Borough of Old Forge, PA
Lackawanna County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
A. 
The design standards established in this article are intended to be fundamental requirements to be applied with professional skill in the subdividing and planning of land so as to produce attractive and harmonious neighborhoods, convenient and safe streets and economical layouts of residential and other land development. The design standards are further intended to encourage and promote flexibility and ingenuity in the layout and design of subdivisions and land developments, in accordance with modern and evolving principles of site planning and development.
B. 
It is also the intent of this article to require subdividers and developers to follow all applicable codes, regulations and standards adopted by the Borough relative to improvements to the subdivision or development site. In all cases, the codes, regulations and standards of the Borough shall be followed and the improvements shall be approved by the municipality before the final plan is approved. All improvements as specified in this article shall be installed before the final plat is approved, or, in lieu thereof, a guaranty of installation shall be provided by the subdivider or developer prior to final plat approval. The guaranty shall assure the Borough that the required improvements will be installed in accordance with the subdivision or land development plan.
C. 
During the design and approval of subdivision and land development plans, both the municipality and the developer shall give primary consideration to all state, county and Borough thoroughfare plans, water plans, sewer plans, community facility plans, official maps and all such other public and voluntary sector plans as may be in effect in and for the Borough.
D. 
The standards outlined herein shall be considered minimum standards, and the municipality may require more restrictive standards. Wherever municipal or other applicable regulations impose more restrictive standards, such other regulations shall control.
E. 
Land subject to hazards of life, health or property as may arise from fire, floods, mine fire, mine subsidence, toxic waste, disease or other dangers shall not be subdivided for development or developed for purposes susceptible to such hazards unless they have been eliminated or the subdivision or land development plan provides adequate safeguards against such.
In addition to the standards contained elsewhere in these regulations, the following general standards shall be observed:
A. 
Existing utilities and improvements. Existing utilities and improvements shall be utilized wherever possible. New roads and extended utility services shall be discouraged if existing services and facilities may be utilized. Scattered urban development shall be avoided.
B. 
Minimize street lengths. Development designs shall minimize street lengths necessary to serve developed properties.
C. 
Lot line angles. Side lot lines should be substantially at right angles or radial to street lines, unless the purpose of lot line orientation is to obtain greater solar access.
D. 
Depth of residential lots. Depth of residential lots should be not less than one nor more than three times the lot width.
E. 
Lot frontage and access.
(1) 
Every lot shall abut a street. Lot frontage or access shall be physically accessible by standard vehicle in existing condition or the municipality shall require illustration of the site improvements planned and necessary to alter steep banks, floodplains, visibility limitations, etc., to a condition that will facilitate safe and adequate access. The municipality may also require that lots be arranged to reserve a right-of-way for street access to future lots.
(2) 
The development of sites not located on a public thoroughfare of sufficient width and alignment in respect to the traffic to be generated is forbidden under this chapter. When proposed subdivisions or land developments are not located directly upon an adequate public thoroughfare, the municipality will require the developer to improve the access road between the site and the nearest adequate thoroughfare to the standards of this chapter as a condition for final plan approval. Said access road must be dedicated to the municipality after the completion of development as provided for in this chapter.
F. 
Double- or reverse-frontage lots. Double-frontage lots shall be prohibited except where, in the judgment of the municipality, they are necessary to separate residences from major traffic arteries or railroads or to overcome specific disadvantages of topography in hillside areas. Where double-frontage lots back on a major traffic artery, a planting strip for a screen, at least 20 feet in width, shall be provided along the back of the lot. The municipality may also require a twenty-foot planting screen for a double-frontage lot which backs on a railroad or other disadvantageous use. Double- or reverse-frontage lots may be preferred or required when lot access to an adjoining street is not permitted or separation from the street is desired because of topographic, orientation, aesthetic, congestion, safety or high noise level considerations.
G. 
Drainage and utility easements. Adequate easements or rights-of-way shall be required for drainage and utilities. Easements shall be a minimum of 20 feet in width and, whenever possible, shall be centered on side or rear lot lines. No structure or buildings shall be erected within such easements.
H. 
Natural and historic feature preservation. Every measure shall be taken to ensure, insofar as possible, the preservation of natural and historic features, areas and structures determined to be worthy of such preservation by the municipality and public access to such where appropriate. Site design and development shall include reasonable efforts to save existing trees and vegetation and to provide for the planting of such additional trees and vegetation as may be required to meet Borough standards for the same.
I. 
Pedestrian circulation.
(1) 
Pedestrian walkways shall be physically separated from all streets and, insofar as possible, from vehicle circulation ways within nonresidential developments.
(2) 
Parking lots shall be designed so as to minimize the necessity for pedestrians to walk within and across vehicle circulation ways.
(3) 
Commercial developments should be designed so as to allow pedestrians to browse and pause in areas removed or otherwise protected from vehicular circulation and parking areas.
(4) 
Insofar as possible, common open areas and other residential service areas shall be located at the interior of dwelling sites to minimize the necessity for pedestrians to cross streets.
(5) 
Construction standards for sidewalks and curbs shall be in accordance with Chart III.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Chart III is included at the end of this chapter.
J. 
Residual land and nearby development. The standards of this chapter shall apply to all lots being subdivided or developed and residual land which is created by the subdivision or land development activity. The design of proposed subdivisions and land developments shall be coordinated with existing nearby development and physiography so that the entire area may be developed harmoniously.
K. 
Structure orientation.
(1) 
Structure sites should be grouped whenever possible as such provides larger, more usable open space without decreasing the overall density of development.
(2) 
Extra building setbacks are recommended at all street intersections in order to increase sight distances and to make the presence of an intersection more apparent.
(3) 
Insofar as possible, commercial structures should be relatively central in respect to their parking areas in order to minimize required walking distances for safety and convenience. (Protected pedestrian accessways shall be provided in commercial developments adjacent to residential neighborhoods.)
L. 
Vegetation and street trees.
(1) 
Street trees.
(a) 
The developer shall seed the planting strip between the curb and sidewalk, if either or both are required, and, in addition, provide street trees of a caliper not less than one to two inches and planted 40 feet to 60 feet apart. The type and spacing of the trees shall be approved by the municipality.
(b) 
The following is a list of acceptable trees. Any tree not on this list must be specifically approved by the municipality. Any tree which is on this list must be approved as to locale of the project by the municipality:
Norway maple
Sugar maple
White ash
Green ash
Maidenhair tree
Thornless honey locust
Sweetgum
Oriental plane tree
American plane tree
White oak
Red oak
Scarlet oak
Pin oak
Littleleaf European linden
Silver linden
American elm
(c) 
Special reference is made here to the solar access requirements as contained in Chapter 350, Zoning, with respect to trees and vegetation.
(2) 
Conservation. Development shall be planned so as to minimize the removal of existing trees, shrubs and ground cover and to minimize the amount of land covered by structures and paving.
(3) 
Noise control. Street trees along arterial and collector streets in residential areas are recommended to absorb traffic noise.
(4) 
Screening. Wherever natural screening is being provided to meet a screening requirement of any zoning ordinance, such shall consist of 50% evergreen or evergreen-type hedges and 50% shrubs interplanted and of a variety and size at the time of planting that such will attain a height of at least six feet within three years thereafter and spaced at intervals of not more than four feet. Furthermore, subdivision and land development plans shall provide for such screening:
(a) 
Where commercial or industrial uses abut residential uses.
(b) 
Where residential uses abut any railroad or limited access highway or any other arterial highway in the case of reverse frontage or where marginal or rear access is provided.
(c) 
Around all open sides of any common utility yard and any outdoor equipment or refuse storage area in a group residential development.
(d) 
Elsewhere as deemed necessary by the municipality.
(5) 
Windbreaks. The use of planting rows to serve as windbreaks to control the drifting of snow across public and private thoroughfares as well as for general comfort is recommended.
(6) 
Obstructions to vision. No bushes or shrubs exceeding 30 inches in height or at such lesser height which, due to ground elevations, would obstruct the vision of motorists shall be permitted within any required clear sight triangle nor within 10 feet of the right-of-way line adjacent to access drives, and all street trees shall be kept free of branches and foliage from the ground level to a height of at least eight feet.
M. 
Vehicle provisions.
(1) 
Access drives. Whenever required and/or provided under the provisions of this chapter or otherwise, all access drives shall be designed according to the following standards:
(a) 
Except in the case of single- and two-family dwellings, the general layout shall be such that there will be no need for motorists to back into public rights-of-way.
(b) 
Access drives for commercial and industrial uses shall be paved and shall not be less than 18 feet in width nor exceed 35 feet in width within 12 feet of the street right-of-way line, excepting as increased by the curb radii.
