Township of Pocopson, PA
Chester County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
A. 
Hereafter, no land shall be used or occupied, and no building or structure shall be erected, altered, used or occupied, except in conformity with the regulations herein established for the district in which such land, building or structure is located.
B. 
In cases of mixed occupancy, the regulations for each use shall apply to the portion of the building or land so used.
No yard or other space provided about any building or structure for the purpose of complying with this chapter shall be considered as a yard or other open space for another building or structure.
[Amended 8-14-2017 by Ord. No. 1-2017]
Excepting buildings, structures, lots, and uses which are governed by Article VI of this chapter, the following regulations shall be applicable:
A. 
Nonconforming use of land. A nonconforming use of land, exclusive of buildings on the lot, or of land containing no buildings, may be extended on the lot so used one time during the existence of the nonconformity where such use exists at the effective date of this chapter, provided that the area of such use shall not be increased by more than 25% of the area of that portion of the lot actually occupied by the use, and such extension shall conform to the area and bulk requirements and to the design standards for the district. The extension of a nonconforming use of land shall be limited to that which was in single and separate ownership on September 13, 1972; except that any portion of the lot which is subdivided after the effective date of this chapter and to which the nonconforming use has not been extended before subdivision, shall after subdivision be used only in conformity with all of the provisions of this chapter.
B. 
Conforming uses of conforming buildings on nonconforming lots. Conforming buildings of which a conforming use is made and which are located on a lot which is nonconforming at the effective date of this chapter may be enlarged, or additional buildings may be erected, subject to the following:
(1) 
Provided all area and bulk requirements and design standards for the district are met, except that:
(a) 
If the owner of such a lot owns or controls adjacent land sufficient to enable him to enlarge the lot in conformity with the Pocopson Township Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance to the size required for the use and district, he shall be required to do so before any enlargement or additional buildings are permitted, unless such enlargement of the nonconforming lot would create nonconformity of any type on the adjacent land.
(b) 
The provisions of Articles V and VII and § 250-86 and Subsection M hereof relating to maximum impervious coverage shall be met.
C. 
Conforming uses of nonconforming buildings on conforming lots.
(1) 
Buildings of which a conforming use is made, but which are nonconforming in area and bulk by exceeding the allowable lot coverage or height for the district in which they are located may not be enlarged unless the lot size is enlarged.
(2) 
Buildings of which a conforming use is made, but which are nonconforming in location on a lot, may be enlarged or additional buildings may be constructed subject to the following:
(a) 
Additional buildings and enlargement of existing buildings must conform to distances from lot and setback lines and all design standards for the district.
(b) 
The additions and enlargements, together with the buildings existing on the lot shall not exceed lot coverage requirements for the district.
(c) 
The provisions of this section and § 250-86 herein.
(d) 
Any building which does not meet the applicable setback requirements from state or Township arterial or collector streets shall not be enlarged, or additional buildings constructed, such that the resulting, total area coverage on the lot is greater than 2 1/2 that of the existing building(s).
D. 
Conforming uses of nonconforming buildings on nonconforming lots. Nonconforming buildings existing on nonconforming lots at the effective date of this chapter, if such buildings are used in conformity with the use provisions of the district in which they are located, may be enlarged or additional buildings may be constructed subject to:
(1) 
The provisions of Subsections B and C above and Subsection M below;
(2) 
The provisions of § 250-86 herein; and
(3) 
The grant of a special exception by the Zoning Hearing Board under the provisions of Article XII of this chapter.
E. 
Nonconforming uses of conforming buildings on conforming lots. A nonconforming use of a building which is conforming in area and bulk and location on a lot conforming in size shall be subject to the following provisions:
(1) 
In all Neighborhood Commercial or Limited Industrial Districts, such buildings may be increased in area by enlargement of existing buildings or by construction of additional buildings provided that the existing buildings plus enlargements or additions do not exceed the area, bulk and setback requirements for the district; and, provided that all design standards for the district are complied with or their installation and construction guaranteed by posting of a performance bond or other acceptable, adequate security. Enlargements and construction of additional buildings for extension of a nonconforming use shall be limited to the lot which was in single and separate ownership on the effective date of this chapter.
(2) 
In all residential districts such buildings may be increased in area by not more than 50% of the area of such buildings as were on the lot at the date the use first became nonconforming. Such increase may be by enlargement of existing buildings or the construction of additional buildings, subject to the following:
(a) 
The granting of special exception by the Zoning Hearing Board under the provisions of Article XII of this chapter.
(b) 
Provided that the buildings on the lot at the effective date of this chapter, plus the enlargements or additions, do not exceed the area and bulk requirements for the district and provided that all design standards for the district are complied with.
(c) 
The enlargements and construction of additional buildings for extension for the nonconforming use shall be limited to the lot which was in single and separate ownership on September 13, 1972.
(d) 
There shall be no increase in area permitted or allowed for a use which is in violation of Article IX of this chapter prohibiting, among other things, hazardous or dangerous conditions.
F. 
Nonconforming uses of conforming buildings on nonconforming lots. Nonconforming uses of conforming buildings located on nonconforming lots shall be subject to the provisions of Subsection E above. Any expansion shall be limited to a one-time expansion during the time nonconformity exists.
G. 
Nonconforming uses of nonconforming buildings on conforming lots. A nonconforming use of a nonconforming building located on a conforming lot shall be subject to the following provisions:
(1) 
In all districts, buildings nonconforming in area and bulk by exceeding the allowable lot coverage or height for the district shall not be enlarged or additional buildings constructed.
(2) 
Buildings nonconforming in location on the lot, by reason of being closer to a lot line or setback line than the minimum requirements for the district, may be enlarged or additional buildings may be constructed subject to the following provisions:
(a) 
In all Neighborhood Commercial Districts or Limited Industrial Districts:
[1] 
Provided that enlargements and additional buildings conform to all setback requirements for the district.
[2] 
Provided that the buildings on the lot at the effective date of this chapter plus the enlargements or additions do not exceed the lot coverage requirements for the district and that all design standards for the district are complied with.
[3] 
Provided that the enlargements and additional buildings for the extension of a nonconforming use shall be limited to the lot which was in single and separate.
[4] 
Provided that access and egress to the lot, including but not limited to sight distance and cuts in the road embankment, is brought into conformity with § 250-90 of this chapter.
(b) 
In all residential districts such buildings may be increased in area by not more than 50% of the area of such buildings which were on the lot at the date the use first became nonconforming, provided the use of the building is the same as that use at the time when the nonconformity was created. Such increase may be by enlargement of existing buildings or the construction of additional buildings, subject to the granting of a special exception by the Zoning Hearing Board under the provisions of Article XII of this chapter, and subject to the provisions of Subsection A of this section and § 250-86 and Subsection M
H. 
Nonconforming uses of nonconforming buildings on nonconforming lots. A nonconforming building of which a nonconforming use is made on a nonconforming lot may not be enlarged, nor may additional buildings be constructed.
I. 
Nonconforming lots containing no buildings. A nonconforming lot, which contains no buildings, and which is in single and separate ownership at the effective date of this chapter, and which is not of the required minimum area or width, or which is of unusual dimensions such that the owner could not provide the open spaces required for the district, may be used or a building erected thereon under the following conditions:
(1) 
Provided that the owner does not presently own or control other adjoining property, or has not conveyed ownership or control in other adjoining property since the effective date of this chapter, sufficient to enable him to comply with the area and bulk requirements for the district.
(2) 
A special exception is granted by the Zoning Hearing Board subject to the provisions of Article XII of this chapter. In considering a special exception for this use, the Zoning Hearing Board shall impose the following requirements:
(a) 
That the use of the lot and the building shall conform to the permitted uses in the district.
(b) 
That the building height conform to the requirement for the district.
(c) 
That the design standards for uses in the district can be applied.
(d) 
Compliance with Subsection M and §§ 250-86 and 250-90.
J. 
Change of use. Any nonconforming use of a building or land may be changed to another nonconforming use of substantially the same character and type provided there are no changes in the pattern of usage (such as, but not limited to, traffic generation, operating hours, on-site sewage or water demands, noise or light pollution) of the building or land as it affects that building or land and adjacent and neighborhood buildings and land.
K. 
Abandonment of use. If a nonconforming use of land or of a building or other structure is abandoned or discontinued for a continuous uninterrupted period of one year or more, subsequent use of such building or structure or land shall be in conformity with the provisions of this chapter.
L. 
Restoration. Any lawful nonconforming building or other structure which has been involuntarily damaged or destroyed by fire, explosion, windstorm or other similar active cause, to an extent of not more than 75% of its fair market value, excluding land, may be reconstructed in the same location, provided that:
(1) 
The reconstructed building or structure shall not exceed the height, area or volume of the damaged or destroyed building or structure; and
(2) 
Reconstruction shall begin within one year from the date of damage or destruction and shall be completed without interruption.
(3) 
If any destroyed portion of the nonconforming building or structure did not meet setback or other applicable bulk and area requirements or design standards, that portion of the building shall not be rebuilt in the same location unless the owner can prove that the building cannot be rebuilt in conformity or greater conformity with applicable area and bulk, regulations and design standards. In considering a request for a special exception under this section, the Zoning Hearing Board shall have the power to impose conditions on the location of the reconstruction consistent with this section and chapter and the public health and safety.
M. 
Maximum impervious coverage. The area of impervious cover on nonconforming residential lots of one acre or less shall not exceed 15% of the lot area as defined in this chapter. The area of impervious cover on nonconforming residential lots between one and two acres shall not exceed 10% of the lot area as defined in this chapter. In calculating the area of impervious cover, both the area of the existing building(s) and paving, as well as the proposed extension or enlargement, (or when no buildings and paving are already in existence, the proposed building and paving or that paving or parking area required by ordinance), shall be included.
N. 
Registration of nonconformity. The Zoning Officer is authorized to compile and maintain a registration file or a list of all nonconforming uses and structures within Pocopson Township. The Zoning Officer may provide a notice of the registration or refusal to register in the manner and in addition shall send notice of such action to the property owner and any occupant or user thereof.
[Amended 3-4-2002 by Ord. No. 1-2002]
Each residential, residential-institutional or multiuse lot served by an individual on-site sewage system shall contain a minimum of 20,000 square feet of contiguous area suitable for on-site sanitary sewage disposal and groundwater recharge facilities exclusive of slopes of 20% or greater, floodplains, seasonal high water table soils, as delineated on USGS maps, with appropriate soil survey overlays (i.e., Soil Survey of Chester and Delaware Counties), or, if requested by the Supervisors, a competent aerial topographic survey, with appropriate soils information, and areas of the lot subject to impervious cover. Commercial or industrial lots or tracts served by an individual on-site sewage system shall have not less than 25% of the lot or tract area, and in no event less than 10,000 contiguous square feet, or such larger area that may be required by the Chester County Health Department, exclusive of the aforesaid features. Where a minimum requested square footage does not include the building site, such area shall be no more than 100 feet from the building site and shall not be separated from the building site by any stream, drainageway, restrictive right-of-way or road. Said area shall be deemed acceptable for an individual on-site sewage system by the Chester County Health Department.
[Amended 3-4-2002 by Ord. No. 1-2002; 5-14-2007 by Ord. No. 3-2007]
A. 
Purpose. The following natural resource conservation standards are established to protect the public health, safety, and welfare by minimizing adverse environmental impacts. These standards are intended to meet the following purposes:
(1) 
Define and delineate selected natural resources within the Township and establish resource conservation standards to assist the Township in reducing the impact proposed uses will have on the environment.
(2) 
Conserve valuable natural resources within the Township in accordance with the Pocopson Township Comprehensive Plan (2001) and the Pocopson Township Parks, Recreation, and Open Space Plan (1993).
(3) 
Conserve and protect natural resources within the Township and the Kennett Area Region in accordance with the following policies of the Kennett Area Region Comprehensive Plan (2000), as amended:
(a) 
Preserve and protect areas which are naturally unsuitable for development or which provide valuable wildlife habitat, including stream valleys, riparian zones, steep slopes, floodplains, woodlands, wetlands, and seasonal high water table soils.
(b) 
Continue to preserve sensitive natural areas and wildlife habitats from development by strengthening natural resource conservation standards contained in each municipality's Zoning and Subdivision and Land Development Ordinances.
(c) 
Protect regional watersheds and the quality of groundwater and streams within the region, and pursue measures to maintain and, where possible, improve water quality.
B. 
General applicability of conservation standards.
(1) 
In the event that the provisions of this section and any other provisions of the Township Code are in conflict, the more restrictive provisions shall apply.
(2) 
In the event that two or more natural resource areas identified in this section occur on the same lot or tract, disturbance limitations shall be measured separately. Where such resource areas overlap, the most restrictive standard (the least amount of permitted alteration, regrading, clearing, or building) shall apply to the area of overlap.
(3) 
It shall be a violation of this chapter to regrade, fill, pipe, divert, channel, build upon, or otherwise alter or disturb a natural resource protected by this section prior to the submission, review, and approval of any applicable application for zoning or building permit(s), conditional use or special exception approval, zoning variance, or subdivision or land development plan(s).
(4) 
Limitations to the disturbance of resources shall apply before, during, and after construction on a site.
(5) 
Disturbance limitations, established as a maximum percentage of permitted disturbance, shall be applied concurrently as a percentage of each applicable resource area to the extent that it is present on the entirety of any tract or any lot and as a percentage of the area within each discrete resource area measuring one acre or more. A "discrete resource area" is the entirety of any single contiguous area comprising any one resource regulated by the provisions of this Section. Any area of resource overlap shall be measured as part of the contiguous resource area with the most restrictive disturbance limitation. For example, if disturbance of 25% of a particular resource area is permitted, then it shall apply as 25% of the total area of that resource on the applicable lot or tract. In addition, the twenty-five-percent limitation shall apply individually to each discrete resource area measuring one acre or more, regardless of whether, collectively, such areas comprise 25% of all areas of such resource on the applicable lot or tract.
(6) 
Disturbance limitations shall be applied based on the occurrence of identified resource areas at the time of adoption of this section. Disturbance permitted over time in multiple applications on the same lot or tract shall be measured against the same overall limitations established at the time of the first application after the adoption of this section. For example, if applicable disturbance limitations for a particular resource permit two acres of disturbance, and one acre of disturbance is permitted upon the first application after the adoption of this section, then only one acre shall remain to be permitted for future disturbance of the applicable resource regardless of the total number of applications over the years.
(7) 
Information submitted to demonstrate compliance with this section shall be verified as correct by the Township Engineer or other qualified professional as determined by the Township.
(8) 
Regulations and disturbance limits for each specific resource area set forth below shall be complied with as applicable. The following summary table is provided as an overview of disturbance limitations. In certain cases as provided herein, exceptions or modifications may apply.
[Amended 8-14-2017 by Ord. No. 1-2017; 10-16-2017 by Ord. No. 3-2017]
Resource Area
Maximum Disturbance
Floodplain
0%
Very steep slopes
10%
Moderately steep slopes
25%
Steep slope margins
25%
Riparian buffer's inner 50 feet
0%
Riparian buffer's outer 50 feet
15%
Seasonal high-water table soils
20%
Heritage trees
0%
Rare species sites
0%
Exceptional natural areas
10%
Forest interior habitat
10%
Woodland
20%
Wetlands
0%
C. 
Floodplain conservation. Areas identified as floodplains shall comply with Article VI of this chapter.
[Amended 8-14-2017 by Ord. No. 1-2017]
D. 
Steep slope conservation.
(1) 
Steep slope areas shall be preserved in their natural state whenever possible. Where construction of roads, buildings, driveways, or infrastructure cannot be avoided, disturbance shall be kept to the minimum necessary and in no case shall it exceed the following permitted disturbance limits:
(a) 
Moderately steep slopes. No more than 25% of moderately steep slopes shall be regraded, cleared, built upon, or otherwise altered or disturbed.
(b) 
Steep slope margins. No more than 25% of steep slope margins shall be regraded, cleared, built upon, or otherwise altered or disturbed.
(c) 
Very steep slopes. No more than 10% of very steep slopes shall be regraded, cleared, built upon, or otherwise altered or disturbed. In addition, disturbance permitted on very steep slopes shall be limited to the following activities:
[1] 
Timber harvesting, when conducted in compliance with the required timber harvesting plan. Clearcutting or grubbing of trees is prohibited on very steep slopes.
[2] 
Grading for the minimum portion of a driveway necessary for access to the principal use and sewer, water, and other utility lines when it can be demonstrated to the satisfaction of the Township that no other routing is practicable, but excluding sewage disposal systems.
[3] 
Hiking and riding trail(s) of minimum adequate width(s), where developed so as to minimize potential erosion, follow existing topographic contours to the greatest degree practicable and, where using unpaved surfaces, to the maximum practicable extent.
(2) 
All permitted buildings or structures shall be constructed in such a manner as to provide for the least alteration necessary of the existing grade, vegetation, and natural soils condition.
(3) 
A grading plan shall be provided identifying the existing contours of the site, proposed finished grades, and the proposed location of all buildings and structures. Locations for all stockpiled earth, stone, and other materials shall be shown on the plan and shall not be located within the dripline of any trees intended to remain post permitted disturbance.
(4) 
Excessive cut and fill shall be avoided. New roads and improvements to existing roads should be designed within the existing contours of the land to the extent possible and strive for compatibility with the character of rural roads.
(5) 
Finished slopes of permitted cut and fill shall not exceed thirty-three-percent slope unless the applicant can demonstrate the method by which steeper slopes will be stabilized and maintained adequately.
(6) 
Any stockpile(s) of earth intended to be stored for more than 21 days shall be seeded or otherwise stabilized to the satisfaction of the Township Engineer. Any disturbed areas of very steep slope and any cut and fill resulting in slopes of greater than 20% shall be protected with an erosion control blanket.
(7) 
Any disturbance of land shall be in compliance with the erosion and sedimentation control standards of Chapter 190, Subdivision and Land Development, and PADEP Title 25, Chapter 102. All applicants shall refer to the PADEP Erosion and Sediment Pollution Control Program Manual dated March 2000, or latest edition, for applicable erosion and sediment control standards. Where applicable, in the context of any application before the Township, any applicant shall permit inspection of erosion and sedimentation controls by designated personnel of both the Township and the Chester County Conservation District.
(a) 
An erosion and sedimentation control plan and soil stabilization plan shall be submitted consistent with the requirements of Chapter 190, Subdivision and Land Development.
(b) 
The plan shall demonstrate how soil will be protected from erosion during construction and how soil will be stabilized upon the completion of construction.
(8) 
Where the following information has not been previously submitted as part of a subdivision or land development plan application, such information shall be submitted to the Township with building permit, conditional use, special exception, or zoning applications, when applicable:
(a) 
The adequacy of access to the site for emergency vehicles shall be subject to review by the Fire Marshal or his designee. The necessary information shall be submitted by the applicant to the Fire Marshal or his designee for his review.
(b) 
Grading plan and erosion and sedimentation control plans.
E. 
Wetlands conservation.
(1) 
Wetlands shall not be regraded, filled, piped, diverted, channeled, built upon, or otherwise altered or disturbed, including for purposes of access or utility crossings, except where all applicable permits have been obtained and copy thereof submitted to the Township.
(2) 
Any applicant proposing a use, activity, or improvement which would entail the regrading or placement of fill in wetlands shall provide the Township with proof that the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (Bureau of Dams and Waterway Safety and Bureau of Water Quality Management) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have been contacted to determine the applicability of state and federal wetland regulations. Any applicant contacted by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection or the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in regard to wetlands also shall concurrently provide to the Township a copy of such correspondence.
(3) 
Where permitted subject to applicable regulation and as otherwise provided herein, sewers or other liquid transport pipelines shall only be permitted to cross wetlands on the minimum traversal distance and where every precaution shall be taken to prevent leaks and to prevent any possible draining of the wetland (e.g., water flowing through or along any pipe or trench). At the expense of the applicant, the Township may require inspection of applicable systems and facilities, including but not limited to x-ray of steel welds and pressure testing of pipelines.
(4) 
Where wetland disturbance is permitted subject to applicable regulation on any lot or tract, no more than 10% nor more than one acre of any wetland area, whichever is less, shall be disturbed for any purpose. To the maximum extent feasible, any disturbance to or loss of natural wetlands shall be mitigated at the rate of three times the lost or disturbed wetland area in a manner approved by the Township. Mitigation may include creation of wetlands which shall be hydrologically fed with stormwater discharged from an approved stormwater management facility. Created wetlands may be located at a site approved by the Township for such mitigation, whether on or off the property that contains the wetland subject to disturbance. Where approved by the Township, some or a portion of any required wetlands mitigation, in lieu of wetland creation, may be accounted for through permanent conservation of other existing unprotected wetlands or by restoration of former wetlands (e.g., through removal of tilefields or other drainage facilities) by means satisfactory to the Township.
(5) 
Where required to comply with state or federal regulation, any applicant also shall provide the Township with a full wetland delineation report conducted by a qualified wetland biologist, soil scientist, or environmental professional of demonstrated qualifications, subject to the following:
(a) 
Where there is any question as to the accuracy of the wetland delineation report, the Township may hire a qualified consultant to review the delineation and recommend revisions at the applicant's expense.
(b) 
Such a professional shall certify that the methods used correctly reflect the currently accepted technical concepts, including identification and analysis of wetland vegetation, hydric soils, and hydrologic indicators. Methods used in the delineation report shall be acceptable to the Township Engineer or other qualified consultant hired by the Township.
(c) 
The wetland report submitted to the Township shall include a determination of whether wetlands are present on the site and a full delineation, area measurement (in square feet), and description of any wetlands determined to be present.
F. 
Water body and riparian buffer protection standards. The provisions of this section shall not apply to the footprints of existing primary and accessory uses, including, but not limited to, all agricultural uses and research related thereto, buildings, fences, lawns, gardens, utility lines, roads, driveways, sidewalks, decks, piers, water, septic and sewage supply facilities and their related appurtenances (well houses, utility pump and lift stations, manholes, etc.).
[Amended 10-16-2017 by Ord. No. 3-2017]
(1) 
The riparian buffer area is designated as:
(a) 
An area that begins at each edge of a water body and shall extend landward a minimum width of 100 feet, measured horizontally on a line perpendicular to the nearest edge of the water body, as reviewed and approved by the municipal engineer.
(b) 
Where the floodplain extends greater than 100 feet from the water body, the riparian buffer area shall extend to the outer edge of the defined one-hundred-year floodplain.
(2) 
Isolated wetlands and other water bodies. Wetlands and other water bodies not located along a watercourse, where the wetland or water body is greater than 5,000 square feet in area, shall have a minimum riparian buffer width of 50 feet, measured from the edge of the wetland or water body around the entire perimeter.
(3) 
The following uses or activities are permitted by right in riparian buffer areas:
(a) 
Wildlife sanctuaries, nature preserves, forest preserves, fishing areas, passive areas of public and private parklands.
(b) 
Temporary stream restoration projects, stream bank restoration projects, and vegetation restoration projects to restore the stream or riparian buffer to an ecologically healthy stage utilizing natural channel design practices to the greatest degree possible.
(c) 
Stream crossings for farm vehicles and/or livestock if part of a federal, state, and/or county conservation district and/or local nonprofit riparian buffer improvement project.
(d) 
Provision for stone-dust or natural trail and related trail access when resulting in minimum disturbance to existing trees and shrubs.
(e) 
Research and monitoring devices, such as staff gages, water recording, water quality testing, cross vanes, weirs and related demonstration facilities.
(f) 
Within the outer 50 feet of a riparian buffer area, timber harvesting, when conducted in compliance with a timber harvesting plan prepared, submitted, and approved in accordance with § 250-87L of this chapter.
(4) 
The following uses or activities are permitted by special exception in riparian buffer areas:
(a) 
Structures that, by their nature, cannot be located anywhere except within the riparian buffer. These structures shall include docks, boat launches, public water supply intake structures, facilities for natural water quality treatment and purification and public wastewater treatment plant sewer lines and outfalls. The structures shall provide for the minimum practicable disturbance of the riparian buffer by minimizing size and location and by taking advantage of co-location, if possible.
(b) 
Road crossings (when perpendicular to the stream or buffer), bridges, culverts, utilities, and impoundments.
(c) 
Provision for paved trail and related trail access when resulting in minimum disturbance to existing trees and shrubs.
(d) 
Stormwater conveyance structures and outfalls.
(5) 
The following uses or activities are permitted by special exception approval only within the outer 50 feet of a riparian buffer area:
(a) 
Any other use or activity permitted in the underlying base district, provided there is no regrading, filling, or alteration within the inner 50 feet of the riparian buffer area, and no more than 15% of the outer 50 feet may be regraded, filled, or otherwise altered or subject to land disturbance. Uses and activities permitted by this provision shall not include the establishment of any impervious surfaces.
(6) 
The following activities or practices are expressly prohibited in riparian buffer areas:
(a) 
Removal or disturbance of vegetation in a manner that is inconsistent with erosion and sedimentation control and riparian buffer protection.
(b) 
Storage or discharge of any hazardous or noxious materials, except those used during emergencies for the treatment and/or maintenance of any public sewer and public water treatment facilities (i.e., generator sets or alternative drive units).
(c) 
Use of fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, and/or other chemicals, except:
[1] 
Where permitted by a valid conservation plan, forest stewardship plan, or approved planting and maintenance plan [see § 250-87F(7)(e) below];
[2] 
For selective herbicide application by a qualified professional to control noxious weeds and invasive species of plants in riparian buffers.
