Township of East Whiteland, PA
Chester County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
This article regulates signs that are visible from the right-of-way and from beyond the property where erected. These regulations balance the need to protect the public safety and welfare, the need for a well-maintained and attractive community, and the need for adequate identification, communication, and advertising for all land uses. In addition, these regulations for signs are intended to:
A. 
Ensure that signs are designed, constructed, installed, and maintained so that public safety and traffic safety are not compromised.
B. 
Allow and promote positive conditions for meeting sign users' needs while, at the same time, avoiding nuisances to nearby properties and promoting an attractive environment.
C. 
Reflect and support the desired character and development patterns of the various districts.
D. 
Allow for adequate and effective signs in commercial and industrial districts while preventing signs from dominating the visual appearance of the area.
E. 
Allow for adequate and multiple types of signs for a site, although the provisions do not necessarily assure or provide for a property owner's desired level of visibility for the signs.
This article regulates the number, size, placement, and physical characteristics of signs. The regulations are not intended to, and do not, restrict, limit, or control the content or message of signs. The regulations of this article apply to all districts in the Township.
No sign may be erected unless it conforms to the regulations of this article. Sign permits must be approved prior to erection of the sign.
The following signs are exempt from the provisions of this article, but may be subject to other Township ordinances:
A. 
Signs inside a building, not visible from a right-of-way, private or public road, or other private property.
B. 
Building street address numbers.
C. 
Signs carved into or part of materials that are on an integral and permanent part of the building, noting the name of the building and its date of erection.
D. 
Garage or yard sale signs no larger than four square feet, displayed for a maximum duration of 48 hours per year.
E. 
Public and/or government signs, including traffic or similar regulatory devices.
F. 
Flags and insignia of any government, except when displayed in connection with a commercial promotion.
G. 
Nonilluminated warning, private drive, posted, or no trespassing signs, not exceeding two square feet per face.
H. 
Temporary, nonilluminated "For Sale," "For Rent," real estate signs concerning the premises upon which the sign is located, subject to the provisions of § 200-83D(2).
I. 
Nonilluminated window signs and posters not exceeding 10% of the window surface.
J. 
One temporary sign for a seasonal roadside stand selling agricultural produce grown on the premises, providing that such sign shall not exceed six square feet in area, shall be set back a minimum of 10 feet from any property line, and shall remain on the site only for that portion of the year that the stand is in active use.
K. 
Nonilluminated, on-premises directional signs for the convenience of the general public, such as those identifying public parking areas, fire zones, and entrances and exits; not exceeding four square feet per face and no more than six feet above the ground.
The following signs are prohibited and shall be removed:
A. 
Signs placed or painted on a vehicle or vehicle trailer and parked with the primary purpose of providing a sign for a business, use, event, or similar function.
B. 
A sign that copies or imitates or in any way approximates an official highway sign or carries the words "STOP," "DANGER," "GO SLOW," "CAUTION," "WARNING," or similar terms.
C. 
Any sign in, or projecting into, a public right-of-way.
D. 
A sign or illumination that causes any direct glare into or upon any building or street, other than the building to which the sign may be accessory.
E. 
Abandoned signs, defined as those on-premise signs that advertise an activity, business, product, or service no longer conducted or available on the premises.
F. 
Any sign advertising activities, services, products or uses not located, made, sold, used, or served on the premises displaying such sign.
G. 
Billboard signs or off-premises signs, except as provided for in § 200-85.
H. 
Roof signs or signs on dormers or balconies.
I. 
Strobe lights and signs containing strobe lights.
J. 
Except as permitted under § 200-85F, any sign which falls within the scope of an "animated sign," a "flashing or message sign," a "glaring sign" or an "intermittent sign," being respectively defined as follows:
[Amended 1-13-2010 by Ord. No. 221-2010; 2-8-2017 by Ord. No. 289-2017]
ANIMATED SIGN
A sign which includes action, motion, or color changes, or the optical illusion of action, motion or color changes, including signs set in motion by movement of the atmosphere or made up of a series of sections that turn. An animated sign exists whenever such sign contains kinetic or illusionary motion.
FLASHING AND MESSAGE SIGN
A sign which permits light to be turned on or off intermittently, or any illuminated sign on which such illumination is not kept stationary or constant in intensity or color at all times when such sign is in use, including an LED (light-emitting diode) or digital sign. A flashing or message sign occurs whenever such signs include lights or messages which change, flash, blink or turn on and off intermittently, with the exception of such signs which are limited exclusively to time and temperature displays, with no other text or image.
GLARING SIGNS
A sign with light sources or which reflect brightness in a manner which constitutes a distraction to passing motorists or a nuisance to adjacent property owners, including signs with fluorescent text, graphics or background, as well as holographic signs.
INTERMITTENT SIGN
A sign which permits light to be turned on or off intermittently more frequently than once every 12 hours or which is operated in a way whereby light is turned on or off intermittently more frequently than once every 12 hours, including any illuminated sign on which such illumination is not kept stationary or constant in intensity or color at all times when such sign is in use, including an LED or digital sign which varies in intensity or color more frequently than once every 12 hours.
K. 
Signs that emit smoke, visible vapors, particles, sound, or odors.
L. 
Signs consisting of pennants, spinners, or streamers, or inflatable signs, except as short-term temporary on-site commercial event signs as permitted in this article.
M. 
Any sign that impairs, or causes confusion to, vehicular or pedestrian traffic in its design, color, or placement, as determined by the Police Department of East Whiteland Township.
N. 
Any sign mounted or attached to a tree or utility pole in the public right-of-way.
O. 
Any sign located in a rear yard.
P. 
Any sign that is not included under the types of signs permitted in specific district regulations or in this article.
A. 
Sign face area.
(1) 
The area of sign faces enclosed in frames or cabinets shall be determined based on the outer dimensions of the frame or cabinet surrounding the sign face. Sign area shall not include foundations, supports, and other essential structures that do not serve as a backdrop or border to the sign. Only one side of a double-faced sign shall be counted in the calculation of sign face area.