(c) 
The number of access drives shall not exceed two per lot on any one street frontage. The municipality may grant permission for additional access drives where required to meet exceptional circumstances and where frontage of unusual length exists.
(d) 
Access drives shall not cross the street right-of-way lines:
[1] 
Within 40 feet of the street right-of-way line of an intersecting street and in no case less than 10 feet from the point of tangency when the intersecting street lines are joined by a curve. When deemed reasonably necessary for safety by the municipality, this dimension shall be increased for access drives to shopping centers and other commercial, industrial, public or institutional uses. Such access drives shall be located on major streets, when practical, in a manner to permit safe ingress and egress.
[2] 
Within 10 feet of a fire hydrant, catch basin or drain inlet.
[3] 
Within 40 feet of another access drive, except in the case of single- and two-family dwellings.
[4] 
Within three feet of a property line, unless two adjoining owners mutually agree to a common access drive.
[5] 
Access to the public highway or street shall be controlled in the interest of public safety. Off-street parking, loading and service areas on all properties used for purposes other than single-family residences shall be physically separated from the highway or street by a curb, pipe, rail or fence and a planting strip.
(e) 
General sight distance safety requirement. Driveways shall be located in safe relationship to sight distance and barriers to vision. They shall not exceed a slope of 10% within 12 feet of the street line.
(2) 
Off-street parking facilities. Whenever required and/or provided under the provisions of this chapter or otherwise, all off-street parking facilities shall be designed according to Chapter 350, Zoning.
(a) 
Surfacing. In commercial and industrial uses, any off-street parking area, service or access drive shall be graded for proper drainage and shall be stabilized sufficiently to accommodate the anticipated traffic.
(b) 
Circulation patterns. The circulation patterns in large off-street parking facilities (more than 40 vehicles) shall be so arranged as to provide for orderly and safe parking and storage of self-propelled vehicles, including the separation of lanes intended for general circulation through the facility from the lanes used to circulate through and among the dedicated parking lanes and areas.
(c) 
Lighting. Any lighting used to illuminate any off-street parking area shall be so arranged as to reflect the light away from adjoining residential use premises as well as from vehicles moving upon a public thoroughfare.
N. 
Public uses.
(1) 
Reservations by Comprehensive Plan. When a proposed park, playground, school or other public use, as shown on the Comprehensive Plan for either the County of Lackawanna or the Borough, is located in whole or in part in a subdivision, the municipality may require dedication or reservation of such area(s) within the subdivision in those cases which the municipality deems such dedication or reservation to be reasonable. Where such area(s) is not dedicated, it shall be reserved for acquisition by the appropriate public body for a period of one year unless said public body indicates its unwillingness to acquire such area(s) at an earlier date. If not acquired by the appropriate public body, such area(s) shall revert to the subdivider.
(2) 
Recreation and education areas.
(a) 
Upon consideration of a proposed land development, particularly large-scale developments located outside of normal municipal service areas, the municipality may require the dedication of public grounds and open space for schools, parks, playgrounds and other appropriate public uses in those cases where the municipality deems such uses as essential and arising out of the needs created for the same by the development itself. Suitable arrangements shall be made for fixing responsibility for continued maintenance of these areas. These provisions may be made applicable to the total areas of several contiguous subdivisions in the instances of common majority ownership if so determined by the municipality.
(b) 
Every proposed residential subdivision or land development to accommodate more than 25 dwelling units may be required to provide open space for the common recreational use of the residents thereof. The size of lots or area per dwelling unit required by any zoning ordinance in effect may be reduced by 5%, except in the case of on-lot sewage disposal, when such land is provided in accordance with the following standards:
[1] 
The land provided is of suitable size, dimensions, topography and general character for the type of recreational use deemed appropriate to the varied outdoor needs of the development as determined by the municipality.
[2] 
The amount of such land equals at least 0.02 acre for each dwelling unit to be established in the subdivision or land development; provided, however, that such area must be at least one acre in size.
[3] 
Such recreational space shall be easily and safely accessible to all areas of the subdivision or land developments and shall be free of hazards to health and safety.
[4] 
Such recreation area may be offered for dedication; however, such offer shall not bind the Borough to accept the same. If such dedication is accepted, the reduction of the area requirements permitted above shall be deemed adequate compensation to the landowner for the land so dedicated if said allowance has been exercised.
[5] 
The developer shall make adequate provision for the perpetuation and grounds maintenance of such recreation area not offered or accepted for dedication and shall provide evidence of such provision to the municipality upon filing the final plan.
(3) 
Recreation area fee in lieu of land. In fulfillment of this education and recreation area requirement, the developer may offer to pay the Borough a fee, in an amount as set from time to time by resolution of the Borough Council, in lieu of a set-aside of land within the boundaries of the subdivision. Acceptance or rejection of such an offer will be at the sole discretion of the municipality.[2]
[2]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
(4) 
Open spaces. In the case of planned residential developments or cluster developments, no less than 25% of the total land area shall be devoted to recreational use and common open space, and adequate assurance for the perpetuation and maintenance thereof shall be provided by the developer.
O. 
Mine subsidence and mine fire hazards.
(1) 
Land subject to mine subsidence or mine fires, as determined by the authorized state and/or federal officials, shall not be platted for use unless such adverse conditions are first remedied by the subdivider to the satisfaction of the municipality and other appropriate federal, state, county and local agencies. (See § 305-10 for other restrictions regarding geological hazards, etc.)
(2) 
Land in identified mine subsidence areas may require core borings under specified road and building sites, at locations and at a frequency to be determined by the Borough Engineer. Said core borings are to be conducted in accordance with state and federal standards and are to be paid for by the developer.
P. 
Subdivision of property with existing dwellings. Subdivision of property with existing dwellings or development shall be regulated by the following:
(1) 
Each dwelling or use shall be serviced by separate utility connections. Shared sewage systems are not permitted.
(2) 
Each dwelling or use subdivided shall be on sufficient land area to satisfy minimum lot area and yard setback requirements. Where adequate land area is not available to satisfy minimum standards, subdivision may be permitted when:
(a) 
Each dwelling or principal building is in good structural condition.
(b) 
Mobile homes are not involved.
(c) 
An equitable distribution of land is proposed between the existing uses or buildings.
Q. 
Special purpose subdivisions. Lot additions, land exchanges, agricultural-use-only lands and any other specific or special purpose subdivision or land development shall include prominent plan notes to avoid misinterpretation of the intent of the subdivision or land development plan. Applicable deed restrictions may be required.
R. 
Accuracy of deeds.
(1) 
Deeds filed subsequent to subdivision or land development approval shall accurately and correctly describe the property therein. Deeds shall be in complete compliance with all plan notes and conditions.
(2) 
Recording a deed which omits or contradicts the information on an approved subdivision or land development plan shall be a violation of this chapter.
A. 
Fire protection access easements. In the areas where, in the opinion of the Borough Fire Chief, there will exist any fire hazards, unobstructed fire-protection equipment access easements shall be provided. The size, location, design and grading of such easements shall be recommended by the Fire Chief and shall be as found necessary by the municipality.
B. 
Sole access street. For reasons of public safety, any street serving as the only means of access to a development shall be classified as not less than a collector street.
C. 
Fire hydrants. The need, location, design and related features of fire hydrants shall be as determined by the Fire Chief in accordance with applicable existing laws and regulations.
Conservation of energy shall be an important principle in the design of subdivisions and land developments. Plans shall facilitate the energy-efficient placement of homes and buildings on lots. Whenever the following criteria are found to be appropriate to a site, development design should be in accordance with the standards contained herein:
A. 
Lot and structure orientation.
(1) 
Lots shall be designed for energy-efficient siting of buildings with respect to slopes and existing trees.
(2) 
Southerly exposures should be utilized for development. North slopes, especially those over 10% slope, should be avoided because the long shadows created severely restrict solar access.
(3) 
New lots and new residences shall be oriented to make maximum effective use of passive solar energy. The long axis (depth) of each lot should run north to south, with a possible east to west variation of 22 1/2°. Lot design should provide for lots of adequate width, depth and slope for solar orientation. Lot layout should facilitate solar access by at least 75% of the proposed dwellings or buildings within a development.
(4) 
The largest yard setback should be stipulated on the south side of proposed buildings. Buildings should be situated to the north end of the lot to permit maximum on-lot control of solar sky space.
B. 
Streets.
(1) 
Streets should be oriented along an east-west axis, with maximum north-south deviations of 30°. This should be required to the maximum extent possible, although size, configuration or orientation of the property, nature of the surrounding development, circulation patterns, existing physical features such as topography and vegetation (trees) and improved design potential may be considered to determine the feasibility of this requirement for a given site.
