Township of Ross, PA
Allegheny County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Ord. 2035, 12/9/2002, § 1500; as amended by Ord. 2288, 4/12/2010]
1. 
Existing Parking. Structures and uses in existence at the date of adoption of this chapter shall not be subject to the requirements of this Part so long as the kind or extent of use is not changed, provided that any parking facility now serving such structures or uses shall not in the future be reduced below such requirements.
2. 
Change in Requirements. Whenever there is an alteration of a structure or a change or extension of a use which increases the parking requirements according to the standards of § 27-506, the total additional parking required for the alteration, change or extension shall be provided in accordance with the requirements of that section.
3. 
Conflict with other Uses. No parking area shall be used for any use that interferes with its availability for the parking need it is required to serve, except that it may be used for a stormwater retention basin of a maximum depth of six inches.
4. 
Continuing Character of Obligation. All required facilities shall be provided and maintained so long as the use exists which the facilities were designed to serve.
A. 
Off-street parking facilities shall not be reduced in total extent after their provision except upon the approval of the Zoning Hearing Board and then only after proof that:
(1) 
By reason of diminution in floor area;
(2) 
Seating area;
(3) 
The number of employees;
(4) 
Change in other factors controlling the regulation of the number of parking spaces; such regulation is in conformity with the requirements of this Part.
B. 
Reasonable precautions shall be taken by the owner or sponsor of particular uses to assure the availability of required facilities to the employees or other persons whom the facilities are designed to serve. Such facilities shall be designed and used in such a manner as to at no time constitute a nuisance, a hazard, or an unreasonable impediment to traffic.
5. 
Joint Use. Two or more uses may provide for required parking in a common parking lot if the total space provided is not less than the sum of the spaces required for each use individually. However, the number of spaces required in a common parking facility may be reduced below this total if it can be demonstrated to the Planning Commission and Board of Commissioners that the hours or peak parking needed for the uses are so different that a lower total will provide adequately for all uses served by the facility.
6. 
Location of Parking Spaces. Required off-street parking spaces shall be on the same lot or premises and same zoning district with the principal use served; or where this requirement cannot be met, within 300 feet of the same lot if the use is nonresidential and after approval from the Board of Commissioners.
7. 
Maintenance of Parking Areas. For parking areas of three or more vehicles, the area not landscaped and so maintained, including driveways, shall be graded, surfaced with all-weather paving, and drained to the satisfaction of a professional engineer selected by the Township to the extent necessary to prevent dust, erosion or excessive water flow across streets or adjoining property. All off-street parking spaces shall be marked so as to indicate their location. Failure to keep parking in satisfactory condition, i.e., free from holes, shall be considered a violation of this chapter.
8. 
Drive Through Use Standards. Any use, that proposes a drive through shall meet the following standards:
A. 
Provide at least two means of ingress and egress.
B. 
Four parking spaces per lane per exterior drive through window are required.
C. 
Access drives shall provide at least the minimum required sight distances for motorist and circulation into and through the property.
D. 
Location of parking shall be obvious to motorists.
9. 
Additional Restrictions for Residential Districts.
A. 
Any truck whose gross weight exceeds 10,000 pounds, any commercial vehicle, any commercial equipment, any construction vehicle, any construction equipment, any trailer (as now defined in § 102 of the Vehicle Code, 75 Pa.C.S.A. § 102), any semitrailer (as now defined in § 102 of the Vehicle Code, 75 Pa.C.S.A. § 102) and special mobile equipment (as now defined in the Vehicle Code, 75 Pa.C.S.A. § 102) shall not be parked in any district zoned residential in the Township of Ross, unless parked in a garage.
(1) 
The provisions of this subsection shall not be applicable to any "minivan."
(2) 
The provisions of this subsection shall not be interpreted to include any vehicle and/or equipment being utilized for repair and/or construction purposes or a service call.
B. 
The parking of any recreational trailer, boat, mobile home, camper unit and/or any other recreational vehicle of any kind upon any public highway, street, alley or public property in the Township of Ross shall be and the same is hereby prohibited. Recreational vehicles, boats, mobile homes, camper units and/or any other recreational vehicle unit shall be permitted to be parked on private property. Persons are prohibited from residing in such mobile home, camper unit and/or other recreational vehicle in any district zoned residential in the Township of Ross.
C. 
Any subsurface parking structure may be constructed within five feet of the property line and shall not be used in computing the lot coverage.
D. 
Off-street parking is prohibited in any property zoned residential in Ross Township when the same is required off-street parking under any permitted nonresidential use.