(2) 
When a sign shall be on a base material and attached without a frame, such as a wood or plastic panel, the dimensions of the base material shall be used unless it is clear that part of the base contains no sign, related display, or decoration.
(3) 
When signs shall be constructed of individual pieces or letters attached to a building wall, sign area shall be determined by a perimeter drawn around all the pieces or letters.
(4) 
For sign structures containing multiple modules oriented in the same direction, the modules taken together shall be counted as one sign face.
(5) 
The maximum surface area visible at one time of a round or three-dimensional sign shall be calculated to determine total sign area.
B. 
Height of signs. The overall height of a sign or sign structure shall be measured from the grade directly below the sign to the highest point of the sign or sign structure.
A. 
The lawful use of a sign or signs existing at the time of adoption of this article may be continued, even though the sign does not conform to the regulations and limitations of this article, until one or more of the following occurs:
(1) 
The structure, size, location or accessories of any or all lawful, nonconforming signs are altered, modified, changed, reconstructed, or moved;
[Amended 3-12-2008 by Ord. No. 203-2008]
(2) 
Buildings, structures, or site improvements on the property upon which the sign is placed are altered in such a way as to require subdivision or land development plan approval;
(3) 
Any or all signs on the property are damaged or destroyed by fire, explosion, or act of God to the extent of more than 60% of the actual value thereof;
(4) 
Any or all signs on the property are abandoned; or
(5) 
Any or all signs on the property fall into a state of disrepair and/or become unsafe.
B. 
Ordinary maintenance and repairs may be made to any nonconforming sign, provided the structure, advertising display matter, lettering, color scheme, or accessories are not altered, modified, changed, reconstructed, or moved, and provided that such ordinary maintenance and repairs do not exceed 20% of the value of the sign in any one-year period.
C. 
Nothing contained in this section shall be deemed to require any change in the plans or construction of any sign upon which actual construction was lawfully initiated prior to the effective date of this article. "Actual construction" is hereby defined as the actual placing of the sign and/or structure materials in their permanent position in compliance with the previously obtained approval and permits.
A. 
Where more than one sign is permitted for the same activity, all signs should be coordinated with respect to color, letter style, illumination, and other graphic features.
B. 
In multiple owner/tenant occupancies, the various signs required for identification of different activities should be coordinated with respect to placement on the building facade, legibility, and illumination, and should express integration of design and a harmonious appearance.
C. 
All signs should be legible and visible for the purpose and circumstances in which they are used.
D. 
Sign(s) shall be considered a site plan and architectural feature of the proposed development, and as such, should be coordinated in size, height, color, illumination, location, graphic design, and finish detailing with the building(s), landscaping, area lighting, and vehicular and pedestrian circulation, and shall be shown on drawings with and considered in conjunction with uses where land development approval is required.
E. 
Where different uses are permitted side by side or on adjoining properties, signs permitted for one property or tenancy should not adversely affect the identification and reasonable use of the neighboring property or tenancy.
F. 
Where signs are to be placed near residential uses, sign height, size, location, and illumination shall be adjusted to ensure minimum impact on the residential uses.
G. 
Illumination. Where illumination of signs is permitted, such illumination shall be in conformance with Article I of this chapter. Illumination shall be of an even intensity at all times. Illumination may be direct (giving forth light from the interior of the sign) or it may be indirect (when the light source is not visible from any adjoining property or street and is directed upon the sign). Direct lighting shall illuminate the letters, characters, or graphics on the sign, but not its background. In addition:
[Amended 3-12-2008 by Ord. No. 203-2008]
(1) 
Illumination should be appropriate to the character of the sign and its surrounding, and shall not adversely illuminate or shadow surrounding properties, uses or streets and roads;
(2) 
No sign shall be illuminated in such a manner so as to diminish or detract in any way from the effectiveness of any traffic signal or similar safety or warning device; and
(3) 
The illumination shall be directed downward onto the sign to avoid sky glow.
A. 
All nontemporary signs installed after the effective date of this article shall have attached to the sign a durable metal nameplate giving the sign permit number and the name and address of the owner, person, or corporation responsible for the general requirements and maintenance as outlined herein.
B. 
All internally illuminated signs shall be constructed in conformance with the Standards for Electric Signs (U.L. 48) of Underwriters Laboratories, Inc., and bear the seal of Underwriters Laboratories, Inc. If such a sign does not bear the Underwriters Laboratories label, the sign shall be inspected and certified by a fire underwriting agency.
C. 
All transformers, wires, and similar items shall be concealed. All wiring to freestanding signs shall be underground.
D. 
All signs, including attached wall, projecting, and suspended wall signs, shall be securely anchored and shall not swing or move in any manner.
E. 
All signs, sign finishes, supports, and electric work shall be kept clean, neatly painted, and free from all hazards, such as, but not limited to, faulty wiring, and loose supports, braces, guys, and anchors.
F. 
All signs shall be painted and/or fabricated in accordance with generally accepted sign industry standards.
G. 
All signs and sign structures shall be erected and attached totally within the site.
H. 
Sight triangle area. No sign may be located within a sight triangle area. No support structure(s) for a sign may be located in a sight triangle area unless the combined cross-sectional area is 36 square inches or less.
I. 
Vehicle area clearances. When a sign shall extend over an area where vehicles travel or are parked, the bottom of the sign shall be at least 14 feet above grade. Vehicle areas shall include, but are not limited to, driveways, alleys, parking lots, and loading and maneuvering areas.
J. 
Pedestrian area clearances. When a sign shall extend over sidewalks, walkways, or other spaces accessible to pedestrians, the bottom of the sign shall be at least 8.5 feet above grade.
[Amended 3-12-2008 by Ord. No. 203-2008; 9-10-2008 by Ord. No. 211-2008; 1-13-2010 by Ord. No. 221-2010]
A. 