(2) 
A street system shall be designed to reduce overall lengths and facilitate traffic flow (minimum number of intersections).
C. 
Vegetation and wind.
(1) 
Site design shall emphasize the preservation of all beneficial natural features of the site, such as existing slope, naturally wooded areas and watercourses. The site design should also avoid requiring removal of large isolated trees and desirable woods and other vegetation, particularly those existing plant materials which serve as wind barriers and aid in energy conservation.
(2) 
Developments shall be designed to maximize wind buffering and/or breeze channelization capabilities of vegetation, topography and structure layouts. Windbreaks and buffers should utilize evergreens to protect north and northwesterly exposures. Cooling breezes from the southwest should be channeled past buildings. Deciduous trees shall be located in areas which will enable them to shade buildings from the summer sun but still allow penetration of the winter sun.
A. 
The standards of this chapter may be increased or the modification of the design of a proposed subdivision or land development may be required, on the recommendation of the Municipal Engineer, when such is deemed necessary as a result of topographic and other natural or man-made physical features within or adjoining a particular site to assure public safety, health and welfare, the provision of public services and the maintenance of public facilities.
B. 
Subdivisions shall be planned to take advantage of the topography of land in order to utilize the natural contours, economize in the construction of drainage facilities, reduce the amount of grading and minimize destruction of trees and topsoil. The natural features and other distinctive characteristics of the site shall be integrated into the plan to create functional variations in the neighborhoods.
C. 
Additionally, environmental safeguards may be mandated on slopes in excess of 15%. On steep slopes (in excess of 15%), site and lot design shall be adjusted, where necessary, to mitigate the detrimental effects of development on steeper slopes. The following topographic considerations shall be utilized in design of subdivisions and land developments:
(1) 
Streets. Land which is relatively flat or of very gentle slopes should be planned so that the streets follow the natural drainagecourses, and as many lots as possible shall be above the street grade. On more irregular topography, streets shall be designed to avoid extensive cuts and fills and follow the ridges or be planned approximately parallel to contour lines and adjusted, however, so that lots on one side of the street will not be excessively below the street grade.
(2) 
Natural drainage.
(a) 
Subdivisions shall be designed, particularly on land of very gentle slopes, to take every advantage of natural grades so that all the land can be drained without excessive grading. Where a subdivision is traversed by a watercourse, a drainage easement or right-of-way shall be provided. These shall later conform substantially to the line of such watercourse and shall be of adequate width as determined by the Municipal Engineer to preserve natural drainage.
(b) 
Unless watercourses or drainageways are enclosed, the plan shall be adjusted so that rear lot lines shall be approximately parallel to the natural or straightened course, and only where such plan is not possible should side lot lines be arranged parallel to an open drainagecourse. Easements for drainageways and low-lying land which are subject to flooding may be included as part of a lot but shall not be used as building sites or included in calculating the required lot area or width.
(3) 
Natural features. Natural features, irregularities, changes in level, brooks, lakes, hilltops and other focal points within the site and distant views outside the subdivision shall be integrated in the design to obtain variations and interest in each neighborhood and more attractive building sites. Trees, topsoil and other natural resources shall be preserved and utilized in the development of the subdivision.
(4) 
Driveways. Private driveways shall be designed to furnish safe and convenient access, with reasonable clear sight distance at the intersection with the street. Steep slopes shall be traversed diagonally to minimize grades. Driveway grades shall not exceed 15% slope and shall be reduced to less than 10% at least 12 feet before the street line. The municipality may require paving of driveways exceeding 10% slope to minimize erosion.
A. 
Grading.
(1) 
Where major cuts, excavation, grading and filling materially change the site and its relationship with surrounding areas or materially affect such areas, they shall not be permitted if they result in a slope exceeding a vertical rise of one foot for each two feet of horizontal distance between abutting lots or between adjoining tracts of land, except where adequate provision is made to prevent slides and erosion by cribbing and retaining walls.
(2) 
Adequate provisions shall be made to prevent surface water from damaging the cut face of excavations of the sloping surfaces of fills.
(3) 
Cut and fills shall not endanger adjoining property.
(4) 
Fill shall be placed and compacted so as to minimize sliding or erosion of the soil.
(5) 
Fills shall not encroach on natural watercourses or constructed channels.
(6) 
Fills placed adjacent to natural watercourses or constructed channels shall have suitable protection against erosion during periods of flooding.
(7) 
Grading will not be done in such a way so as to divert water onto the property of another landowner without the expressed consent of the municipality.
(8) 
During grading operations, necessary measures for dust control will be exercised.
(9) 
Grading equipment will not be allowed to cross live streams. Provision will be made for the installation of culverts or bridges.
(10) 
The grading of the roadway shall extend the full width of the cartway, shoulder and swale area, if applicable. Where possible, grass strips or channels between the curb or shoulder and right-of-way line should be graded at three-to-one slope; however, when unusual topographic conditions exist, good engineering practice shall prevail.
B. 
Soil and sedimentation control.
(1) 
No changes shall be made in the contour of the land and no grading, excavating, removal or destruction of the topsoil, trees or other vegetative cover of the land shall be commenced until such time that a plan for minimizing erosion and sedimentation has been processed with and reviewed by the municipality or there has been a determination by the municipality that such plans are not necessary.
(2) 
No subdivision or land development plan shall be approved unless:
(a) 
There has been a plan approved by the municipality that provides for minimizing erosion and sedimentation consistent with this article, and an improvement bond or other acceptable securities are deposited with the municipality in the form of an escrow guaranty which will ensure installation and completion of the required improvements; or
(b) 
There has been a determination by the municipality that a plan for minimizing erosion and sedimentation is not necessary.
(3) 
Measures used to control erosion and reduce sedimentation shall, as a minimum, meet the standards and specifications of the United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service. The Municipal Engineer or other official, as designated, shall ensure compliance with the appropriate specifications, copies of which are available at the municipal building.
(4) 
Performance principles. The following measures are effective in minimizing erosion and sedimentation and shall be included where applicable in the control plan:
(a) 
Stripping of vegetation, regrading or other development shall be done in such a way that will minimize erosion.
(b) 
Development plans shall preserve salient natural features, keep cut-fill operations to a minimum and ensure conformity with topography so as to create the least erosion potential and adequately handle the volume and velocity of surface water runoff.
(c) 
Whenever feasible, natural vegetation shall be retained, protected and supplemented.
(d) 
The disturbed area and the duration of exposure shall be kept to a practical minimum.
(e) 
Disturbed soils shall be stabilized as quickly as practicable.
(f) 
Temporary vegetation and/or mulching shall be used to protect exposed critical areas during development.
(g) 
The permanent (final) vegetation and structural erosion control and drainage measures shall be installed as soon as practical in the development.
(h) 
Provisions shall be made to effectively accommodate the increased runoff caused by changed soil and surface conditions during and after development. Where necessary, the rate of surface water runoff will be structurally retarded.
(i) 
Sediment in the runoff water shall be trapped until the disturbed area is stabilized by the use of debris basins, sediment basins, silt traps or similar measures.
The minimum lot size and lot width requirements established by Chapter 350, Zoning, shall be utilized as minimum subdivision standards. All lots shall satisfy the Borough zoning standard for lot width and lot size at the time of subdivision. Additionally, the building setback lines established by Chapter 350, Zoning, shall be applicable and shall be noted on each subdivision or land development plan. Additionally, each subdivision or land development plan shall satisfy all other applicable zoning standards, unless variance thereto has been granted.
A. 
Lot areas beyond minimum size.
(1) 
Lots having an average cross-slope of 10% or less shall conform to the requirements for lot widths and areas as established by Chapter 350, Zoning. Additional lot areas beyond minimum size may be required:
(a) 
On slopes in excess of 10%. Lots having an average cross-slope of greater than 10% (hillside lots) shall conform to the requirements for lot widths and areas as established by Chart I, Lot Requirements Based on Slope,[1] which is hereby incorporated in this chapter by reference.
[1]
Editor's Note: The chart is on file and available for inspection in the office of the Borough Secretary.
(b) 
To control erosion or stormwater runoff.
(c) 
To provide sufficient area for sewage disposal.
[1] 
In subdivisions to be provided with a public water system but not with a sanitary sewer system, the lot width at the building setback line shall be a minimum of 75 feet, and the lot area shall be a minimum of 11,250 square feet.
[2] 
In subdivisions to be provided with neither a sanitary sewer system nor a public water supply system, the lot width at the building setback line shall be a minimum of 100 feet, and the lot area shall be a minimum of 20,000 square feet, subject to the approval of PennDEP and based upon the results of percolation tests.
