comment if the applicant has not already done so. Where applicable, the plan may also be forwarded to the Borough Engineer, the Borough planning consultant, the Natural Resources Conservation Service, the municipal and/or regional sewer authority, PennDEP, PennDOT or other agencies for review and comment. Review comments may be used as substantiation for plan approval or disapproval.
(2) 
Review and report of plans by the Lackawanna County Regional Planning Commission shall be completed and forwarded to the Borough Planning Commission within 30 days from the date the application was forwarded to the Lackawanna County Regional Planning Commission. The municipality shall not approve such application until the County Planning Commission report is received or until the expiration of 30 days from the date the application was forwarded to the County Planning Commission.
(3) 
After completion of its review process, the Borough Planning Commission shall vote to recommend approval or disapproval of the application by the Borough Council. If the Planning Commission's evaluation of an application resulted in recommendations of approval pending changes to the proposed plan, such changes shall be included in the Planning Commission's recommendation of approval to the Borough Council and shall be in the format provided for in Subsection D below. Should the Planning Commission vote to recommend denying approval of an application, then the reasons for recommending a denial should also be included in the Planning Commission's recommendation to Borough Council.
(4) 
The preliminary plan of any major subdivision or land development that comes before the municipality shall be approved or disapproved by the Borough Council in conformance with Subsection D below.
D. 
Approval or disapproval.
(1) 
After an application for preliminary approval of a plat of a major subdivision or land development has been officially filed with the municipality, together with all improvement plans, maps, necessary data and fees, the municipality shall complete the review in accordance with the procedure outlined in § 305-12C and either approve or disapprove the plan in accordance with the procedure outlined in § 305-12D and E.
(2) 
The decision shall state:
(a) 
The specific changes, if any, it will require in the plan.
(b) 
The character and extent of the required public improvements.
(c) 
The amount of construction or improvements.
(d) 
The amount and terms of the performance bonds or other security which the Planning Commission may require, among other conditions in the public interest, and prerequisite to the approval of the final plan to be submitted subsequently.
(3) 
Approval of the preliminary plan shall constitute approval of the subdivision or land development as to the character and intensity of development and the arrangement and approximate dimensions of streets, lots and other planned features but shall not authorize the sale of lots.
E. 
Recording.
(1) 
After approval of a preliminary plan for a major subdivision or land development plat by the Planning Commission, recording of the preliminary plan is not authorized.
(2) 
Approval of the preliminary plan shall assure the subdivider for a period of three years from the date of approval that:
(a) 
The general layout of streets, lots and other features is approved and shall be the basis for the preparation of the final plan;
(b) 
The general terms and any special conditions under which the approval of the plan was granted will not be changed; and
(c) 
The subdivider may install improvements in accordance with the approved preliminary plan and other requirements contained in this chapter, including the posting of proof of necessary insurance with the Borough prior to the start of any construction as provided for in § 305-34 of this chapter. Failure to provide such proof of insurance prior to the start of construction of improvements will constitute a breach of the terms of the preliminary plan approval and would be cause for the municipality to initiate enforcement action per the terms of § 305-47 of this chapter.
(3) 
Approval of a preliminary plan does not constitute approval of the final plan and therefore does not authorize the recording of the subdivision or land development plan or the sale or transfer of lots.
F. 
Expiration of approval. After a period of three years, approval of the preliminary plan shall expire, unless the developer shall petition the municipality, in writing, for a maximum one-year extension. Such petition must be received at least 90 days prior to the expiration of preliminary plan approval. The municipality may grant two such one-year extensions only.
A. 
Classification. Any subdivision or land development involving more than four lots or dwelling units; or any subdivision or land development on a property after four or more lots or dwelling units have previously been subdivided from that property; or any subdivision or land development proposing the opening, widening, extension or improvement of a street; or any subdivision or land development proposing multifamily housing of five or more units shall be deemed to be a major subdivision or land development, whether or not such development includes the subdivision of land. A group living facility, a mobile home park and all commercial and industrial development shall be considered a major subdivision or land development, regardless of the number of lots or units, if any, created.
B. 
Application.