Signs in O/BP, O/BPS and PO Districts. The following types of signs and no other shall be permitted in O/BP, O/BPS and PO Districts:
(1) 
Any sign permitted in a residential district for single-family detached dwellings and agriculture uses.
(2) 
Office signs in conjunction with all other O/BP, O/BPS and PO District uses, provided that:
(a) 
Such signs shall be erected only on the premises on which the use to which the signs pertain is conducted, and a plot plan prepared by a qualified engineer, surveyor, or architect, showing locations, shall be submitted to the Township.
(b) 
Such signs shall not exceed 50 square feet on any one side, and there shall not be more than 400 square feet of exposed sign area for any one lot.
(c) 
The square-foot limitations set forth in Subsection A(2)(b) above may be increased by special exception. In granting special exception, the Zoning Hearing Board may attach such reasonable conditions and safeguards, in addition to those expressed in this chapter, as it may deem necessary to implement the purposes of this chapter.
(d) 
On any one lot there shall not be more than four signs larger than five square feet on any one side and not more than 10 signs altogether.
(e) 
There may be one sign with an overall ground height up to, but not exceeding, 15 feet.
(f) 
No sign shall be within 150 feet of another sign.
(g) 
No sign shall have lineal dimensions which exceed 25 feet in length or exceed 10 feet in height.
(h) 
If any sign is illuminated, the average light reading shall not exceed 40 lumens. The lumens may be increased by special exception. In granting a special exception, the Zoning Hearing Board may attach such reasonable conditions and safeguards, in addition to those expressed in this chapter, as it may deem necessary to implement the purposes of this chapter.
B. 
Signs in VMX, FC, ROC and I Districts. The following types of signs and no other shall be permitted in VMX, FC, ROC and I Districts:
(1) 
Any sign permitted in residence districts.
(2) 
Commercial or industrial signs in conjunction with any permitted use, provided that:
(a) 
Such sign shall be erected only on the premises on which the use to which the sign pertains is conducted.
(b) 
Unless otherwise provided for in this section, all ground signs shall be limited to 15 feet in height.
[Added 6-12-2019 by Ord. No. 316-2019[1]]
[1]
Editor’s Note: This ordinance also redesignated former Subsections B(2)(b) through B(2)(e) as Subsections B(2)(c) through B(2)(f), respectively.
(c) 
There shall be not more than three signs for any one use. Such signs shall not exceed 50 feet on any one side, and the maximum total exposed sign area of all three shall be two square feet for every one foot of building frontage or 100 square feet, whichever is greater. "Building frontage" shall be defined as the lineal footage of a building face which serves as the principal approach to a store or building and which building face fronts a public street, shopping center driveway or pedestrian walkway. For corner lots, the building frontage may be calculated on the basis of the principal approach and one adjacent face if such face also fronts on a public street, shopping center driveway or pedestrian mall or walkway.
[1] 
Frontage on a service driveway to an unloading area shall not be considered in determining corner lot status. In addition, the sign area calculated for each building frontage on a corner lot shall relate to that frontage only and shall not be applied to the sign area for another frontage.
[2] 
Window signs shall not be considered in computing the total exposed sign area but shall not cover more than 20% of the area of any window opening.
[3] 
Letters painted on or affixed to a building shall be included in the computation of the total exposed sign area.
(d) 
The square-foot limitations set forth in Subsection B(2)(b) above may be increased by one additional square foot for each foot that the sign is set back from the street line.
(e) 
There may be not more than one directional sign for each permitted nonresidential use erected in a location other than on the premises to which the sign relates, but in no case shall such a sign exceed 24 square feet in area on any one side nor have a total exposed area in excess of 48 square feet. No such directional sign shall be located in a residence, P0-1 or P0-2 District. Additional directional signs may be authorized as a special exception by the Zoning Board of Adjustment. All such directional signs shall be removed when the activity to which the sign relates no longer exists.
(f) 
Signs in a shopping center shall conform to the following regulations:
[1] 
Signs for individual establishments shall follow § 200-82B(2)(b); provided, however, that individual establishments cannot have ground signs.
[2] 
Pedestrian directory signs shall be permitted in the proportion of one such sign for each 10 establishments. The signs shall not exceed 15 square feet on any one side; they may be double-faced; and they may be located on a building, on a mall or in any area used solely by pedestrians.
[3] 
Parking signs and directional signs shall be permitted but shall not exceed two square feet on any one side.
[4] 
One ground sign identifying the shopping center shall be permitted at each vehicular entrance from a public street, provided that:
[a] 
The overall height of any such entrance sign, including structural support, shall not be more than 25 feet.
[b] 
The total exposed area of all permitted entrance signs shall not exceed 600 square feet. Any one two-faced sign shall not exceed a total of 200 square feet. No single-faced sign or any one side of a two-faced sign shall exceed 100 square feet, of which not more than 50% may be used to identify the various tenants. Below such a sign and not forming part of it may be a semipermanent changeable sign which shall not exceed 34 square feet on any one side and which shall not have any of the attributes of signage prohibited under § 200-77. The area of the changeable sign shall form part of the six-hundred-square-foot limitation.
[c] 
The distance between such signs, with reference to each other, shall not be less than 400 feet measured in a single straight line.
[d] 
There shall not be more than three such signs for any one shopping center. The signs may be double-faced.
C. 
Special signs. In all districts, signs which do not meet the restrictions of § 200-82A or B may be permitted in unusual circumstances if approved as a special exception by the Zoning Hearing Board.
The following signs shall be permitted within any district in the Township:
A. 
Development/neighborhood identification sign. In conjunction with an existing development or neighborhood, except as set forth in § 200-83F below, on-site development or neighborhood identification signs may be placed subject to the following conditions:
[Amended 3-12-2008 by Ord. No. 203-2008; 3-13-2013 by Ord. No. 245-2013]
(1) 
A maximum of two single-faced freestanding signs shall be permitted per road entrance/intersection per development or neighborhood;
(2) 
The maximum area per sign shall be 16 square feet;
(3) 
Such signs shall only be indirectly illuminated; and
(4) 
If such signs are freestanding, the maximum height shall be 48 inches above the finished grade.