(d) 
Motor or wheeled vehicle traffic in any area not designed to accommodate adequately the type and volume of vehicular movement.
(7) 
Riparian buffer restoration and planting requirements. All riparian buffer areas shall be continually maintained with a diverse mix of locally adapted native species of canopy trees, understory trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants so as to constitute a forested riparian buffer where not otherwise occupied by any existing use except in accordance with § 250-87F, or any authorized use permitted in § 250-87F(3) through (5). In addition:
(a) 
The applicant shall restore the full 100 feet of the impacted riparian buffer area, or the first 100 feet of a one-hundred-year floodplain, to a forested riparian buffer, as a condition of any approval listed in § 250-87B(3), except as provided in Subsection F(7)(e) below, through invasive plant removal and planting of a diverse mix of native tree and shrub species.
(b) 
Restoration plantings shall be planted at initial densities sufficient enough to provide a minimum of 200 trees per acre at canopy closure.
(c) 
The following tree planting and spacing standards shall apply at installation:
[1] 
Seedlings: ten-foot spacing (approximately 435 seedlings/acre) protected by five-foot tree shelters.
[2] 
Bare root trees or container trees (at least six feet in height for either): twelve-foot spacing (approximately 300 trees/acre). Tree shelters, wraps, or other proven methods shall be required to prevent damage from antler rubbing.
To reduce competition from grasses and invasives, vegetation around tree shelters shall be sprayed or otherwise effectively controlled annually for a minimum of four years. Tree shelters shall be maintained at all times and removed when the tree reaches 1 1/2- to 2-inch. Additional planting guidance may be obtained from PADEP's Bureau of Watershed Management Document Number 394-5600-001, entitled "Riparian Forest Buffer Guidance," November 27, 2010, and the "Chesapeake Bay Riparian Handbook, A Guide for Establishing and Maintaining Riparian Forest Buffers," USDA Forest Service, NA-TP-02-97, Radnor, Pennsylvania."
(d) 
Landowners who are enrolled in, and fully in compliance with, the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) administered through their local Farm Service Agency are permitted to utilize their stream-side-buffer restoration to satisfy the forested riparian buffer restoration requirements of this section for as long as they are enrolled in, and fully in compliance with, that voluntary program.
(e) 
Applicants shall submit, and, as a condition of approval for any activity listed in § 250-87B(3), a planting and maintenance plan for the impacted riparian buffer. The plan shall be prepared by a registered landscape architect or professional plant ecologist. The plan shall identify the number, density and species of locally adapted native trees appropriate to the site conditions that will achieve a minimum of 60% uniform canopy coverage within 10 years. The plan shall describe the maintenance program to be conducted by the buffer owner for a minimum of five years, including measures to remove, and subsequently control, invasive plant species, limit deer and rodent damage, and replace deceased trees and shrubs for the first four years. Applicants with riparian buffer areas associated with a pending Township application, and which are also enrolled in CREP, shall submit a plan showing the existing or proposed stream-side-buffer planting that has been approved by the Farm Service Agency.
(f) 
Restoration to a forested riparian buffer shall not be required for issuance of a building permit for a single-family dwelling, addition thereto, or for the construction of an accessory structure disturbing less than 10,000 square feet of land on an existing lot.
(8) 
Any riparian buffer that is included within a lot created after the effective date of this ordinance shall include as a condition of approval of the subdivision creating the lot, a restrictive covenant approved by the municipal solicitor, and recorded with the final subdivision or land development plan and the deed for the lot. The restrictive covenant shall clearly define the riparian buffer area, shall include binding provisions for the adequate long-term functioning and integrity of the riparian buffer, and shall include a requirement for notification of all subsequent lot owners of its restrictive nature.
G. 
Conservation of seasonal high water table soils.
(1) 
With the exception of those uses or activities listed below, and where not otherwise regulated more restrictively under the provisions of this chapter, no more than 20% of any seasonal high water table soil shall be regraded, filled, built upon, or otherwise altered or disturbed:
(a) 
Regulated activities permitted by the commonwealth (i.e., permitted stream or wetland crossing);
(b) 
Provision for trail and trail access where approved by the Township;
(c) 
Selective removal of hazardous or invasive vegetation; or
(d) 
Vegetation management in accordance with an approved landscape plan or open space management plan.
(2) 
Notwithstanding the twenty-percent disturbance limitation set forth above, the following regulations shall apply to seasonal high water table soils:
(a) 
No structures for human use or habitation or for regular animal occupancy shall be constructed in any area of soil where the seasonal high water table is within one foot of the surface;
(b) 
No subsurface sewage system shall be constructed within any area of seasonal high water table soil.
(c) 
No road, driveway, or emergency access shall cross any area of seasonal high water table soil except where providing necessary access which clearly is otherwise impracticable and only where drainage, adequate base preparation, and paving approved by the Township Engineer shall be provided.
H. 
Heritage trees.
(1) 
No heritage trees shall be removed from any lot or tract except where undertaken in accordance with an approved timber harvesting plan or where the applicant demonstrates to the satisfaction of the Township that such removal is essential to eliminate hazardous condition(s). In consideration of any need for tree removal, the Township may engage the services of an arborist, reasonable costs therefor to be borne by the applicant.
(2) 
To the minimum extent necessary to permit retention of heritage trees while providing for lawful use, modification to otherwise applicable area and bulk requirements may be approved in the following situations:
(a) 
Where approved by the Board of Supervisors as part of any applicable subdivision or land development application; or
(b) 
Where approved by the Zoning Officer upon approval of any applicable building permit; and
(c) 
Provided that no applicable yard area setback shall be reduced more than 50% except where approved as a variance by the Zoning Hearing Board.
(3) 
Where any applicant for building, zoning, subdivision or land development approval establishes conservation restrictions acceptable to the Township which shall result in the conservation of heritage trees, all such heritage trees to be retained shall be credited toward any tree replacement required under § 250-87K(5) below, at the ratio of four trees credited for each heritage tree retained.
I. 
Rare species sites.
(1) 
With the exception of selective removal of hazardous or invasive vegetation, no rare species site shall be regraded, filled, built upon, or otherwise altered or disturbed.
(2) 
A buffer area with a minimum dimension of 25 feet shall be provided around the entire perimeter of any rare species site within which no land disturbance shall be permitted.
(3) 
To the minimum extent necessary to avoid disturbance to rare species site(s) or to provide for required buffer(s), while providing for lawful use, modification to otherwise applicable area and bulk requirements may be approved in the following situations:
(a) 
Where approved by the Board of Supervisors as part of any applicable subdivision or land development application; or
(b) 
Where approved by the Zoning Officer upon approval of any applicable building permit; and
(c) 
Provided that no applicable yard area setback shall be reduced more than 50% except where approved as a variance by the Zoning Hearing Board.
J. 
Exceptional natural areas.
(1) 
With the exception of those uses or activities listed below, and where not otherwise regulated more restrictively under the provisions of this chapter, no more than 10% of any exceptional natural area, where not otherwise classified as woodland, shall be regraded, filled, built upon, or otherwise altered or disturbed:
(a) 
Regulated activities permitted by the commonwealth (i.e., permitted stream or wetland crossing);
(b) 
Provision for trails;
(c) 
Selective removal of hazardous or invasive vegetation; or
(d) 
Vegetation management in accordance with an approved landscape plan or open space management plan.
(2) 
Exceptional natural areas which are classified as forest interior habitat or woodland shall be regulated as provided in § 250-87K, without further limitation under this subsection.
[Amended 10-16-2017 by Ord. No. 3-2017]
K. 
Woodlands and hedgerows.
[Amended 10-16-2017 by Ord. No. 3-2017]
(1) 
Disturbance limitations for woodlands and hedgerows. Notwithstanding the provisions of this section, timber harvesting shall be permitted where undertaken in compliance with the provisions set forth in § 250-87L. Except for approved timber harvesting pursuant to § 250-87L, all woodland disturbance shall be subject to the following total disturbance limitations unless modified subject to § 250-87M(3) below, and where replacement plantings are provided subject to § 250-87K(4):
(a) 
Permitted woodland disturbance on any lot or tract shall not exceed 10% of any area defined as forest interior habitat.
(b) 
Permitted woodland disturbance on any lot or tract shall not exceed 20% of any woodland other than forest interior habitat.
(c) 
Disturbance limitations shall be measured based on the extent of the woodland at the time of first submission of applicable application(s) after the adoption of this section, and shall be indicated on applicable plan(s). The extent of any area of woodland disturbance shall be measured to include the entire area within the drip line of any tree where any part of the area within the drip line of said tree is subject to woodland disturbance. Any disturbance limitation shall run with the land, once established. Subsequent applications shall be subject to the initial determination of disturbance limitations, regardless of intervening disturbance which may have occurred. If, at any time within three years prior to an applicable application, there had existed a greater extent of woodland, such greater area shall be utilized to calculate the extent of woodland disturbance and the limitations set forth herein.
(2) 
In determining where necessary woodland disturbance shall occur in the context of any subdivision or land development or building or zoning permit application, the applicant shall consider the following:
(a) 
The location(s) and benefit of conservation of healthy mature woodland stands.
(b) 
The impacts, in terms of functions and values to wildlife, of separating, dividing and/or encroaching on wildlife travel corridors and/or extensive habitat areas. Such impacts must be explicitly assessed in any area designated as one or more of the following:
[1] 
Forest interior habitat.
[2] 
Forested riparian buffers.
[3] 
Rare species site(s).
[4] 
Exceptional natural areas.
(3) 
In areas of permitted woodland disturbance and areas adjacent to permitted woodland disturbance, remaining trees shall be protected from damage. The following procedures shall be utilized during construction in order to protect remaining trees:
(a) 
Where existing trees are to remain, no change in existing grade shall be permitted within the drip line of the trees. Appropriate fencing four feet in height shall be placed at the drip line of trees to remain, wherever adjacent to proposed construction. Such fencing shall be maintained in place throughout the duration of construction activity. Roots shall not be cut within the drip line of any trees to remain.
(b) 
Trees within 25 feet of a building, or bordering entrances or exits to building sites, shall be protected by a temporary barrier to be maintained in place throughout the duration of construction activity.
(c) 
No boards or other material shall be nailed or otherwise attached to trees during construction.
(d) 
Construction materials, equipment, soil and/or debris shall not be stored, nor disposed of within the drip lines of trees to remain.
(e) 
Tree trunks, limbs and exposed roots damaged during construction shall be protected from further damage by being treated immediately in accordance with accepted professional landscape procedures.
(4) 
Woodland replacement. Where subject to modifications to these provisions pursuant to § 250-87M(3), woodland disturbance is permitted in excess of the limitations established in § 250-87K(1)(a) and (b) above. Replacement plantings shall be installed in accordance with the standards set forth below. A sample list of acceptable replacement plantings is found in § 250-87N.
(a) 
Required replacement tree calculation based on area of woodland disturbance. At a minimum, for each 500 square feet of woodland disturbance area, or fraction thereof, in excess of the applicable standard set forth in § 250-87K(1)(a) and (b) above, and regardless of the character and sizes of the disturbed vegetation, one tree at least 2- to 2 1/2-inch caliper shall be planted.
(b) 
Replacement tree calculation based on specific tree removal. Regardless of any disturbance allowances, for each tree greater than 12 inches dbh to be removed, required replacement trees also shall be calculated in accordance with the following schedule. For purposes of this section, it shall be assumed that any tree greater than 12 inches dbh shall be removed if located within 25 feet of any proposed land disturbance.
For Each Tree to Be Removed
(inches dbh)
Minimum Number and Caliper of Replacement Trees
(inches)
One, 12 to 18
Two, 2 to 2 1/2
One, 18 to 24
Three, 2 to 2 1/2
One, 24 to 36
Four, 2 to 2 1/2
One, greater than 36
Six, 2 to 2 1/2
(c) 
Required replacement shrubs. At a minimum, for each 100 square feet of woodland disturbance area, or fraction thereof, in excess of the applicable standard set forth in § 250-87K(1)(a) or (b) above and regardless of the character and sizes of the disturbed vegetation, one shrub at least 24 inches to 30 inches in height shall be planted in addition to any required tree replacement. Shrubs planted in accordance with this requirement may be of restoration quality and not necessarily landscape quality.
(d) 
Required replacement plantings shall be in addition to any required street trees or any other landscape material required under the provisions of this chapter or Chapter 190, Subdivision and Land Development.
(e) 
Where approved by the Township as a condition of any building, zoning, subdivision or land development approval, or as a condition of grant of modification under § 250-87M(3), required replacement trees may be substituted for greater numbers of trees of smaller caliper than otherwise required, or by vegetation other than trees (e.g., for purposes of reforestation).
(f) 
Where approved by the Township as a condition of any building, zoning, subdivision or land development approval, or as a condition of grant of modification under § 250-87M(3), some or all of the required replacement plantings may be installed at a site other than that subject to required replacement planting.
(g) 
In lieu of actual installation of replacement plantings, the Township may permit any applicant to place the equivalent cash value, as agreed upon by the Township and the applicant, for some or all of the required replacement plantings into a special fund established for that purpose. Such fund shall be utilized at the discretion of the Township for the purchase and installation of plantings elsewhere in the Township. Installation of such plantings on private lands shall be dependent upon the establishment of conservation easement(s) or other restriction(s) acceptable to the Township that will reasonably guarantee the permanent protection of such plantings. Where the provisions of this section are otherwise applicable, any grant of approval of modifications requested pursuant to § 250-87M(3) also may be conditioned upon the placement of equivalent cash value for otherwise required replacement plantings into such a fund.
(h) 
The locations, selected species and sizes of all replacement plantings, along with a planting schedule tied to the timing and/or phasing of the development, shall be indicated on the final subdivision/land development plan(s) or building or zoning permit application, as applicable.
(i) 
Required replacement vegetation and their measurement shall conform to the standards of the publications "American or U.S.A. Standard for Nursery Stock", ANSI or U.S.A.S. Z60.1 of the American Association of Nurserymen, as amended. All plant material used on the site shall have been grown so as to have a high likelihood of survival on the site (e.g., grown specifically for planting in the applicable USDA hardiness zone) and shall be nursery grown, unless it is determined by the Township that the transplanting of trees partially fulfills the requirements of this section.
(j) 
Species of replacement plantings selected and planting locations shall reflect careful site evaluation and, in particular, the following considerations:
[1] 
Existing and proposed site conditions and their suitability for the plant materials, based upon the site's geology, hydrology, soils and microclimate.
[2] 
Specific functional and design objectives of the plantings, which may include, but not necessarily be limited to: replacement of woodland area removed, enhancement of existing woodland or oldfield area(s), reforestation of impacted riparian buffer areas, mitigation of new woodland edge conditions as a result of land disturbance, provision for landscape buffer, visual screening, noise abatement, energy conservation, wildlife habitats and aesthetic values.
[3] 
Maintenance considerations, such as hardiness, resistance to insects and disease, longevity and availability.
[4] 
Because of the many benefits of native plants (ease of maintenance, longevity, wildlife habitat, etc.), the use of nursery-grown free-fruiting native trees and shrubs is strongly encouraged. Species selection should reflect species diversity characteristic of the native deciduous woodland.
(k) 
All replacement plantings shall be guaranteed and maintained in a healthy and/or sound condition for at least 24 months, or shall be replaced. In addition, the applicant may be required to escrow sufficient additional funds for the maintenance and/or replacement of the proposed vegetation during the twenty-four-month replacement period, and to provide for the removal and replacement of vegetation damaged during construction, based upon the recommendation of the Township Engineer.
(l) 
All applicants shall include, as part of preliminary and final plan submission, where applicable, a plan for the long-term management of any woodland area not subject to woodland disturbance and any area selected for introduction of replacement plantings in accordance with this section. Such a plan shall include a statement of woodland management objectives and shall demonstrate to the satisfaction of the Board of Supervisors the feasibility of intended management practices, aiming to ensure the success of stated objectives, including the viability of introduced plantings, deterrence of invasive vegetation, and means to minimize any future woodland disturbance. Applicants are strongly encouraged to seek woodland management assistance from a qualified professional.
L. 
Timber harvesting.
[Amended 10-16-2017 by Ord. No. 3-2017]
(1) 
The purpose of these regulations are as follows:
(a) 
To encourage proper management and silvicultural practices that reap continuous economic benefits from a woodland or forest while still maintaining or improving wildlife habitat, protecting forest soils and waters, and ensuring the continuation of productive forest ecosystems;
(b) 
To retain significant ecological services that forests and woodlands provide, including carbon sequestration and carbon storage;
(c) 
To recognize the limited extent and disproportionate wildlife, water resource, and aesthetic values of forests and woodlands in southeastern Pennsylvania; and
(d) 
To insure the Township's citizens have a right to clean air, pure water, and to preserve the natural, scenic, historic and esthetic values of the environment as guaranteed by Article I, Section 27, of the Pennsylvania Constitution.
(2) 
Applicability. Forestry, including timber harvesting as defined in this chapter, shall be a permitted use by right in all zoning districts. Timber harvesting shall be conducted in accordance with the requirements of this § 250-87L.
(3) 
Regulations.
(a) 
Any timber harvesting shall be undertaken in accordance with a timber harvesting plan submitted by a landowner or timber harvest operator and approved by the Township. All timber harvesting plans shall be prepared and signed by a professional forester and submitted to the Township for review for compliance with the standards for timber harvesting set forth herein not less than 45 days prior to commencement of the timber harvesting. The Township may seek the assistance of the Chester County Conservation District and/or the PA DCNR Bureau of Forestry Service Forester in reviewing the timber harvesting plan. Within 30 days of submission to the Township, a timber harvesting plan shall be approved or denied.
(b) 
Any timber harvesting plan submitted to the Township for review and approval shall include both narrative and maps supplying the following:
[1] 
Name, address, and telephone number of landowner and the timber harvesting operator, if known. Identity and contact information for the timber harvesting operator shall be provided to the Township no later than upon award of the bid for the timber harvest covered by the approved timber harvesting permit.
[2] 
An existing features map, drawn to scale, with North arrow, showing:
[a] 
Site location and boundaries of both the entirety of the property upon which the timber harvesting shall occur and the area proposed for timber harvesting within that property;
[b] 
General location of the area proposed for timber harvesting in relation to municipal and state highways, roads, and bridges, including any weight limits, locations of ingress and egress to the public road system, and haul routes to be used through the Township;
[c] 
Existing watercourses (including identifying any with EV or HQ status), floodplain areas, and wetlands within the area proposed for timber harvesting;
[d] 
Topography of the property, including identification of any steeply sloped area(s), as defined herein, within the area proposed for timber harvesting.
[3] 
A logging plan, at the same scale as the existing features map, with North arrow, showing:
[a] 
The area proposed for timber harvesting within the property;
[b] 
Location of all earth disturbance activities such as skid roads, skid trails, log landings, points of access to municipal or state highways or roads, and water control measures and structures;
[c] 
Location of all crossings of any watercourses, wetlands, or seasonally wet areas.
[d] 
Identification of forest canopy to remain using a plot-based estimate of the residual tree stand conditions.
[e] 
Design, construction, maintenance, and retirement of the access system, including haul roads, skid roads, skid trails, and log landings;
[f] 
Design, construction, and maintenance of water control measures and structures such as culverts, broad-based dips, filter strips, and water bars; and
[g] 
Design, construction, and maintenance of proposed watercourse and wetland crossings.
[h] 
How the plan complies with the requirements of all applicable state regulations, including but not limited to, the following:
[i] 
Erosion and sedimentation control regulations contained in Title 25 Pennsylvania Code Chapter 102, promulgated pursuant to the Clean Streams Law (35 P.S. § 691.1 et seq.); and
[ii] 
Stream crossing and wetlands protection regulations contained in Title 25 Pennsylvania Code Chapter 105, promulgated pursuant to the Dam Safety and Encroachments Act (32 P.S. § 693.1 et. seq.).
NOTE: An approved timber harvest erosion and sedimentation control plan for the proposed timber harvesting submitted to PADEP or to the Chester County Conservation District if delegated such responsibility by PADEP may be submitted to satisfy the requirements of Subsections L(3)(b)[3][h][i] and [ii] above. The name and contact information for the assigned Chester County Conservation District representative reviewing the written E&S plan should be included with the timber harvesting plan, if known.
[4] 
A forest stewardship activities plan, if available, for the area proposed for timber harvesting. If not available, then, at a minimum, the timber harvesting plan shall include the following information:
[a] 
How the timber harvest operator and landowner will insure the success of the proposed forest regeneration method for the area proposed for timber harvesting. Regeneration methods include, but are not necessarily limited to, single-tree selection or group selection, shelterwood, seed tree, and clear-cut;
[b] 
Where any method of forest regeneration is proposed, the professional forester shall provide a written narrative explaining how regeneration within the area to be timber harvested will be successfully accomplished and maintained based on the following analysis:
[i] 
Assess advanced regeneration, seed sources for postharvest regeneration, and potential stump and root sprouting;
[ii] 
Assess and, if necessary, control competing vegetation such as ferns, grasses, and other undesirable understory tree and shrub species;
[iii] 
Assess and, if necessary, control the potential loss of seed, seedlings, and sprouts to deer and other wildlife.
[c] 
A listing and description of the selected forest best management practices to be employed during and after the timber harvesting operation. (See Best Management Practices for Pennsylvania Forests, Penn State College of Agriculture.)
NOTE: Where clearing of woodlands or forest is proposed to prepare land for the growing of crops or raising of livestock, a conservation plan report submitted for approval by the Chester County Conservation District that reduces erosion below the tolerable levels in crop field and incorporates the new acreage into proper management may be substituted for a forest stewardship activities plan and shall be submitted with the logging plan.
(c) 
A timber harvesting plan proposing any crossing of streams or wetlands or otherwise obstructing or encroaching any watercourse during the harvesting operations must identify any and all required permits, plans, and approvals required by PADEP, Chester County Conservation District, or the United States Army Corps of Engineers. Copies of any and all approved permits, plans, and approvals shall be provided to the Township upon receiving such approval.
(d) 
Any timber harvesting proposed on slopes of 25% or greater must provide an explanation of the erosion and sediment control best management practices to be employed on the slopes, the reasons for harvesting on the slopes and method for retrieving the logs that are felled on the slopes.
(e) 
A timber harvesting plan proposing to engage in timber harvesting activities near a floodway, identified floodplain area, zone one riparian buffer, wetland or other water source shall include a description of the best management practices required for the activity under both an erosion and sediment control plan and pursuant to the dam safety and waterway management regulations and best practices manual for timber harvesting operations.
(f) 
Proof of the plans to retire all access systems, including access roads, haul and skid trails and landing areas shall be provided to the Township through the timber harvesting plan and/or erosion and sediment control plan and shall be in conformance with DEP best management practices.
(g) 
In addition to those forest best management practices selected by a landowner or timber harvest operator, the following minimum acceptable standards shall apply to all timber harvesting:
[1] 
Diameter-limit cutting and selective cutting shall be prohibited.
[2] 
Use of the clear-cut method on very steep slopes shall be prohibited.
[3] 
Felling and skidding shall be undertaken in a manner which minimizes damage to trees or other vegetation not intended to be harvested, such as using bumper trees, exercising special care when harvesting trees during the growing season (between April and August), and avoiding wolf trees, den trees, and cavity trees.
[4] 
Felling or skidding across any municipal or state highway or road is prohibited without the express written consent of the Township or PADOT, whichever is responsible for the maintenance of said highway or road.
[5] 
Slash or tops resulting from timber harvesting shall either be cut to a height of three feet or less and left on site, or chipped and recycled on site. The burning of slash or litter shall be prohibited.
[6] 
No processing of wood products, except the processing of firewood for the landowner's personal use, shall be permitted on site, except where specifically permitted in the zoning district in which the timber harvesting operation occurs.
[7] 
No tops or slash shall be left within 50 feet of any Township or state highway or road, private road, or neighboring property line.
[8] 
Soils within the area proposed for timber harvesting shall not be contaminated with fuels, lubricants, and other chemicals, and all refuse resulting from a timber harvesting operation shall be cleaned up daily.
[9] 
No timber harvesting shall be permitted within the first 50 feet any forested riparian buffer as provided for in § 250-87F of this chapter.
(4) 
Timber harvesting permitted within that portion of the forested riparian buffer beyond the first 50 feet shall comply with the provisions of § 250-87F of this chapter.
M. 
Application of natural resource conservation standards.
(1) 
Plan information and delineation of natural resources. To ensure compliance with the natural resource conservation standards of this section, the following information shall be submitted by the applicant when applying for a zoning or building permit, conditional use or special exception approval, zoning variance, or subdivision and land development approval where land disturbance is contemplated. In those cases where only a limited amount of the site will be subject to disturbance, the Board of Supervisors may allow a smaller area of land to be shown on the plan, based upon a review and recommendation from either the Zoning Officer or the Township Engineer, where the information submitted will adequately demonstrate compliance with the natural resource conservation standards of this section. Where less than the entire site is to be shown on the plan, the application shall be accompanied by a written explanation from the applicant as to why it is not necessary to include the entire site with the plan information.
[Amended 5-9-2011 by Ord. No. 1-2011]
(a) 
A site plan which identifies the limits of all natural resources on the site, including areas of woodlands or other vegetation to be preserved, and the proposed use of the site, including any existing or proposed structures.
(b) 
The limits of all encroachments and disturbances necessary to establish the proposed use on the site, including a grading plan showing existing and proposed contours.
