§ 290-33Statement of intent.
§ 290-34Nonconforming use regulations.
§ 290-35Nonconforming lawful signs.
§ 290-36Registration of nonconformity.
The zoning districts established by this chapter are designed to guide the future use of land in the Borough by encouraging the development of desirable residential and commercial areas, with appropriate groupings of compatible and related uses, toward promoting and protecting the public health, safety, comfort, prosperity and other aspects of the general welfare.
To achieve this end, lawful existing uses which would be prohibited or restricted under the terms of this chapter or future amendments, and which do not conform to the character and regulations of the zoning district in which they are located, shall be subject to certain limitations.
Similarly, buildings or other structures which do not comply with one or more of the applicable district requirements as to lot width, minimum lot area and yard space, off-street parking, lot coverage or building height are deemed to be nonconforming.
Nonconforming uses and structures will generally be permitted to remain. The purpose of regulating them is to place reasonable restrictions on further expansion of uses or structures which are inappropriate to their location.
To avoid undue hardship, nothing in this chapter shall be deemed to require a change in plans, construction or intended use of any building on which actual construction was lawfully begun prior to the effective date or amendment of this chapter and on which actual building construction has been diligently carried on.
Continuation and/or expansion.
Lawful uses located either within a building or other structure, or part thereof, or on the land, or in combination of both, which, at the effective date of this chapter, or subsequent amendment thereto, become nonconforming may be continued so long as they remain otherwise lawful, including subsequent sales of the property.
Nonconforming uses and structures may be reasonably expanded to provide for natural expansion to accommodate increased trade, business or industry, provided that such expanded use shall not be detrimental to the health, safety, morals and general welfare of the people and residents in the surrounding area, and provided further that a special exception therefor is granted by the Zoning Hearing Board.
Moving of structure. No nonconforming building or structure shall be moved in whole or in part to another location on the lot, unless every portion of said building or structure is made to conform to all the regulations of the district in which it is located.
Discontinuance. If a nonconforming use of land or building ceases operation for a continuous period of more than six months, then this shall be deemed to be an intent to abandon such use, and any subsequent use of land shall conform to the regulations of this chapter. This regulation shall not apply to any single-family or two-family use.
Change in use.
The lawful use of a building existing at the time of the adoption of this chapter may be continued, although such use does not conform to the provisions hereof, and such use may be extended throughout the building, provided that such extension does not displace any residence use in a residence district. If no structural alterations are made, a nonconforming use of a building may be changed to another nonconforming use of the same or higher classification. If such a nonconforming use or a portion thereof is discontinued or changed to a conforming use, any future use of such building, structure or portion thereof shall be in conformity with the provisions of this chapter.
Whenever a use district shall be hereafter changed, any existing nonconforming use in such changed district may be continued or changed to another nonconforming use of the same or higher classification, provided that no structural alterations are made other than those ordered by an authorized public officer to assure the safety of the building, structure or its occupants or of an abutting building, structure or its occupants.
Damage or destruction.
In the event that a nonconforming building or structure in any district is destroyed or partially destroyed by fire, explosion or other cause, or otherwise damaged to the extent of 50% or more of either its assessed valuation (as determined from the assessment rolls effective at the date of the damage or destruction) or the bulk of all buildings, structures and other improvements on the lot, such nonconforming uses shall terminate and the lot shall thereafter be used only for conforming uses, except that a single-family dwelling or duplex located in any nonresidential district which is partially or totally damaged or destroyed by fire or other means may be reconstructed, provided that the dwelling is rebuilt on the existing foundation and there is no increase in any nonconforming aspect of the dwelling.
In any case, whether conforming or nonconforming, the remains of any building so destroyed must be removed from the premises within six calendar months so that the same is or shall not remain a nuisance thereon.
Lawful signs in existence at the effective date of this chapter or amendments thereto may be continued, subject to the following regulations:
Moving. No nonconforming advertising sign, billboard, commercial advertising structure or statuary shall be moved to another position on the building or lot on which it is located after the effective date of this chapter or amendment thereto.
Structural alterations. A nonconforming sign of a nonconforming use may be continued, but the area of such sign or signs shall not be increased, and such sign or signs shall not be structurally altered.
Damage or destruction. In the event that any nonconforming advertising sign, billboard, commercial advertising structure or statuary is damaged by any means to the extent of 50% of its cost of replacement at the time of destruction, such sign shall not be restored or replaced.
In order to administer this chapter, the Zoning Officer or his duly authorized representative shall prepare, after the adoption of this chapter and over a reasonable period of time, a list of all nonconforming uses, buildings, lots and signs then in existence.
Every nonconforming use shall be registered with the Zoning Officer, and a certificate of nonconforming occupancy shall be reissued every three years thereafter.