[3] 
Any other provision of this chapter notwithstanding, any nonresidential or multiple-dwelling subdivisions which are proposed to be served by either or both on-lot sanitary sewage disposal and water supply facilities shall be subject to the individual review of the municipality, which shall determine what the lot widths and areas of such subdivisions shall be in order to prevent any health hazards.
(2) 
The depth-to-width ratio of the usable area of a lot shall ordinarily be at a maximum of 3.0 to 1.0.
(3) 
Lot widths in cluster subdivisions shall be reviewed on a project basis by the municipality.
B. 
Lot shape.
(1) 
Lots in newly platted subdivisions shall be suitably shaped to encourage and facilitate use and maintenance of all portions of the lot. Accordingly, lots shall be square or generally rectangular in shape. Lot configurations which result in flag lots and L-shaped, T-shaped, triangular or otherwise inappropriately shaped lots shall be avoided.
(2) 
In older sections of the Borough, where flag lots may be created to subdivide larger lots, such flag lots will provide a minimum of 25 feet of road frontage and a twenty-five-foot access to the main body of the lot so as to allow for screening and a lot wide enough to provide at least the minimum lot width required at the building line for the applicable zone.
A. 
Scope.
(1) 
A stormwater management plan shall be required for each subdivision or land development plan at both the preliminary and final submittal stage. As an integral part of the stormwater management plan, erosion and sedimentation control measures shall be included.
(2) 
For the purposes of this section, any expansion or construction where such development occupies an area in excess of 20,000 square feet (combined building and paved parking area) shall be considered a land development plan and also require a stormwater management plan in accordance with the applicable regulations of this section. The twenty-thousand-square-foot requirement applies on individual large projects, projects which exceed a cumulative total of 20,000 square feet after the effective date of this chapter and any project occurring after the twenty-thousand-square-foot level has been reached.
(3) 
A stormwater management plan must be approved as per Subsection C of this section before construction of any expansion may proceed.
B. 
Drainage easements.
(1) 
Where a subdivision is traversed by a watercourse, a drainage easement or right-of-way shall be provided. These shall later conform substantially to the line of such watercourse and shall be of adequate width as determined by the Municipal Engineer to preserve natural drainage.
(2) 
Exception. Single-family residential lots may be exempted from the mandatory design and installation of certain stormwater management facilities when the lot improvements (house, driveway, regrading, etc.) on the proposed subdivision plan document to the satisfaction of the municipality and the Borough Engineer that the lot improvements will not result in detrimental stormwater discharges within the lot(s) or upon adjoining lands, roads, waterways or other areas. Exemption may be granted by the municipality, provided that all of the following criteria are satisfied:
(a) 
The subdivision plan shall meet all of the criteria for a minor subdivision.
(b) 
The minimum lot area shall be two acres.
(c) 
The slope of the lot shall not exceed 4% in the lot improvement area, and slopes in excess of 8% shall not exist within 50 feet of the lot improvement area.
(d) 
Streams, waterways and ecologically sensitive areas shall not exist within 100 feet of the lot improvement area.
(e) 
The proposed lot improvements shall be a minimum of 50 feet from side and rear lot lines, unless site conditions or other requirements necessitate greater setback.
(f) 
Plan notes shall document that the soils within the lot improvement area are in the hydrologic soil group A, B or C, as published in the current edition of TR-55, Urban Hydrology for Small Watersheds.
(g) 
Stormwater discharges shall not endanger or potentially damage the lot improvements, adjoining lands or roads or otherwise pose a threat to the health, safety or welfare of the public.
(h) 
No unique or adverse lot conditions shall exist which warrant refusal of the exemption request.
(i) 
The exemption request shall be submitted in writing with the subdivision application and shall address all the criteria cited herein.
(j) 
The subdivision application shall be accompanied by standard application and inspection fees to assure evaluation of lot(s) for compliance with the exemption criteria at the design, construction and inspection stages.
(k) 
Subdivision plans containing any lots which have received stormwater management design and installation exemptions in accordance with these provisions shall contain a prominent plan note explaining the exemption and the lot development restrictions applicable thereto.
(l) 
Any lot receiving a stormwater management installation exemption and subsequently found to be developed or under development contrary to the approved subdivision plan, contrary to these exemption provisions or otherwise evidencing a stormwater runoff problem shall forthwith be subject to the following:
[1] 
Corrective action shall be taken in the lot development to eliminate the noncompliance.
[2] 
Submission of a revised subdivision plan shall be required, depicting necessary stormwater management facilities, in accordance with standard plan processing procedures.
[3] 
Lot owner(s), developer(s) or other responsible person(s) who fail to take corrective lot development action or fail to submit a required revised plan shall be guilty of a violation of this chapter, punishable as provided by § 305-51 of this chapter.
C. 
Content of stormwater management plan. The stormwater management plan shall utilize the projected one-hundred-year flood as currently calculated by the Federal National Weather Service (NWS) as the design storm and contain the following:
(1) 
A general description of the proposed subject.
(2) 
Project location on a United States Geological Survey map of 7.5 minute or equivalent.
(3) 
Topographic features of the site and adjacent lands that are considered to impact upon the stormwater management design. Flow-direction arrows should be utilized to indicate the direction of stormwater flow on site.
(4) 
Runoff calculations for the entire watershed and related design computation necessary to substantiate the proposed temporary and permanent stormwater management facilities. A minimum affected drainage area of one acre shall be used to calculate required stormwater storage, unless otherwise justified by site topography illustrated on the plan.
(5) 
Design and specifications of temporary and permanent stormwater management facilities. The volume of stormwater detention required per lot shall be noted on the plan, as well as approximate dimensions of the proposed facility. An estimated construction cost should also be provided.
(6) 
Staging or implementation schedule for constructing the proposed stormwater control system. A plan note shall be added to grant Borough officials and employees thereof the right of access to the property for inspection of stormwater management facilities and, in the event of default by the subdivider, installation of the stormwater management facilities.
(7) 
Maintenance and ownership provisions.
D. 
Review and approval.
(1) 
All stormwater management plans shall be reviewed by the Borough Engineer prior to Borough approval. A set of design plans shall be maintained on file at the site during construction as record drawings.
(2) 
Observations of construction shall be the responsibility of the Borough Engineer or his or her designated representative and shall be conducted to certify compliance with this chapter. Upon completion of the stormwater management installation for a subdivision or land development of more than one lot or unit and/or with an estimated stormwater management facilities construction cost in excess of $3,000, the developer/subdivider shall provide a certification of completion from a registered engineer or surveyor verifying that stormwater management facilities have been constructed in compliance with the approved plans. Changes to the approved plans shall be authorized only with the written approval of the Borough Engineer.
E. 
Storm drainage design standards.
(1) 
Computations for determining stormwater runoff and for the design of stormwater management facilities shall be based upon the current United States Department of Agriculture Soil-Cover-Complex Method described in TR-55, Urban Hydrology for Small Watersheds, the United States Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service National Engineering Handbook, Section 4.
(2) 
The stormwater management plan shall effectively demonstrate the control of post-development peak discharge rates to predevelopment peak discharge rates based on the following standards:
(a) 
All predevelopment calculations, unless in woodland, shall be based upon the assumption of grass or pasture cover in good hydrologic condition, and predevelopment stormwater runoff shall be calculated for a two-year storm event. Where the site contains existing impervious surface, up to 50% of the impervious area may be considered as an existing predevelopment condition.
(b) 
Storage structures and peak flow from subdivision or land development shall be designed such that post-development five-year peak discharge will not exceed the predevelopment two-year peak discharge for the primary outlet structure and from the development.
(c) 
All storage structures shall be designed with emergency spillways. The minimum design capacity of the emergency spillway shall be the twenty-five-year post-development peak discharge while maintaining a minimum of one-and-zero-tenths-foot freeboard.
(d) 
Culverts, pipes and other water-carrying structures shall be designed to handle the peak discharge from the ten-year post-development storm event.
(e) 
The stormwater management plan shall include calculations indicating velocities of flow, grades, sizes and capacities of water-carrying structures, debris or sediment basins and retention and detention structures and sufficient design information to construct such facilities.
(f) 
Maximum permitted average velocities are as follows:
[1] 
Three feet per second where only sparse vegetation can be established.
[2] 
Four feet per second under normal conditions where vegetation is to be established by seeding.
[3] 
Five feet per second where dense, vigorous sod can be quickly established or where water can be temporarily diverted during establishment of vegetation.
[4] 
Six feet per second where well-established sod is in existence.
[5] 
For lined water-carrying channels, the following velocities are permitted:
[a] 
Six-inch rock riprap: up to six feet per second.
[b] 
Nine-inch rock riprap: up to eight feet per second.
[c] 
Asphalt: up to seven feet per second.