B. 
Multiple-family development identification signs. In conjunction with an existing multiple-family development having 20 units or more, on-site multiple-family identification signs may be placed subject to the following conditions:
(1) 
One freestanding, attached wall or suspended wall sign, single- or double-faced, shall be allowed per street frontage from which vehicles gain access to the development;
(2) 
The maximum area per sign shall be 16 square feet;
(3) 
If such signs are freestanding, the maximum height shall be 48 inches above the finished grade;
(4) 
If freestanding, such signs shall only be indirectly illuminated; and
(5) 
A maximum of 30% of the area of the sign may include information pertaining to the availability or size of the dwelling units.
C. 
Religious and quasi-public institutions. In conjunction with religious institutions, libraries, colleges, other educational institutions, and hospitals, signs may be placed subject to the following regulations:
(1) 
One on-site, freestanding, attached wall, or suspended wall sign bulletin board may be placed that shall not exceed 20 square feet in area and eight feet in height.
(2) 
One on-site attached wall, suspended wall, or projecting sign identifying the name of the institution may be placed that shall not exceed 20 square feet in area.
(3) 
On-site attached wall, suspended wall, or projecting signs identifying permitted accessory uses may be placed whose aggregate areas shall not exceed 20 square feet in area.
D. 
Long-term temporary signs.
(1) 
Off-site directional signs. In conjunction with an approved subdivision or use, off-site directional signs may be placed subject to the following regulations:
(a) 
Maximum duration of such signs shall be 48 hours in any calendar week.
(b) 
One such sign may be placed per intersection.
(c) 
Such signs shall be located within 50 feet of the intersection, no further than two vehicular miles from the advertised site, and not less than five feet from a property line.
(d) 
Such signs shall be freestanding, with a maximum height of five feet.
(e) 
The maximum sign area per directional sign shall be three square feet.
(f) 
Directional signs shall have no commercial messages or copy and shall not be illuminated.
(2) 
On-site real estate signs in all zoning districts except O/BP Office/Business Park District and O/BPS Office/Business Park Services District. Signs advertising the sale, lease, or rent of the premises upon which sign is located, except for said signs located in the O/BP District and O/BPS District which are regulated by § 200-83D(4), may be placed subject to the following restrictions:
[Amended 3-12-2008 by Ord. No. 203-2008]
(a) 
One attached wall or freestanding sign per street frontage is permitted.
(b) 
For residential properties, the maximum area sign shall be six square feet with a maximum height of five feet. For nonresidential properties, the maximum area per sign shall be 20 square feet and the maximum height of the sign shall be eight feet.
(c) 
Signage shall not illuminated.
(d) 
All such signs shall be removed within five days following the sale of the premises.
(e) 
No sign shall be permitted within the right-of-way adjacent to any property.
(f) 
Open house and associated directional language shall be permitted, provided such signs comply with the following:
[1] 
Open houses signs shall be permitted on the subject property and shall not exceed the sign area permitted for primary real estate signs. Directional signs shall not exceed three square feet in area;
[2] 
Such signs shall not be erected more than 48 hours prior to the open house and must be removed no later than one hour following the open house;
[3] 
No sign is permitted within the right-of-way of any public street, alley, or way. Signage erected on private property must have the permission of the property owner.
(3) 
On-site construction signs. In conjunction with an approved subdivision or land development, construction signs may be placed subject to the following regulations:
(a) 
There shall not be more than one such freestanding sign for each arterial or collector street frontage of the project or development.
(b) 
Such sign may only identify persons or companies involved with the construction, architecture, engineering, and development of the premises.
(c) 
Such sign shall be no larger than 20 square feet in total area, and no more than eight feet in height.
(d) 
Construction signs shall not be illuminated.
(e) 
Construction signs may be erected and maintained for a period not to exceed 14 days prior to the commencement of construction and shall be removed within 14 days of the termination of construction of the project or development.
(4) 
On-site real estate signs in O/BP Office/Business Park District and O/BPS Office/Business Park Services District. Signs advertising the sale, lease, or rent of the premises upon which such sign is located may be placed subject to the following regulations:
[Added 3-12-2008 by Ord. No. 203-2008]
(a) 
No sign shall be permitted within the right-of-way adjacent to any property;
(b) 
For any on-site real estate sign located on street frontage along Route 202 or Route 29, the maximum area per sign shall be 75 square feet with a maximum height of 12 feet. For any on-site real estate sign located on any other portion of a property, the maximum area per sign shall be 35 square feet with a maximum height of nine feet;
(c) 
All such signs shall be removed within five business days following the sale of the premises of the premises or the lease of all available space in the premises.
E. 
Short-term temporary signs.
(1) 
Political signs. Signs announcing political candidates seeking public office, political parties, and/or political and public issues contained on a ballot may be placed subject to the following regulations:
(a) 
There shall be no limit on the number of permitted political signs displayed; however, such signs shall not be placed on public property except at polling places on election day, and shall be placed on private property only with permission of the property owner.
[Amended 3-12-2008 by Ord. No. 203-2008]
(b) 
Such signs may be freestanding or attached wall signs.
(c) 
Such signs shall not be illuminated, shall not exceed eight square feet in total area per property and, if freestanding, each sign shall be no more than six feet in height and no more than six square feet in area.
(d) 
All political signs shall be erected no earlier than 30 days prior to the election in question, and shall be removed within two days after election day.
(e) 
Any political sign erected in violation of these regulations shall be removed and impounded by the Township if such violation(s) is not corrected within 48 hours after issuing a notice to correct such signs. A reasonable service charge, as established by the Township, shall be levied to cover the cost of removing and impounding such signs.
(2) 
Civic event signs. Signs announcing a campaign, drive, activity, or event of a civic, philanthropic, educational, or religious organization for noncommercial purposes may be placed subject to the following regulations:
(a) 
There shall not be more than one such sign for each lot. If the sign is not to be placed on property owned by the organization requesting the permit, then the permittee shall present written consents from all the property owners on whose property the sign is to be located.