(1) 
Within three years after the approval of the preliminary plan, a final plan with all necessary supplemental data shall be officially submitted to the municipality with an application requesting approval. Failure to submit an application for final plan approval within three years of the date of an approval of the preliminary plan shall void the preliminary approval, unless extended, in writing, by the municipality per § 305-13F above. Said expired or voided preliminary plan shall not be used as a basis for any development or construction or for the issuance of any permits therefor. Any subsequent development on the affected site shall be preceded by a new application to the Borough for preliminary plan approval.
(2) 
When filing an application for a final approval of the major subdivision or land development, the subdivider or developer shall submit to the municipality two Mylar copies or originals and 11 blue-line paper prints of each page of the proposal on sheets of 18 inches by 24 inches.
(3) 
In order to streamline the review process, a copy of an application for final approval of a major subdivision or land development may be sent by the applicant directly to the County Planning Commission with the required fee. Such a submission, properly documented with an application, will trigger the timetable for the County Planning Commission's mandatory review of the application.
(4) 
The subdivider or developer may apply for final approval of only a portion, section or phase of the entire subdivision or land development as preliminarily approved or the entire subdivision or land development. Applications should be appropriately marked.
(5) 
The subdivider or developer shall also agree to maintain and repair all streets within the development prior to their official dedication to and acceptance by the municipality.
C. 
Review.
(1) 
Upon receipt of the final plan, the Borough Secretary shall transmit the application documents to the Borough Planning Commission, which shall begin to review the plan for compliance with this chapter. The final plan shall be examined for conformity with the preliminary plan, for design and detail of required site improvements and for adherence to other standards of this chapter. The plan shall also be examined to determine if the required site improvements have been installed or, in lieu thereof, a bond or financial security has been submitted.
(2) 
A copy of the plan will also be forwarded to the County Planning Commission for its review and comment if the applicant has not already done so. Where applicable, the plan may also be forwarded to the Borough Engineer, the Borough planning consultant, the Natural Resources Conservation Service, the municipal and/or regional sewer authority, PennDEP, PennDOT or other agencies for review and comment. Review comments may be used as substantiation for plan approval or disapproval.
D. 
Approval or disapproval.
(1) 
After an application for final approval of a plat of a major subdivision or land development has been officially filed with the municipality, approval or disapproval shall be granted in accordance with § 305-12D of this chapter.
(2) 
However, no plat shall be finally approved unless the streets on such plat have been improved as may be required by ordinance and any walkways, curbs, gutters, streetlights, fire hydrants, shade trees, landscaping, water mains, sanitary sewers, storm sewers, stormwater management facilities and other site improvements as may be required by this chapter and any applicable municipal requirements have been installed in accordance with such requirements.
(3) 
In lieu of the completion of any site improvements required as a condition for the final approval of a plat, a financial security shall be deposited by the subdivider/developer with the municipality in an amount to cover the costs of any site improvements which may be required by ordinance. Such financial security shall provide for and secure to the public the completion of any site improvements which may be required for the subdivision or land development. Financial improvement guaranties shall further be subject to the requirements of § 305-33 of this chapter and Sections 509 through 511 of Act 247.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. §§ 10509 through 10511.
(4) 
Approval of a final plan by the municipality shall not be deemed to constitute or effect an acceptance by the municipality of the dedication of any street or other proposed public way, space or area shown on said final plan.
E. 
Recording.
(1) 
After approval of a final plat for a major subdivision or land development by the municipality, the plat shall be recorded, such recording to include any conditions attached thereto, and copies distributed in the manner prescribed in § 305-12F and G of this chapter.
(2) 
Recording shall entitle the subdivider to sell, transfer or develop the land shown on the plat in accordance with the approved plat, subject to any conditions attached thereto. Where final plans are approved for only a portion, section or phase of the entire subdivision or land development, sale, transfer or development may proceed only on that approved portion, section or phase.
(3) 
The recording of the plan shall not constitute grounds for assessment increases until such time as lots are sold or improvements are installed on the land included within the subject plan.
F. 
Impact of changes in municipal ordinances. Changes in municipal subdivision, zoning, other governing ordinance or plan shall affect subdivision and land development plats as follows:
(1) 
From the time an application for approval of a plat, whether preliminary or final, is duly filed as provided for in this chapter, and while such application is pending approval or disapproval, no change or amendment of the zoning, subdivision or other governing ordinance or plan of the municipality shall affect the decision on such application adversely to the applicant, and the applicant shall be entitled to a decision in accordance with the provisions of the governing ordinances or plans as they stood at the time the application was duly filed. In addition, when a preliminary application has been duly approved, the applicant shall be entitled to final approval in accordance with the terms of the approved preliminary application as hereinafter provided; however, if an application is properly and finally denied, any subsequent application shall be subject to the intervening change in governing regulations.