[d] 
Durable bedrock: up to eight feet per second.
[e] 
Twelve-inch rock riprap: up to nine feet per second.
[f] 
Concrete or steel: up to 12 feet per second.
[6] 
The normal maximum velocity of open channel flows shall not exceed 10 feet per second.
(g) 
Energy dissipaters shall be placed at the outlets of all pipes where flow velocities exceed maximum permitted channel velocities.
(h) 
Where a subdivision or land development is traversed by a watercourse, drainageway, channel or stream, there shall be provided a drainage easement conforming substantially to the line of such watercourse, drainageway, channel or stream and of such width as will be adequate to preserve the unimpeded flow of natural drainage or for the purpose of widening, deepening, relocating, improving or protecting such drainage facilities. Any changes in the existing drainageway shall be subject to the approval of PennDEP and such other agencies of the commonwealth as may have jurisdiction.
(i) 
All streets shall be so designed to provide for the discharge of surface water from their rights-of-way.
(j) 
The slope of the crown on proposed streets shall be 1/8 of an inch per foot. Slope of the center-line grade shall be at least .75%.
(k) 
Adequate facilities shall be provided at low points along streams and where necessary to intercept runoff.
(l) 
Storm sewers and related piping shall be fully coated corrugated metal, reinforced concrete or corrugated polyethylene as approved by Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.
(m) 
If the subdivision or land development is to be developed in stages, a general drainage plan for the entire subdivision shall be presented with the first stage, and appropriate development stages for the drainage system shall be indicated.
(n) 
The existing points of natural drainage discharge onto adjacent property shall not be altered without the written approval of the affected landowners.
(o) 
No stormwater runoff or natural drainage water shall be so diverted as to overload existing drainage systems or create flooding or the need for additional drainage structures on other private properties or public lands without approved provisions being made by the developer for properly handling such conditions.
(p) 
Vertical pipes, inlets and other surface water receiving structures shall be installed with trash racks.
(q) 
Stormwater runoff channels shall be designed and installed to avoid trapping excess sediment.
(r) 
Storage of equivalent stormwater runoff for a portion of a property may be considered in lieu of storage of generated runoff, provided that:
[1] 
The site is located so that it is physically impossible to detain runoff from the proposed facilities, or drainage problems exist upgrade that would impact upon the site or downgrade properties.
[2] 
The impact of generated runoff discharging off site from the subdivision or land development is determined by the Borough Engineer to be negligible and not detrimental to adjacent properties.
[3] 
Implementation of equivalent storage shall be determined applicable and feasible by the Borough Engineer.
(s) 
A variety of methods for stormwater detention are available for use. These include surface detention, subsurface detention, use of existing facilities (ponds, etc.) or a combination thereof. Subsurface detention shall be utilized only where the subsurface is stable and not prone to sinkhole formation.
(t) 
Lots shall be arranged and graded to provide positive drainage away from buildings.
F. 
Erosion and sedimentation control. Erosion and sedimentation control measures shall be in accordance with the applicable standards and specifications set forth in the current edition of the Soil Erosion and Sedimentation Control Handbook as distributed by the Lackawanna County Soil Conservation District.
G. 
Ownership and maintenance program.
(1) 
Each stormwater management plan shall contain provisions which clearly set forth the ownership and maintenance responsibility of all temporary and permanent stormwater management facilities and erosion and sedimentation control facilities, including:
(a) 
A description of temporary and permanent maintenance requirements.
(b) 
Identification of the responsible individual, corporation, association or other entity for ownership and maintenance of both temporary and permanent stormwater management and erosion and sedimentation control facilities.
(c) 
Establishment of suitable easements for access to all facilities.
(2) 
The intent of these regulations is to provide for private ownership and maintenance of stormwater management and erosion and sedimentation control facilities. Where the stormwater management plan proposes municipal ownership and/or maintenance, a description of the methods, procedures and the extent to which any facilities shall be turned over to the Borough, including a written approval of responsibilities as proposed, shall be incorporated as an integral part of the plan.
H. 
Basic construction criteria. Construction of stormwater management and erosion control facilities shall be in accordance with the approved plans and accompanying specifications, if any. Construction or development contrary to or not in compliance with the stormwater management design on the approved subdivision or land development plan shall be a violation of this chapter, punishable as provided by § 305-51 of this chapter. The construction details and standards of the following publications in their most recent revision shall be acceptable:
(1) 
Erosion and Sedimentation Control Handbook of Lackawanna County.
(2) 
PennDOT Form 408, Specifications.
(3) 
PennDOT, RC Series, Roadway Construction Standards.
Sewage disposal facilities shall be designed and constructed to meet the needs of the proposed subdivision or land development. Sewage disposal facilities shall also meet all requirements of PennDEP, the applicable sewer authority or sewer authorities, if any, and the Borough. The following requirements specify the design and installation standards for subsurface sewage disposal and public and private sewerage systems.
A. 
Subsurface sewage disposal. All subdivisions and land developments proposing subsurface sewage disposal shall be designed and submitted in compliance with the prevailing requirements of the Pennsylvania Sewage Facilities Act.[1] It is the intent of this section to coordinate a simultaneous review of subdivision and land development plans with sewage planning modules at the municipal level, thereby avoiding the approval of lots that are not suitable for sewage disposal. In accordance with those standards, application for subdivision or land development approval shall satisfy the following procedural requirements:
(1) 
Minor subdivision. The subdivider shall submit the sewage planning module and required associated information to the Sewage Enforcement Officer at the time of final plat application. The subdivision or land development plan shall not be processed until documentation is provided to verify that the Sewage Enforcement Officer has received the sewage planning module. All newly created lots, whether for immediate or future use, shall be tested and approved for sewage suitability.
(2) 
Major subdivision. The subdivider shall submit a preliminary plan depicting general lot layout and street design, as required elsewhere herein. After preliminary approval, the subdivider shall submit the required sewage planning module and associated information to the Sewage Enforcement Officer at the time of final plat application. The subdivision or land development plan shall not be processed until documentation is provided to verify that the Sewage Enforcement Officer has received the sewage planning module.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 35 P.S. § 750.1 et seq.
B. 
Connection to existing public sewers. When a subdivision or land development has public sewers available on site or within 1,000 feet of the site, sewer lines shall be included on the subdivision or land development plan, and installation must be approved by the municipal and/or other authority responsible for the sewer system.
C. 
Planned sewer area. When a proposed subdivision or land development is located in an area not presently served by public sewers but which has received design data preparatory to sewer system installation within 10 years, then the municipality shall determine the necessity of installing house connections and/or capped mains, even though on-site facilities will be required in the interim. Installation of house connections and capped mains shall be in accordance with municipal design data and approved by the Borough Engineer prior to approval of a preliminary or final plan.
D. 
Private sewerage system. When a subdivision or land development is to be provided with a private sewerage system, a statement shall be submitted to the municipality from PennDEP prior to final plan approval verifying that a permit has been issued approving the proposed facilities. Additionally, the Borough must be satisfied that adequate provisions have been made to guarantee the construction and maintenance of the proposed private sewerage system.
E. 
Plan notice on sewer permits and connection to public sewers.
(1) 
Subsurface sewage disposal. All subdivision and land development plans shall contain a plan note specifying that approval of the plan does not guarantee permit issuance for sewage disposal.
(2) 
Public sewers. All subdivision and land development plans shall contain a plan note specifying that connection to public sewer lines is required.
A. 
Design standards. A water supply system shall be designed and constructed by the subdivider or developer as required by the Borough, water company or water authority in relation to the specific site of the proposed subdivision or land development. The water supply system shall be capable of meeting the domestic and fire protection needs of the site. (See § 305-21.)
B. 
Certification of public water supply. When possible, the subdivision or land development should be served by a public water supply system approved by appropriate water officials or a community water system approved by PennDEP. If the subdivision or land development is to be supplied by a public or community water system, the subdivider or developer shall submit with the preliminary plan a written certification, commitment or evidence that the municipal water company or authority or the association of lot owners or private company, as applicable, has adequate water capacity and has agreed to provide water service.
C. 
On-site well requirements. In those cases where a public or community water system is not available or practical, a well shall be provided for each lot. Wells shall be placed uphill from sewage disposal systems. Wells shall not be within 100 feet of any part of the absorption field of any on-site sewage disposal system, and they shall not be placed within 50 feet of lakes, streams, ponds, quarries, etc.
D. 
Plan notes on water supply. Subdivision and land development plans shall contain a plan note specifying the source of water supply. Plans proposing the use of public or community water shall contain a note specifying that connection to the public or community waterline, as applicable, is required. Plans proposing the use of individual wells shall contain a note specifying that the lot(s) has not been tested for the availability of water of adequate quality or quantity, and no guaranty of water availability is provided.