(b) 
Such signs may be freestanding or attached wall signs.
(c) 
Such signs shall not be illuminated, shall not exceed 16 square feet in total area and, if freestanding, shall be no more than six feet in height.
(d) 
Civic event signs may be erected and maintained for a period not to exceed 30 days prior to the date of which the campaign, drive, activity, or event advertised is scheduled to occur and shall be removed within five days of the termination of such campaign, drive, activity, or event.
(3) 
On-site commercial event signs. Signs, banners, posters, and other similar promotional devices announcing a special, unique, or limited activity, service, product, or sale of limited duration may be placed subject to the following regulations:
(a) 
One temporary event sign shall be permitted for every 200 linear feet of street frontage for the subject property. The primary event sign shall not exceed 40 square feet in the sign area. Secondary signs shall not exceed 50% of the primary sign area. There shall be no more than three signs for any event or events on the subject property.
(b) 
If freestanding, no sign shall exceed six feet in height.
(c) 
Approval must be obtained from the Zoning Officer prior to the erection of any commercial event sign(s). In addition to legal United States holidays, commercial event signs shall be limited to no more than four additional times on the parcel in any calendar year.
(d) 
All such signs shall be erected and maintained for a period not to exceed 10 days, and shall be removed within three days of the termination of the activity, service, project, or sale.
F. 
Development identification sign in O/BP District for large office development. In the O/BP District, in conjunction with an existing or approved office development containing or approved for more than 500,000 sq. ft. of gross floor area, freestanding signs may be placed subject to the following conditions:
[Added 3-13-2013 by Ord. No. 245-2013]
(1) 
A maximum of two single-faced freestanding signs shall be permitted per road entrance/intersection providing access to the development, which shall be used to identify the development, subject to the following:
(a) 
The maximum area per sign shall be 60 square feet;
(b) 
Such signs shall only be indirectly illuminated; and
(c) 
The maximum height shall be six feet above the finished grade.
(2) 
A maximum of two additional single-faced freestanding signs shall be permitted per road entrance/intersection providing direct access to the development, which shall be used to identify a user or tenant in the development, subject to the following:
(a) 
The maximum area per sign shall be 20 square feet;
(b) 
Such signs shall only be indirectly illuminated; and
(c) 
The maximum height shall be four feet above the finished grade.
The following signs shall be permitted within any residential district in the Township:
A. 
One nonilluminated attached wall, suspended, or freestanding sign identifying a professional office may be placed on the premises subject to the following conditions:
(1) 
Such sign shall not exceed two square feet in total area; and
(2) 
If freestanding, such sign shall not exceed four feet in height.
[Amended 9-12-2007 by Ord. No. 197-2007; 1-13-2010 by Ord. No. 221-2010; 12-14-2016 by Ord. No. 286-2016]
Except as provided for in this section, off-premises signs are prohibited. As a conditional use, off-premises signs are permitted on nonresidential tracts, subject to the general sign regulations of this article and the following conditions:
A. 
Signs shall be freestanding and shall be located within 75 feet of the right-of-way of Lancaster Avenue and within 2,600 feet of the municipal boundary.
[Amended 2-8-2017 by Ord. No. 289-2017]
B. 
Signs shall not exceed 300 square feet in area and shall have a maximum total height not to exceed 45 feet.
C. 
No more than one off-premises sign shall be erected on a tract.
D. 
Lighting shall comply with Article II of this chapter and § 200-80 of this article. If adjacent to residential zoning districts, signs shall be lit only from dusk to 10:00 p.m.
E. 
Notwithstanding anything contained herein to the contrary, an off-premises sign shall constitute the principal use of the lot upon which it is erected, and such principal use shall constitute the sole principal use of the lot. No off-premises sign shall be erected on any lot upon which another principal use is carried on.
F. 
Off-premises signs containing a message or copy displayed through electronic means shall not be illuminated by a flashing, intermittent or moving light or lights; or constitute an animated sign, flashing or message sign, glaring sign, or an intermittent sign, as defined under § 200-77J. Additionally, electronic signage is prohibited unless the electronic signage complies with the following standards:
(1) 
The electronic display of a sign may not change any more frequently than one time every 10 seconds;
(2) 
Scrolling script, either vertically or horizontally, is not permitted;
(3) 
Signs that move, rotate, oscillate, vibrate or shimmer are not permitted;
(4) 
Signs that flash, scintillate or blink are not permitted;
(5) 
Signs that change script electronically must have an instantaneous change of script and not a gradual or scrolling change of script;
(6) 
The entire electronic portion of the sign must change at the same time, thereby preventing different portions of the sign changing at different times;
(7) 
The degree of brightness shall not be greater than necessary for adequate visibility.
(8) 
The above requirements are in addition to all other sign regulations in the zoning code, and if any other provision of the zoning code conflicts with the above regulations, then the above regulations shall apply.
G. 
Off-premises signs are prohibited in any zoning district that permits residential development.
A. 
Permit required. Except for the following, no person may erect, alter, or relocate within the Township any sign without first obtaining a sign permit:
(1) 
Exempt signs as specified in § 200-76.
(2) 
Routine maintenance or changing of the parts of a sign, provided the maintenance or change of parts does not alter the surface area, height, message copy, or otherwise render the sign nonconforming.
B. 
Permit applications. Each sign being applied for shall require the filing of a separate permit application. Applications for sign permits shall be submitted to the Zoning Officer on forms prescribed and provided by the Township and shall contain or have attached thereto such components of the following information that the Zoning Officer shall deem relevant for consideration of the permit application:
[Amended 3-12-2008 by Ord. No. 203-2008]
(1) 
The names, addresses, and telephone numbers of the applicant, the owner of the property on which the sign is to be erected or affixed, and the person or company to be erecting or affixing the sign.
(2) 
The location of the building, structure, or lot on which the sign is to be erected or affixed.
