Township of Whitehall, PA
Lehigh County
By using eCode360 you agree to be legally bound by the Terms of Use. If you do not agree to the Terms of Use, please do not use eCode360.
A. 
Purpose. The purpose of this article is to require well designed landscaping plantings, which in turn, provide an attractive, aesthetic appearance of the developed property.
A. 
Filing of plan. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, a landscaping plan for any proposed development project in the Township shall be filed concurrently with the submission of a land development plan.
B. 
Plan requirements. To ensure that principles of good landscaping and design are adhered to and implemented, each site plan submitted for approval shall:
(1) 
Identify and locate irrigation and drainage system components, if any.
(2) 
Preserve existing trees and shrubs, if possible.
(3) 
Preserve natural rock outcropping and natural topographic features, if possible.
(4) 
Depict the location, size and variety (name identification) of existing trees over six inches in caliper.
(5) 
Identify which existing trees (or shrubs) are to be retained and the method of protection thereof during construction.
(6) 
Provide construction details including the specific identification, location and height of all landscaping materials as installed.
(7) 
Provide a complete planting list outlining the botanical and common name of all proposed landscaping plantings.
(8) 
Provide adequate planting density.
(9) 
Provide for proper selection and diversification of plant species to minimize the possibility of damage due to insects and disease.
(10) 
For all plants, meet the requirements as set forth in the latest edition of "American Standard for Nursery Stock" by American Association of Nurserymen, as amended.
A. 
Landscaping materials. All landscaping materials shall be compatible with the general conditions of the site. The following minimum standards, with exceptions of dwarf varieties which shall not be used unless otherwise permitted by the Township, shall be met concerning required plant materials used by the developer:
(1) 
Street trees. Two and one half to three inches (caliper) measured six inches above the root crown. Trees shall have a minimum of a seven-foot single straight stem to the first lateral branches, above ground level.
(2) 
Ornamental trees. Six feet to eight feet in height.
(3) 
Pyramidal evergreen trees. Six feet to seven feet in height. White pine must be lightly sheared.
(4) 
Columnar evergreen trees. Four feet to five feet in height.
(5) 
Evergreen and semievergreen shrubs. Eighteen inches to 24 inches in height.
(6) 
Broadleaf evergreen shrubs. Two feet to three feet in height.
(7) 
Deciduous shrubs. Two and one half to three feet in height.
(8) 
Synthetic or artificial material in the form of trees, shrubs, ground cover, vines or turf shall not be used.
(9) 
The use of stationary, permanent architectural planters (in contact with soil so that water can pass through the planter to the ground) is permitted in fulfillment of landscaping requirements, provided that such planters shall be of material and design specifically intended for landscaping use.
B. 
Minimum landscaping requirements for parking area. The off-street parking and loading area shall have a minimum of 5% of the area represented by approved plantings. Said landscaped area shall be located in such manner as to divide and interrupt the expanse of paving. In addition:
(1) 
Landscaping or grassed areas adjacent to front and rear lot lines shall be required.
(2) 
All areas utilized for landscaping in the parking area shall be surrounded by concrete curbing.
(3) 
A minimum of 10-foot wide landscaped berms or landscaping strips shall be constructed between the right-of-way line and parking areas of commercial properties. This landscaping shall minimize the visibility of such parking from the street right-of-way and the parking area. No such landscaping shall constitute a violation of the "clear sight triangle" as defined in Chapter 27, Zoning, as amended from time to time.
(4) 
Sight distance for landscaping adjacent to public right-of-way and points of access. When an access way intersects a public right-of-way or when a access way intersects a public right-of-way or when the subject property abuts the intersection of two or more public rights-of-way, no landscaping shall be installed within the clear sight area, other than grass and/or lower level plantings.
(5) 
Credit for existing trees. Trees that are newly planted or already established and growing shall be credited against the landscaping requirements, provided that such trees are of an acceptable variety.
C. 
Buffer strips and screening.
(1) 
Buffer strips.
(a) 
Buffer strips shall be established and maintained in accordance with § 27-89 of Chapter 27, Zoning.
(b) 
Screening shall be installed according to § 27-89 of Chapter 27, Zoning.
(c) 
Recommended buffer and screening materials are indicated in Subsection A of this section.
(d) 
Trees of deciduous hardwood varieties shall be planted within the street right-of-way in areas by the developer in accordance with plans approved by the Board of Commissioners. In no event shall street trees be located in a manner which will restrict the view of any permitted traffic signage.
(e) 
Street trees shall be planted at minimum intervals of between 30 and 40 feet, depending upon the type of tree as approved by the Township.
D. 
Planting standards. All landscaping shall be planted conforming with good nursery and landscape practice and to the standards established by the American Association of Nurserymen in the "American Standard of Nursery Stock" as revised.
E. 
Street trees. Street trees shall be planted along all new lots. Street trees shall be installed prior to entering into the maintenance period of the subject to the following:
(1) 
For land developments in which there is no land development improvements agreement the required tree(s) shall be planted prior to the issuance of the final certificate of occupancy.
(2) 
Street trees shall grow (or be pruned to be) symmetrical and be free of insects, pests and disease.
(3) 
Only those trees listed in Appendix B,[1] "Permitted Street Trees," will be acceptable street trees. Those street trees listed in Appendix B, "Undesirable Street Trees," shall, under no circumstances, be planted.
[1]
Editor's Note: Appendix B is included at the end of this chapter.
F. 
Maintenance. All landscaping materials for a subdivision or land development shall be installed in accordance with the landscaping plan. Final installation of all such landscaping material shall be subject to the approval of the Township Engineer. A maintenance period of 18 months shall be required to assure the proper establishment of all landscaping, during which 15% of the required security shall be retained for the purpose set forth in this article. Improvements security shall include the cost of said materials. During the maintenance period, the developer shall replace dead trees and dead landscaping. If the particular season makes such replacement unfeasible, then it shall be accomplished within a reasonable period of time not to exceed six months thereafter.