E. 
All vehicles and/or trailers parked off-street shall be parked in or on an authorized parking lot, parking pad, garage or driveway.
F. 
All residential parking facilities shall be graded, all weather surfaced and drained to the satisfaction of the Township, to the extent necessary to prevent nuisances of dust, erosion or excessive water flow onto public right-of-ways.
10. 
Parking Requirements for All Other Uses Not Provided for Herein. For all other uses not provided for herein, required parking spaces shall be determined by a study to be prepared by the developer and approved by the Township. The study shall include the following:
A. 
Type of use and estimated number total trips generated during peak conditions (inbound and outbound).
B. 
Estimated parking duration per vehicle trip (turnover rate).
C. 
Base on estimated number of trips generated and parking average duration per trip, calculate number of spaces required.
D. 
Estimated number of employees; one space to be provided for ever two employees working maximum shift.
[Ord. 2035, 12/9/2002, § 1501; as amended by Ord. 2288, 4/12/2010]
1. 
The design standards specified below shall be required for all off street parking facilities with the capacity of three or more vehicles built after the effective date of this amendment to chapter:
A. 
The minimum dimensions of stalls and aisles shall be as follows:
(1) 
Stall width shall be at least 10 feet for all angle parking and 10 feet for all parallel parking.
(2) 
Stall depth shall be at least 20 feet with said dimensions measured on the angle for all parking and 22 feet for parallel parking.
(3) 
Minimum width of aisles providing access to stalls for one way traffic only, varying with the angle of the parking, shall be:
Angle of Parking
Minimum Aisle Width
Parallel
12 feet
30°
14 feet
45°
16 feet
60°
20 feet
B. 
Minimum width of aisles providing access to stalls for two way traffic shall be 24 feet.
2. 
Parking areas shall be designed to permit each motor vehicle to proceed to and from the parking space provided for it without requiring the moving of any other motor vehicles.
3. 
The width of entrance and exit drives shall be:
A. 
A minimum of 12 feet for one way use only.
B. 
A minimum of 24 feet for two way use.
C. 
A maximum of 35 feet at the street line and 54 feet at the curb line.
4. 
For the purpose of servicing any property held under single and separate ownership, entrance and exit drives crossing the street lot line shall be limited to two along the frontage of any single street, and their center lines shall be spaced at least 800 feet apart. On all corner properties, there shall be a space of a minimum of 60 feet, measured at the curb line, between the center line of any entrance or exit drive and the street line of the street parallel to said access drive.
5. 
In no case shall parking areas be designed to require or encourage cars to back into a public street in order to leave the lot.
6. 
All parking spaces and access drives shall be at least 10 feet from any side or rear lot line.
7. 
All parking areas for any purpose other than single family residences shall be physically separated from any public street by a planting strip which shall be not less than 10 feet in depth. Tire bumpers or concrete curb shall be installed so as to prevent vehicle overhang of the sidewalk area. This ten-foot planting strip shall be parallel to the street line and shall be measured from the right of way.
8. 
Lighting of parking areas may be required and/or permitted at the discretion of the Board of Commissioners. All artificial lighting used to illuminate any parking space or spaces shall be so arranged that no direct rays from such lighting shall fall upon any neighboring property or streets. Lighting level shall be minimum of one-foot candle average unless modified by the Board of Commissioners.
9. 
One hundred square feet of planting shall be required for each 25 parking spaces and the same shall be planted with such plantings as will be recommended by the Ross Township Planning Commission and approved by the Ross Township Board of Commissioners. Minimum size of planing islands shall be 400 square feet with a ten-foot minimum width.
10. 
Parking for the Physically Challenged.
A. 
All multifamily commercial, public and industrial uses shall provide handicapped parking spaces for the physically challenged as follows:
Total Parking Spaces
Required Accessible Spaces
Required Van Accessible Spaces*
1 to 25
1
1
26 to 50
2
1
51 to 75
3
1
76 to 100
4
1
101 to 150
5
1
151 to 200
6
1
201 to 300
7
1
301 to 400
8
1
401 to 500
9
2
501 to 1,000
2% of total
Over 1,000
20 plus 1 per 100 over 1,000
NOTES:
*
Required van accessible spaces shall be C of the total number with fractions of any number rounded up to the next highest number (i.e., nine spaces times C = 1.125, which would be rounded up to two required spaces).
B. 
Design of accessible spaces shall be completed in accordance with the applicable building code.