(3) 
A site plan of the parcel involved, showing all structures and the exact location of the proposed sign.
(4) 
Two sets of plans and specifications of the sign to be erected or affixed and its method of construction and attachment to the building or in the ground. Such plans and specifications shall include details of dimensions, materials, color, and weight.
(5) 
If necessary, a certification from a professional engineer or architect, indicating the sign is designed to withstand winds of at least 100 miles per hour.
(6) 
The written consent of the owner of the building, structure, or property on which the sign is to be erected or affixed.
(7) 
The method of illumination, if any, and the position of lighting or other extraneous devices, and a copy of the electrical permit related to the electrical connection.
(8) 
Such other information as the Zoning Officer may require to determine full compliance with this and other applicable ordinances and regulations of the Township.
C. 
Issuance of permits. Upon the filing of an application for a sign permit, the Zoning Officer shall examine the plans, specifications, and other submitted data, and the premises upon which the sign is proposed to be erected or affixed. If it appears that the proposed sign is in compliance with all the requirements of this article and other applicable ordinances of the Township, and if the appropriate permit fee has been paid, the Township shall, within 30 days, issue a permit for the proposed sign. The issuance of a permit shall not excuse the applicant from conforming to the other laws, ordinances, or regulations of the Township. If the work authorized under a sign permit has not been completed within 90 days after the date of issuance, the permit shall become null and void, but may be renewed within 15 days prior to the expiration, for good cause shown, for an additional 90 days, upon payment of 0.5 of the original permit fee.
D. 
Permit fees. At the time of filing a sign permit application, it shall be accompanied by an appropriate application fee. Application fees shall be in accordance with the fee schedule established by the Board of Supervisors.
A. 
Nonrequested inspections. The Zoning Officer, or his authorized representative, shall have the authority, without a formal request, to inspect any sign for the purpose of identifying those signs that are not in compliance with the provisions of this article.
B. 
Requests for inspections. Any person may file a written request with the Zoning Officer requesting an inspection of one or more existing signs as identified in the request. In each such instance, the Zoning Officer shall promptly inspect such sign(s) to determine compliance with the provisions of this article. Following the inspection, the Zoning Officer shall make a written report indicating the findings of the inspections to both the owner of the inspected sign and to the person filing the request for inspection.
C. 
Notice of violation. The Zoning Officer shall notify in writing each owner of an existing sign found to be in violation of any provision of this article pursuant to inspections made under Subsections A and B, above. The notice shall specifically refer to each section of this article under which a violation has been found to exist and thereupon describe the features of the inspected sign found to be deficient.
D. 
Effect of notice. Upon receipt of a notice of violation for an existing sign, the owner of said sign shall have 15 days to correct the violation(s). If the violation(s) is not corrected after the conclusion of such fifteen-day period, the Zoning Officer is hereby authorized to cause the sign to be removed or repaired forthwith at the expense of the owner of the building or premises on which such sign is located.
[Amended 3-12-2008 by Ord. No. 203-2008]
A. 
Illegal signs. If the Zoning Officer shall find that any signage is in violation of the terms of this chapter (lawful, nonconforming signs being considered not to be in violation of this chapter, as more fully set forth in § 200-79, unless altered in violation of § 200-79A), the Zoning Officer shall give written notice to the owner of the premises on which such sign is located. Removal of the sign shall be effected within 15 days after receipt of the notice. If such sign is not removed after the conclusion of such fifteen-day period, the Zoning Officer is hereby authorized to commence any and all enforcement proceedings for such violation as authorized under § 200-8A, B and/or C.
B. 
Obsolete signs. A sign, whether existing on or erected after the effective date of this article, that advertises a business no longer being conducted or a product no longer being offered for sale in or from the premises on which the sign is located, shall be removed within one year after cessation of such business or cessation of the sale of such products by the owner or tenant of the premises on which sign is located, unless the owner of such premises shall demonstrate that it is the owner's intent to maintain the signage, subject to alteration of the text and/or display of the signage, for a subsequent permitted use of the premises. In such event, the owner shall remove the signage lettering and/or display pending commencement of a subsequent permitted use of the premises, but may retain the standard frame or cabinet of the signage, provided they are in good repair. Any electrical components, including but not limited to ballasts, sockets and lamps that may become exposed as a result of removal of the message area, shall be concealed by means of an opaque insert installed in the frame or cabinet. If the Zoning Officer shall find that any such obsolete sign has not been removed or altered to remove the message area within one year after cessation of such business or the cessation of the sale of such product, he shall given written notice to the owner of the premises on which such sign is located. Removal of the sign shall be effected within 15 days after receipt of the notice. If such sign is not removed after the conclusion of such fifteen-day period, the Zoning Officer is hereby authorized to commence any and all enforcement proceedings for such violation as authorized under § 200-8A, B and/or C.
C. 
Unsafe signs. If the Zoning Officer shall find that any sign is unsafe, insecure or is a menace to the public, he shall give written notice to the owner of the premises on which such sign is located. Correction of the condition that caused the Zoning Officer to give such notice shall be effected within 15 days after receipt of the notice. If such condition is not corrected after the conclusion of such fifteen-day period, the Zoning Officer is hereby authorized to institute such enforcement remedies as he may deem necessary to preclude further threat to public health, safety and welfare, including but not limited to, the institution of an action to prevent, restrain, correct or abate such conditions, as authorized by §§ 200-8 and 200-9B of this chapter, together with financial remedies (including court costs and reasonable attorneys' fees) as authorized by § 200-9C of this chapter. Notwithstanding the foregoing provision, the Zoning Officer is authorized to cause any sign to be removed summarily, with notice to the owner of the premises if reasonably practicable, or without notice in the event of an emergency, at the expense of the owner of the premises on which sign is located, whenever he determine that such sign is an immediate peril to persons or property.