(c) 
Calculations indicating the area of the site comprising each of any regulated natural resources and the area of each of such natural resources that would be disturbed or encroached upon. The calculations shall be shown on submitted plan sheet(s).
(d) 
Deed restrictions, conservation easements, or other mechanisms proposed to ensure continued resource protection where applicable and subject to Township approval.
(2) 
Continued protection of identified natural resources. To ensure the continued protection of identified natural resources, the following requirements shall apply:
(a) 
Natural resource areas on individual lots.
[1] 
For natural resource areas protected under the terms of this section located on individual lots, deed restrictions, conservation easements, or other permanent mechanisms acceptable to the Township shall be recorded for each lot that has such natural resource areas within its boundaries.
[2] 
The mechanism(s) approved by the Township for permanent protection of natural resources shall clearly state that the maintenance responsibility lies with the individual property owner and shall provide for the continuance of natural resource protection in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.
(b) 
Natural resource areas held in common.
[1] 
For natural resource areas held in common, the provisions of § 250-98, Open space standards, and § 250-99, Homeowners associations, shall apply.
[2] 
The party or organization responsible for the maintenance of any natural resource area(s) shall be clearly identified in applicable deed(s).
(c) 
Changes to approved plans. All applicable plans and deeds shall include the following wording: "Any structures, infrastructure, utilities, sewage disposal systems, or other proposed land disturbance indicated on the approved final plan shall only occur at the locations shown on the plan. Changes to such locations shall be subject to additional review and reapproval in accordance with the provisions of § 250-87, Chapter 250, Zoning, of the Pocopson Township Code."
(3) 
Modifications to natural resource conservation standards.
(a) 
For any use or activity subject to subdivision or land development review, as part of applicable plan submission, modification(s) may be requested to the provisions of this § 250-87. Requested modification(s) may be granted at the discretion of the Board of Supervisors pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 190, Subdivision and Land Development.
(b) 
For any use or activity not subject to Subdivision or Land Development review but where the use or activity is subject to application for approval of a conditional use, special exception, or zoning variance, modification(s) to the provisions of this § 250-87 may be requested as part of such application.
(c) 
For any use or activity not otherwise subject to permit or approval as provided in M(3)(a) or (b), modification(s) to the provisions of this § 250-87 may be requested in the form of an application for grant of a special exception by the Zoning Hearing Board. Such applications shall be submitted to the Township Planning Commission for review and comment prior to formal special exception application to the Zoning Hearing Board.
(d) 
In consideration of approval of any request for modification(s) under this § 250-87, it shall be determined that the specific nature of the lawful use or activity, existing site conditions, and/or safety considerations warrant such modification(s) and that the resource protection purposes of this § 250-87 shall be adhered to, to the maximum extent practicable.
(e) 
No alteration of the use regulations set forth in § 250-87F(3) through (5) of this chapter shall be authorized as a modification pursuant to this subsection. Any such requested alteration shall require a variance in accordance with § 250-78 of this chapter.
[Added 10-16-2017 by Ord. No. 3-2017]
(4) 
Agricultural exception to natural resource conservation standards. Disturbance or removal of woodland, hedgerow, or oldfield vegetation may be excepted from the definitions of "land disturbance" and "woodland disturbance," and from otherwise applicable regulation, for purposes of expanding or continuing agricultural use on an existing agricultural property or on adjacent property into which an existing agricultural operation may be expanded, only in compliance with the following:
[Added 12-10-2007 by Ord. No. 10-2007]
(a) 
Agricultural operations on the subject property shall be conducted in accordance with a conservation plan filed with and acceptable to the Township and the Chester County Conservation District.
(b) 
The landowner intending to disturb or remove woodland, hedgerow, or oldfield vegetation under this exception shall, prior to initiation of such disturbance or removal, submit a signed and dated statement to the Township that, at a minimum, indicates commitment to comply with the following standards; where thereafter any of the following standards are violated, the Township shall notify the affected landowner that the exception has been violated and that the subject lands shall be regulated as if the exception never had been utilized:
[1] 
Should the property be proposed for development of more than an average of one dwelling per 20 acres within seven years of the disturbance subject to this exception, the landowner shall be required to replant the disturbed area with a mix of trees and shrubs of sufficient size and number to provide a visual screen and to provide for the re-creation of the preexisting woodland, hedgerow or oldfield conditions to the satisfaction of the Township.
[2] 
Should the Chester County Conservation District determine that the conservation plan in effect for the subject property has been repeatedly and/or grossly violated and that such violation(s) have not been corrected in a timely fashion after proper notice by the District or the Township, the landowner shall be required to replant the disturbed area as set forth in Subsection M(4)(b)[1] above.
[3] 
This exception shall not apply to disturbance or removal of vegetation within any wetland, exceptional natural area, Zone One Inner Riparian Buffer or on very steep slopes.
N. 
Suggested plant list. The following list includes species acceptable for woodland replacement plantings. Examples of species appropriate for use where screening or buffering is desirable or required are indicated with an asterisk (*). Appropriate species for street tree plantings are indicated by the notation "ST." Specific species selection and planting locations shall reflect careful site evaluation as further set forth herein.
Tree Common Name
Botanical Name of Tree
Evergreen trees
Eastern red cedar*
Juniperus virginiana
Canadian hemlock
Tsuga canadensis
Red (eastern or yellow) spruce*
Picea rubens
Norway spruce*
Picea abies
Eastern white pine
Pinus strobes
Shade trees
Red maple, ST
Acer rubrum
Sugar maple, ST
Acer saccharum
White ash, ST
Fraxinus americana
Green ash, ST
Fraxinus pennsylvanica
Sycamore
Platanus occidentalis
White oak, ST
Quercus alba
Northern red oak, ST
Quercus rubra
Tulip poplar
Liriodendron tulipifera
Scarlet oak, ST
Quercus coccinea
Pin oak, ST
Quercus palustris
Shagbark hickory
Carya ovata
American basswood
Tilia americana
American beech
Fagus grandifolia
Black cherry
Prunus serotina
London plane tree
Platanus acerifolia
Small trees and shrubs
Rhododendron
Rhododendron sp.
Black chokecherry
Aronia melanocarpa
Shadbush/serviceberry*
Amelanchier canadensis
Redbud
Cercis canadensis
Flowering dogwood*
Cornus florida white
Winterberry
Ilex verticulata
Washington hawthorn*
Crataegus phaemopyrum
New Jersey tea
Ceonothus americanus
Sourwood
Oxydendrum arboreum
Ironwood
Ostrya virginiana
Arrowwood
Viburnum dentatum
Black haw
Vibumum prunifolium
Maple leaf viburnum
Viburnum acerifolium
Mountain laurel
Kalmia latifolia
Highbush blueberry
Vaccinium corybosum
Lowbush blueberry
Vaccinium vacillans
Common juniper
Juniperus communis
A. 
Residential off-street parking regulations.
(1) 
For all dwelling types, a minimum of two parking spaces shall be provided on each lot, at least one of which shall be within a structure. Where lot widths permit, driveways shall be so constructed as to permit vehicles to turn around on the lot, so as to eliminate the necessity of backing either on or off the lot. Each parking space shall be at least 9 1/2 feet by 18 feet in size. Parking spaces shall have an approved all-weather surface and shall have a safe and convenient access in all seasons.
(2) 
In a residential subdivision, excluding townhouses and apartments, where lot frontages along the street are less than 200 feet or the road width is less than 24 feet, a third on-lot space shall be provided in the garage or driveway, or in an alternative off-street location approved by the Township. The applicant is encouraged to consider designs such as those appended to this chapter, including "boulevard parking" and "cul-de-sac" parking.
(3) 
For townhouses and apartments, 2 1/2 parking spaces per unit shall be provided on the lot or in congregate parking areas. One additional space shall be provided for each unit with 2,400 square feet of floor area.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
(4) 
No recreational vehicles, boats, trailers, heavy trucks or similar vehicles shall be parked within the street right-of-way except for local deliveries, or parked or stored on a residential property of three acres or less, unless they are screened from view by an enclosed structure. On residential properties of less than three acres, parking or storage of vehicles over two tons (load weight) shall be prohibited under any circumstances.
B. 
Nonresidential off-street parking regulations.
(1) 
Standards.
(a) 
Off-street parking spaces, with proper and safe access from a street, shall be provided on each lot, either within a structure or in the open, to serve the uses within the district adequately.
(b) 
Parking spaces for each vehicle shall at least 9 1/2 feet by 18 feet in size. Parking spaces shall have an approved all-weather surface, and shall have a safe and convenient access in all seasons.
(c) 
Parking lots for over 20 vehicles shall be so divided by permanent raised curbing that access lanes are clearly defined, and that moving traffic will be confined to designated access lanes.
(d) 
Off-street parking spaces must be provided on the lot for which they are intended unless satisfactory evidence is presented to the Zoning Officer that an agreement exists which provides for sufficient permanent off-street parking spaces on another lot.
(e) 
Whenever possible, parking spaces shall not be located within front yard areas.
(f) 
Parking areas shall be landscaped in accordance with this chapter.[2]
[2]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
(g) 
Any parking for five or more vehicles on a lot which abuts a residence district or a lot used for residence purposes, whether single-family or multifamily, shall be screened from the adjacent property by a buffer planting strip of width and density approved by the Township, sufficient to fully screen the parking area from view.
(h) 
Aisles servicing parking spaces shall be a minimum of 24 feet for back-to-back double-bay parking, and 18 feet for single-bay ninety-degree parking.
(2) 
Space requirements. There shall be sufficient parking places provided for each use so that there is a minimum of one place for each employee on the shift of greatest employment, plus additional parking places to be provided by the application of the appropriate formula listed below for each use:
(a) 
Golf course: three parking spaces for each tee.
(b) 
Park, riding academy, fox hunting club or other outdoor recreational use: variable depending upon proposed intensity of use, subject to approval of the Board of Supervisors.
(c) 
Elementary school: one parking space for every 20 students, plus one parking space for each 10 fixed seats or 100 square feet of floor area in an auditorium or gymnasium.
(d) 
All other schools: one parking space for each 10 students, plus one parking space for each 10 fixed seats or 100 square feet of floor area in an auditorium or gymnasium.
(e) 
Offices, financial institutions, government offices: four parking spaces for each 1,000 square feet of gross leasable area.
(f) 
Laboratory or research facilities: sufficient parking to accommodate visitors, subject to approval of the Board of Supervisors.
(g) 
Wholesales, storage, or distribution: one parking space for each 1,000 feet of floor area.
(h) 
Gift, art, craft, and antique shops, food stores and pharmacies: one parking space for each 100 square feet of sales area.
(i) 
Personal service shops and other retail stores: one parking space for each 200 square feet of sales area.
(j) 
Eating and drinking establishments: one parking space for each four seats.
(k) 
Motels: one parking space for each guestroom.
(l) 
Supermarkets: one parking space for each 200 square feet of sales area.
(m) 
Gasoline service station: two parking spaces for each pump.
(n) 
Public places of amusement: one parking space for each four seats and/or 50 square feet of floor area.
(o) 
Undertaking establishments: sufficient parking to accommodate proposed use, subject to approval of the Board of Supervisors.
(p) 
Automobile sales and service, garage, automobile repair shop, or car wash, in addition to display and storage areas: one parking space for each 200 square feet of floor area.
(q) 
Newspaper publishing, job printing, and all other commercial uses: one parking space for each 500 square feet of floor area.
(r) 
Hospital, sanitarium, nursing or convalescent home, home for handicapped individuals: one parking space for each three beds for patient use.
(s) 
Retirement community: one parking space for each dwelling unit plus one additional parking space for each three beds for patient use.
C. 
Off-street loading. Adequate space shall be provided to accommodate the loading and unloading of trucks, tractors, and trailers servicing any commercial, industrial, or large-scale residential or institutional use. Loading berth space which is utilized for the location of solid waste collection or compaction units shall be provided for and shall be in addition to the loading space requirements provided in this section.
(1) 
Area of loading berths or spaces. A required off-street loading berth or space shall be at least 12 feet in width and at least 65 feet in length, exclusive of aisle and maneuver space, and shall have a vertical clearance of at least 14 feet.
(2) 
Access to loading area. Each required off-street loading space or berth shall be afforded appropriate means of vehicular access to a street, highway, or alley in a manner which will least interfere with traffic movement.
(3) 
Surfacing. All open off-street loading areas shall be improved with a compacted select gravel base and surfaced with an all-weather dustless material, suitably designed for the intended use to a standard approved by the Township Engineer. In general, the standards of residential and collector streets shall be used depending on projected weight limits of vehicles servicing the facility.
(4) 
Screening. All loading berths or spaces and truck circulation areas which abut a residential district shall be set back at least 100 feet therefrom unless they are completely screened therefrom by building walls, or a solid fence, wall, earth berm and landscaping, or any combination thereof, not less than six feet in height; in no case shall be at least 75 feet from residential property lines and screened from view from such areas and from public roads.[3]
[3]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
(5) 
Number of spaces. Buildings with commercial, industrial, or storage uses which exceed 6,000 square feet of gross leasable area shall be provided with a minimum of one off-street loading space.
(6) 
Location. Loading and unloading areas including those for solid wastes shall not be located between the building setback line and the street line, or within any required parking spaces, access drives, or pedestrian ways.
Home occupations, as defined in § 250-6 of this chapter and permitted under the provisions of § 250-14, shall comply with the following regulations and standards:
A. 
General standards.
(1) 
A home occupation shall be conducted within a single-family dwelling which is the bona fide residence of the principal practitioner of the home occupation or in an accessory building thereto which is normally associated with a residential use. The home occupation shall be carried on wholly indoors. There shall be no more than one home occupation in a dwelling or accessory building.
(2) 
The area used for the conduct of a home occupation, whether conducted all or partly in an accessory structure, shall occupy no more than 25% of the total floor area of the principal dwelling unit and no more than 1,000 square feet total, whichever is less.
(3) 
The appearance of the residential structure or accessory building shall not be altered nor the occupation within the residence conducted in a manner which would cause the premises to differ from its residential character by, including but not limited to, the use of colors, materials, construction, lighting, show of windows or advertising visible outside the premises to attract customers or clients, other than those signs permitted by this section of the chapter.
(4) 
There shall be no exterior display, sale or storage of materials, products, equipment or refuse related to the conduct of the home occupation.
(5) 
There shall be no discharge of potentially dangerous effluent or fumes.
(6) 
There shall be no production or storage of any material designed for use as an explosive or any other hazardous material or chemical, excluding such quantity of materials as might normally be used on a property of a homeowner not engaged in a home occupation.
(7) 
No equipment or process shall be used in the conduct of the home occupation which creates noise, vibration, glare, smoke, fumes, odors, dust, electrical interference, or other objectionable effects perceptible at or beyond the lot boundaries, or in the case of a multifamily or attached dwelling unit. No equipment or process shall be used which creates visible or audible interference in any radio or television receiver of a neighborhood property.
(8) 
The driveway or access to the home occupation shall be paved for 100 feet form the street to the residence or accessory building used in the home occupation. The surface shall be in excellent condition at the time of application and continued high quality maintenance shall be a condition of any approval. The driveway access shall have a clear sight distance of 200 feet in either direction where entering upon a residential street and 500 feet in either direction on a collector or arterial road.
(9) 
No home occupation dependent on heavy use of water, such as pet grooming, shall be permitted unless the sewage facilities are replaced or have been replaced with previous 10 years and are currently and continually certified by the Chester County Health Department.
(10) 
All home occupations shall be registered with the Zoning Officer and the Tax Collector. The Zoning Officer shall issue a home occupation permit if the standards and conditions of this chapter are met. If the home occupation shall cease to be conducted in compliance with these standards and conditions, the home occupation permit shall be revoked.
B. 
Additional standards for minor home occupations (permitted by right).
(1) 
There shall be no signs, advertising or otherwise, or other indicia showing evidence of the existence or conduct of a minor home occupation.
(2) 
No additional off-street parking area shall be provided to facilitate the conduct of the home occupation other than the off-street parking required or permitted for the particular residential use, nor shall the home occupation generate vehicular traffic such that there is a need for such additional parking.
(3) 
No retail sales shall be permitted on the premises.
(4) 
No business vehicle other than a pick-up truck or small can shall be parked on the property and any sign or lettering on such shall not indicate the location of the business.
(5) 
There shall be no sale, nor storage for sale, of chemicals or biological agents on the premises.
C. 
Additional standards for major home occupations (permitted when authorized as a conditional use).
(1) 
No more than two persons not residents of the premises may be employed by the principal practitioner of the major home occupation. The principal practitioner of the major home occupation must be the owner or the spouse, or offspring of the owner, and a resident of the property on which the occupation is practiced.
(2) 
There shall be no more than one sign, nonilluminated, and no larger than four square feet in aggregate area, identifying the name and occupation of the practitioner. The area of any sign on a vehicle or structure which is regularly visible from the street shall be included in calculating compliance.
(3) 
In addition to the off-street parking spaces required for the residential use of the property, one off-street parking space shall be provided for each employee, plus one additional off-street parking space for each 400 square feet of space on the premises occupied by the home occupation, providing, however, that a total of no more than six off-street parking spaces shall be permitted on one lot. (Off-street parking spaces are not permitted in front yards.) Two off-street parking spaces may be of concrete or asphalt. Any parking spaces in addition to the two spaces of concrete or asphalt must be porous, concrete or lattice block pavers. All off-street parking spaces shall be located at least 50 feet from any property line.
(4) 
Any lot on which a major home occupation is conducted or proposed shall have a minimum lot size of 2.5 acres, subject to the following:
(a) 
The Board of Supervisors may require a greater minimum lot size if they determine that more acreage is required to maintain the residential character of the property and/or to provide adequate off-street parking and/or to provide adequate visual or noise buffers to neighboring residences.
(b) 
The Board of Supervisors may permit a major home occupation on a lot less than 2 1/2 but not less than one acre if the home occupation will meet or exceed all of the standards of the chapter, provided that:
[1] 
Residential property owners within 300 feet of the property agree in writing;
[2] 
Sign display area is limited to two square feet;
[Amended 12-21-2009 by Ord. No. 3-2009]
[3] 
Only bona fide residents who are the owners may be employed in the home occupation;
[4] 
The home occupation is a personal service and does not involve the sale and/or repair of any item, the use of trucks or vans, and/or frequent visitations or deliveries by tradesmen.
(5) 
No more than one business vehicle may be parked on the property on a regular basis. Any trucks, vans or business vehicles shall have loading capacities not exceeding two tons. The business vehicle shall be parked in an enclosed structure (or in an area screened from view from neighboring properties and streets).
(6) 
No major home occupation shall be permitted in a mobile home within a mobile home park.
(7) 
Major home occupations, other than bed-and-breakfast operations, shall be permitted only where the five-hundred-foot sight distances of Subsection A(8) can be met and direct access can be provided to one of the following major roads: Route 52, Route 842, Lenape-Unionville Road and Pocopson Road. Such occupations include: office facility for a doctor or dentist; instructional or tutoring services involving more than one student at a time; small pet grooming but no boarding; beauty parlor or barbershop with no more than two beauty parlor or barber chairs; baby-sitting or day care for more than two but not more than eight children not related to the caregiver; repair services for (small) appliances, lawn mowers, business machines and bicycles, but not for motor vehicles.
D. 
Standards for bed-and-breakfast facilities.
(1) 
A bed-and-breakfast facility shall be considered a major home occupation, and shall be subject to all applicable standards of this section regarding major home occupations.
(2) 
A bed-and-breakfast facility shall be permitted only in single-family detached owner-occupied dwellings, or existing buildings accessory thereto on the same property. Only those buildings identified as surveyed historic resources within Pocopson Township shall be eligible for use as a bed-and-breakfast facility.
(3) 
A lot size of not less than five acres shall be required for the operation of a bed-and-breakfast facility. The Board may consider a reduced lot size, but in no case less than one acre, where:
(a) 
The property in question is adjacent to a commercial or an industrial zoning district;
(b) 
The Board is satisfied that sufficient parking to meet the requirements of this section can be provided on the lot without altering substantially its residential character;
(c) 
The adequacy of the sewage system to handle the increased flows and the availability of sufficient backup area on the lot has been certified by the Chester County Health Department on the basis of an on-site inspection, or the requisite improvements on the system have been made; and
(d) 
Compliance with all other requirements of this section can be demonstrated.
(4) 
The principal use of the property shall remain that of a single-family dwelling.
(5) 
No more than three guest rooms may be offered for bed-and-breakfast purposes on any individual residential property.
(6) 
There shall be provided one full bathroom (one toilet, wash basin, bath and/or shower) for each two guest rooms.
(7) 
Length of stay shall not exceed seven uninterrupted days for any guest.
(8) 
Meals shall consist of breakfast only, and only for guests of the establishment. Owners shall comply with all federal, state and local requirements for the preparation, handling, and serving of food.
(9) 
Any amenities (swimming pool, tennis court, etc.) shall be for the sole use of the resident owner and the bed-and-breakfast guests.
(10) 
The owner shall maintain a current guest register.
(11) 
Other than minimum lot size, area and bulk standards shall be those that apply to single-family detached dwellings within the applicable zoning district.
(12) 
One on-site parking space shall be provided per guest room, and shall not be located in any required front yard area.
(13) 
No signs shall be permitted in association with a bed-and-breakfast operation.
(14) 
Each bed-and-breakfast facility shall be equipped, at minimum, with one smoke detector in each guest room and one fire extinguisher per floor or sleeping area. Guests shall be provided information regarding the floor plan of the dwelling and the location of the emergency exits.
(15) 
Proof of annual fire inspection by a fire company or recognized fire safety organization shall be available at all times.
E. 
Home occupation permit. All applications for home occupation permits shall be made to the Township Zoning Officer and shall be accompanied by plot plan in duplicate, drawn to scale, showing the location and size of each building on the lot on which the home occupation use will be made, the actual dimensions of the lot including dimensions of the front, back and side yards and such other information, in narrative form if necessary, as may be necessary to enable the Zoning Officer to determine that the proposed home occupation will conform to the provisions of all Township ordinances and regulations. A record of such application and plans submitted in support thereof shall be kept on file by the Zoning Officer. No home occupation permit shall be issued until the Zoning Officer has determined that the proposed home occupation complies with all the provisions of this chapter. Upon the approval of the plans and the proposed home occupation use by the Zoning Officer, one application shall be returned to applicant and one application filed by the Zoning Officer, who shall certify that the application complies in particular with the provisions of this chapter. No fee shall be charged unless the permit shall be issued.
To minimize traffic congestion and hazard, control street access, and encourage orderly development of street highway frontage, the following regulations shall apply:
A. 
Unless clearly impractical or inappropriate, lots which abut two or more streets shall have direct access only to a street of lesser functional classification.
B. 
Where residential lots are created having frontage on an existing arterial, collector, or local road within the Township, the subdivision street pattern shall provide reverse frontage access to a local street within the subdivision, rather than access to the existing arterial, collector, or local road. All such lots shall be provided with a minimum rear yard of 80 feet from the street line of any existing arterial, collector, or local road.
C. 
No more than one point of ingress/egress from/to a public street shall be permitted per street frontage for any tract, except that a tract with more than 500 feet of frontage on a public street may have a second access point on that street. The second access point shall be located not less than 300 feet from the first, as measured from center line to center line and shall meet sight distance requirements established by PennDOT or the Township, whichever is more stringent.
D. 
All vehicular accessways to or from any public street shall be located not less than 100 feet (measured from center line to center line) from any intersection of streets. Greater distances may be required for commercial or industrial uses accessing from unsignalized arterial or collector roads.
E. 
Provision shall be made for safe and efficient ingress and egress to and from public streets without undue congestion or interference with normal traffic flow within the Township. The developer shall be responsible for the design, construction, and costs of any necessary traffic control devices and/or highway modifications required by the Township and/or the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.
F. 
In cases where property access poses a particular safety problem with respect to inadequate sight distance or similar concerns, the Board may require the construction of a common driveway in place of two individual driveways to serve adjacent lots.
G. 
In addition to the above requirements, all uses of land shall comply with the applicable standards for street intersections contained in Article VI, Design Standards, of the Township Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance.
The following standards shall apply to the storage of all man-made materials:
A. 
Storage for periods in excess of 30 days shall be screened from view of any public right-of-way and any contiguous residential use. Screening shall consist of contiguous evergreen plantings and/or include walls, opaque fencing, or similar screening designed to be architecturally compatible with the building and an architectural screen approved by the Board.
B. 
No storage shall be permitted within any front yard.
C. 
No merchandise, goods, articles, or equipment shall be stored, displayed, or offered for sale outside any building except seasonal articles which are too large or otherwise infeasible to be stored indoors. Such articles shall be stored adjacent to the building housing any principal use, and shall be enclosed by either walls or opaque fencing designed to be architecturally compatible with the building. Such enclosure shall be at least six feet in height. Any outdoor display area shall be considered sales floor area for purposes of computing building coverage and parking requirement.
D. 
Any organic refuse and garbage shall be stored in tight, verminproof containers. On multifamily, commercial, or industrial properties, solid waste storage shall be centralized to expedite collection and adequate space provided to facilitate separation of wastes for recycling. Storage containers shall be enclosed on three sides by walls, opaque fencing, or similar screening designed to be architecturally compatible with the building.
E. 
Flammable and combustible liquids, solids or gases shall be stored in accordance with the BOCA Fire Code. There shall be no storage of toxic or hazardous waste anywhere within the Township, including temporary storage in a parked vehicle. Hazardous waste shall be as defined in the Pennsylvania Act 97-1980, or any subsequent amendment or revision thereto.