[Ord. 2035, 12/9/2002, § 1502]
1. 
Off-street loading requirements as specified below shall be provided on any lot on which a building exceeding 6,000 square feet of gross floor area for business or industry is hereafter erected.
A. 
Every retail establishment, storage warehouse or wholesale establishment exceeding 6,000 square feet shall have at least one off-street loading space. Where there is an aggregate gross floor area of 20,000 square feet or more arranged, intended or designed for such use, there shall be provided off-street truck loading or unloading berths in accordance with the following table.
Square Feet of Aggregate Gross Floor Area Devoted to Each Use
Required Number of Berths
6,000 up to 19,999
1
20,000 up to 79,999
2
For each additional 50,000 square feet
1 additional berth
2. 
Every auditorium, funeral home, multi-family dwelling of 20 units or more, office building, restaurant, hotel exceeding 6,000 square feet shall have at least one off-street loading space. Where there is an aggregate gross floor area of 30,000 square feet or more, arranged, intended or street truck loading and unloading berths in accordance with the following table:
Square Feet of Aggregate Gross Floor Area Devoted to Each Use
Required Number of Berths
6,000 up to 29,999
1
30,000 up to 44,999
2
For each additional 75,000 square feet
1 additional berth
[Ord. 2035, 12/9/2002, § 1503]
1. 
Off-street loading facilities shall be designed to conform to the following specifications:
A. 
Each required space shall be no less than 14 feet wide, 60 feet long and 17 feet high, exclusive of drives and maneuvering space and located entirely on the lot being served.
B. 
There shall be appropriate means of access to a street or alley as well as adequate maneuvering space.
C. 
The maximum width of driveways and sidewalk openings measured at the street lot line shall be 35 feet; the minimum width shall be 20 feet.
D. 
All accessory driveways and entrance ways shall be graded, all-weather surfaced and drained to the satisfaction of the Township Engineer, to the extent necessary to prevent nuisances of dust, erosion or excessive water flow across public ways.
E. 
Such facilities shall be designed and used in such a manner so that at no time constituting a nuisance, a hazard or an unreasonable impediment to traffic.
F. 
Such facilities shall be located to the side or rear of the principal structure on the lot and at no time shall be located in front of the principal structure on the lot.
G. 
Such facilities shall be sufficiently screened so as to limit visibility from any residential district or public right of way.
H. 
No vehicle shall be permitted to park in the loading area for more than 48 hours.
I. 
Lighting of loading areas may be required and/or permitted at the discretion of the Board of Commissioners. When applicable, all artificial lighting used to illuminate any parking space or spaces shall be so arranged that no direct rays from such lighting shall fall upon any neighboring property or streets. Lighting level shall be minimum of one foot-candle average unless modified by the Board of Commissioners.
2. 
All required loading facilities shall be provided and maintained in accordance with the following requirements:
A. 
They shall be provided and maintained as long as the use exists which the facilities were designed to serve.
B. 
They shall be reduced in total extent after their provision, except when the reduction is in conformity with the requirements of this Part.
C. 
Reasonable precautions shall be taken by the owner or sponsor of particular uses to assure the availability of required facilities to the delivery and pick-up vehicles they are designed to serve.
[Ord. 2035, 12/9/2002, § 1504]
1. 
Definitions.
LANDSCAPE BUFFER YARD
The area adjacent to any vehicular use area or along common boundaries in which the perimeter landscaping requirements are to be met.
OPACITY
An imaginary vertical plane extending from the established grade to a required height of which a required percent of the vertical plane shall be visually screened from adjacent property use.
PERIMETER LANDSCAPING
The use of landscape materials within the required landscape buffer yard.
VEHICULAR USE AREA
An open or unenclosed area containing more than 1,800 square feet of area or used by six or more of any type of vehicle, whether moving or at rest, including, but not limited to, parking lots, loading and unloading areas, mobile home parks and sales and service areas.
2. 
Unless otherwise provided, landscape materials shall be installed to provide a minimum of 50% winter opacity and 70% summer opacity, between one foot above finished grade level to the top of the required grade level to the top of the required planting, hedge or earthen mound within four years after installation. Further, grass or ground cover shall be planted on all portions of the landscape buffer yard not occupied by other landscape material.
A. 
Vehicular use area perimeter requirements shall be as follows:
(1) 
When any property adjoins a vehicular use area, a landscape buffer yard of at least five feet in width shall be provided. Such landscape buffer yard shall contain at least one tree for every 40 feet of boundary of vehicular use area or fraction thereof, or a minimum of three foot average height continuous planting, hedge or earth mound.