[Added 3-12-2008 by Ord. No. 203-2008[1]]
In all districts, signs which do not meet the restrictions set forth in this Article XII (Signs) may be permitted in unusual circumstances by special exception, provided, however, that the Zoning Hearing Board, in considering any such request for a special exception for special signage, shall consider the unusual circumstances upon which the special exception application is based, and the review and recommendation by the Township Planning Commission with respect to the application.
[1]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also repealed former § 200-89, Violations and penalties.
[Added 9-10-2008 by Ord. No. 211-2008; amended 11-12-2008 by Ord. No. 214-2008]
A. 
Procedure.
(1) 
Identification signs, as defined in § 200-89.1B(1) hereinbelow, and directional/directory signs, as defined in § 200-89.1B(2) hereinbelow, may be erected and/or replaced by only the overall developer of the unified development area (UDA) or its successor.
(2) 
The location, size, design, copy and maintenance responsibility of identification signs and directional/directory signs shall be shown on a Master Signage Plan prepared by the overall developer of the UDA (or its successor) and approved by the Board of Supervisors after review and comment by the East Whiteland Township Planning Commission.
(3) 
Applications for revisions to the sign area of a sign approved as part of the Master Signage Plan may be made by only the overall developer (or its successors) and shall be subject to East Whiteland Township Planning Commission review and Board of Supervisors approval.
B. 
Identification, directional/directory, retail/other commercial, office, wall-mounted building exterior directory, cinema, hotel and residential signage. In the ROC/R Zoning District, signs will be classified into eight categories: identification signs; directional/directory signs; retail/other commercial signs; office signs; wall-mounted building exterior directory signs; cinema signs; hotel signs; and residential signs. Each category shall be regulated as set forth hereinbelow:
(1) 
Identification signs. Identification signs are those signs used to identify the name of the UDA as well as merchants situated therein. There are three categories of identification signs: site identification; entrance column signs; and entrance pylon signs. Regulation of identification signs shall be as follows:
(a) 
A maximum of three site identification signs are permitted within a UDA. Site identification signs may be designated on the Master Signage Plan as "entrance sign"; "gateway sign" and/or "corner identification sign." No site identification sign shall exceed 40 feet in height and 375 square feet of face area per side. Site identification signs shall be situated at major access roads within the development tract; however, one of the site identification signs may be situated on the development tract at the intersection of existing public roadways. Site identification signs are only for the purpose of identifying the name of the UDA.
(b) 
A maximum of four entrance column signs are permitted within a UDA. No entrance column sign shall exceed 30 feet in height and 55 square feet of face area per side. Entrance column signs shall be situated on minor access roads within the UDA. The entrance column signs are only for the purpose of identifying the name of the UDA.
(c) 
A maximum of two entrance pylon signs are permitted within a UDA. No entrance pylon sign shall exceed 22 feet in height and 200 square feet of face area per side. Entrance pylon signs shall be situated at entrance roads within the UDA. Entrance pylon signs are for the purpose of identifying both the name of the development as well as certain of those merchants situated therein.
(2) 
Directional/directory signs. Directional and directory signs are those signs strategically placed throughout the UDA to assist motorists and pedestrians in arriving at their destination within the UDA. There are six categories of directional/directory signs: master vehicular directional signs; minor vehicular directional signs; exterior directory signs; parking garage identification/entrance signs; ground monument site identification signs; and bank directional signs. Regulations of directional/directory signs shall be as follows:
(a) 
A maximum of three master vehicular directional signs not to exceed 17 feet in height and 55 square feet of face area per side shall be permitted within the UDA. These signs shall depict the road network within the UDA, or a portion thereof, and shall be located at one of the major access roads within the UDA.
(b) 
A maximum of five minor vehicular directional signs not to exceed 14 feet in height and 32 square feet of face area per side shall be permitted within the UDA. The purpose of these signs is to list various destinations within the UDA together with directional arrows.
(c) 
A maximum of 15 exterior directory signs not to exceed 7.5 feet in height and 25 square feet of face area per panel shall be permitted within the UDA. One panel of each exterior directory sign shall include a site map and be available for the posting of community information by East Whiteland Township. The remaining three panels may contain information directing pedestrians to various locations and/or general commercial advertisement within the UDA.
(d) 
A maximum of 16 parking garage identification/entrance signs not to exceed three feet in height and 51 square feet of face area per side shall be permitted within the UDA. The purpose of these signs is to identify structured parking facilities.
(e) 
A maximum of six ground-mounted site identification signs shall be permitted within the UDA. Three of the ground-mounted site identification signs shall not exceed eight feet in height and 95 square feet of face area per side. The other three ground-mounted site identification signs shall be used to identify bank buildings and shall not exceed six feet in height and 45 square feet of face area per side. The purpose of these signs is to identify the location of various destinations within the UDA.
(f) 
A maximum of six bank directional signs not to exceed three feet in height and four square feet of face area per side shall be permitted within the UDA. The purpose of these signs is to identify the location of bank parking and bank drive-through areas within the UDA.
(3) 
Retail signage. Retail signs are those signs within the UDA to be affixed to buildings containing retail or other commercial uses except for office, cinema, and hotel uses. There are eight categories of retail signs: wall sign; blade sign; awning edge sign; banner; window sign; canopy edge sign; spire sign; and roof sign. The eight sign categories are shown on Exhibit A attached to this chapter.[1] Retail signage shall be regulated as follows:
[Amended 1-7-2013 by Ord. No. 243-2013]
(a) 
Retail signage for freestanding retail buildings which are in excess of 120,000 square feet.
[1] 
Retail signage shall be dimensioned and shown on the Master Signage Plan.
[2] 
The maximum amount of square footage permitted on the main-entrance exterior building wall for each freestanding retail building shall not exceed 5%. The maximum amount of square footage permitted on all other exterior building walls per exterior building wall for each freestanding retail building shall not exceed 4%.
(b) 
Retail/other commercial signage.