[Amended 11-23-2009 by Ord. No. 2-2009; 10-16-2017 by Ord. No. 4-2017]
A. 
Purpose.
(1) 
This section establishes reasonable regulations governing the keeping of animals in order to protect human and animal health, safety and welfare, prevent unsightly and erosion-prone land use conditions, prevent the contamination of groundwater and surface waters, and reduce the safety hazards of straying animals.
(2) 
Pet animals and livestock shall be kept only in accordance with the standards set forth herein.
B. 
Definitions. The following definitions shall apply to this section.
ADULT ANIMAL
An animal having reached maturity.
EXOTIC WILDLIFE
Wild, dangerous and/or exotic nondomesticated animals, including, but not limited to, bears, coyotes, foxes, raccoons, lions, tigers, wolves, and similar animals, as defined in the Game and Wildlife Code, Act 93 of 1986, or amendments thereof, as "exotic wildlife" or "wildlife."
FOWL
Chickens, guinea hens, peacocks, ducks, geese, turkeys and the like.
KENNEL (COMMERCIAL)
Any lot, building, structure, enclosure, or premises where six or more dogs over six months of age are kept for commercial purposes, including boarding, breeding, wholesale and retail of goods or animals, or the rendering of services for profit, or any facility which is classified as a regulated business by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
KENNEL (PRIVATE)
A shelter at or adjoining a private residence where fewer than 10 dogs over six months of age are bred and/or kept for hunting, training, and exhibition for organized shows, field, working and/or obedience trials, or for the enjoyment of an identifiable species of dog with no wholesaling of animals.
LIVESTOCK
Cattle, sheep, swine, goats, buffalo, camel, emu, ostrich, llama, alpaca, horses, donkeys, mules, burros, ponies, fowl and other animals of a similar nature.
PET ANIMAL
Dogs, cats, rabbits, guinea pigs, rodents, birds, reptiles, and other species of animal that may be restrained by a leash, or by holding the animal in the hands, or by having direct supervision and control of the animal.
C. 
General standards for keeping of pet animals. The following standards shall apply to all properties in the Township:
(1) 
No pet animals of any kind shall be kept in any structure or enclosure or elsewhere on a property which will result in unhealthy or unsanitary conditions for humans or animals or cause excessive noise, objectionable odors, or pollution of groundwater or stormwater runoff to neighboring properties and surface waters.
(2) 
All pet animals shall have appropriate and adequate facilities for food and water. Permanent shelter shall be provided for all pet animals not kept in the residence.
(3) 
A fenced or otherwise enclosed outside area shall be provided which is capable of containing any pet animals that are permanently maintained outside on the property. Materials used for fencing shall be of sufficient sturdiness and properly designed, installed and maintained so as to prevent straying.
(4) 
Exotic wildlife shall not be permitted in any district within the Township unless authorized by the Exotic Wildlife Possession Permits section of the Game and Wildlife Code, Act 93 of 1986,[1] or amendments thereto. In the event of such authorization, the permit holder shall comply with all requirements of the Pennsylvania Game Commission. The permit holder shall produce the permit upon request of the Township.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 34 Pa.C.S.A. § 101 et seq.
(5) 
A private kennel shall only be located on at least three acres of land and shall be permitted by conditional use of the Board of Supervisors. Such kennels shall comply with the Pennsylvania Dog Law (3 P.S. §§ 459-101 through 459-1205), as amended. A building used for a private kennel shall be set back at least 100 feet from all property boundaries.
(6) 
A commercial kennel shall only be located on at least 10 or more acres of land and shall be permitted by conditional use of the Board of Supervisors. Such kennels shall comply with the Pennsylvania Dog Law, as amended. A building used for a commercial kennel shall be set back at least 100 feet from all property boundaries.
(7) 
In the event a homeowner's document, covenant, or other similar document is in place and applicable to a property, whichever contains the most restrictive standard, be it this ordinance or the document, shall prevail.
D. 
Standards for keeping of pet animals on properties less than 1/2 acre. An individual owning 1/2 acre or less shall comply with the general standards of Subsection C and the following additional regulations.
(1) 
Pet canines, pet cats or other small pet animals of similar character may be kept up to a total not to exceed three animals of any combination. No more than one canine may be left outside the home or a soundproof building at night.
E. 
Standards for keeping of pet animals on properties between 1/2 acre and 10 acres. An individual owning less than 10 acres but more than 1/2 acre shall comply with the general standards of Subsection C and the following additional regulations:
(1) 
Adult pet canines, pet cats or other small pet animals of similar character and impact may be kept up to a total not to exceed six animals of any combination. No more than one canine may be left outside the home or a soundproof building at night.
(2) 
A maximum of 20 fowl, rabbits, guinea pigs or the like may be kept on any parcel greater than two acres. For lot sizes of less than two acres, five fowl or 10 rabbits and the like may be kept. Any structure housing fowl shall be set back a minimum of 50 feet from any dwelling on an adjacent lot and a minimum of 25 feet from the property boundaries.
F. 
Standards for keeping of pet animals on properties 10 acres or greater. An individual owning more than 10 acres shall comply with the general standards of Subsection C and the following:
(1) 
No adult pet canines in excess of those permitted by Subsection E(1) shall be permitted, except in kennels or in facilities maintained for the benefit of a member-supported foxhunting organization. Such kennels or other suitable shelter for six or more canines shall not be located within 500 feet of any adjoining property unless permitted by special exception of the Zoning Hearing Board. The Board shall ensure that soundproofing, waste treatment facilities, food preparation and storage facilities, and running water are provided, that the facility will be landscaped to prevent viewing from public roads or neighboring residences, and all other requirements for a special exception are met. No more than one canine may be left outside the home or a soundproof building at night.
(2) 
A maximum of 30 fowl, rabbits, guinea pigs or the like may be kept on any parcel greater than 10 acres. Any structure housing fowl shall be set back a minimum of 50 feet from any dwelling on an adjacent lot and a minimum of 25 feet from the property boundaries.
G. 
General standards for keeping of livestock.
(1) 
Buildings or structures that house any livestock shall be constructed or placed at least 100 feet from any property line.
(2) 
All permanent shelters for livestock shall be designed for ease of manure removal and handling.
(3) 
A fenced or otherwise enclosed outside area shall be provided which is capable of containing the livestock and is of sufficient size and properly located for good sanitation practices. Materials used for fencing shall be of sufficient sturdiness and properly designed, installed and maintained so as to prevent straying.
(4) 
The owner of any livestock shall provide proof of a written manure management plan or certified nutrient management plan, as applicable, that identifies any animal concentration areas and best management practices as required by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and DEP's Manure Management Manual.
(5) 
The owner of any livestock shall provide proof of a written agricultural erosion and sediment control plan, if required by DEP.
(6) 
Manure storage shall be set back a minimum of 100 feet from the property line and shall be designed, constructed, maintained and operated in accordance with the applicable laws and regulations. Permits shall be secured from all governmental agencies having jurisdiction over this activity.
(7) 
Livestock that are not kept in the course of a normal agricultural operation as such term is defined pursuant to the Pennsylvania Right to Farm Act, 3 P.S. § 951 et seq., shall not be kept on properties of less than one acre.
H. 
Standards for keeping animals for commercial purposes. The keeping of animals for commercial purposes, including, but not limited to, riding academies, commercial stables and kennels, shall be permitted only on those land parcels over 10 acres, with the exception of private kennels which are permitted on properties of three acres or greater. A conditional use permit shall be required for these uses.
A. 
Purpose. In allowing opportunities for the creation of accessory dwelling units within existing single-family dwellings, in buildings accessory to single-family dwellings, or in new structures designed specifically for that purpose, it is the intent of this section to address the housing needs of small households and the economic viability of the existing housing stock in the Township. In particular, it is the intent to balance the needs and desires of extended families to provide an independent residence for a family member with the need to protect the existing residential character of the surrounding neighborhood. The ability to make reasonable and efficient use of large residential structures already situated in the Township, again consistent with neighborhood character, also is an important objective.
B. 
General standards.
(1) 
Accessory dwelling units shall be permitted only in the Residential and Agricultural District, and only upon the grant of conditional use approval from the Board of Supervisors, pursuant to § 250-70 of this chapter.
(2) 
Accessory dwelling units may be established within a principal single-family detached dwelling or within a detached structure on a residential property, when in compliance with the terms of Subsections C and D below.
(3) 
There shall not be more than one accessory dwelling unit on any lot occupied by a single-family dwelling.
(4) 
One of the two dwelling units shall be occupied by the owner of the lot on which both dwelling units are located.
(5) 
The lot on which the accessory dwelling unit is proposed must meet the minimum lot size requirement (calculated in net acres) for the underlying zoning district; lots of record which are nonconforming with respect to required minimum lot size requirement (calculated in net acres) shall not be eligible for conditional use approval for an accessory dwelling unit. In addition, the lot must comply with the minimum contiguous lot area requirements of § 250-86.
[Amended 12-10-2007 by Ord. No. 9-2007]
(6) 
Except as otherwise required by Subsection D, below, the lot must be served by a septic tank with a minimum capacity of 1,000 gallons. The applicant must present documentation from the Chester County Health Department as to the size of the tank, as well as the adequacy of the drainage field and the absence of reported failures or problems. Where these conditions cannot be fulfilled, the Board may require the replacement of the existing system or the installation of an additional septic system to serve the proposed accessory dwelling unit.
(7) 
Where the existing garage on a property is to be fully converted to an accessory dwelling unit, the applicant must demonstrate the availability of, and/or must construct, sufficient replacement parking facilities to comply with the requirements of Subsection B(10) below, prior to the issuance of a certificate of occupancy.
(8) 
Water supply for the two dwelling units must meet all applicable standards of the Chester County Health Department and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.
(9) 
The driveway and parking area on the property must be in sufficiently good condition to serve both dwelling units. The Board may require an inspection by and report from the Township Engineer as to the quality of the existing surfaces, and may require resurfacing by the applicant as it deems necessary.
(10) 
One off-street parking space shall be required for the accessory dwelling unit, in addition to those required for the principal dwelling. The additional parking space shall not be located within any required minimum area or setback area.
C. 
Additional standards for an accessory dwelling unit to be contained within a single-family detached dwelling.
(1) 
The accessory dwelling unit must be entirely within the principal dwelling or located within a garage or barn attached to the principal dwelling unit.
(2) 
Such an accessory dwelling unit shall comprise not more than 600 square feet of gross floor area, and, absent unusual or compelling circumstances, the accessory dwelling unit shall not be occupied by more than one resident.
(3) 
Any addition to the existing structure to accommodate an accessory dwelling unit shall be limited in its size to 10% of the net floor area of the existing principal dwelling. No other alteration to the exterior of the structure shall be permitted unless necessary for health and safety reasons.
(4) 
No exterior changes shall be made which, in the judgment of the Board, are not in conformance with the existing character of the neighborhood. No special entrance shall be created in any facade which faces a street. The property shall contain not more than one exterior mailbox and shall be identified as one number address.
D. 
Additional standards for an accessory dwelling unit to be contained within a detached structure.
(1) 
A property proposed to contain an accessory dwelling unit in a detached structure must have a minimum lot size of not less than three net acres.
[Amended 12-10-2007 by Ord. No. 9-2007]
(2) 
The accessory dwelling unit may be located in an existing detached structure or in a structure proposed to be built for that purpose.
(3) 
The gross and net floor area of the accessory dwelling unit shall not exceed 25% of the respective gross and net floor area of the principal residence on the property, or 600 square feet, whichever is greater. This limitation shall not apply to properties which meet the criteria of Subsection D(5)(b), below; on such properties, there shall be no limit on maximum size of the accessory dwelling unit.
(4) 
Where the floor area of the accessory dwelling unit will exceed 600 square feet, or its location precludes the reasonable ability to utilize the existing septic system on the property, a separate septic system on the property, a separate septic tank and drainage field, shall be installed in accordance with all requirements of the Chester County Health Department.
(5) 
For any property containing two times the minimum lot size for the RA District, and thus having the potential for further subdivision, the plan for the accessory dwelling unit also shall demonstrate whether the property is capable of subdivision, consistent with all requirements of this chapter and the Township Subdivision Land Development Ordinance, thereby creating a separate lot for each dwelling unit.
(a) 
Where the property could not qualify for subdivision approval, a deed restriction against further subdivision to run in favor of the Township, in form acceptable to the Board of Supervisors and the Township Solicitor, shall be imposed on the property, and recorded in the Recorder of Deeds Office for Chester County.
(b) 
Where the property does have the potential for meeting all applicable requirements of this chapter and the Township Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance, the proposed improvements for the accessory dwelling unit shall satisfy, or have good and sufficient reasons for not satisfying those additional requirements. No formal subdivision approval shall be sought or granted, but the results of this review process shall be filed with the application for building permit. This review process and the location of the accessory dwelling unit shall not be construed to limit the full application of the Township Zoning Ordinance and Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance in the future, or in any way constitute a waiver of the requirement that subdivision or land development approval be obtained pursuant to applicable Township ordinances.
(6) 
No separate driveway access to a street shall be created for the detached accessory dwelling unit. Access shall be shared with that which exists for the principal residence.
[Amended 12-10-2007 by Ord. No. 9-2007; 12-3-2012 by Ord. No. 8-2012]
A. 
Accessory buildings and structures in residential districts that do not exceed 300 square feet of floor area and are not designed or used for temporary or regular human or animal habitation shall be set back from the side and rear property lines a minimum distance equal to the height of the building at its highest point or 10 feet, whichever is greater, and shall comply with minimum front yard setbacks, impervious surface limits and the following:
(1) 
The accessory building or storage/utility structure shall be built out of materials (and painted or otherwise finished) as to be compatible with the dwelling unit on the same lot and the other dwelling units in the neighborhood. Exterior doors shall not permit any opening with a width of greater than seven feet.
(2) 
An accessory building or storage/utility structure of this size may not be used for the storage and repair of licensable or licensed motor vehicles or for any commercial or home occupation purposes. The structure shall be used for the storage of household articles, yard and garden tools, and small equipment such as lawn mowers, chain saws, etc.
(3) 
Swimming pools, tennis or basketball courts, or other active use facilities shall be set back from all side and rear property lines a minimum of 50 feet and 100 feet from roadways. Equestrian riding rings shall be set back twice the above minimums.
(4) 
If the underlying zoning district or selected development option contains more-restrictive setback requirements, the applicant shall comply with the more-stringent requirements.
(5) 
Accessory buildings or storage/utility structures shall be used for the purposes set forth above and in Subsections B and C below and those uses set forth in § 250-15A, B, and C, where permitted, and no other uses.
B. 
Accessory buildings and structures in residential districts that exceed 300 square feet of floor area but are less than 2,500 square feet of floor area and are not designed or used for temporary or regular human or animal habitation, including freestanding garages, shall be set back from the side and rear property lines a minimum distance equal to the height of the building at its highest point or 30 feet, whichever is greater, and shall comply with minimum front yard setbacks and Subsection C below.
C. 
Accessory buildings and structures in residential districts that are designed or could be used for animal husbandry shall comply as follows:
(1) 
Building for pigeons, poultry, miniature equines, rabbits and other small, quiet animals with inoffensive smells or habits shall be set back a minimum of 100 feet from a street right-of-way line and a distance from side and rear property lines equal to the height of the building at its highest point or 10 feet, whichever is greater.
(2) 
Buildings for bovines, ovines, equines and other pack animals must be set back a minimum of 150 feet from a street right-of-way or any residential structure on adjacent properties and no less than 100 feet from any side or rear property line.
(3) 
Setbacks for swine and large animal confinement buildings shall be 200 feet from any residential buildings on adjacent properties.
(4) 
Section 250-92, Keeping of animals, sets forth further standards for animal structures. If the underlying zoning district or selected development option contains more-restrictive setback requirements, the applicant shall comply with the-more stringent requirements.
D. 
Accessory building and structures (excluding fences) in commercial and limited industrial districts shall comply with the standards set forth in Article V and Article VII.
E. 
Fences and walls.
(1) 
The following regulations shall apply to all fences and walls in all districts:
(a) 
No fence or wall shall encroach on any right-of-way.
(b) 
No fence or wall shall be erected, installed or constructed which obstructs sight distance at street intersections, whether public or private, or at the point where any driveway intersects a public or private street.
(c) 
No fence or wall shall be constructed within the base flood elevation as defined in Article VI or where otherwise prohibited by Article VI or shall impede the natural flow of water in any watercourse, ditch or swale.
[Amended 8-14-2017 by Ord. No. 1-2017]
(d) 
No fence or wall with barbed wire, spikes, exposed nails or other sharp objects shall be permitted. Notwithstanding the above, barbed wire or aboveground electrified fences shall be permitted on lots used for agricultural purposes that are three or more acres in size. Aboveground electrified fences shall be nonhazardous to people and shall be clearly marked.
(e) 
Chain-link fence is not permitted, except as required for security or access control purposes as provided in §§ 250-49 and 250-96, or by special exception of the Zoning Hearing Board. Where granted, the fence shall be landscaped in such a manner as to be indiscernible from such landscaping from any viewpoint on adjacent properties and street. Fences generally shall be made of wood, wrought iron, plastic, vinyl, aluminum or other architectural-grade material. Stockade or solid barrier fencing is permitted if located behind existing vegetation or if it is landscaped with suitable green materials or a living plant screen.
(f) 
At no time may a person or persons installing a fence or wall encroach onto the adjacent property without the written approval of the adjacent property owner, a copy to be submitted to Township Office and attached to the permit application.
(2) 
The following regulations shall apply to all fences and walls in the residential and agricultural district:
(a) 
No fence over six feet in height or wall over four feet in height shall be erected, installed or constructed, except in compliance with all requirements applicable to construction of a structure including obtaining required permits.
(b) 
Fences erected, installed or constructed in the front yard of any parcel shall not exceed five feet in height and shall have a ratio of open to solid area of at least four to one.
(c) 
Fences or walls erected, installed or constructed in a side yard or rear yard setback area of any lot shall not exceed six feet in height and may be solid.
(d) 
No permit shall be required for decorative fences and walls and nonboundary fences with a maximum height of three feet located within a parcel. Examples of decorative fences and walls include, but are not limited to, picket fences, iron or similar fences, stone or similar walls, and raised planting areas. Decorative walls shall not be used as retaining walls.
(e) 
To the extent that any side of a fence is more finished than the other side of that fence, the more finished side of the fence must face the abutting property, regardless of whether the abutting property is public or private.
(3) 
The following regulations shall apply to fence and wall installation and maintenance in all districts:
(a) 
Fences and walls shall be installed so that they are straight and do not sag, lean in any direction or extend over the property line.
(b) 
Fences and walls shall be erected, installed or constructed only at the natural grade of the property and shall not be erected on berms or artificial mounds.
(c) 
Fences, walls and related structures shall be kept in good repair, structurally sound and in compliance with the International Building Codes so as not to pose a threat to public health, safety or welfare.
(d) 
Fences, walls and related structures shall be repaired or replaced if the nominal strength of any structural member is exceeded by nominal loads, the load effect or the required strength due to rust, decay or deterioration.
(4) 
The following regulations shall apply to boundary fences and walls in all districts:
(a) 
Boundary fences and walls shall be set back at least 10 feet from the paved area of all public roads or streets.
(b) 
Boundary fences and walls shall not obstruct existing or proposed trail easements and shall be installed to allow for maintenance on both sides of the fence or wall.
(c) 
In front yards, boundary fences and walls shall be a maximum height of five feet unless authorized by a special exception of the Zoning Hearing Board.
(d) 
In side yards beyond the front yard setback, and rear yards, the maximum height for a boundary fence shall be six feet unless authorized by a special exception by the Zoning Hearing Board.
(5) 
The following regulations shall apply to privacy and residential swimming pool fences in all districts:
(a) 
In side yards beyond the front yard setback, and rear yards, privacy fences shall be located a minimum of 10 feet from the property lines.
(b) 
Privacy fences are not permitted forward of the rear of the main building unless authorized as a special exception by the Zoning Hearing Board.
(c) 
The maximum height of a privacy fence shall be six feet; the minimum height for a swimming pool fence shall be four feet.
(d) 
Where privacy fences are attached to a structure, there shall be at least one access point (such as a gate or opening) at least three feet wide for rapid access to and from the yard enclosed by a fence.
(e) 
All swimming pool fences and/or privacy fences enclosing a swimming pool shall have a self-locking gate with an audible alarm.
(f) 
All swimming pool fences shall further comply with the Construction Codes relating to swimming pool safety devices per the provisions of Chapter 53 of this Code.
(6) 
The following regulations shall apply to temporary fences in all districts:
(a) 
A temporary fence may be constructed of wire, rolled plastic, wood or other suitable material as determined and approved by the Township Building Inspector or Zoning Officer.
(b) 
The maximum height of a temporary fence shall be six feet unless a height in excess of six feet is required by the International Building Code for the protection of a construction site or for the protection of a deemed hazard by the Township Building Inspector or Zoning Officer.
(c) 
No permit shall be required for a temporary fence which is erected for less than six months during a calendar year.
(7) 
The following regulations shall apply to deer and plant protection fencing in the residential and agricultural district:
(a) 
Deer and plant protection fencing shall be constructed of a monofilament material that is dark green, black, or brown in color or of a similar material with low visibility.
(b) 
Low-visibility polypropylene fencing used to control deer may include metal hexagrid fencing products used for segments of perimeter or boundary control.
(c) 
Fence posts shall be dark green, black, or brown in color or of a material that will provide minimal visual impact.
(d) 
Deer and plant protection fencing shall not exceed a height of 10 feet.
(e) 
Deer fencing shall not encircle an entire property perimeter. Deer fencing shall be set back from any property line by the distance required for accessory buildings.
(f) 
Deer fencing shall be set back at least 20 feet from existing Township trails. Deer fencing shall not cross or close off existing Township trails.
(8) 
The following regulations shall apply to retaining walls in all districts:
(a) 
No retaining wall shall be erected, installed or constructed, except in compliance with all requirements applicable to a structure.
(b) 
No retaining wall shall be constructed without review and approval of the design and specifications by the Township Engineer.
(c) 
When the adjoining grade is not higher than the natural level, the person causing an excavation to be made shall erect a retaining wall pursuant to the provision of the Grading Ordinance, Chapter 85, or the Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance (Chapter 190) at his own expense and on his own land. Such wall shall be built to a height sufficient to retain the adjoining earth and shall be properly coped.
(d) 
Walls built to retain or support the lateral pressure of earth, water or other superimposed loads shall be designed and constructed of approved masonry, reinforced concrete, steel sheet pilings or other approved materials within the allowable stresses of engineering practices, and subject to the approval of the Township Engineer and the Zoning Officer and in conformance with the Township Code.
(e) 
A retaining wall of approved construction, designed by a registered civil engineer or architect, shall be required for all permanent landfills or excavations which exceed three feet in height or depth along a property boundary line, unless a 1:1 natural slope of the land can be maintained entirely within the boundaries of the excavated or filled property.
(f) 
A fence or other barrier to pedestrians such as plants shall be installed at the top of any retaining wall four or more feet high and on retaining walls less than four feet high if determined necessary for safety by the Zoning Officer or Township Engineer.
(g) 
Retaining walls shall require a grading permit, building permit, and approval by a professional engineer along with requisite inspections.
(9) 
Permits.
(a) 
The landowner, or the applicant with the landowner's permission, shall submit a copy of the certified survey, or proof of boundary markers by photographs, and a detailed plan showing the location of the fence or wall on the property, the type of fence or wall, the height from the natural grade, all openings and other related information.
(b) 
The Township shall have the authority to inspect the fence or wall once it is installed or built to ensure that it was constructed according to the approved permit and plan submitted.
(c) 
A building and/or zoning permit must be applied for, approved, received, and posted on the property prior to the start of any work to construct a fence or retaining wall that exceeds the heights specified in the International Residential Code or when determined by the Building Inspector, Zoning Officer, and/or Township Engineer.
(d) 
Issuance of the permit by the Township in no way implies or confirms that a project has been approved by the applicant's homeowners' association, if applicable, and/or that the issuance supersedes the requirements of the homeowners' association. It is solely the applicant's obligation to comply with the homeowners' association's requirements.
(10) 
All existing fences and walls which do not conform to the requirements of this section shall be nonconforming and shall be made to conform as follows:
(a) 
Once a fence or wall is removed voluntarily or through neglect, the replacement wall or fence must comply with all the provisions of this section.
(b) 
Any completed repairs or repairs required to be done more than 50% of the overall linear feet of the fence or wall will require the entire fence or wall to comply with all the provisions of these regulations.
(c) 
Any fence or wall which in the judgment of the Zoning Officer is dilapidated, unsafe, dangerous and/or a menace to the health, safety and general welfare of the people of Pocopson Township shall be made to comply with all provisions of these regulations.
A. 
The provisions of this section are enacted in order to minimize undesirable off-site effects while providing for lighting that is sufficient for the safe and pleasurable use of each property. All lighting shall be arranged, constructed, screened, or shielded so as to protect streets and neighboring properties from direct or indirect glare which may cause a safety problem.
B. 
All exterior light fixtures, except streetlighting and associated traffic safety devices provided by a public utility or governmental entity within a public right-of-way, shall comply with the following standards. Measurements shall be made two hours after sunset with the lamp(s) or luminaire(s) in question on and then off; all lamps, luminaires, transparencies, translucencies, and meter filters must be clean; the difference between the on and off readings shall not exceed the permitted value.