(2) 
When any public or private street right of way, access road or service road adjoins a vehicular use area, a landscape buffer yard of at least five feet in width shall be provided. Such landscape buffer yard shall contain at least one tree for every 40 feet of boundary of vehicular use area or fraction thereof, plus a three-foot average height continuous planting, hedge or earth mound.
B. 
Landscape Buffer Yard Conflicts. The required landscape buffer yard may be combined with a utility or other easement as long as all of the landscape requirements can be provided in addition to, and separate from, any other easement. Cars or other objects shall not overhang or otherwise intrude upon the required landscape buffer yard more than 2 1/2 feet, and wheel stops or curbs shall be required.
C. 
Landscaping at Access Drive and Street Intersections. To insure that landscape materials do not constitute a driving hazard, a clear sight triangle shall be observed at all street intersections or intersections of access drives with streets. Within this clear sight triangle no landscape material nor parked vehicles, or other objects shall obstruct the clear sight triangle.
3. 
Landscaping Materials. The landscaping materials shall consist of the following and are described in more detail in the plant list on file at the Municipal Building. The proposed landscape materials should complement the form of the existing trees and plantings, as well as the development's general design and architecture. The type of shade or sun should be considered in selecting plant materials.
A. 
Earth Mounds. Earth mounds shall be physical barriers which block or screen the view similar to hedge, fence or wall. Mounds shall be constructed with proper and adequate plant material to prevent erosion. A difference in elevation between areas requiring screening does not constitute an existing earth mound and shall not be considered as fulfilling any screening requirement.
B. 
Plants. Artificial plants are prohibited. All plant materials shall be living plants and shall meet the following requirements:
(1) 
Quality. Plant materials used in conformance with provisions of this Part shall conform to the standards of the American Association of Nurserymen and shall have passed any inspections required under state regulations.
(2) 
Deciduous Trees. Trees which normally shed their leaves in the fall shall be species having an average mature crown spread of greater than 15 feet in Western Pennsylvania and having trunks which can be maintained with over five feet of clear wood in areas which have visibility requirements, except at vehicular use area intersection where eight foot clear wood requirement shall control. Trees having an average mature spread of crown less than 15 feet may be substituted by grouping of the same so as to create the equivalent of fifteen-foot crown spread. A minimum of 10 feet overall height or a minimum of caliper, trunk diameter, measured six inches above ground for trees up to four inches caliper of at least 1 3/4 inches immediately after planting shall be required. Trees of species whose roots are known to cause damage to public roadways or other public works shall not be planted closer than 15 feet to such public works, unless the tree root system is completely contained within a barrier for which the minimum interior containing dimensions shall be five feet square and five feet deep and for which the construction requirements shall be four-inch thick, reinforced concrete.
(3) 
Evergreen Trees. Evergreen trees shall be a minimum of five feet high with a minimum caliper of 1 1/2 inches immediately after planting.
(4) 
Shrubs and Hedges. Shall be at least two feet for vehicular use area perimeter requirements, and three feet for property perimeter requirements, in average height when planted and shall conform to the opacity and other requirements within four years after planting.
(5) 
Vines. Shall be at least 12 or 15 inches high at planting, and are generally used in conjunction with walls or fences.
(6) 
Grass or Ground Cover. Grass of the fescue (Gramineae) or bluegrass (Poaceae) family shall be planted in species normally grown as permanent lawns in Western Pennsylvania, and may be sodded or seeded; except in swales or other areas subject to erosion, where solid sod, erosion reducing net, or suitable mulch shall be used, nurse grass seed shall be sown for immediate protection until complete coverage otherwise is achieved. Grass sod shall be clean and free of weeds and noxious pests or diseases. Ground cover shall be planted in such a manner as to present a finished appearance and 75% of complete coverage after complete growing seasons, with a maximum of eight inches on center. In certain cases, ground cover also may consist of rocks, pebbles, sand and similar approved materials.
C. 
Maintenance and Installation. All landscaping materials shall be installed in a sound, workmanshiplike manner and according to accepted, good construction and planting procedures. The owner of the property shall be responsible for and shall keep them in a proper, neat and orderly appearance, free from refuse and debris at all times. All unhealthy or dead plant material shall be replaced within one year, or by the next planting period, whichever comes first; while other defective landscape material shall be replaced or repaired within three months. Violation of these installation and maintenance provisions shall be grounds for the refusal of a certificate of occupancy or institution of legal proceedings.