A. 
Proposed streets shall conform in all respects to the municipality's Official Map and to other local and county comprehensive plans, as such may be developed and apply. Street and alleys shall conform to a plot plan approved by the municipality and shall generally provide for the continuation or appropriate projection of existing principal streets in surrounding areas. The grade, location and character of all streets shall also be approved by the Municipal Engineer.
B. 
In addition to relating to topography, natural features, public safety and convenience, adequate traffic circulation within and near the development and solar orientation, streets shall be designed according to the function served, the use of abutting land and standards of width, intersections, maximum grades and curvatures. The municipality shall require that all developments have adequate access. Where major subdivision is proposed or may occur because of the patterns started by minor subdivision activity, the municipality should require reservation for or installation of two or more streets to ensure safe and convenient access.
C. 
Elimination or vacation of previously approved streets shall be approved only when the municipality determines that:
(1) 
Alternate access has been provided in another, more suitable location;
(2) 
Further development is not possible utilizing the street; and
(3) 
Any landowners who purchased property with reliance upon the street agree, in writing, to its elimination.
D. 
Where a land development abuts or contains a railroad or an existing or proposed major traffic street, the municipality may require marginal access streets, properly buffered by a planting strip from said railroad or highway, or parallel streets or a series of culs-de-sac or short loops, reverse-frontage lots or such other treatment as will provide protection to abutting properties and will result in the reduction of the number of intersections and the separation of local and through traffic.
E. 
The developer shall design and construct streets, whether public or private, including pavements, shoulders, gutters, curbs, etc., as required by municipal ordinance. Where specific municipal regulations do not exist, the following requirements shall apply:
(1) 
Classification and general design goals.
(a) 
Major streets. Major streets function primarily for the movement of fast traffic between points of heavy traffic generation (average daily traffic of 3,000 plus). They are often known as "arterial streets" or "highways." They shall be planned for continuation of existing streets in the system at the same or greater width in accordance with adopted municipal standards. Major streets shall contain as few intersections as possible.
(b) 
Collector streets. Collector streets function to collect traffic from local streets and distribute it into major streets, and, as such, they will normally contain a relatively large number of intersections with local streets and few with main streets. A collector street system may be required wherever a residential neighborhood near a major street is over 50 acres in area or where the local street pattern is so designed as to converge and serve over 100 one-family dwellings or 100 multifamily units with a projected average daily traffic of 500 to 3,000 vehicles. Collector streets shall be planned for continuity and to lead more or less directly to one or more focal points or centers of traffic generation and may become bus routes.
(c) 
Local streets.
[1] 
Local streets provide direct access to each lot and function to allow traffic to circulate toward the principal directions of travel, bus routes, schools and playgrounds; however, the design shall discourage through and high-speed traffic (average daily traffic of less than 500 vehicles). The street pattern shall be indirect to prevent through traffic and yet continuous, formed of straight, moderately winding, curved, looped or angular streets. There shall be an underlying systematic neighborhood pattern; however, gridiron and other rigid geometrical patterns should be avoided where possible.
[2] 
The street pattern shall include extensions to the boundaries of the development to provide circulation between adjoining neighborhoods.
[3] 
Half, partial and dead-end streets shall be prohibited except where:
[a] 
In the opinion of the municipality, they are essential to reasonable development conforming to the other requirements of this chapter.
[b] 
The municipality finds it practicable to require dedication of the other half when adjoining property is plotted.
[c] 
Designed as culs-de-sac.
[4] 
Whenever a half or partial street adjoins property proposed to be subdivided, the completion of such street shall be required as part of the plot.
(d) 
Alleys. Alleys shall not be permitted in residential districts and shall be included in nonresidential areas only where needed for loading and unloading or access purposes.
(e) 
Cul-de-sac streets. Cul-de-sac streets provide direct access to properties from other streets. Ordinarily, a cul-de-sac is a short street with only one outlet and having an appropriate terminal for safe and convenient reversal of traffic movement. Drainage should be towards the open end. If drainage is toward the closed end, it shall be conducted away in an underground storm sewer.
(f) 
Hillside streets. The right-of-way standards for hillside areas set forth herein [Subsection E(2)] are merely to guide the municipality and are not intended to be fixed minimums. The basis for the requirements shall be the actual topography of the land, the location of the hillside areas and streets with respect to the adjoining loads and streets and the density of development, particularly in terms of the proposed number of dwellings to be served by the street.
(g) 
Blocks.
[1] 
Length, width and shape of blocks shall be determined with due regard to the following:
[a] 
Provision of building sites adequately suited to the specific needs of the uses contemplated.
[b] 
Zoning requirements.
[c] 
Topography.
[d] 
Requirements for convenient access, circulation and safety of pedestrian and vehicular traffic.
[2] 
Block lengths shall generally not exceed 1,200 feet. Wherever practicable, residential blocks shall be of sufficient depth to accommodate two tiers of building lots. Interior pedestrian walks may be required where necessary to improve circulation and to provide access to community facilities. Such walkways shall have a right-of-way width of not less than 10 feet and a paved width of not less than six feet.
(2) 
Minimum street standards. See chart entitled "Minimum Street Standards" at the end of this chapter.
(3) 
Supplementary street standards. In addition to the specific standards cited in Subsection E(2), the following street standards shall apply to the design and construction of streets:
(a) 
Intersections.
[1] 
Streets shall be designed to intersect as nearly as possible at right angles (90°). No street shall intersect another at less than 75°. An oblique street should be curbed approaching an intersection and should be at right angles for at least 100 feet therefrom. If the smaller angle of intersection of two streets is required to be less than 75° by reason of the topography, the radius of arc, as determined by Subsection E(3)(a)[4] below, shall be increased by 25%.
[2] 
No more than two streets shall intersect at any one point. Where this proves to be impractical in the opinion of the municipality, such intersections shall be designed with extreme care for both pedestrian and vehicular safety.
[3] 
Proposed new intersections along one side of an existing street shall coincide with any existing intersections on the opposite side of the street. Where intersections cannot practically be connected, a minimum of 150 feet shall separate the center lines of offset local streets, and 400 feet minimum shall be provided for collector and major streets. (See Chart II in the Appendix of this chapter.[1])
[1]
Editor's Note: The chart is on file and available for inspection in the office of the Borough Secretary.
[4] 
Street curb intersections shall be rounded with a minimum radius of 20 feet for local streets and 30 feet for collector or major streets. The radius point shall be concentric with that for the property line.
[5] 
Intersections shall be designed with a flat grade. In hilly or rolling topography, a leveling area shall be provided at the approach to an intersection. The leveling area shall have a maximum grade of 2% for 60 feet preceding the intersection, measured from the nearest right-of-way line of the intersecting street.
[6] 
Clear sight triangles of 75 feet measured along the center line from the point of intersection shall be provided and maintained at all intersections.
(b) 
Street names. Street names shall not duplicate others nearby and shall be subject to the approval of the Borough. Street signs shall be erected to identify all streets.
(c) 
Street expansion. Where a subdivision adjoins unsubdivided land, sufficient streets shall be planned to extend to the boundary lines so that all parcels may be subdivided and a coordinated street system obtained.
(d) 
Streets for multifamily development. These shall be planned to connect with major or collector streets to avoid generating large volumes of traffic on local residential streets.
(e) 
Reserve strips. The creation of reserve strips shall not be permitted adjacent to a proposed street in such a manner as to deny access from adjacent property to such street.
(f) 
Right-of-way widths. Land for the right-of-way for the opening or extension of any street within a subdivision shall be dedicated by the developer. Where a property abuts a street which does not conform to the right-of-way width required by this chapter or other ordinances of the Borough, the additional width necessary to meet current standards shall be dedicated when such land is subdivided.
(g) 
Auxiliary street improvements. In addition to the required pavement and shoulder widths, streets shall be designed and constructed with curbs, streetlights, gutters, culverts, catch basins, sidewalks and other improvements required by municipal ordinance or deemed necessary for a proposed subdivision.
(h) 
Median strips. Median strips shall be placed in streets only where, in the opinion of the municipality, they are necessary for safety or traffic control. The width of the same shall be in addition to the required cartway widths as hereinabove set forth.
(4) 
Unimproved streets or rights-of-way. Subdivision on unimproved (unpaved) streets or access rights-of-way is forbidden; however, one lot may access via an unimproved private right-of-way, provided that the right-of-way is a minimum of 50 feet in width and so located and designed that a street could be installed in the event of future subdivision activity.