(1) 
Illuminance at property lines. Illuminance at any point of a property's perimeter shall be no more than 0.5 footcandle when measured with a calibrated, stable reading photometer, regardless of the attitude or angle of the meter to the light source.
(2) 
Point sources of light. In addition to the above requirement, all lamps equipped with diffusing translucencies and rated at more than 1,750 lumens average (a G.E. "soft white" one-hundred-watt lightbulb is rated at 1710 lumens) and measuring greater than 8.0 footcandles when measured with a calibrated, stable reading photometer at a distance of five feet from the light source(s), regardless of the attitude or angle of the meter to the light source(s) shall be shielded so that the light source(s) are not directly visible beyond the perimeter of the lot. All lamps not equipped with diffusing translucencies and rated at more than 1,200 lumens average (a G.E. "crystal clear" seventy-five-watt lightbulb is rated at 1,190 lumens average) and measuring greater than 4.0 footcandles when measured with a calibrated, stable reading photometer at a distance of five feet from the light source(s) shall be shielded so that the light source(s) are not directly visible beyond the perimeter of the lot.
(3) 
Broad areas of illumination. In addition to the above requirements, illuminated areas visible beyond the perimeter of a lot shall not be illuminated so that the reflected light is in excess of an average of 1.0 footcandle and may not exceed 5.0 footcandles at any point when measured at a distance of one foot from the surface with a calibrated, stable reading photometer regardless of the attitude or angle of the meter to the lighted surface. Illuminated areas not visible beyond the perimeter of a lot shall not be illuminated so that the reflected light is in excess of an average of 2.0 footcandles and may not exceed 10.0 footcandles at any point when measured at a distance of one foot from the surface with a calibrated, stable reading photometer regardless of the attitude or angle of the meter to the lighted surface.
(4) 
Beam projectors. In addition to the requirements in Subsection B(1) and (3) above, types of lamps or luminaires that produce light in near parallel rays, including but not limited to spot and flood lamps, shall be directed generally downwards so that the center of the beam of light is no more than 30° from vertical and so that the beam angle will fall completely within the perimeter of the property.
(5) 
No exterior lighting fixture shall have any blinking, flashing, or fluttering light or other illuminating device which has changing light intensity, brightness, or color. No beacon light shall be permitted.
(6) 
Neither direct nor reflected light from any exterior lighting fixture shall create a disabling glare that would be a potential traffic hazard for motor vehicle operators on public roads.
(7) 
The Township may allow lighting in excess of this section, including but not limited to low-level specialized lighting of buildings, accent lighting, security lighting, or lighting of recreational areas within a property, only if it can be demonstrated that the lighting design will restrict lighting pollution, overhead sky glow, and lighting trespass onto adjacent properties and roads.
(8) 
A lighting plan must be developed to demonstrate compliance with this chapter.
[Amended 7-13-2015 by Ord. No. 3-2015]
A. 
Purposes and findings of fact.
(1) 
The purpose of this section is to regulate the placement, construction and modification of wireless communications facilities, in order to protect the health, safety and welfare of the public, while not unreasonably interfering with the development of the competitive wireless telecommunications marketplace in Pocopson Township (hereinafter the "Municipality"). The purpose of this section may be achieved through adherence to the following objectives:
(a) 
Protect residential areas and land uses from potential adverse impacts that wireless communications facilities might create, including but not limited to negative impacts on aesthetics, environmentally sensitive areas, historically significant locations, flight corridors, and health and safety of persons and property;
(b) 
Establishment of clear and nondiscriminatory local regulations concerning wireless telecommunications providers and services that are consistent with federal and state laws and regulations pertaining to telecommunications providers;
(c) 
Encourage the location of wireless communications facilities in nonresidential areas and allow wireless communications facilities in residential areas only when necessary to meet functional requirements of the telecommunications industry as defined by the Federal Communications Commission;
(d) 
Encourage and, where legally permissible, require cooperation between competitors and, as a primary option, joint use of new and existing towers, tower sites and suitable structures to the greatest extent possible, in order to reduce cumulative negative impact on the Municipality;
(e) 
Ensure wireless communications facilities are configured in a way that minimizes the adverse visual impact of the facilities, as viewed from different vantage points, through careful design, landscape screening, minimal impact siting options and camouflaging techniques, and through assessment of current location options, siting, future available locations, and innovative siting techniques;
(f) 
Enhance the ability of the providers of telecommunications services to provide such services to the community quickly, effectively and efficiently;
(g) 
Provide for the prompt removal of wireless communications facilities that are abandoned or no longer inspected for safety concerns and building code compliance, and provide a mechanism for the Municipality to cause these abandoned wireless communications facilities to be removed as necessary to protect the citizens from imminent harm and danger;
(h) 
Avoid potential damage to adjacent properties from tower failure, through strict compliance with state building and electrical codes;
(i) 
Provide a means for public input on wireless communication facility placement, construction and modification; and
(j) 
Address new wireless technologies, including, but not limited to, distributed antenna systems, data collection units, cable wi-fi and other wireless communications facilities.
(2) 
In furtherance of these objectives, the Municipality shall give due consideration to the zoning code, existing land uses, and environmentally sensitive areas when approving sites for the location of communication towers and antennas.
(3) 
These objectives were developed to protect the public health, safety and welfare, to protect property values, and to minimize visual impact, while furthering the development of enhanced telecommunications services in the Municipality. These objectives were designed to comply with the Federal Telecommunications Act of 1996 and the Pennsylvania Wireless Broadband Collocation Act. The provisions of this section are not intended to and shall not be interpreted to prohibit or to have the effect of prohibiting personal wireless services. This section shall not be applied in such a manner as to unreasonably discriminate between providers of functionally equivalent personal wireless services.
(4) 
In reviewing any application to place, construct or modify wireless communications facilities, the Municipality shall act within a reasonable period of time after an application for a permit is duly filed, taking into account the nature and scope of the application. Any decision to deny an application shall be in writing, supported by substantial evidence contained in a written record. The Municipality shall approve, approve with conditions, or deny the application in accordance with this title, this section, and other applicable ordinances and regulations.
B. 
General siting criteria and design requirements.
(1) 
This Municipality encourages wireless communication services providers to use existing sites or more frequent, less noticeable sites instead of attempting to provide coverage through use of taller towers. To that end, applicants shall consider the following priority of preferred locations for wireless communications facilities:
(a) 
Co-location, without an increase in the height of the building, pole or structure upon which the facility would be located;
(b) 
Co-location, where additional height is necessary above existing building, pole, or structure;
(c) 
A replacement pole or structure for an existing one;
(d) 
A new pole or structure altogether.
(2) 
Co-location shall be encouraged for all wireless communication facilities' applications and is implemented through less complex permit procedures.
(a) 
Applicants for new monopole facilities shall be required to build mounts capable of accommodating at least two other carriers.
(b) 
Any wireless communication facility that requires a conditional use approval under the provisions of this section shall be separated by a minimum of 500 feet from any other WCF requiring a conditional use approval, unless the submitted engineering information clearly indicates that the requested site is needed in order to provide coverage for the particular provider and other siting options have been analyzed and proven infeasible.
(3) 
The following wireless communications facilities are prohibited in the Municipality:
(a) 
Guyed towers; and
(b) 
Lattice towers.
C. 
Tower-based communications facilities.
(1) 
General requirements applicable to all tower-based wireless communications facilities.
(a) 
Standard of care. Tower-based WCF shall be designed, constructed, operated, maintained, repaired, modified and removed in strict compliance with all current applicable technical and safety codes, including, but not limited to, the most recent editions of the American National Standards Institute Code, National Electrical Safety Code, National Electrical Code, as well as the accepted and responsible workmanlike industry practices of the National Association of Tower Erectors and the applicable provisions of the IBC International Building Code. Tower-based WCF shall at all times be kept and maintained in good condition, order and repair by qualified maintenance and construction personnel, so that the same shall not endanger the life of any person or any property in the Municipality.
(b) 
Wind. Tower-based WCF shall be designed to withstand the effects of wind according to the standard designed by the American National Standards Institute as prepared by the engineering departments of the Electronics Industry Association and Telecommunications Industry Association (ANSFEINTIA-222-E Code, as amended).
(c) 
Height. Tower-based WCF shall be designed at the minimum functional height and shall not exceed a maximum total height of 150 feet, which height shall include all subsequent additions or alterations.
(d) 
Additional antennae. As a condition of approval for all tower-based WCF, the WCF applicant shall provide the Municipality with a written commitment that it will allow other service providers to co-locate antennae on their tower-based WCF where technically and economically feasible. The owner of a tower-based WCF shall not install any additional antennae without obtaining the prior written approval of the Municipality.
(e) 
Visual or land use impact. The Municipality reserves the right to deny an application for the construction or placement of any tower-based WCF based upon site specific aesthetics and/or land use impact based upon legitimate regulatory factors including municipal ordinances, protection of natural resources, scenic vistas, and protections set forth in the Municipality's Comprehensive Plan and any related planning documents.
(f) 
Public safety communications. Tower-based WCF shall not interfere with public safety communications or the reception of broadband, television, radio or other communication services enjoyed by occupants of nearby properties.
(g) 
Maintenance. The following maintenance requirements shall apply:
[1] 
Tower-based WCF shall be fully automated and unattended on a daily basis and shall be visited only for maintenance or emergency repair.
[2] 
Such maintenance shall be performed to ensure the upkeep of the WCF in order to promote the safety and security of the Municipality's residents.
[3] 
All maintenance activities shall utilize nothing less than the best available technology for preventing failures and accidents.
(h) 
Radio frequency emissions. Tower-based WCF shall not, by itself or in conjunction with any other WCF, generate radio frequency emissions in excess of the standards and regulations of the FCC, including but not limited to, the FCC Office of Engineering Technology Bulletin 65 entitled "Evaluating Compliance with FCC Guidelines for Human Exposure to Radio Frequency Electromagnetic Fields," as amended.
(i) 
Historic protections. No tower-based WCF may be located on a property, building or structure that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Pennsylvania Register of Historic Places or included on a list of official historic places and/or within historic districts as established and maintained by the Municipality. No tower-based WCF may be located within 150 feet of any historic building, structure, property or designated historic district.
(j) 
Identification. All tower-based WCFs shall post a notice in a readily visible location identifying the name and phone number of a party to contact in the event of an emergency and such contact information shall also be provided to the Municipality.
(k) 
Lighting. Tower-based WCF shall not be artificially lighted, except as required by law and as may be approved by the Municipality. If lighting is required, the applicant shall provide a detailed plan for sufficient lighting, demonstrating as unobtrusive and inoffensive an effect as is permissible under state and federal regulations.
(l) 
Appearance. The tower portion of tower-based WCF shall employ stealth technology including, if feasible, galvanized and/or painted with a rust-preventative paint of an appropriate color to harmonize with surroundings, and maximize the use of a like facade to blend in with the existing surroundings and neighboring buildings to the greatest extent possible.
(m) 
Noise. Tower-based WCF shall be operated and maintained so as not to produce noise in excess of applicable noise standards under state law and local regulations, except in emergency situations requiring the use of a backup generator, where such noise standards may be exceeded on a temporary basis only.
(n) 
Aviation safety. Tower-based WCF shall comply with all federal and state laws and regulations concerning aviation safety.
(o) 
Conditional use and notice. Upon submission of an application for a tower-based WCF and scheduling of the required conditional use hearing, the applicant shall mail notice thereof to the owner or owners of every property within 1,000 feet of property lines of the parcel or property upon which the proposed facility is to be situated. Such notice requirements shall be met by the applicant and proof of notification provided to the Municipality and also confirmed by the applicant as part of the conditional use hearing.
(p) 
Application requirements. An application for a tower-based WCF shall not be approved unless the applicant can show that the wireless communications equipment planned for the proposed tower-based WCF cannot be accommodated on an existing wireless support structure, including a wireless support structure that could be considered and approved by the Municipality such as existing water towers or similar type structures. The following information must be submitted as part of a completed application:
[1] 
Project description including a design narrative, technology description, and co-location analysis indicating the alternative locations and technologies considered;
[2] 
Existing wireless coverage map overlaid on a current aerial photo showing provider's existing facilities and wireless coverage in the area, including the gap in coverage which is resulting in the need for the tower-based WCF;
[3] 
Proposed wireless coverage map overlaid on a current aerial photo showing provider's wireless coverage with the proposed facility;
[4] 
Site information on scaled plans, including:
[a] 
Site plan;
[b] 
Elevation drawings;
[c] 
Undergrounding details, as applicable;
[d] 
Screening, camouflaging or landscaping plan and cost estimate, as appropriate;
[e] 
All plans and drawings for a tower and antenna shall contain a seal and signature of a professional structural engineer, licensed in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
[5] 
Photos and photo simulations showing the existing appearance of the site and appearance of the proposed installation from nearby public viewpoints;
[6] 
A copy of the current FCC license for the entity that will own or operate the tower-based WCF, including the contact information of the operator of the facility. The applicant shall also provide a copy of all applicable FCC regulations with which it is required to comply and a schedule of estimated FCC inspections;
[7] 
Any other documentation deemed required and necessary by the Municipality in order to issue a decision.
(q) 
Retention of experts/consultants. Applicants may use various methodologies and analyses, including geographically based computer software, to determine the specific technical parameters of the services to be provided utilizing the proposed WCF, such as expected coverage area, antenna configuration, capacity, and topographic constraints that affect signal paths. In certain instances, a third-party expert, and other consultants, may be needed to review the engineering and technical data submitted by an applicant. The Municipality may at its discretion require consultant assistance, including third-party engineering and technical review as part of a permitting process. The costs of such reviews shall be borne by the applicant. Based on the results of the expert review, the Municipality may require changes to the proposal. The third-party review shall address the following:
[1] 
The accuracy and completeness of submissions;
[2] 
The applicability of analysis techniques and methodologies;
[3] 
The validity of conclusions reached;
[4] 
The viability of other site or sites in the Municipality for the use intended by the applicant; and
[5] 
Any specific engineering or technical issues deemed necessary by the Municipality.
(r) 
Timing of approval. Within 30 calendar days of the date that an application for a tower-based WCF is filed with the Municipality, the Municipality shall notify the applicant in writing of any information that may be required to complete such application. The Municipality shall have 14 days from the receipt of the additional information to issue a letter of completeness, or request additional information as appropriate. All applications for tower-based WCF shall be acted upon within 150 days of the receipt of a fully completed application for the approval of such tower-based WCF and the Municipality shall advise the applicant in writing of its decision. If additional information was requested by the Municipality to complete an application, the time required by the applicant to provide the information shall not be counted toward the one-hundred-fifty-day review period. The parties can mutually agree upon extensions of time.
(s) 
Nonconforming uses. Nonconforming tower-based WCF which are hereafter damaged or destroyed due to any reason or cause may be repaired and restored at their former location, but must otherwise comply with the terms and conditions of this section.
(t) 
Permit fees. The Municipality may assess appropriate and reasonable permit fees directly related to the Municipality's actual costs in reviewing and processing the application for approval of a tower-based WCF, as well as related inspection, monitoring and related costs. All permit fees and consultant fees must be paid in full by the applicant prior to a building permit being issued to the applicant.
(u) 
Bond. Prior to the issuance of a permit, the owner of a tower-based WCF shall, at its own cost and expense, obtain and maintain from a surety licensed to do business in Pennsylvania a bond, or other form of financial security acceptable to the Municipality's Solicitor, in an amount of $100,000 to assure the faithful performance of the terms and conditions of this section. The language contained in the bond or other form of financial security shall be reviewed and approved by the Municipal Solicitor. The bond shall provide that the Municipality may recover from the principal and surety any and all compensatory damages incurred by the Municipality for violations of this section, including the costs of removal of the tower if necessary, after reasonable notice and opportunity to cure. The owner shall file the bond with the Municipality prior to, or at the same time as, the issuance of the permit.
(v) 
Insurance. Each person that owns or operates a tower-based WCF greater than 40 feet in height shall provide the Township with a certificate of insurance evidencing general liability coverage in the minimum amount of $5,000,000 per occurrence and property damage coverage in the minimum amount of $5,000,000 per occurrence covering the tower-based WCF. Each person that owns or operates a tower-based WCF 40 feet or less in height shall provide the Municipality with a certificate of insurance evidencing general liability coverage in the minimum amount of $1,000,000 per occurrence and property damage coverage in the minimum amount of $1,000,000 per occurrence covering each tower-based WCF.
(w) 
Indemnification. Each person that owns or operates a tower-based WCF shall, at its sole cost and expense, indemnify, defend and hold harmless the Municipality, its elected and appointed officials, employees and agents, at all times against any and all claims for personal injury, including death, and property damage arising in whole or in part from, caused by or connected with any act or omission of the person, its officers, agents, employees or contractors arising out of, but not limited to, the construction, installation, operation, maintenance or removal of the tower-based WCF. Each person that owns or operates a tower-based WCF shall defend any actions or proceedings against the Municipality in which it is claimed that personal injury, including death, or property damage was caused by the construction, installation, operation, maintenance or removal of tower-based WCF. The obligation to indemnify, hold harmless and defend shall include, but not be limited to, the obligation to pay judgments, injuries, liabilities, damages, reasonable attorneys' fees, reasonable expert fees, court costs and all other costs of indemnification.
(x) 
The owner and/or operator of any tower-based WCF shall submit an annual routine maintenance and inspection report to the Municipality. Any structural faults will be immediately corrected by the owner/operator. Failure to provide proof of certified inspection will result in notification to the owner of fines, and cease of operations and dismantle of tower.
(y) 
Removal. In the event that use of a tower-based WCF is planned to be discontinued, the owner shall provide written notice to the Municipality of its intent to discontinue use and the date when the use shall be discontinued. Unused or abandoned WCF or portions of WCF shall be removed as follows:
[1] 
All unused or abandoned tower-based WCF and accessory facilities shall be removed within six months of the cessation of operations at the site unless a time extension is approved by the Municipality.
[2] 
If the WCF is not removed within six months of the cessation of operations at a site, or within any longer period approved by the Municipality, the WCF and accessory facilities and equipment may be removed by the Municipality and the cost of removal assessed against the owner of the WCF.
[3] 
Any unused portions of tower-based WCF, including antennas, shall be removed within six months of the time of cessation of operations. The Municipality must approve all replacements of portions of a tower-based WCF previously removed.
(2) 
Specific requirements applicable to tower-based wireless communications facilities located outside of the rights-of-way.
(a) 
Development regulations.
[1] 
Zoning districts. Tower-based WCF located outside of the rights-of-way shall be permitted by conditional use in the following zoning districts in the Municipality:
[a] 
C-1 Neighborhood Commercial.
[b] 
L-I Limited Industrial.
[2] 
Sole use on a lot. A tower-based WCF is permitted as a sole use on a lot subject to the minimum lot area and yards complying with the requirements for the applicable zoning district. Additionally, the minimum distance between the base of the tower and any adjoining property line or street right-of-way shall equal 110% of the proposed WCF tower height.
[3] 
Combined with another use. A tower-based WCF may be permitted on a property with an existing use or on a vacant parcel in combination with another permitted use, subject to the following conditions:
[a] 
The existing use on the property shall be any permitted use in the applicable district, and need not be affiliated with the tower-based WCF.
[b] 
Minimum lot area. The minimum lot shall comply with the requirements for the applicable district and shall be the area needed to accommodate the tower-based WCF, the WCF equipment enclosure, security fence, and buffer planting.
[c] 
Minimum setbacks. The tower-based WCF and WCF equipment enclosure shall comply with the setback requirements for the applicable zoning district. Additionally, the minimum distance between the base of the tower and any adjoining property line or street right-of-way shall equal 110% of the proposed WCF tower height.
(b) 
Surrounding environment.
[1] 
The tower-based WCF applicant shall provide a landscape plan to the Municipality and shall further ensure that the existing vegetation, trees and shrubs located within proximity to the tower-based WCF shall be preserved to the maximum extent possible.
[2] 
The tower-based WCF applicant shall submit a soil report to the Municipality showing compliance with the accepted industry standards and to document and verify the design specifications of the foundation of the tower-based WCF as being compliant with all applicable safety regulations.
(c) 
Security fencing and screening.
[1] 
A security fence having a maximum height of at least eight feet shall completely surround any tower-based WCF and WCF equipment enclosure.
[2] 
An evergreen screen that consists of a hedge, or a row of evergreen trees or some similar type of vegetative buffer approved by the Municipality, shall be located along the perimeter of the security fence.
[3] 
The WCF applicant shall submit a landscape plan for review and approval by the Municipality for all proposed screening.
(d) 
Wireless communications facility equipment enclosure and accessory equipment.
[1] 
Ground-mounted equipment associated to, or connected with, a tower-based WCF shall be underground. In the event that an applicant can demonstrate that the equipment cannot be located underground to the satisfaction of the Municipality Engineer, then the ground mounted equipment shall be screened from public view using stealth technologies.
[2] 
All wireless communications facility equipment enclosures and accessory structures shall be architecturally designed to blend into the environment in which they are situated and shall meet the minimum setback requirements of the underlying zoning district.
(e) 
Access road. An access road, turnaround space and parking shall be provided to ensure adequate emergency and service access to tower-based WCF. Maximum use of existing roads, whether public or private, shall be made to the extent practicable. Road construction shall at all times minimize ground disturbance and the cutting of vegetation. Road grades shall closely follow natural contours to assure minimal visual disturbance and minimize soil erosion. Where applicable, the WCF owner shall present documentation to the Municipality that the property owner has granted an easement for the proposed facility.
(f) 
Inspection. The Municipality reserves the right to inspect any tower-based WCF to ensure compliance with the provisions of this section and any other provisions found within the federal, state or local law. The Municipality and/or its agents shall have the authority to enter the property upon which a tower-based WCF is located at any time, upon reasonable notice to the operator, to ensure such compliance and assess the cost of such inspection against the owner/operator.
(3) 
Specific requirements applicable to tower-based wireless communications facilities located within the rights-of-way.
(a) 
Prohibited in underground utility areas. Tower-based WCF are prohibited in the rights-of-way along any roadways or corridors of the Municipality which are served by underground utilities (with the exception of sewer and water lines). Tower-based WCF are prohibited from being located within the rights-of-way which abut front yard setback areas upon properties with a residential dwelling(s).
(b) 
Permitted by conditional use.
[1] 
Only tower-based WCF that are 40 feet or shorter in height are permitted, by conditional use along the following corridors and roadways, regardless of the underlying zoning district, provided that they are not located within 50 feet of an area which is served by underground utilities (excluding underground sewer and water lines):
[a] 
Route 52.
[b] 
Route 842.
(c) 
Time, place and manner. The Municipality shall determine the time, place and manner of construction, maintenance, repair and/or removal of all tower-based WCFs in the ROW based on public safety, traffic management, physical burden on the ROW, and related considerations. For public utilities, the time, place and manner requirements shall be consistent with the police powers of the Municipality and the requirements of the Public Utility Code.
(d) 
Restoration. If appropriate, the applicant shall provide an estimate of the cost of restoration to the ROW by disturbances caused by its installation of a tower-based WCF. After completion of any maintenance, placement, installation, or removal of any tower-based WCF in the ROW, the owner of such facility shall, at its own expense, restore the ROW to its original condition within 20 days or such longer period as may reasonably be required and approved by the Municipality. Additionally:
[1] 
For one year following the completion of such work, the owner of such tower-based WCF shall guarantee its work and correct, at its own expense, any restoration work that does not satisfy the construction standards under the Municipality's codes; and
[2] 
The owner of the tower-based WCF shall exercise due care in such restoration of the ROW and shall take all reasonable steps to safeguard work site areas.
(e) 
Equipment location. Tower-based WCF and accessory equipment shall be located so as not to cause any physical or visual obstruction to pedestrian or vehicular traffic, or to otherwise create safety hazards to pedestrians and/or motorists or to otherwise inconvenience public use of the ROW as determined by the Municipality. In addition:
[1] 
Ground-mounted equipment, walls, or landscaping shall not be located within 18 inches of the face of the curb.
[2] 
Ground-mounted equipment that cannot be placed underground shall be screened, to the fullest extent possible, through the use of landscaping or other decorative features to the satisfaction of the Municipality.
[3] 
Required electrical meter cabinets shall be screened to blend in with the surrounding area to the satisfaction of the Municipality.
[4] 
Any graffiti on the tower or on any accessory equipment shall be removed at the sole expense of the owner within 10 business days of notice of the existence of the graffiti.
[5] 
Any underground vaults related to tower-based WCF shall be reviewed and approved by the Municipality.
(f) 
Relocation or removal of facilities. Within 60 days following written notice from the Municipality, or such longer period as the Municipality determines is reasonably necessary or such shorter period in the case of an emergency, an owner of tower-based WCF shall, at its own expense, temporarily or permanently remove, relocate, change or alter the position of any tower-based WCF when the Municipality, consistent with its police powers and any applicable Public Utility Commission regulations, shall determine that such removal, relocation, change or alteration is reasonably necessary under the following circumstances:
[1] 
The construction, repair, maintenance or installation of any municipal improvement or other public improvements necessary within the right-of-way.
[2] 
Certain operations of the Municipality or other governmental entity are required to take place within such right-of-way and the tower-based WCF is interfering with the ability of the Municipality or other government entity to function and perform such operations within such right-of-way.
[3] 
Vacation of a street or road or the release of a utility easement.
[4] 
An emergency as determined by the Municipality.