(2) 
When an application for approval of a plat, whether preliminary or final, has been approved without conditions or approved by the applicant's acceptance of conditions, no subsequent change or amendment in the zoning, subdivision or other governing ordinance or plan shall be applied to affect adversely the right of the applicant to commence and to complete any aspect of the approved development in accordance with the terms of such approval within five years from such approval.
(3) 
Where final approval is preceded by preliminary approval, the aforesaid five-year period shall be counted from the date of the preliminary approval. In the case of any doubt as to the terms of a preliminary approval, the terms shall be construed in the light of the provisions of the governing ordinances or plans as they stood at the time when the application for such approval was duly filed.
(4) 
Where the developer has substantially completed the required improvements as depicted upon the final plat within the aforesaid five-year limit or any extension thereof as may be granted by the municipality, no change of municipal ordinance or plan enacted subsequent to the date of filing of the preliminary plat shall modify or revoke any aspect of the approved final plat pertaining to zoning classification or density, lot, building, street or utility location.
(5) 
In the case of a preliminary plat calling for the installation of improvements beyond the five-year period, a schedule shall be filed by the developer with the preliminary plat delineating all proposed sections as well as deadlines within which applications for final plat approval of each section are intended to be filed. Such schedule shall be updated annually by the applicant on or before the anniversary date of the preliminary plat approval until final plat approval of the final section has been granted, and any modification in the aforesaid schedule shall be subject to approval of the municipality in its discretion.
(6) 
Each section in any residential subdivision or land development, except for the last section, shall contain a minimum of 25% of the total number of dwelling units as depicted on the preliminary plan, unless a lesser percentage is approved by the municipality in its discretion. Provided that the developer has not defaulted with regard to or violated any of the conditions of the preliminary plat approval, including compliance with developer's aforesaid schedule of submission of final plats for the various sections, then the aforesaid protections afforded by substantially completing the improvements depicted on the final plat within five years shall apply. For any section or sections beyond the initial section in which the required improvements have not been substantially completed within said five-year period, the aforesaid protections shall apply for an additional term of three years from the date of final plat approval for each section.
(7) 
Failure of the developer to adhere to the aforesaid schedule of submission of final plats for the various sections shall subject any such section to any and all changes in zoning, subdivision and any other governing ordinance or plan enacted by the municipality subsequent to the date of the initial preliminary plan submission.
G. 
Action on the approved final plan by the municipality on acceptance of streets.
(1) 
Subsequent to its approval of the final plan, the municipality shall maintain four prints of the final plan, together with appropriate certificates of title for action on any proposed dedications. The municipality shall return three approved prints of the final plan to the Planning Commission. The Commission shall return two of the approved prints to the developer. Should the municipality not accept the proposed dedications, the developer may amend said final plan and resubmit the same to the municipality for its review and approval.
(2) 
The developer shall maintain any and all improvements and/or infrastructure for a period of 18 months prior to offering them to the Borough for dedication. The deed of dedication to the municipality shall be tendered by the owner only after all surfacing, curbs, sewers, sidewalks and other required improvements shall have been installed or constructed and certified as satisfactory by the Municipal Engineer at the time of their construction or installation. If, at the end of this eighteen-month period of developer maintenance and after reinspection and recertification by the Municipal Engineer, said improvements and/or infrastructure meet the requirements of this chapter, they must be accepted by the Borough.
H. 
Approval granted prior to passage of ordinance. A subdivision planned, constructed or designed in compliance with existing laws prior to the passage of this chapter shall be deemed to be legal, provided that:
(1) 
The preliminary or final plans have been approved by a proper and duly recorded resolution of the Borough Council;
(2) 
Construction within the subdivision has been initiated within six months from the date of passage of this chapter or within five years from the date of approval of the preliminary plan, whichever is the later date; and
(3) 
The subdivision shall have been completed to the satisfaction of the municipality within a period of two years from the passage of this chapter or within three years from the date of approval of the final plan, whichever is the later date.