(5) 
Private streets. Private streets are to be discouraged. They will be approved only if they are designed and constructed to meet public street standards and maintenance is guaranteed in perpetuity via a bona fide homeowners' association (or similar organization) agreement and appropriate financial security for repair and maintenance is provided to said homeowners' association and to the municipality, up front, by the developer.
(6) 
Street construction standards. Streets, sidewalks and rights-of-way shall be improved to meet the Borough design standards and specifications as set forth in Chart III herein.[2] It shall be the developer's responsibility to satisfy all applicable municipal construction requirements and design standards or, in lieu thereof, deposit a security in compliance with § 305-33 of this chapter and established municipal policies. All public and private streets shall meet the following standards:
(a) 
Adequate surface and subsurface drainage shall be provided.
(b) 
All topsoil shall be removed from the area to be paved.
(c) 
There shall be installed a base to consist of four inches of compacted shale or stone on the shoulder of the road which shall extend four feet minimum on both sides of the cartway.
(d) 
The base course shall be constructed in accordance with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Transportation Manual Form 408. The base binder course shall also conform to the Form 408 specifications.
(e) 
The surface course shall be constructed in accordance with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Transportation Manual Form 408.
[2]
Editor's Note: Chart III is included at the end of this chapter.
(7) 
State and county approval of streets and access.
(a) 
To ensure that street designs comply with all applicable standards, the municipality may submit any preliminary and final subdivision or land development plans to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation for review and comment.
(b) 
Subdivision and land development plans which will require access to a state highway under the jurisdiction of the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) shall contain a plan note specifying that a highway occupancy permit is required from PennDOT before driveway access to the state highway is permitted. The plan note shall also specify that plan approval does not guarantee that a PennDOT permit will be issued.
(c) 
Subdivision and land development plans which will require access to a county highway under the jurisdiction of Lackawanna County shall contain a plan note specifying that a highway occupancy permit is required from Lackawanna County before driveway access to the county highway is permitted. The plan note shall also specify that plan approval does not guarantee that a county permit will be issued.
Sufficient monuments shall be set to ensure that reliable survey points are available for all parts of the subdivision. At least one monument shall be placed for every two lots or every 200 feet of streets, whichever requirement is less.
A. 
Types of monuments. Monuments shall be of the following types:
(1) 
Made of concrete, having a five-by-five-inch cross section and 36 inches in length. A scored one-half-inch round brass pin shall be located in the top center.
(2) 
Made of cut stone, having a five-by-five-inch cross section and being 36 inches in length with a drill hole in the top center.
(3) 
A two-inch round galvanized pipe 36 inches long with a brass cap having a punch hole in its center.
(4) 
A cast-iron box, inside of which shall be placed a three-fourths-inch steel pin three feet in length, with the top of the pin set to serve as the survey point.
B. 
Placement of monuments. Monuments shall be set at the intersection of all lines forming angles in the boundary of the subdivision. They shall be placed so that the scored or marked point will coincide exactly with the intersection of the lines to be marked and shall be set so that the top of the monument is level with the surface of the surrounding ground.
C. 
Markers. Markers shall consist of steel bars being at least 15 inches long and not less than 3/4 of an inch in diameter. Markers shall be set at the beginning and ending of all curves along street property lines, at all points where lot lines intersect curves, at all angles in property lines of lots and at all corner lots.
A. 
Utility standards. All subdivisions shall be designed and serviced with adequate utilities, including electricity, natural gas, telephone and cable television service. The developer shall be responsible to cooperate with the utility companies to ensure installation of the necessary utilities. All utilities shall be underground and constructed at current specifications, except where developments of five lots or fewer are exempted by the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission. Where required, the developer shall obtain a letter from the utility company confirming that service may be extended to the development. Where such lines are not placed underground, said lines shall be placed along rear lot lines to the fullest extent possible.
B. 
Location of utilities.
(1) 
Insofar as practicable, all utilities, with the exception of on-site laterals, shall be located in public rights-of-way. Where this is not possible, utility easements shall be so located as to be centered on or adjacent to rear or side lot lines to the fullest extent possible. Such easements shall have minimum widths of 20 feet. In general, the required pipe or other improvement shall be located in the center of the easement. Prior to determining the location of easements, the municipality shall require the subdivider to coordinate his or her plans with those of the local public utilities in order to assure the proper location of easements for the installation of the required services.
(2) 
When required by the Borough, the developer shall provide a streetlighting duct system in accordance with the specifications of the appropriate public utility.
C. 
Fire hydrants. On streets served by public waterlines, fire hydrants shall be installed by the developer. Fire hydrants shall be located at the discretion of the Fire Chief.
D. 
Natural gaslines. All natural gaslines must be installed in compliance with applicable national, state and local codes. The minimum distance from a natural gasline to a dwelling unit or other structure must be as required by the applicable transmission or distributing company.
E. 
Petroleum lines. Between a proposed dwelling or other structure and the center line of a petroleum or petroleum products transmission line which may traverse the subdivision or land development, there must be a minimum distance of 100 feet measured in the shortest distance.
A. 
The land improvements required to be completed by the developer of a subdivision or land development as set forth in this article shall be designed and installed in accordance with this chapter and other codes of the Borough. The improvements shall be of such sizes and capacities as are required for the development of the proposed subdivision and of extra sizes as may be necessary to serve nearby land which is an integral part of the neighborhood service or drainage areas.
B. 
The developer shall be required to extend improvements to serve adjoining unsubdivided land. If streets or utilities are not available at the boundary of a proposed subdivision, the municipality may require the developer to construct off-site extensions of the improvements. Procedures for providing any necessary extra-size and off-site improvements and general standards for prorating costs shall be coordinated with the Borough and shall be in accordance with the following:
(1) 
Extra-size improvements.
(a) 
The developer shall be required to pay for a part of the materials or construction of streets, sewers or waterlines which are determined by the municipality according to the standards set forth in this article to be in excess of the size required for the development of the subdivision and the integral neighborhood service or drainage area.
(b) 
If a storm sewer in excess of 18 inches, a sanitary sewer in excess of eight inches or a water main in excess of six inches is required but each is less in size than the sewer trunk lines or water mains which are to be constructed and financed on a regional basis, the Borough shall construct the extra-size utility and require a deposit in advance from the developer for the cost of the utility he or she is required to install and his or her portion of other costs which the Borough may assess against the benefited property owners of the service or drainage area.
(2) 
Extensions to boundaries. The developer shall be required to extend the improvements to the boundary of the proposed subdivision to serve adjoining unsubdivided land; however, where the municipality determines that a connecting street is necessary for the future subdividing of adjoining land but the present construction of pavement and/or utilities therein is not warranted, the municipality may require the dedication of land, the pavement of intersections constructed, utilities extended at least three feet beyond the pavement and connections provided and made available for future extensions by other developers.
(3) 
Off-site extensions. If streets or utilities are not available at the boundary of a proposed subdivision, the municipality may require, as a precedence to approval of a preliminary or final plan, assurances that such improvement extensions shall be provided as follows:
(a) 
If the municipality finds that the extensions across undeveloped areas would not be warranted as a special assessment to the intervening properties or a municipal expense until some future time, the developer may be required, if he/she wishes to proceed with the development, to obtain necessary easements or rights-of-way and construct and pay for extensions. Such improvements shall be available for connections by developers of adjoining land; or
(b) 
The Borough may construct and pay for the extensions and assess the costs to the owners benefitted and require a deposit from the developer as described in Subsection B(1) herein. The Borough may establish a revolving fund to pay for such development costs and not collect the assessments on the intervening land until it is developed.
(4) 
Prorating costs. In making determinations for prorating costs for the construction of off-site extensions or extra-size improvements, the Borough shall consider, in addition to the standards set forth in this article and other regulations of the Borough, the following conditions:
(a) 
The relative location and size of the proposed subdivision.
(b) 
The traffic estimated to be generated by the development in relation to present streets.
(c) 
The natural drainage area for sewers and the service area for water.
(d) 
The development benefits that will accrue to the subdivision.
(e) 
The sequence of land and utility developments in the vicinity.
(f) 
Any other condition it may find pertinent.
The developer shall be responsible, in all cases, for the installation of all required improvements, which improvements shall be approved as they are constructed and completed by the Borough Engineer. The developer shall also submit a certificate that no lot will be sold or transferred unless and until the required improvements and installations have been made or installed or proper security as defined below has been provided for such required improvements and/or installations. When security is provided as performance guaranty in lieu of actual improvements, it shall be the Borough Council, on behalf of the municipality, that shall negotiate, approve, accept, hold and release said security.
A. 
Performance guaranty in lieu of installation.