(g) 
Compensation for ROW use. In addition to other permit fees as required by the Municipality, every tower-based WCF in the ROW is subject to the Municipality's right to fix annually a fair and reasonable compensation to be paid for use and occupancy of the ROW. Such compensation for ROW use shall be directly related to the Municipality's actual ROW management costs including, but not limited to, the costs of the administration and performance of all reviewing, inspecting, permitting, supervising and other ROW management activities by the Municipality. The owner of each tower-based WCF shall pay an annual fee as determined by the Municipality to compensate the Municipality for the Municipality's costs incurred in connection with the activities described above.
D. 
Structure-mounted wireless communications facilities.
(1) 
Provisions applicable to all structure-mounted wireless communications facilities.
(a) 
Standard of care. Any structure-mounted WCF shall be designed, constructed, operated, maintained, repaired, modified and removed in strict compliance with all current applicable technical, and safety codes, including, but not limited to, the most recent editions of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Code, National Electrical Safety Code, and National Electrical Code and the applicable regulations of the IBC, International Building Code. Any WCF shall at all times be maintained in good condition, order and repair by qualified maintenance and construction personnel, so that the same shall not endanger the life of any person or any property in the Municipality.
(b) 
Wind. Any structure-mounted WCF shall be designed to withstand the effects of wind according to the standard designed by the American National Standards Institute as prepared by the engineering departments of the Electronics Industry Association, and Telecommunications Industry Association (ANSFEINTIA-222-E Code, as amended).
(c) 
Public safety communications. Structure-mounted WCF shall not interfere with public safety communications or the reception of broadband, television, radio or other communication services enjoyed by occupants of nearby properties.
(d) 
Aviation safety. Structure-mounted WCF shall comply with all federal and state laws and any local regulations concerning aviation safety.
(e) 
Maintenance. The following maintenance requirements shall apply:
[1] 
The structure-mounted WCF shall be fully automated and unattended on a daily basis and shall be visited only for maintenance or emergency repair.
[2] 
Such maintenance shall be performed to ensure the upkeep of the facility in order to promote the safety and security of the Municipality's residents.
[3] 
All maintenance activities shall utilize nothing less than the best available technology for preventing failures and accidents.
(f) 
Radio frequency emissions. Structure-mounted WCF shall not, by itself or in conjunction with other WCFs, generate radio frequency emissions in excess of the standards and regulations of the FCC, including but not limited to, the FCC Office of Engineering Technology Bulletin 65 entitled "Evaluating Compliance with FCC Guidelines for Human Exposure to Radio Frequency Electromagnetic Fields," as amended.
(g) 
Historic protections. Structure-mounted WCF shall not be located on a property, building or structure that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Pennsylvania Register of Historic Places or included on the list of official historic places and/or within historic districts as established and maintained by the Municipality. No structure-mounted WCF may be located within 150 feet of any historic building, structure, property or designated historic district.
(h) 
Insurance. Each person that owns or operates a structure-mounted WCF shall provide the Municipality with a certificate of insurance evidencing general liability coverage in the minimum amount of $1,000,000 per occurrence and property damage coverage in the minimum amount of $1,000,000 per occurrence covering the structure-mounted WCF.
(i) 
Indemnification. Each person that owns or operates a structure-mounted WCF shall, at its sole cost and expense, indemnify, defend and hold harmless the Municipality, its elected and appointed officials, employees and agents, at all times against any and all claims for personal injury, including death, and property damage arising in whole or in part from, caused by or connected with any act or omission of the person, its officers, agents, employees or contractors arising out of, but not limited to, the construction, installation, operation, maintenance or removal of the structure-mounted WCF. Each person that owns or operates a structure-mounted WCF shall defend any actions or proceedings against the Municipality in which it is claimed that personal injury, including death, or property damage was caused by the construction, installation, operation, maintenance or removal of a structure-mounted WCF. The obligation to indemnify, hold harmless and defend shall include, but not be limited to, the obligation to pay judgments, injuries, liabilities, damages, reasonable attorneys' fees, reasonable expert fees, court costs and all other costs of indemnification.
(j) 
Removal. In the event that use of a structure-mounted WCF is discontinued, the owner shall provide written notice to the Municipality of its intent to discontinue use and the date when the use shall be discontinued. Unused or abandoned WCF or portions of WCFs shall be removed as follows:
[1] 
All abandoned or unused WCFs and accessory facilities shall be removed within three months of the cessation of operations at the site unless a time extension is approved by the Municipality.
[2] 
If the WCF or accessory facility is not removed within three months of the cessation of operations at a site, or within any longer period approved by the Municipality, the WCF and/or associated facilities and equipment may be removed by the Municipality and the cost of removal assessed against the owner of the WCF.
(2) 
Specific requirements applicable to structure-mounted wireless communications facilities that do not substantially change the physical dimensions of the wireless support structure to which they are attached.
(a) 
Permitted by building permit. Structure-mounted WCF that do not substantially change the physical dimensions of the wireless support structure to which they are proposed to be attached are permitted by building permit in all zoning districts within the Municipality.
(b) 
A structure-mounted WCF proposing a co-location in a zoning district or designated area where WCF are not currently permitted by zoning ordinance may still be permitted if there are currently wireless support structures in place and available for co-location. Such co-location shall be subject to the regulations and conditions prescribed below and the prior written approval of the Municipality.
(c) 
Timing of approval. Within 30 calendar days of the date that an application for a structure-mounted WCF is filed with the Municipality, the Municipality shall notify the applicant in writing of any information that may be required to complete such application. The Municipality shall have 14 days from receipt of the additional information to issue a letter of completeness, or request additional information as appropriate. Within 60 calendar days of receipt of a complete application, the Municipality shall make its final decision on whether to approve the application and shall advise the applicant in writing of such decision. If additional information was requested by the Municipality to complete an application, the time required by the applicant to provide the information shall not be counted toward the Municipality's sixty-day review period. The parties can mutually agree upon extensions of time.
(d) 
Permit fees. The Municipality may assess appropriate and reasonable permit fees directly related to the Municipality's actual costs in reviewing and processing the application for approval of a structure-mounted WCF, or $1,000, whichever is less.
(3) 
Specific requirements applicable to structure-mounted wireless communications facilities that do substantially change the wireless support structure to which they are attached.
(a) 
Permitted in certain zones subject to regulations. Structure-mounted WCF that substantially change the wireless support structure to which they are proposed to be attached are permitted in the zoning districts by conditional use in the following zoning districts, and within ROWs upon the following roadways and corridors:
[1] 
C-1 Neighborhood Commercial.
[2] 
L-I Limited Industrial.
[3] 
Route 52 (within the ROW).
[4] 
Route 842 (within the ROW).
(b) 
Conditional use and notice. Upon submission of the application for the structure-mounted WCF and scheduling of the required conditional use hearing, the applicant shall mail notice thereof to the owner or owners of every property within 1,000 feet of the property line of the parcel or property upon which the proposed facility is to be situated. Such notice requirements shall be met by the applicant and proof of notification provided to the Municipality and also confirmed by the applicant as part of the conditional use hearing.
(c) 
Timing of approval. Within 30 calendar days of the date that an application for a structure-mounted WCF is filed with the Municipality, the Municipality shall notify the applicant in writing of any information that may be required to complete such application. The Municipality shall have 14 days from receipt of the additional information to issue a letter of completeness, or request additional information as appropriate. Within 90 calendar days of receipt of a complete application, the Municipality shall make its final decision on whether to approve the application and shall advise the applicant in writing of such decision. If additional information was requested by the Municipality to complete an application or the parties agree to an extension of time, the time required by the applicant to provide the information shall not be counted toward the Municipality's ninety-day review period.
(d) 
Application requirements. An application for a structure-mounted WCF that proposes to substantially change the wireless support structure must submit the following as part of a completed application:
[1] 
Project description including a design narrative, technology description, and co-location analysis indicating the alternative locations and technologies considered;
[2] 
Existing wireless coverage map overlaid on a current aerial photo showing provider's existing facilities and wireless coverage in the area;
[3] 
Proposed wireless coverage map overlaid on a current aerial photo showing provider's wireless coverage with the proposed facility;
[4] 
Photos and photo simulations showing the existing appearance of the site and appearance of the proposed installation from nearby public viewpoints; and
[5] 
Any other documentation deemed necessary by the Municipality in order to issue a decision.
(e) 
Retention of experts. The Municipality may hire any consultant and/or expert necessary to assist the Municipality in reviewing and evaluating the application for approval of the WCF, and reviewing any potential violations. This analysis may include determining whether or not the co-location is substantially changing the wireless support structure despite falling outside the technical scope as defined in this zoning ordinance. The applicant or the owner of the WCF shall reimburse the Municipality for all expert and/or consultant costs.
(f) 
Bond. Prior to the issuance of a permit, the owner of each individual structure-mounted WCF shall, at its own cost and expense, obtain and maintain from a surety licensed to do business in Pennsylvania a bond, or other form of security acceptable to the Municipality's Solicitor, in an amount of $25,000 for each individual structure-mounted CF, to assure the faithful performance of the terms and conditions of this section. The bond language or other financial security language shall be review and approved by the Municipality's Solicitor. The bond shall provide that the Municipality may recover from the principal and surety any and all compensatory damages incurred by the Municipality for violations of this section, after reasonable notice and opportunity to cure. The owner shall file a copy of the bond with the Municipality.
(g) 
Permit fees. The Municipality may assess appropriate and reasonable permit fees directly related to the Municipality's actual costs in reviewing and processing the application for approval of a structure-mounted WCF, as well as related inspection, monitoring and related costs. All permit fees and reimbursement for expert/consultant fees shall be paid in full by the applicant prior to the issuance of any building permits.
(4) 
Requirements applicable to structure-mounted wireless communications facilities located outside the rights-of-way that substantially change the wireless support structure to which they are attached.
(a) 
Development regulations. Structure-mounted WCF shall be co-located on existing structures, such as existing buildings or tower-based WCF subject to the following conditions:
[1] 
Such WCF does not exceed a maximum height of 150 feet.
[2] 
If the WCF applicant proposes to locate the communications equipment in a separate building, the building shall comply with the minimum requirements for the applicable zoning district.
[3] 
A eight-foot-high security fence shall surround any separate communications equipment building. Vehicular access to the communications equipment building shall not interfere with the parking or vehicular circulations on the site for the principal use.
(b) 
Design regulations.
[1] 
Structure-mounted WCF shall employ stealth technology and the stealth technology chosen by the WCF applicant shall be subject to the approval of the Municipality.
[2] 
Structure-mounted WCF, which are mounted to a building or similar structure, may not exceed a height of 15 feet above the roof or parapet, whichever is higher.
[3] 
All structure-mounted WCF applicants must submit documentation to the Municipality justifying the total height of the nontower structure. Such documentation shall be analyzed in the context of such justification on an individual basis.
[4] 
Antennae, and their respective accompanying support structures, shall be no greater in diameter than any cross-sectional dimension than is reasonably necessary for their proper functioning.
[5] 
Noncommercial usage exemption. The design regulations enumerated in this Subsection shall not apply to direct broadcast satellite dishes installed for the purpose of receiving video and related communications services at residential dwellings.
(c) 
Removal, replacement, and/or modification.
[1] 
The removal and replacement of structure-mounted WCF and/or accessory equipment for the purpose of upgrading or repairing the WCF is permitted, so long as such repair or upgrade does not increase the overall size of the WCF or the numbers of antennae.
[2] 
Any material modification to WCF shall require a prior amendment to the original permit or authorization.
(d) 
Inspection. The Municipality reserves the right to inspect any WCF to ensure compliance with the provisions of this section and any other provisions found within the local, state or federal law. The Municipality and/or its agents shall have the authority to enter the property upon which a WCF is located at any time upon reasonable notice to the operator, to ensure such compliance and to assess such inspection costs against the owner/operator.
(5) 
Additional requirements applicable to all structure-mounted wireless communications facilities located in the rights-of-way.
(a) 
Co-location. Structure-mounted WCF in the ROW shall be co-located on existing poles, such as existing utility poles or light poles.
(b) 
Design requirements.
[1] 
WCF installations located above the surface grade in the public ROW including, but not limited to, those on streetlights and joint utility poles, shall consist of equipment components that are no more than six feet in height and that are compatible in scale and proportion to the structures upon which they are mounted. All equipment shall be the smallest and least visibly intrusive equipment feasible.
[2] 
Antennae and all support equipment shall be treated to match the supporting structure. WCFs and accompanying equipment shall be painted, or otherwise coated, to be visually compatible with the support structure upon which they are mounted.
(c) 
Compensation for ROW use. In addition to permit fees as described above, every structure-mounted WCF in the ROW is subject to the Municipality's right to fix annually a fair and reasonable compensation to be paid for use and occupancy of the ROW. Such compensation for ROW use shall be directly related to the Municipality's actual ROW management costs including, but not limited to, the costs of the administration and performance of all reviewing, inspecting, permitting, supervising and other ROW management activities by the Municipality. The owner of each structure-mounted WCF shall pay an annual fee to the Municipality to compensate the Municipality for its costs incurred in connection with the activities described above. The annual ROW management fee for structure-mounted WCF shall be determined by the Municipality and shall be based on the Municipality's actual ROW management costs as applied to such structure-mounted WCF.
(d) 
Time, place and manner. The Municipality shall determine the time, place and manner of construction, maintenance, repair and/or removal of all structure-mounted WCF in the ROW based on public safety, traffic management, physical burden on the ROW, and related considerations. For public utilities, the time, place and manner requirements shall be consistent with the police powers of the Municipality and the requirements of the Public Utility Code.
(e) 
Restoration. If appropriate, the applicant shall provide an estimate of the cost of restoration to the ROW by disturbances caused by its installation of any structure-mounted WCF. If necessary, after completion of any maintenance, placement, installation, or removal of any structure-mounted WCF in the ROW, the owner of such facility shall, at its own expense, restore the ROW to its original condition within 20 days or such longer period as may reasonably be required and approved by the Municipality. Additionally:
[1] 
For one year following the completion of any such necessary work, the owner of such structure-mounted WCF shall guarantee its work and correct, at its own expense, any restoration work that does not satisfy the construction standards under the Municipality's codes; and
[2] 
The owner of the structure-mounted WCF shall exercise due care in any such restoration of the ROW and shall take all reasonable steps to safeguard work site areas.
(f) 
Equipment location. Structure-mounted WCF and accessory equipment shall be located so as not to cause any physical or visual obstruction to pedestrian or vehicular traffic, or to otherwise create safety hazards to pedestrians and/or motorists or to otherwise inconvenience public use of the ROW as determined by the Municipality. In addition:
[1] 
Ground-mounted equipment, walls, or landscaping shall not be located within 18 inches of the face of the curb.
[2] 
Ground-mounted equipment shall be located underground. In the event an applicant can demonstrate, to the satisfaction of the Municipality Engineer, that ground-mounted equipment cannot be placed underground, then all such equipment shall be screened, to the fullest extent possible, through the use of landscaping or other decorative features to the satisfaction of the Municipality.
[3] 
Required electrical meter cabinets shall the screened to blend in with the surrounding area to the satisfaction of the Municipality.
[4] 
Any graffiti on the tower or on any accessory equipment shall be removed at the sole expense of the owner within 10 business days of notice of the existence of the graffiti.
[5] 
Any underground vaults related to structure-mounted WCF shall be reviewed and approved by the Municipality.
(g) 
Relocation or removal of facilities. Within 60 days following written notice from the Municipality, or such longer period as the Municipality determines is reasonably necessary or such shorter period in the case of an emergency, an owner of a structure-mounted WCF in the ROW shall, at its own expense, temporarily or permanently remove, relocate, change or alter the position of any WCF when the Municipality, consistent with its police powers and applicable Public Utility Commission regulations, shall have determined that such removal, relocation, change or alteration is reasonably necessary under the following circumstances:
[1] 
The construction, repair, maintenance or installation of any municipal improvement or other public improvements necessary within the right-of-way.
[2] 
Certain operations of the Municipality or other governmental entity are required to take place within such right-of-way and the structure-mounted WCF is interfering with the ability of the Municipality or other government entity to function and perform such operations within such right-of-way.
[3] 
Vacation of a street or road or the release of a utility easement.
[4] 
An emergency as determined by the Municipality.
[Added 7-13-2015 by Ord. No. 4-2015]
A. 
Purpose and objective.
(1) 
Pocopson Township seeks to provide opportunities for alternative and emerging energy facilities, while regulating the use of potentially intrusive facilities, equipment and machinery.
(2) 
The purpose of this section of the Zoning Chapter is to establish provisions for the design, permitting, construction and operation of alternative and emerging energy facilities within the Township, subject to reasonable conditions that will protect the public health, safety and/or general welfare of the community.
B. 
Applicability and permitted uses.
(1) 
This section shall apply to all alternative and emerging energy facilities that are proposed to be constructed after the effective date of this section.
(2) 
Alternative and/or emerging energy facilities constructed prior to the effective date of this section shall not be required to meet the requirements specified under this section unless otherwise specified, but shall be required to register with the Zoning Officer. Any physical modification, alternation, construction or reconstruction to an existing alternative or emerging energy facility that alters the size, type and/or generating capacities of the facilities shall require a permit and shall be brought into compliance with the applicable provisions specified under this section.
(3) 
Alternative and/or emerging energy facilities shall be permitted within all zoning districts as an accessory use by right, except as otherwise specified in this section.
(4) 
Alternative and/or emerging energy facilities shall be utilized by the principal use of the lot on which it is located. Surplus energy may be exchanged, transferred and/or sold to a public utility company, provided that such surplus energy is exchanged, transferred and/or sold in accordance with the provisions established by the Public Utility Commission and Public Utility Code.
(5) 
Alternative and/or emerging energy facilities shall not generate energy in excess of 200% of the normal peak on-site energy demand of the principal and accessory uses of the property.
C. 
Land use and dimensional requirements.
(1) 
The following provisions shall apply to wind turbines or wind energy facilities:
(a) 
Wind turbines or wind energy facilities shall be permitted by conditional use in all zoning districts as an accessory use. A wind energy facility is considered an accessory wind energy facility if it supplies electrical power primarily for on-site use.
(b) 
All wind turbines or wind energy facilities shall be located, designed and installed as per the manufacturer's specifications, shall conform to applicable industry standards, such as those of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), Underwriters Laboratories, Det Norske Veritas, Germanischer Lloyd Wind Energies, the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), or other similar certifying organizations, shall comply with all zoning, building code and utility requirements and shall comply with all federal, state, county and local laws, regulations and ordinances.
(c) 
When a property upon which a wind turbine or wind energy facility is installed also receives electrical power supplied by a public utility company, excess electrical power generated by the wind turbine or wind energy facility and not presently needed for on-site use may be used by the public utility company, as long as the electrical power generated by the wind turbine or wind energy facility is used primarily on-site. The owner of the wind turbines or wind energy facilities shall provide written confirmation that the public utility company has been informed of the customer's intent to install an interconnected customer-owned generator and also approves of such connection. Facilities not connected to the public utility grid shall be exempt from this requirement.
(d) 
Wind turbines or wind energy facilities that are designed and permitted as an attached alternative energy facility shall comply with the maximum height requirements for buildings in the zoning district on which it is located or 50 feet, whichever is less, as measured from the ground surface to the tip of the blade at its highest turning movement.
(e) 
For any roof-mounted wind turbines or wind energy facilities, the applicant must demonstrate to the Building Code Inspector, by credible evidence, that the structural integrity of the structure on which the roof-mounted wind turbine or wind energy facility will be mounted is such that it can adequately support the system being considered.
(f) 
Wind turbines or wind energy facilities that are designed as a freestanding alternative energy facility shall be setback more than 1.1 times the turbine height from any structure. The required setback distance shall be measured from the nearest point of the wind turbine base to the nearest point of the structure.
(g) 
All wind turbines or wind energy facilities shall be set back from all structures located on a nonparticipating landowner's property a distance of not less than five times the turbine height, as measured from the nearest point of the wind turbine base to the nearest point of the structure(s).
(h) 
All wind turbines or wind energy facilities shall be set back from the nearest property line a distance of not less than the normal setback requirements for that zoning district or two times the turbine height, whichever is greater. The required setback distance shall be measured from the nearest point of the wind turbine base to the property line.
(i) 
All wind turbines or wind energy facilities shall be set back from the nearest public road a distance of not less than two times the turbine height, as measured from the nearest point of the wind turbine base to the right-of-way line of the nearest public road.
(j) 
All wind turbines or wind energy facilities shall be set back sufficiently from any aboveground utility lines, radio, television, or telecommunication towers so as to present no danger to those lines or structures, as certified by the applicant's engineer. No portion of any wind energy system shall extend over parking areas, access drives, driveways or sidewalks.
(k) 
No wind turbine shall be permitted in the front yard of the lot on which it is located or along any street frontage (e.g., in a side yard abutting a street).
(l) 
The minimum height of a wind turbine shall be 15 feet, as measured from the ground surface to the tip of the blade at its lowest turning movement. If the wind turbine proposed is a vertical axis wind turbine, the height between the lowest point of the turbine and the ground may be reduced to 10 feet.
(m) 
Wind turbines or wind energy facilities shall not generate noise which exceeds 55 decibels, or 10 decibels above ambient noise, in any hour, whichever is higher. Noise is measured from the property line of the closest neighboring inhabited structure or nearest habitable structure setback line on any abutting property. The ambient sound measurement, known as "A-weighted sound level," is taken where the noise from the wind turbine or wind energy facility cannot be heard, or with the wind turbine or wind energy facility shut down. The ambient sound level shall be considered the level that is exceeded 90% of the time when the noise measurements are taken. Any noise exceeding this level may be subject to the nuisance provisions of the Township Code. Notwithstanding the above, the 55 decibel or 10 decibel over ambient level may be exceeded during short-term events such as utility outages and/or severe windstorms.
(n) 
No more than one wind turbine shall be permitted per lot. A wind energy facility made up of a number of adjacent micro-turbine panels is considered one turbine for the purposes of this subsection.
(o) 
If the owner of the wind energy system determines it is necessary to ensure that wind access to any wind system shall not be obstructed over time by permissible uses on any adjacent property (e.g., by planting or growth of vegetation or by new construction), it shall be the responsibility of the owner of the wind energy system to obtain appropriate wind access easement(s) from neighboring property owners(s) and to notify the Township upon the recording of any such easement(s). All wind access easements shall be recorded in the Office of the Chester County Recorder of Deeds.
(p) 
All wind turbines and wind energy facilities shall be equipped with a redundant braking system, which shall include both aerodynamic over-speed controls (including variable pitch, tip, and other similar systems) and mechanical brakes. Mechanical brakes shall be operated in a fail-safe mode. Stall regulation shall not be considered a sufficient braking system for over-speed protection.
(q) 
Wind turbines shall not be climbable up to 15 feet above ground surface. All access doors to wind turbines and electrical equipment shall be locked or fenced, as appropriate, to prevent entry by nonauthorized persons.
(2) 
The following provisions shall specifically apply to solar energy systems:
(a) 
Solar energy systems shall be located, designed and installed as per the manufacturer's specifications as well as all zoning, building code and utility requirements and shall comply with all federal, state, county and local laws, regulations and ordinances.
(b) 
A solar energy system connected to the public utility grid shall provide written authorization from the public utility company acknowledging and approving such connection. Excess electrical power generated by the solar energy system and not presently needed for on-site use may be used by the public utility company, as long as the electrical power generated by the solar energy system is primarily for on-site use. Facilities not connected to the public utility grid shall be exempt from this requirement.
(c) 
Solar energy systems which are designed as an attached alternative energy facility shall be permitted provided that all structural components of the solar energy system do not exceed the permitted building height requirements of the zoning district in which it is located and the system does not extend beyond the existing overhangs of the structure to which it is attached. The building height shall be measured from the average ground elevation of the building to the average height of the solar panel(s) or other structural components of the solar energy facilities.
(d) 
Solar energy systems designed and permitted as a freestanding alternative energy facility shall not exceed 15 feet in height and shall be located not less than the normal setback requirements for that zoning district or 15 feet from a property line, whichever is greater. All such solar energy systems shall comply with the building and lot coverage requirements of the zoning district on which it is located. For the purposes of this section, all "at grade" or "above grade" features and facilities relating to ground-mounted solar energy systems, including appurtenances, shall be considered impervious surface and shall be counted in the maximum impervious coverage requirements of the zoning district, unless the applicant can demonstrate to the Township Engineer, by credible evidence, that stormwater will infiltrate into the ground beneath the solar collection system at a rate equal to that of the infiltration prior to placement of the system.
(e) 
Solar energy systems shall be located behind the front facade of the building for the primary permitted use. No solar energy system shall be permitted in the front yard of the lot or along any street frontage.
(f) 
Solar energy systems shall be located to ensure solar access without reliance on adjacent properties.
(g) 
If the owner of the solar energy system determines it is necessary to ensure that solar access to any solar energy system shall not be obstructed over time by permissible uses on any adjacent property (e.g., by planting or growth of vegetation or by new construction), it shall be the responsibility of the owner of the solar energy system to obtain appropriate solar access easement(s) from neighboring property owners(s) and to notify the Township upon the recording of any such easement(s). All solar access easements shall be recorded in the Office of the Chester County Recorder of Deeds.
(h) 
Solar energy panels shall be designed and located in order to minimize glare and visual impact on neighboring properties or roadways. As part of permit issuance, the Township may require a vegetative buffer to minimize glare or visual impact on neighboring properties or roadways. Any glare that is visible beyond the property lines of the property upon which the solar energy system is located shall be considered a nuisance and may be subject to the nuisance provisions of the Township Code.
