The lawful use of a building or land or any structure existing at the effective date of this chapter may be continued although such use does not conform to the provisions of this chapter, and such use may be continued throughout the building.
Whenever a nonconforming use of a building or land has been changed to a use of a more restricted classification or to a conforming use, such use shall not thereafter be changed to a use of a less restricted classification.
A nonconforming use or building which is partially destroyed by fire, explosion, flood or other destructive force may be continued as the same nonconforming use, provided that the building reconstruction shall be completed within one year from the date when the building was destroyed or condemned.
If a nonconforming use of a building or land is voluntarily abandoned and ceases for a continuous period of six months or more, the subsequent use of such building or land shall be, thereafter, a conforming use in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.
A nonconforming use shall be considered abandoned:
When the intent of the owner to discontinue the use is apparent;
When the characteristic equipment and furnishings of the nonconforming use have been removed from the premises and have not been replaced by similar equipment within six months, unless other facts show intention to resume the nonconforming use;
When it has been replaced by a conforming use; or
When it has been changed to another use by the governing body.
[Amended 12-12-2012 by Ord. No. 1331]
In case of a lot where the deed is recorded in the Register of Deeds' office or laid out on the Official Tax Map of the Borough of Lindenwold prior to the effective date of this chapter, having an area less than hereinafter required or of such irregular shape that the owner would have difficulty in providing the required side and rear yard setbacks for the zone in which such lot is situated, the Joint Land Use Board may modify the requirements of this chapter in accordance with its power as conferred by law and permit a building or structure to be built thereon.
Any sign, billboard or advertising device existing prior to the effective date of this chapter that does not conform in use, type, location, height or size to the regulations of the district in which it is located may be maintained or repaired; however, such sign, billboard or advertising device shall not be replaced.
Upon the effective date of this chapter, the Building Inspector shall issue a certificate of nonconforming use to all owners of property the use of which does not conform to the provisions of the use zone in which the property is located.
In accordance with the provisions of this section, no use of land, buildings or structures shall be made other than that specified on the certificate of nonconforming use unless the said use shall be in conformity with the provisions of the use zone in which the property is located.
A copy of each certificate of nonconforming use shall be filed with the office of the Borough Clerk. No permit or license shall be issued to any property for which a certificate of nonconforming use has been issued until said permit or license has been approved by the governing body.
Whenever the boundaries of a district shall be changed so as to transfer an area from one district to another district of a different classification, the foregoing provisions shall also apply to any nonconforming uses existing therein.
Nothing herein contained shall require any change in the plans, construction or intended use of a building for which a building permit has heretofore been issued and the construction of which shall have been diligently prosecuted within six months of the date of such permit and the entire building completed according to such plans as filed within 15 months from the effective date of this chapter.