(1) 
No plat shall be finally approved unless the streets shown on such plan have been improved to a mud-free or otherwise permanently passable condition or improved as may be required by this chapter, and any walkways, curbs, gutters, streetlights, fire hydrants, shade trees, water mains, sanitary sewers, storm sewers, stormwater management facilities and other improvements as may be required by this chapter have been installed in accordance with this chapter.
(2) 
In lieu of the completion of any improvement required as a condition for the final approval of a plat, the subdivider or developer shall deposit with the municipality a fiscal security in an amount sufficient to cover the costs of any improvements or common amenities, including but not limited to roads, stormwater detention and/or retention basins and other related drainage facilities, open space improvements or buffer or screen plantings which may be required.
B. 
Type of performance guaranty.
(1) 
Without limitation as to other types of financial security which the Borough Council may approve, which approval shall not be unreasonably withheld, federal- or commonwealth-chartered lending institution irrevocable letters of credit and restrictive or escrow accounts in such lending institutions shall be deemed acceptable financial security for the purposes of this section. Such financial security shall be posted with a bonding company or federal- or commonwealth-chartered lending institution chosen by the party posting the financial security, provided that said bonding company or lending institution is authorized to conduct such business within the commonwealth.
(2) 
Such bond or other security shall provide for and secure to the public the completion of any improvements which may be required on or before the date fixed in the formal action of approval or accompanying agreement for completion of the improvements.
C. 
Amount of performance guaranty.
(1) 
The amount of financial security to be posted for the completion of the required improvements shall be equal to 110% of the cost of completion estimated as of 90 days following the date scheduled for completion by the developer. Annually, the Borough Council may adjust the amount of the financial security by comparing the actual cost of the improvements which have been completed and the estimated cost for the completion of the remaining improvements as of the expiration of the 90th day after either the original date scheduled for completion or a rescheduled date of completion.
(2) 
Subsequent to said adjustment, the Borough Council may require the developer to post additional security in order to assure that the financial security equals said 110%. Any additional security shall be posted by the developer in accordance with this subsection.
(3) 
The amount of financial security required shall be based upon an estimate of the cost of completion of the required improvements submitted by an applicant or developer and prepared by a professional engineer licensed as such in this commonwealth and certified by such engineer to be a fair and reasonable estimate of such cost. The Borough Engineer shall review and approve the cost estimate or, for good cause, refuse to accept the estimate, in which case he/she shall calculate an accurate cost estimate of the required site improvements.
(4) 
If the party posting the financial security requires more than one year from the date of posting of the financial security to complete the required improvements, the amount of financial security may be increased by an additional 10% of each year period beyond the first anniversary date from posting of financial security or to an amount not exceeding 110% of the cost of completing the required improvements as reestablished on or about the expiration of the preceding one-year period by using the above estimate review procedure.
(5) 
A developer who fails to complete the improvements within the allotted time specified in the financial guaranty shall, at least 30 days in advance of the guaranty expiration date, renew or resubmit a financial guaranty. Failure to keep a financial guaranty in effect until the completion and approval of all improvements shall be a violation of this chapter.
D. 
Progressive installation. In the case where development is projected over a period of years, the municipality may authorize submission of final plats by sections or stages of development subject to such requirements or guaranties as to improvements in future sections or stages of development as it finds essential for the protection of any finally approved section of the development.
E. 
Release from guaranty.
(1) 
As the work of installing the required improvements proceeds, the party posting the financial security may request the release, from time to time, of such portions of the financial security necessary for payment to the contractor or contractors performing the work. Any such requests shall be made in writing to the Borough Council, and, within 45 days of receipt of such request, the Borough Engineer shall certify, in writing, whether or not such portion of the work upon the improvements has been completed in accordance with the approved plat.
(2) 
When the improvements are certified to be in accordance with the approved plat, the Borough Council shall authorize release by the bonding company or lending institution of an amount as estimated by the Municipal Engineer fairly representing the value of the improvements completed.
(3) 
The Borough Council shall notify the developer, in writing, by certified or registered mail, of the action of said Borough Council with relation thereto.
(4) 
If the Borough Council fails to act within said forty-five-day period, the release of funds shall be deemed to have been approved as requested. The Borough Council may, prior to final release at the time of completion and certification by its Engineer, require retention of 10% of the estimated cost of the aforesaid improvement.
(5) 
If any portion of said improvements shall not be approved or shall be rejected by the Borough Council, the developer shall proceed to complete the same, and, upon completion, the same procedure of notification as outlined herein shall be followed.
(6) 
The applicant shall assume the necessary expense incurred for the inspection of improvements. Such inspection costs shall be based upon the schedule established at § 305-50 and amended from time to time as deemed necessary.
(7) 
Nothing herein, however, shall be construed in limitation of the developer's right to contest or question, by legal proceedings or otherwise, any determination of the Borough Council or the Borough Engineer.
(8) 
Where herein reference is made to the Municipal Engineer, he/she shall be a duly registered professional engineer employed by the municipality or engaged as a consultant thereto.
(9) 
If water mains or sanitary sewer lines, or both, along with apparatus or facilities related thereto, are to be installed under the jurisdiction and pursuant to the rules and regulations of a public utility or municipal authority separate and distinct from the municipality, financial security to assure proper completion and maintenance thereof shall be posted in accordance with the regulations of the controlling public utility or municipal authority and shall not be included within the financial security as otherwise required by this section.
(10) 
If financial security has been provided in lieu of the completion of improvements required as a condition for the final approval of a plan as set forth in this section, the municipality shall not condition the issuance of building, grading or other permits relating to the erection or placement of improvements, including buildings, upon the lots or land as depicted upon the final plan upon actual completion of the improvements depicted upon the approved final plan. Moreover, if said financial security has been provided, occupancy permits for any building or buildings to be erected shall not be withheld following Borough inspection and approval of the improvement of the streets providing access to and from existing public roads to such building or buildings to a mud-free or otherwise permanently passable condition, as well as the completion of all other improvements as depicted upon the approved plat, either upon the lot or lots or beyond the lot or lots in question, if such improvements are necessary for the reasonable use of or occupancy of the building or buildings.
F. 
Maintenance of streets prior to dedication. In submitting the final plan to the municipality, the developer shall agree to maintain and repair all streets and other public lands to be dedicated until the same are officially accepted and dedicated by the municipality.
G. 
Maintenance guaranty. Where the Borough Council accepts dedication of all or some of the required improvements following completion, the Borough Council may require the posting of financial security to secure structural integrity of said improvements as well as the functioning of said improvements in accordance with the design and specifications depicted on the final plat for a term not to exceed 18 months from the date of acceptance of dedication. Said financial security shall be of the same type as otherwise required in this section with regard to installation of such improvements. The amount of financial security shall not exceed 15% of the actual cost of installation of said improvements.
H. 
Remedies to effect completion of improvements.
(1) 
In the event that any required improvements have not been installed as provided in this chapter or in accordance with the approved final plat, the Borough Council is hereby granted the power to enforce any corporate bond or other security by appropriate legal and equitable remedies.
(2) 
If proceeds of such bond or other security are insufficient to pay the cost of installing or making repairs or corrections to all the improvements covered by said security, the Borough Council may, at its option, install part of such improvements in all or part of the subdivision or land development and may institute appropriate legal or equitable action to recover the moneys necessary to complete the remainder of the improvements.
(3) 
All of the proceeds, whether resulting from the security or from any legal or equitable action brought against the developer, or both, shall be used solely for the installation of the improvements covered by such security and not for any other municipal purpose. Failure to properly install the required improvements shall also constitute a violation of this chapter, punishable as provided by § 305-51 of this chapter.
The developer agrees to indemnify and save harmless the Borough against and from any and all loss, cost, damage, liability and expense on account of damage to property of or injury to or death of the parties thereto or a third person caused by, growing out of or in any way whatsoever attributable to the construction of said improvements and the use of the street delineated on the subdivision plat during construction. The developer further agrees, but without limiting its liability to indemnify the Borough, to carry liability insurance contracts with a reliable insurance company covering the period of said construction in the minimum sum of $1,000,000 for injury to or death of person(s) and in the minimum sum of $300,000 for damage to or destruction of property, which insurance contracts shall include the Borough as a named insured.
[Amended 3-21-2011 by Ord. No. 2011-1]
Prior to the issuance of any zoning or building permits related to any approved subdivision or land development within the Borough of Old Forge, the issuing agent shall require proof of compliance with § 305-16E(6) herein from the applicant. Upon proof of compliance with § 305-16E(6), a building or zoning permit may be issued and building construction started after the approval of the final plat. Occupancy shall not be permitted prior to the completion of streets, stormwater management facilities, connection into a sewer system and other improvements necessary for the reasonable use of the building, unless written authorization is granted by the municipality where improvements have been guaranteed by valid bond or other security.