(3) 
The following provisions shall specifically apply to geothermal energy systems:
(a) 
Closed-loop geothermal energy systems, as an accessory use, shall be permitted by right provided that the energy supplied is solely for the use of principal and accessory uses permitted on the subject property.
(b) 
Open-loop geothermal energy systems, as an accessory use, shall be permitted by conditional use provided that the energy supplied is solely for the use of principal and accessory uses permitted on the subject property.
(c) 
Geothermal energy systems may be located on a lot with a permitted use, provided that all structural components comply with the building setback requirements and lot coverage requirements of the zoning district on which it is located.
(d) 
The design and installation of geothermal energy systems and related boreholes shall conform to the manufacturer's specifications and applicable industry standards, including those of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), the International Ground Source Heat Pump Association (IGSHPA), the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), the Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute (ARI), or other similar certifying organizations, and shall comply with the Township Building Code, all other applicable Township requirements and all federal, state, county and local laws, regulations and ordinances. A zoning permit and building permit, consistent with the Pennsylvania Uniform Construction Code, shall be required. Applicable manufacturer specifications shall be submitted as part of the application for any permit.
(e) 
Only the following types of geothermal energy systems shall be permitted:
[1] 
Closed horizontal loop;
[2] 
Closed vertical loop; and
[3] 
Open horizontal loop systems relying upon injection wells.
(f) 
Recognizing the potential formation of sinkholes, all applicants for geothermal energy systems, as part of the application for permit process for installation of a geothermal energy system, shall submit a notarized agreement stating as follows:
[1] 
In all situations when boreholes or trenches are (or have been) excavated, or natural conditions have otherwise been disturbed (such as through the withdrawal of groundwater in an open-loop system), the likelihood of sinkhole formation increases;
[2] 
The applicant, its successors, heirs and assigns accepts all responsibility and liability for any sinkholes that form in association with the geothermal energy system; and
[3] 
The applicant, its successors, heirs and assigns agrees to repair any and all significant sinkholes that form in association with the geothermal energy system.
(g) 
All or any mechanical equipment (appurtenances) associated with and necessary for the operation of the geothermal energy system shall comply with all accessory setbacks for the zoning district in which the system is installed.
(h) 
To the extent any provision of the Chester County Health Department rules and regulations is inconsistent with the terms of this section, the Chester County Health Department rules and regulations shall control.
(i) 
Closed-loop geothermal energy systems shall utilize fluids conforming to all standards set by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). A permanent sign must be attached to the heat pump specifying that only approved heat-transfer fluids must be used.
(j) 
The following regulations shall apply to all open-loop geothermal energy systems:
[1] 
Water extraction:
[a] 
Extraction of water from surface waters shall be prohibited.
[b] 
All open-loop geothermal energy systems that extract water from groundwater sources shall comply with extraction limitations set for potable water wells under federal, state, county and Township laws, regulations and ordinances.
[c] 
Installation requirements for extraction wells shall be the same as those for potable water wells, with respect to those regulations designed to prevent aquifer contamination (grouting, etc.), or in conformance with IGSHPA standards, as determined by the Township Engineer.
[d] 
Prior to the issuance of any permit for the installation of an open-loop geothermal energy system, the applicant shall submit a report to the Township of the yield of the supply and recharge of the groundwater system. It shall be satisfactorily demonstrated that the groundwater yield will be adequate to meet the demands of the manufacturer's specifications for the equipment and shall not negatively impact the domestic water supply.
[2] 
Aboveground discharge of water:
[a] 
Discharge of water from open-loop systems into sanitary sewer systems shall be prohibited.
[b] 
Discharge of water from open-loop systems into storm sewers and onto roads shall be prohibited.
[c] 
Discharge of water from open-loop systems into a watercourse shall be prohibited.
[3] 
Underground injection of water from an open-loop geothermal energy system shall be subject to the following conditions:
[a] 
Returned water shall contain no treatment additives or other introduced chemicals.
[b] 
The return well shall recharge the groundwater from which supply water is extracted.
[c] 
Because such return wells are included as "Class V Underground Injection Wells," the applicant shall submit an "Inventory of injection wells" form, available from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, at the time of permit application and shall comply with all federal, state, county and Township laws, regulations and ordinances.
(4) 
The following provisions shall specifically apply to wood-fired boilers:
(a) 
Wood-fired boilers shall be permitted by special exception as an accessory use in any zoning district.
(b) 
Wood-fired boilers shall be located on a conforming lot with a minimum lot area of 25 net acres.
(c) 
Wood-fired boilers designed as a freestanding alternative energy facility shall not exceed 20 feet in height and shall be located at least 150 feet from any property line, street right-of-way, or any inhabited dwelling not located on the lot on which the wood-fired boiler is proposed. All such systems shall comply with the building and lot coverage requirements of the zoning district on which it is located.
(d) 
Wood-fired boilers shall be located, designed and installed per the manufacturer's specifications as well as all zoning, building code and utility requirements, and shall conform to applicable industry standards, including those of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), American National Standards Institute (ANSI), Underwriters Laboratories (UL), the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), or other similar certifying organizations as demonstrated to the Building Code Inspector by credible evidence.
(e) 
The use of wood-fired bollers shall comply with all federal, state and local laws, regulations and ordinances.
(f) 
Wood-fired boilers shall be located behind the front facade of the building utilized for the primary permitted use. No structural components of the wood-fired boiler shall be permitted in the front yard of the lot.
(g) 
Wood-fired boilers shall be installed with a permanent attached stack, which shall have a minimum stack height of 10 feet above the ground and that also extends at least two feet above the highest peak of any residence located less than 150 feet from the outdoor wood-fired boiler.
(h) 
Wood-fired boilers shall not use a fuel other than clean wood, wood pellets made from clean wood. Home heating oil, natural gas, or propane that complies with all applicable sulfur limits may be used as a starter or supplemental fuel for dual-fired outdoor wood-fired boilers.
(i) 
Any of the following shall not be burned in a wood-fired boiler: any material not listed in Subsection C(4)(h) as a permitted fuel, including but not limited to, treated or painted wood, furniture, garbage, tires, lawn clippings or yard waste, material containing plastic, material containing rubber, waste petroleum products, paints and paint thinners, chemicals, any hazardous waste, coal, construction and demolition debris, plywood, particleboard, salt water driftwood, manure, animal carcasses or asphalt products.
(j) 
Wood-fired boilers shall be designed and located in order to minimize smoke and odor that is emitted and directed towards an occupied residential use.
(k) 
Wood-fired boilers may be located on a lot provided that the wood-fired boiler is located, designed and installed so as not to interfere with the health, safety and general welfare of the adjacent property owners and complies with the provisions of the Township's Nuisance Ordinance.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 129, Nuisances.
(l) 
Effective with the enactment of this section, it shall be unlawful to operate any wood-burning device within the Township which is not United States EPA Phase II certified, a pellet-fueled heater or approved by the Zoning Officer. The Zoning Officer may grant an exception to this section in case of hardship. Hardship can include one of the following:
[1] 
A residential sole source of heat;
[2] 
A temporary sole source of heat; or
[3] 
An inadequate alternative source of heat.
(5) 
The following provisions shall specifically apply to manure digesters:
(a) 
Manure digesters, as an accessory use, shall be permitted as a conditional use in the RA Zoning District on residential and agricultural properties of 25 net acres or more.
(b) 
A manure digester shall be permitted as an accessory use only if it supplies electrical or thermal power primarily for on-site use. A manure digester shall not be permitted as a principal use.
(c) 
When a property upon which a manure digester is installed also receives electrical power supplied by a public utility company, excess electrical power generated and not presently needed for on-site use may be used by the public utility company, as long as the electrical power generated is used primarily for on-site use. The owner of the manure digester shall provide written confirmation that the public utility company has been informed of the customer's intent to install an interconnected customer-owned generator and also approves of such connection. Systems not connected to the public utility grid shall be exempt from this requirement.
(d) 
A manure digester shall only use feedstock produced on the property on which it is located.
(e) 
Design and installation.
[1] 
The design and installation of any manure digester shall conform to applicable industry standards and shall comply with the Township Building Code, and with all other applicable fire and life safety requirements. A zoning permit and building permit, consistent with the Pennsylvania Uniform Construction Code, shall be required. Applicable manufacturer specifications shall be submitted as part of the application for any permit. At the conditional use hearing, the applicant shall address and provide documentation regarding performance standards for siting to minimize impacts on neighboring properties, which shall include considerations of odor, prevailing wind patterns, proximity to nonagricultural properties, operational noise, feedstock to be used and specific hours of operation.
[2] 
Manure digesters shall be designed and constructed in compliance with the applicable guidelines outlined by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Services and in the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection's Bureau of Water Quality Management publication(s), and any revisions, supplements and replacements thereto by the PADEP.
[3] 
Manure digesters shall also be designed and constructed in compliance with applicable federal, state, county and Township laws and regulations. Evidence of all federal and state regulatory agencies' approvals shall be included with the application for conditional use.
[4] 
A certified professional, qualified to do such, shall furnish and demonstrate compliance with all details of construction, operation, maintenance and necessary controls related to the manure digester at the conditional use hearing.
(f) 
The proposed use shall be subject to any applicable operation and performance standards set forth by DEP.
(g) 
Manure digesters shall not be located within 50 feet of any side property line, within 75 feet of any rear property line, within 150 feet from any residential structure other than that of the property owner, or within 100 feet of any public road right-of-way.
(h) 
The footprint of a manure digester shall be calculated as part of the overall lot coverage.
(6) 
The following provisions shall specifically apply to emerging energy facilities not otherwise described in this section of the Township Code:
(a) 
Emerging energy systems, as an accessory use, shall be permitted by special exception in any zoning district.
(b) 
Emerging energy systems may be located on or attached to an occupied building provided that the structural components of the emerging energy facilities do not exceed the permitted building height requirements of the zoning district in which it is located and a roof-mounted system does not extend beyond the existing overhangs of the structure to which it is attached.
(c) 
Emerging energy systems shall be located on a lot with a primary permitted use and all structural components shall comply with the building setback requirements and lot coverage requirements of the zoning district on which it is located.
(d) 
Emerging energy systems that utilize tower-mounted devices shall comply with the wind energy setback and height provisions of this section.
(e) 
Emerging energy systems shall be located, designed and installed taking into consideration the health, safety and general welfare of the adjacent property owners. As part of the special exception application, the Zoning Hearing Board may attach reasonable conditions and safeguards.
(7) 
The following provisions shall apply to noise, shadow flickering and/or interference involving alternative and/or emerging energy facilities:
(a) 
Audible sound from any alternative and/or emerging energy facility shall not exceed the noise levels set forth in the Township's Noise Ordinance[2] or as specified in this section.
[2]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 125, Noise.
(b) 
The applicant shall make reasonable efforts to minimize shadow flicker at the property line.
(c) 
An alternative and/or emerging energy facility shall not disrupt radio, telephone, television or similar communication signals.
(d) 
An alternative and/or emerging energy facility shall not cause a disturbance that adversely affects or causes harm to wildlife.
D. 
Permit and application requirements.
(1) 
No alternative or emerging energy facility shall be located, modified or constructed within the Township unless a permit has been issued to the landowner in accordance with the provisions of this section.
(2) 
The permit application and special exception and/or conditional use application shall demonstrate that the alternative or emerging energy facility will comply with the provisions contained under this section and such other sections of the Township Code, as may be applicable. The following specific items shall be provided by the applicant:
(a) 
A complete narrative describing the proposed alternative or emerging energy facility, which shall include: a project overview; the project location; the number of the alternative or emerging energy facilities; the area and height of the alternative or emerging energy facilities; the initial and potential generating capacities; the facility dimensions; and the manufacturer's specifications.
(b) 
A list of the properties within 500 feet on which the proposed alternative or emerging energy facility will be located.
(c) 
A site plan showing the boundary lines of the property occupied by the alternative or emerging energy facility and the properties within 500 feet on which the proposed alternative or emerging energy facility will be located. The site plan shall also include: topographical and natural features; the planned location of the alternative or emerging energy facilities; the building setback lines; the access road and turnout locations; building and structures; stormwater management facilities and all public utilities.
(d) 
The existing and projected annual energy needs of the permitted use that will benefit from the alternative or emerging energy facility, including the amount of surplus energy that will be exchanged, transferred and/or sold to a public utility company.
(e) 
Shadow flicker and noise studies for wind turbines.
(f) 
Documents related to the potential abandonment and/or decommissioning of the alternative or emerging energy facilities.
(g) 
Such other items as may be specified in this section.
(h) 
Other relevant studies, reports, certifications and approvals as may be reasonably requested by the Township to ensure compliance with this section of the Zoning Chapter.
(3) 
All applicants for an alternative and emerging energy facility permit shall pay all fees for application and inspection as established by resolution of the Board of Supervisors.
E. 
Design and installation requirements.
(1) 
The design of the alternative or emerging energy facility shall conform to applicable industry standards, including those of the American National Standards Institute, the Uniform Construction Code, and/or other pertinent codes adopted by Pocopson Township. In the event of a conflict between the provisions of this section and the Township Building Code, the more stringent requirements shall apply.
(2) 
Aboveground alternative and emerging energy facilities shall be clear-coated, transparent, and/or be designed with a nonobtrusive color such as white, off-white, gray or black. All such facilities shall not be artificially lighted, except to the extent required by the Federal Aviation Administration or other applicable authority that regulates air safety.
(3) 
Aboveground alternative and emerging facilities shall not display advertising, except for reasonable identification of the manufacturer.
(4) 
All exterior electrical and/or plumbing lines serving the alternative and/or emerging energy facility shall be underground and be placed in conduit.
(5) 
Clearly visible warning signs concerning voltage must be placed at the base of all aboveground transformers and substations. Visible, reflective, colored objects, such as flags, reflectors, or tape shall be placed on the anchor points of guy wires and along the guy wires up to a height of 10 feet from the ground.
(6) 
Aboveground alternative and emerging energy facilities shall not be combined with other support towers or accessory structural components that are devoted to or utilized by public or private utilities.
F. 
Decommissioning.
(1) 
The alternative or emerging energy system shall be presumed to be at the end of its useful life if no energy is generated for a continuous period of 12 months.
(2) 
The landowner shall, at the landowner's expense, complete decommissioning of the alternative or emerging energy facility including removal of the alternative or emerging energy facility components, cleaning the site and restoring, grading and re-seeding disturbed earth within six months after the end of its useful life.
(3) 
An independent and certified professional engineer may be retained by the Township to inspect the decommissioning of the alternative and emerging facilities. All such inspection fees shall be paid by the landowner.
(4) 
If the landowner fails to complete decommissioning during the prescribed period of six months, the Township may, but shall have not have the duty, to enter onto the premises to take such measures as necessary to complete decommissioning in accordance with the Township Code and the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Such entry and decommissioning shall not constitute a taking. The Township may charge and assess the costs thereof to each owner of the property and to enforce said charges and assessment by a lien upon the property. Such charge and/or lien may include all decommissioning and other costs incurred by the Township including costs in connection with the enforcement or attempted enforcement, reasonable attorneys' fees and court costs incurred in connection with any legal or equitable proceeding brought to enforce this section. The Township reserves all the right to pursue all remedies available at law or in equity. All permits issued under this section for alternative and/or emerging energy systems shall require the permit holder to acknowledge this subsection.
[Added 11-19-2003 by Ord. No. 3-2003; amended 5-9-2011 by Ord. No. 1-2011]
A. 
Applicability.
(1) 
Except for individual lots existing at the time of adoption of this section and occupied or intended to be occupied by single-family or two-family dwellings, the provisions of § 190-35 of the Pocopson Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance shall apply to all uses and to any change in use in Pocopson Township, such standards incorporated herein by this reference.
(2) 
Where any use or activity requires approval of any building or zoning permit, zoning variance, special exception or conditional use, such approval or permit shall be conditioned upon compliance with the provisions of said § 190-35, including submission of a landscaping plan as set forth in § 190-35B. Plans accompanying conditional use application may be conceptual in nature but shall demonstrate the ability to achieve the objectives of § 190-35.
(3) 
It is the intention of this section that the provisions of said § 190-35 shall apply independently under this chapter only where the Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance does not otherwise apply to the proposed use or activity. Therefore, where any use, activity, permit or approval is also subject to subdivision or land development review, there shall be no requirement for additional review under this chapter. Further, where and to the extent that modification(s) of any of the provisions of said § 190-35 has/have been approved by the Board of Supervisors in connection with any subdivision or land development review, the said requirements shall not be independently enforced pursuant to this chapter.
B. 
Modifications.
(1) 
For any use or activity subject to subdivision or land development review, modification(s) to the provisions of § 190-35 of the Pocopson Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance may be requested, which modification(s) may be granted at the discretion of the Board of Supervisors pursuant to the provisions of that ordinance.
(2) 
For any use or activity not subject to subdivision or land development review, but where the use or activity is subject to application for approval of a conditional use, special exception, or zoning variance, modification(s) to the provisions of said § 190-35 may be requested as part of such application.
(3) 
For any use or activity not otherwise subject to permit or approval as provided in Subsection B(1) or (2) above, modification(s) to the provisions of said § 190-35 may be requested in the form of an application for grant of a special exception by the Zoning Hearing Board. Such applications shall be submitted to the Township Planning Commission for review and comment prior to formal special exception application to the Zoning Hearing Board.
(4) 
In approving any application pursuant to Subsection B(2) or (3) above, the Zoning Hearing Board or Board of Supervisors, as applicable, as a condition of approval of such application, may permit specific modification(s) to the provisions of said § 190-35 subject to the following:
(a) 
The Zoning Hearing Board or Board of Supervisors, as applicable, shall determine that the specific nature of the lawful use or activity, existing site conditions, or safety considerations warrant such modification(s); and
(b) 
Permitted modifications shall be consistent with the purposes of said § 190-35.
[Added 11-19-2003 by Ord. No. 3-2003]
These standards are designed to ensure that all residents of Pocopson Township shall have opportunities for active and passive recreation including enjoyment of historic and natural areas and to ensure safe, clean sustainable water supplies through natural recharge of groundwater.
A. 
General.
(1) 
Conventional development.
(a) 
The developer of a conventional development of lots averaging less than three acres shall pay to the Township Recreation Fund a proportionate share of the Township’s cost of acquiring and developing active recreational facilities as set forth herein.
[Amended 5-9-2011 by Ord. No. 1-2011]
(b) 
In lieu of payment, the Township may accept the donation of land of commensurate value that is suitable and appropriate for active recreation or for the preservation and extension of important natural areas.
(c) 
Anyone constructing a residence of a lot subdivided prior to the enactment of this section (November 19, 2003) and in a subdivision where no prior contribution to active recreational development was made commensurate with the requirements of this section, shall pay to the Township Recreation Fund a fee established by resolution of the Board of Supervisors.
[Added 5-9-2011 by Ord. No. 1-2011]
(2) 
Cluster development.
(a) 
A minimum of 5% of the gross tract acreage in any cluster development shall be suitable and accessible for active recreation by the residents and appropriate facilities provided.
(b) 
The developers of any cluster development with fewer than 20 dwelling units may, in lieu of dedicating land for recreation, elect to contribute to the Township Recreation Fund a proportionate share of the Township's costs of acquiring and developing active recreational facilities off-site as set forth herein.
[Amended 5-9-2011 by Ord. No. 1-2011]
B. 
Location and design of open spaces.
(1) 
Township priorities for restricted open space use (in order of priority):
(a) 
Woodland and natural areas preservation as described in this chapter.
(b) 
Protection of historic sites.
(c) 
Recreation for residents of the development subject to application and Township residents in general.
(d) 
Agriculture.
(e) 
Greenways and scenic river and scenic road corridors with trails or riparian buffers.
(f) 
Wastewater spray irrigation and intensive stormwater recharge facilities (not necessarily mutually exclusive with any of the above).
(2) 
Consideration shall be given to the arrangement and location of open spaces in order to take advantage of physical characteristics of the site and to place open spaces within easy access and view of dwelling units. In general, large blocks of contiguous lands containing undisturbed woodlands and natural areas, agricultural lands, and recreational areas are recommended. Physical interconnection(s) with other such open space areas off site also is recommended. Designation of open space is further encouraged in areas which will afford buffering of important on- or off-site natural or recreational areas. A minimum of 50% of the land(s) intended to meet the minimum open space requirement in any development shall consist of contiguous blocks of open space land with a minimum width of 150 feet and minimum length of 400 feet. The remaining 50% shall be comprised of areas not less than 1/4 acre of contiguous area and not less than 75 feet in width, except where a narrower area of linear open space serves as a connecting access strip, protects a woodland or other important natural feature located between larger open space parcels, or includes a portion of a trail system or pathway network.
(3) 
Areas identified within § 250-17B, Conservation of site features, as unique features shall to the maximum feasible extent be incorporated into the design for common open space areas.
(4) 
Areas set aside for open space shall be of sufficient size and character to support the use(s) designated. Any open space areas shall contain only those structures relating to the purposes of the open space or to wastewater, stormwater or water supply facilities permitted by this chapter in the open space. Areas that will be spray irrigated as well as half of the land devoted to buildings and curvilinear-shaped treatment and storage ponds may be counted in open space calculations. All land used for community septic or drip irrigation fields (where and if permitted by the Township) or any other sewage facilities, all land within a minimum three-hundred-foot-diameter circle around telephone transmission towers, one acre of land around and under any water towers, all land under or within 50 feet of transformer stations and land under or within 25 feet of telephone or electronic switching structures shall be excluded from calculation of minimum required open space.
(5) 
Active recreational use areas shall be located where noise, light, and other attributes of the proposed use will not adversely affect the residents of the development or abutting properties. The Board of Supervisors shall approve the location and design of such areas and may impose limitations on hours of use.
(6) 
The design standards contained within this chapter shall be used where applicable for the control of access, parking, and landscaping associated with uses permitted within an open space area.
(7) 
Any open space land offered for dedication to the Township shall be accessible to Township residents and maintenance vehicles from a public road or across a minimum twenty-foot-wide, easily traversed right-of-way from a public road.
(8) 
The Township may require that, to the greatest extent practicable, all contiguous woodlands, greenways, riparian areas, and any Township-identified natural areas of importance be in common or single ownership.
C. 
Trails and bikeways. All developments shall make provision for the construction and dedication of the sections of the Township comprehensive Trail and Bikeway System linking their development to the rest of the system or, if the linkages along a development's frontage roads or another accessible location has been completed on another property, shall pay a fee for trail and bikeway acquisition, construction, and management to the Township Trails Fund. Such fee shall be established by resolution of the Board of Supervisors. Sidewalks (as may be required by this chapter) and trails within the development shall provide safe connection for the development residents to the Township-wide system.
[Amended 5-9-2011 by Ord. No. 1-2011]
D. 
Mandatory conservation easement. All ground required to be set aside for open space shall be subject to a conservation easement granted to the Township or to a qualified nonprofit conservation organization that restricts the open space land to open space uses in perpetuity and empowers the Township or nonprofit to enforce such restriction at law or in equity. Where any required conservation easement is not granted to the Township, the Township shall be granted a third-party right of enforcement. All required conservation easements shall incorporate any special restrictions or obligations required under the bonus provisions of § 250-16B(3) where applicable.
E. 
Required recreational facilities or contributions for their acquisition and development.
(1) 
Conventional developments with lots of less than five acres without the common recreational facilities of the type indicated in Subsection E(2)(a) through (e) below or alternatives approved by the Board of Supervisors shall contribute funds to the Township Recreation Fund to provide the facilities noted in Subsection E(2) below according to the pro-rata formula noted. All lots over six acres in size contribute 1/2 of the per-lot amount.
[Amended 11-28-2005 by Ord. No. 3-2005; 5-9-2011 by Ord. No. 1-2011]
(2) 
Every development shall either provide on-site or contribute pro rata to off-site purchase of land and the cost of development of the following recreational facilities (except where comparably priced alternative facilities are approved by the Board of Supervisors):
(a) 
At a minimum, for any development with at least 30 dwelling units, there shall be one tennis court, one basketball court and one level playing field suitable for soccer or softball or other field sports (excluding baseball); any development containing 30 or more dwelling units on lots of less than 1/2 acre shall provide a level area of at least one acre suitable for community gardening with appropriate fencing and watering facilities; one additional tennis or basketball court or level playing field shall be provided for every 40 dwellings in excess of 60 up to 140. The type or mix of proposed courts shall, to the satisfaction of the Board of Supervisors, show a direct relationship to the anticipated age structure of the prospective residents.
(b) 
In addition, for any development with more than 60 but not more than 140 dwelling units, and for each additional 140 dwelling units or fraction thereof in excess of the initial 140 dwelling units, one tot lot and one regulation-sized playing field in lieu of a level playing field but suitable to accommodate a variety of activities (e.g., baseball/soccer/nonteam recreation) shall be provided. The regulation field requirement may be waived by the Board of Supervisors when the proposed development is to be age-restricted to residents 50 years of age and older.
(c) 
The developer of less than 30 dwelling units shall provide a multipurpose level practice field and a tennis court/basketball court or, if less than 15 units, may make a pro-rata contribution to the Township Recreation Fund.
[Amended 5-9-2011 by Ord. No. 1-2011]
(d) 
For developments exceeding 100 units and/or 100 acres, a recreation, historic site preservation and nature preserve plan generally incorporating the above basic facilities requirements and its per-unit provisions but specifically designed to accommodate the type of resident populations which may occupy the housing types to be developed shall be presented for review and approval by the Board of Supervisors. Community gardens, passive recreational facilities or preserved natural or historic sites (when such are found on the tract) shall be included and may be substituted for active recreation facilities in excess of those provided in Subsection E(2)(b) above. Regulation-sized playing fields shall be required and other types of recreational facilities provided. The Board of Supervisors, in its sole discretion, may agree to accept dedication of some or all of the facilities or agree to purchase land or construct additional public recreational facilities in excess of minimum requirements on the property.
(e) 
If certain natural resources or a combination of natural resources found on the site are of great significance or an opportunity exists to restore or create a significant nature preserve or riparian nature park, the Board of Supervisors may request that a special plan be prepared at the developer's expense by a qualified naturalist or landscape architect with ecological training. Such plan shall be designed to protect the unique natural resources or create a nature preserve or a riparian nature park with enhanced natural plantings. The land and improvement costs of implementing such plan shall be in lieu of recreational facilities of comparable costs.
(3) 
Township Recreation Fund contributions shall be based on the Township's cost of purchasing and developing land suitable for active recreation (using current fair market value of such land and related acquisition expenses) as well as the current costs of constructing the facilities, parking, and other improvements. Pro-rata contributions per unit shall be based on 1/50 of all of these costs which would be incurred in meeting this Subsection E except that the costs of a regulation-sized soccer or baseball field would be used in place of the practice fields.
[Amended 11-28-2005 by Ord. No. 3-2005; 5-9-2011 by Ord. No. 1-2011]
F. 
Permitted uses within the open space areas.
(1) 
Open space areas shall be used for the following purposes:
(a) 
Restricted open space lands (within the definition of this chapter) retained by the landowner or developer shall be used for one or more of the following purposes:
[1] 
Crop or pasture land, cultivation of nursery stock or orchard uses, and woodland managed for timber according to sustainable forestry principles and ensuring the preservation of mature woodlands in accordance with development approvals.
[2] 
Public park, nature preservation or outdoor recreation or nature education areas, or other conservation activities operated by a governmental agency or nonprofit charitable organization may be permitted, provided no buildings are constructed in the open space for regular operations and all provisions of the conservation easement are followed.
[3] 
No uses which would be considered inherently dangerous, noxious or a public health menace, or extremely objectionable to the average person, shall be permitted.
[4] 
Other open space uses which support the preservation and enhancement of the agricultural, natural, and historic features of the property in a noncommercial manner.
[5] 
Lot areas around historic buildings preserved in accordance with this chapter.
[6] 
Land containing residential or agricultural accessory buildings or supporting parking areas, confined animal pens, or other nonresidential buildings shall be excluded from calculation of minimum required open space.
(b) 
Common open space areas within cluster developments.
[1] 
Public or private recreation with no buildings other than rest room facilities or pavilions, gazebos or similar open recreational structures.
[2] 
Natural areas preservation.
[3] 
Community gardens or horse pastures for horses of residents.
[4] 
Boulevard areas a minimum of 20 feet across and 300 feet in length (shorter boulevard areas that are part of a larger contiguous boulevard would qualify) and looped road or cul-de-sac planting areas at least 70 feet across at their minimum dimension protected by curbs.
[5] 
Riparian buffers of at least 75 feet on either side of a stream or less when not physically possible.
[6] 
Other open space uses benefiting the development's residents and uses approved by the Board of Supervisors.
(2) 
Improvements permitted within common or restricted open space areas and for which full open space area and open space credit will be counted for the land involved.
(a) 
Stormwater facilities.
[1] 
Stormwater recharge facilities located at higher elevations of a development and in relationship to geologic fractures and designed as integral open space features of the development such as subsurface tanks and recharge drain fields in boulevard green spaces, or park areas.
[2] 
Stormwater retention basins (wet ponds) or underground cisterns when part of a potable or nonpotable water system designed, built, and equipped with distribution systems to serve the development or a part thereof.
[3] 
Stormwater detention facilities for controlling soil erosion and sedimentation and runoff prior to installation or implementation of recharge facilities when designed to provide level sports fields.
(b) 
Wastewater facilities.
[1] 
In cluster developments using individual on-site systems, drainage fields for no more than 5% of the lots.
[2] 
In cluster developments with central sewerage systems employing the Township-approved land treatment techniques, the land required for a control building, 1/2 the area underlying treatment and storage lagoons, and all land devoted to spray irrigation to serve the development's needs, provided the treatment and storage lagoons are designed with natural shapes and buildings are designed to look and use materials similar to historic vernacular spring houses and agricultural structures of the area. Approval of open space classification for land needed to treat wastewater from other properties shall be at the sole discretion of the Board of Supervisors and may be conditioned upon other operating and other factors. No land used for facilities or treatment areas for other forms of wastewater treatment shall receive credit as open space lands under the requirements of Article III nor shall be credited as active recreational lands under this section.
[3] 
Storage lagoons or underground cisterns for nonpotable water supply systems using roof drainage from dwellings or roof drainage combined with sewage treated with extended aeration, filtration, and chlorination.
(c) 
Pervious parking areas for active recreation facilities.
(d) 
Such other improvements as the Board of Supervisors shall determine are consistent with the open space purposes of this chapter.
(e) 
Areas for which no open space credit will be accorded:
[1] 
Land within the right-of-way of any public or private street except when improved as a thirty-foot-wide corridor for a public sidewalk, trail or bikeway and landscaped with berms, native trees, shrubs, and forbs (in addition to, and separate from, trees required for street tree planting) or a planted riparian corridor or reforested area as provided in § 250-16B(3)(g).
[2] 
Land within 40 feet of any structure except structures devoted to permitted open space uses or as otherwise provided herein.
[3] 
Land within deeded property lines of a lot excluding lots containing preserved historic buildings.
[4] 
Strips of land or parcels that extend less than 75 feet in the narrowest dimension at any point and less than 400 feet in length, except strips or parcels of 30 feet or more in the narrowest dimension that provide common or public recreational trail access, special protection to an identified natural feature including a wetland, specimen tree, healthy hedgerow or unusual plant colony deemed significant by the Township, boulevard areas or linkages to recreational areas or between natural areas.
[5] 
Land occupied by overhead electric transmission lines transmitting greater than 125 KVA.
G. 
Ownership, protection and management of open space.
(1) 
Ownership and protection of open space. At the time of preliminary plan or conditional use plan submission, the developer and landowner (if retaining an interest in the land) shall prepare and present to the Township documents identifying the proposed ownership of common facilities and required open space areas and the methods for ensuring their perpetual protection including:
(a) 
Restricted open space to be retained by the owner or developer, where permitted under the applicable development option. All such areas shall be identified in the subject and shall be subject to a permanent conservation easement as provided herein.
(b) 
Offer of dedication of some or all of the open space areas to the Township. The Board of Supervisors may accept deeds of dedication or any interest therein for public use and maintenance, but has no duty to accept dedication and need not require, as a condition of approval of the development, that land proposed to be set aside for restricted or common open space be dedicated or made available for public use unless such dedication is specifically required by provisions of this chapter. The Board of Supervisors may accept dedication of trail corridors, greenways, recreational areas, historic sites and buildings, nature preserves or woodlands, provided all residents of the Township and Township maintenance crews will have safe and usable access to them, but shall not assume responsibility for areas primarily or exclusively serving a development.
(c) 
Ownership by a qualified conservation or historic preservation organization. The Township recognizes that certain woodlands, natural areas, or historic properties or sites may benefit from the technical and managerial expertise of well-established private, nonprofit charitable conservation or historic preservation organizations. Ownership of such properties by these organizations could provide a higher level of protection to unique resources than could be provided by public ownership. Where this form of ownership is chosen, however, the Township shall be granted a conservation easement and shall be granted a perpetual reversionary interest in fee title should the organization or a successor organization approved by the Township wish to divest itself of the property.
(d) 
Ownership by homeowners' association or condominium association. In the event of no offer of dedication, or if the Township or a conservation or preservation organization does not accept some or all of the land for dedication, the developer shall provide for the establishment of an organization for ownership, operation, and maintenance of all of the remaining open space areas and common facilities. The organization shall consist of all of the property owners within the development, each entitled to an equal vote ensuring equal responsibility for maintenance and other costs of ownership and operation of open space areas and common facilities. Such an organization shall not be dissolved nor shall it dispose of the common property.
(2) 
Required grant of conservation easements:
(a) 
A conservation easement shall be granted to ensure that all open space required by this chapter (restricted and common open spaces) shall remain open in perpetuity and not be further subdivided in any manner without the unanimous approval of the Board of Supervisors after a special hearing on any such proposal, and shall empower the holder of the easement (Township or conservation organization) and approved third parties (the Township when it is not the holder) to enforce such restrictions at law or in equity. Residents of the development and the homeowners' or condominium association (if such exists) shall have third-party rights of enforcement with regards to conservation easements placed on restricted open space retained by the developer or landowner. The acceptance of such an easement by the Township or conservation organization shall not obligate them to maintain the restricted lands or relieve the owners of common or restricted lands from other burdens of ownership nor permit the general public access or use of such lands unless such access is required in the development approval.
(b) 
All common open spaces or privately owned lands (restricted open space) for which open space credit is being claimed, including active recreational areas, agricultural land, and right-of-way trail corridors, historic properties and others, shall be subject to conservation easement. To the extent that a private conservation easement on some or part of these areas has been granted, the Township or a qualified land conservation organization, another conservation easement covering the remaining areas shall be granted to the Township with third-party rights of enforcement granted to the residents of the development or homeowners' association.
(3) 
Management. The developer and landowner of every proposed development shall prepare and present, at the time of application of conditional use approval or preliminary plan approval, as applicable, a conceptual plan for the management of any common open space, required recreational facilities and trails, and community wastewater, water supplies, and stormwater facilities. At a minimum the open space portion of the plan shall provide:
(a) 
In regard to all common open space, a graphic and narrative description for all open space areas on the site indicating their proposed uses, any facilities to be installed, how the land and vegetation in specific areas is to be managed (including areas which will be regularly mowed, mowed once or twice a year, areas allowed to proceed through natural succession with control of invasive plants only, riparian planting areas, or areas subject to regular flooding to be maintained in wetland plants), and written description of the techniques to be employed.
(b) 
A maintenance schedule for both annual maintenance obligations (such as mowing schedules and striping of tennis and basketball courts) and less frequent maintenance and replacement obligations (tennis or basketball courts, patching, court fence repairs, net replacements), and maintenance for softball, soccer fields and tot lots, etc.
(c) 
A projection of the annual costs of maintenance as outlined above and a description of the capital reserve fund provisions of the homeowners' association documents which will provide for renewal and replacement of funds as they are expended.
(d) 
A provision for leasing certain open space lands back to the original developer, his or her heirs or assigns, or to any qualified person, or corporation for the operation and maintenance of open space lands, provided residents have access at all times, and the agreements and any transfer or assignment of the lease is approved by the homeowners' association and the Board of Supervisors. No lease shall extend beyond the time when the homeowners assume majority control of the homeowners' association unless provision is made for review and approval at such time. Lease agreements of five years or more shall be recorded with the Office of the Recorder of Deeds of Chester County. Copies of current leases shall be kept on file with the Township Secretary.
[Amended 5-9-2011 by Ord. No. 1-2011]
(4) 
Final open space management plan. With the final plan submission, the developer and landowners shall present a final Open Space Management Plan for the development including, in final form, all of the narrative information required under Subsection G(3) above and graphically showing all open spaces and recreational facilities, trails and linkages to sidewalks (if such are required), with notations on the plan, and included in the written narrative, description as to who will own and maintain the various open spaces, and who will own and maintain the public trails and private trails. Conservation easements and any additional private deed restrictions proposed to be placed on restricted open space shall be provided. After approval of the final plan, both graphic and narrative information shall be provided to the Township in electronic format on a computer disk as directed by the Township.
(5) 
Enforcement of open space management plan. In the event that the organization established to own and maintain the open space or other common facilities, or any successor organization, shall, at any time after development of the property, fail to maintain the common open space or facilities in reasonable order and condition in accordance with the Open Space Management Plan, the Board of Supervisors may serve written notice upon such organization or upon the residents and owners of the development. That notice shall set forth the manner in which the organization has failed to maintain the common open space or other common facilities in reasonable condition and said notice shall include a demand that such deficiencies of maintenance be cured within 30 days thereof, and shall state the date and place of the hearing thereon which shall be held within 14 days of the notice. At such hearing, the Board of Supervisors may modify the terms of the original notice as to the deficiencies and may give an extension of time within which they shall be corrected. If the deficiencies contained in the original notice or modifications thereto are not corrected within 30 days or any extension thereof, the Township, in order to preserve the taxable values of the properties within the development, to prevent the common open space from becoming a public nuisance, or to otherwise enforce the provisions of the homeowners' documents, conservation easements, and restrictive covenants, may enter upon the common open space and operate and maintain the same for a period of one year. Said operation and maintenance by the Township shall not constitute a taking of said common open space nor shall it vest in the public any rights to use the same if not previously provided. Before the expiration of said year, the Township shall, upon its initiative or upon the request of the organization theretofore responsible for the maintenance of the common open space, hold a public hearing upon notice to such organization, or to the residents of the development, at which hearing such organization or the residents of the cluster development shall show cause why such maintenance by the Township shall not, at the sole option of the Board of Supervisors, continue for a succeeding year. If the Board of Supervisors shall determine such organization is ready and able to maintain said common open space in reasonable condition as otherwise required by the homeowners' documents, conservation easements, and restrictive covenants, the Township may, in its sole discretion, continue to maintain said common open space during the next succeeding year, and, subject to appeal to the Court of Common Pleas in the same manner and within the same time limitations as is provided for zoning appeals.
(6) 
Taxation. The developer and landowner of every development including common open space shall arrange with the County Board of Assessment a method of assessment of the common open space that will allocate to each tax parcel in the development a proportionate share of the total assessment for such open space. The Board of Supervisors shall approve the method of allocation.
H. 
Assuring compliance with open space requirements and completion and integrity of open space facilities and improvements. In addition to the financial security required for public improvements such as streets, trails and bikeways on or off the property, water supply, wastewater, and stormwater facilities, etc., the Township shall require that either cash or financial security for certain open space costs be posted at the time of issuance of the first building permit or final plan approval as set forth hereafter:
(1) 
Fees in lieu of open space acquisition and open space improvements.
(a) 
Whenever a landowner or developer is required or has been permitted under the provisions of this chapter to provide funds for the acquisition and improvement of open space in lieu of providing such on the property, the landowner or developer, in the case of developments or dwellings not requiring subdivision or land development approval, shall pay such fees prior to the issuance of the first building permit.
(b) 
In the case of subdivisions or land developments requiring final plan approval, financial security in the full amount of that required to cover the required funds shall be posted with the Township at the time of final plan approval. Prior to the issuance of the first building permit, the developer shall pay the Township 1/2 of the total fees to cover land acquisition costs. The balance shall be paid in two increments: 1) at the time of application for a building permit representing 1/2 of total permitted structures; and 2) upon application for the last building permit or at the time of dedication of public improvements, whichever shall first occur.
(2) 
On-site open space and improvements.
(a) 
The Township shall require that financial security be posted at the time of final plan approval to cover the costs of installing required recreational facilities and a time table for their completion shall be provided that shall ensure that 1/2 of the facilities shall be completed before building permits representing more than 1/3 of the total approved dwellings have been issued and the remainder of the facilities completed before building permits representing 2/3 of the total approved dwellings are issued.
(b) 
At such time as recreational facilities, structures, and lands are dedicated to the Township or at the time financial security is to be released for completed improvements that are being transferred to the homeowners' association, financial security in the amount of 15% of the replacement costs (for Township-dedicated facilities) or 15% of actual costs for those transferred to the homeowners' association shall be retained as financial security for 18 months to assure the physical integrity of the structures or facilities.
[Added 11-19-2003 by Ord. No. 3-2003]
A. 
Wherever the ownership and management of certain land areas, buildings, stormwater management, water supply or sewage facilities, or other improvements in a development will devolve in whole or in part to its residents, the developer and landowner shall provide for the establishment of a homeowners' association which shall be formed and operated in accordance with the Uniform Planned Community Act, except that where the provisions herein are more stringent they shall apply. Such organization shall be responsible for ownership, operation, maintenance of open space areas and common facilities, and for exterior maintenance of residential units where such responsibility has been deemed advisable by the Township Board of Supervisors or has been incorporated in the homeowners' association's articles of incorporation. The organization shall consist of all homeowners within the development and the developer until such time as the developer has completed all improvements for which the homeowners' association will be responsible and dedicated all public improvements. Until such time, voting rights shall be based on one vote for every approved residential lot; provided, however, that no changes or alterations of the bylaws, the articles of incorporation, or the obligations of the homeowners' association shall be made without the approval of the developer and the Board of Supervisors in consideration of the recommendation(s) of a majority of the homeowners within the development. At such time as the homeowners take full control of the homeowners' association, each shall be entitled to an equal vote ensuring equal responsibility for maintenance and other costs of ownership and operation of open space areas, common facilities, exterior maintenance where such is to be provided, and such other responsibilities as they may vote to accept. If exterior maintenance will only be provided to certain sections of the property or types of residential units, provisions shall be made for separate voting procedures for those lot, structure, or condominium owners with regards to exterior maintenance only and separate funds and assessments established therefor. Such owners shall have full voting rights on other homeowners' association matters and shall abide by all homeowners' association decisions. The homeowners' association shall not be dissolved nor shall it dispose of the common property.
B. 
The developer and landowner of a development with common ownership of open space or common facilities as defined herein shall prepare and present at the time of application for final approval by the Board of Supervisors documents identifying the disposition of ownership of common facilities and open space areas and any provisions for exterior maintenance of dwellings and yard areas of any portions of the development that will be commonly managed. A homeowners' association shall be structured and operated in accordance with the following minimum regulations which shall be presented in the documents and approved by the Township:
(1) 
Bylaws describing the formation and the duties of the homeowners' association including the responsibilities for maintenance of the common open areas and common facilities and the right of the homeowners' association to lien individual properties for failure to pay such maintenance fees as may be established by the homeowners' association.
(2) 
Mandatory membership by all property owners of the development and their successors and assigns with all membership and voting rights defined. There shall be one class of members to which all homeowners shall belong and for which assessments shall be established for the management, maintenance and insurance of all common facilities and open space. As noted in Subsection A above, if certain residential property owners will be dependent on homeowners' association maintenance of dwellings and yards, a separate and additional class of homeowners' association members may be created for the maintenance and management of exteriors of dwelling and their yard areas and design approval of alterations to such. The members of such class shall bear sole responsibility for management and maintenance of the buildings and yard areas and shall be separately assessed the costs thereof.
(3) 
The homeowners' association shall be organized by the developer and operating with financial subsidy by the developer, before the sale of any lots within the development. Once established, the homeowners' association's bylaws or articles of incorporation shall not be altered or amended without prior legal notice to the homeowners and approval by the Township Board of Supervisors upon consideration of the recommendation(s) of a majority of the homeowners in residence. Such approval shall not be withheld, provided any alteration or amendment will not unreasonably alter the rights and responsibilities of the homeowner members or conflict with the provisions of this chapter.
(4) 
The conditions and timing of transfer of control of the homeowners' association from the developer to the homeowners shall be identified. Prior to transfer, the developer shall provide semiannual estimates and annual audited cost statements to the homeowners for all costs that will be apportioned between the developer and the homeowners and a statement of the balance and contributions made to the trust account [see Subsection B(5) below]. In general, costs of maintaining community open spaces and snowplowing of streets shall be apportioned equally to the owners of each lot (including all developed and undeveloped lots) and on an actual usage basis wherever possible in the case of water, wastewater, and other such services. Maintenance costs of stormwater facilities (other than individual property recharge or storage facilities) and other facilities directly related to the property's development shall remain the developer's exclusive responsibility until dedicated or approved by the Township Board of Supervisors for transfer to the homeowners' association.
(5) 
As noted above, all members of the homeowners' association (including the developer) shall share equitably in the costs of maintaining the common lands and all shall share in improving the common lands and common facilities after the developer's obligations to install improvements have been fulfilled. Homeowners' association assessments shall provide for both annual operating costs and projected long-range costs relating to the repair and replacement of facilities and equipment. A trust account shall be established at the time of organization of the homeowners' association to serve as a repository for funds reserved for such long-range costs, and procedures shall be established to ensure that such funds cannot be withdrawn without the approval of the homeowners in accordance with the provisions of the homeowners' association bylaws.
(6) 
Any sale or transfer of a lot or lots within the development shall provide a disclosure to the buyer at the time of signing the agreement of sale and on the deed informing the buyer of the homeowners' association's existence and providing copies of (at the signing of agreement) or reference to (in the deed) the articles of incorporation, recorded covenants and restrictions and the bylaws and rules and regulations. At the signing of the agreement, the buyer shall be provided a plan showing all land and facilities that will be owned and managed by the homeowners' association, information on how the land is to be managed and reference made to the conservation easement that restricts its use and management, and an estimate of the annual assessment for which the buyer will be responsible.
(7) 
The documents and recorded deeds shall explicate the rights and duties of the Township and members of the homeowners' association in the event of a breach of the covenants and restrictions.
(8) 
The documents and deeds shall contain a statement that grants to the Township powers with reference to the maintenance of the common open space and the common facilities and assessing the cost of the same as provided within the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code.
(9) 
A provision for leasing certain open space lands back to the original developer, his or her heirs or assigns, or to any qualified person or corporation for the operation and maintenance of open space lands, provided residents have access at all times, and the agreements and any transfer or assignment of the lease is approved by the homeowners' association and the Board of Supervisors. No lease shall extend beyond the time when the homeowners assume majority control of the homeowners' association unless provision is made for review at such time. Lease agreements shall be recorded with the Office of the Recorder of Deeds of Chester County and filed with the Township Secretary.
[Amended 5-9-2011 by Ord. No. 1-2011]
(10) 
The developer and landowner of every development shall prepare and present, at the time of application for final approval by the Board of Supervisors, a plan for the management of all common open space and common facilities, which plan shall provide, at a minimum the open space management plan set forth in § 250-98G(3).
(11) 
In regard to all community sewerage or water supply systems:
(a) 
The maintenance requirements of all elements of the systems shall be identified; annual maintenance schedules shall be established, along with other repair and replacement schedules based on manufacturer's specifications and the projected life cycles of the facilities and equipment. Semiannual reports verifying compliance with the above schedules and the monitoring performance of the facilities shall be prepared by a qualified engineer or the homeowners' association and submitted to the Township Engineer. Pumping of any community septic tanks shall occur at least once every two years, with proof of such pumping submitted to the Township.
(b) 
The present costs of all major system components shall be identified and the maintenance, repair, and replacement costs shall be projected. Annual operating costs and annual contributions toward the costs for major repairs and replacements that will need to be placed in the homeowners' association's trust account shall be identified. Substantial deflation of cost estimates by the applicant shall be considered reasonable grounds for denial of final approval.
(12) 
The maintenance and repair requirements for all stormwater management and recharge facilities (excluding storm sewers and inlets) shall be identified and annual cost projections developed. Schedules for biennial inspections of all facilities by the entity responsible for their management during and after rainfall events shall be established to ensure proper connections and operation and to determine the need for cleaning or repair of any tanks or connecting lines. The annualized costs of major repairs and replacements that will need to be placed in the homeowners' association's trust account shall be identified.
(13) 
Maintenance of common open space and common facilities.
(a) 
In the event that the organization established to own and maintain common open space or other common facilities, or any successor organization, shall at any time after establishment of the homeowners' association fail to maintain the common open space or common facilities in reasonable order and condition in accordance with the development plan, the Board of Supervisors may serve written notice upon such homeowners' association or upon the homeowners and owners of the development, setting forth the manner in which the homeowners' association has failed to maintain the common open space or other common facilities in reasonable condition and said notice shall include a demand that such deficiencies of maintenance be cured within 30 days thereof, and shall state the date and place of a hearing thereon which shall be held within 14 days of the notice. At such hearing, the Board of Supervisors may modify the terms of the original notice as to the deficiencies and may grant an extension of time within which they shall be corrected. If the deficiencies contained in the original notice or modifications thereto are not corrected within 30 days or any extension thereof, the Township, in order to preserve the taxable values of the properties within the development, to prevent the common open space or facilities from becoming a public nuisance or environmental hazard, or to otherwise enforce the provisions of the homeowners' documents and restrictive covenants, may enter upon the common open space or common facilities and operate and maintain the same for a period of one year. Said operation and maintenance by the Township shall not constitute a taking of said common open space or common facilities nor shall it vest in the public any rights to use the same.
(b) 
Before the expiration of said year the Township shall, upon its initiative or upon the request of the organization theretofore responsible for the maintenance of the common open space and common facilities, hold a public hearing upon notice to such organization, or to the homeowners or residents of the development, at which hearing such organization or the homeowners or residents of the development shall show cause why such maintenance by the Township shall not, at the sole option of the Board of Supervisors, continue for a succeeding year. If the Board of Supervisors shall determine that such organization is ready and able to maintain said common open space or other common facilities in reasonable condition as otherwise required by the homeowners' documents and restrictive covenants, the Township may, in its sole discretion, continue to maintain said common open space or facilities during the next succeeding year, and subject to a similar hearing and determination in each year thereafter. The decision of the governing body shall be subject to appeal to the Court of Common Pleas in the same manner and within the same time limitations as is provided for zoning appeals by this chapter.