[1] 
Retail signage for retail and other commercial building uses except for freestanding retail buildings which are in excess of 120,000 square feet and signs for cinema and hotel uses shall not be shown or required on the Master Signage Plan referenced in § 200-89.1A. Instead said retail/other commercial signage except for office signage and retail signage as set forth in § 200-89.1B(3)(b)[4] shall be pursuant to the retail signage matrix set forth in this § 200-89.1B(3)(b) and shall be submitted by the applicant to the Zoning Officer for review and approval at the time a sign permit for a particular retail use is sought pursuant to § 200-86 of the Zoning Ordinance. For a mixed-use building, the retail/other commercial signage provisions shall apply to the retail/other commercial uses except for office use components of the building.
[2] 
Except as permitted in § 200-89.1B(3)(b)[4], the maximum retail/other commercial signage allowance for each retail/other commercial building subject to this § 200-89.1B(3)(b) shall be one square foot of wall signage for every lineal foot of exterior building wall, regardless of the number of tenants in the building, plus one square foot of a combination of one or more of the following: blade signage, awning edge signage, banner signage, canopy edge signage, roof signage (if permitted pursuant to § 200-89.1B(3)(b)[4]) and window signage, for every lineal foot of exterior building wall, regardless of the number of tenants in the building.
[3] 
The Retail Signage Matrix to be completed by the applicant for a sign permit shall be as follows:[2]
[2]
Editor's Note: The Retail Signage Matrix is included at the end of this chapter.
[4] 
Roof signs and spire signs are permitted for those buildings containing only retail or commercial uses which are no more than two stories in height in the ROC/R District and which are set back a distance of 1,500 feet as measured perpendicularly from a point in the center line of S.R. 29 to the proposed location of the building(s) and also set back a distance of 700 feet as measured perpendicularly from a point in the center line of Matthews Road to the proposed location of buildings(s).
[a] 
A roof sign shall not extend more than six feet in height above the roof line.
[b] 
A limit of three spire signs shall be permitted per building so long as said spire signs do not extend more than 55 feet in height above the roof line, nor exceed six feet in width.
[1]
Editor's Note: Exhibit A, Retail Signage Types, is included at the end of this chapter.
(4) 
Office signage. Office signs are those signs within the UDA to be affixed to buildings containing office uses.
(a) 
Office signage shall not be shown or required on the Master Signage Plan referenced in § 200-89.1A. For a mixed-use building, the office signage provisions shall apply to the office-use component of the building. (NOTE: In a mixed-use office-retail building, a portion of the office signage may be allocated to retail uses in the building, provided that said allocation shall not exceed 50% of the total office signage permitted for the entire building.)
(b) 
The maximum amount of office signage square footage permitted on each exterior building wall shall not exceed 2% of each building wall as measured utilizing that portion of the building devoted to office use. The maximum number of office signs permitted on each exterior building wall shall be limited to three.
(5) 
Wall-mounted building exterior directory signage. Wall-mounted building exterior directory signage shall not be shown or required on the Master Signage Plan referenced in § 200-89.1A. One wall-mounted building exterior directory sign shall be permitted on the first floor of each exterior building wall containing a building entrance at the entrance to the building. Each wall-mounted building exterior directory sign shall not exceed 3 feet by 4 feet
(6) 
Cinema signage. (Reserved)
(7) 
Hotel signage. (Reserved)
(8) 
Residential signage. (Reserved)
C. 
Other signs. Street signs, pedestrian directional signs, pedestrian blade signs, parking garage blade signs, parking lot row signs, parking directional signs, regulatory signs, bike path identification signs, and decorative banners on existing light poles shall be as set forth on the Master Signage Plan.
D. 
Illumination. The standards of § 200-80G shall not apply within a UDA. The following standards shall apply to illumination of signs in a UDA:
(1) 
Illumination of signs is permitted within the UDA.
(2) 
Illumination shall be of an even intensity at all times.
(3) 
Illumination may be direct (giving forth light from the interior of the sign) or it may be indirect (when the light source is not visible from any adjoining property or street and is directed upon the sign).
(4) 
In addition:
(a) 
Illumination shall be appropriate to the character of the sign and its surroundings, and shall not adversely illuminate or shadow surrounding properties, uses or streets and roads;
(b) 
No sign shall be illuminated in such a manner as to diminish or detract in any way from the effectiveness of any traffic signal or similar safety or warning device; and
(c) 
The illumination shall be directed downward onto the sign to avoid sky glow.
E. 
Conflicting provisions. When requirements of this § 200-89.1 are in conflict with the other signage provisions set forth in this article, the requirements of this section shall prevail.
[Added 1-13-2016 by Ord. No. 276-2016]
The following types of signs and no other shall be permitted in Turnpike Interchange Overlay Districts:
A. 
Commercial signs in conjunction with any permitted use except retail with gasoline service station, provided that:
(1) 
Such signs shall be erected on the tract on which the use to which the sign pertains is conducted.
(2) 
One freestanding sign identifying the Turnpike Interchange Overlay development and commercial users in the Turnpike Interchange Overlay District shall be permitted, provided that:
(a) 
The overall height of any such sign, including structural support, shall be not more than 25 feet.
(b) 
Such sign shall not exceed 145 square feet on any one side.
(3) 
One additional freestanding sign identifying a commercial user shall be permitted, provided that:
(a) 
The overall height of any such sign, including structural support, shall be 12 feet.
(b) 
Such sign shall not exceed 50 square feet on one side.
(4) 
In a building containing a commercial use or uses other than retail with gasoline service station or hotel, wall signs shall be permitted, provided that:
(a) 
One wall sign shall be permitted per commercial use on the front of the building and one additional wall sign shall be permitted each side of the building. No wall signs shall be permitted on the rear of the building.
(b) 
The maximum total exposed sign area of each wall sign shall be two square feet for every one linear foot of the building façade or 75 square feet, whichever is less.
(c) 
Window signs shall not be considered in computing the total exposed sign area on a building but shall not cover more than 10% of the area of any window opening.
(5) 
Wall signs shall be permitted for a hotel, provided that:
(a) 
Two wall signs shall be permitted per building.
(b) 
The maximum total exposed sign area of each wall sign shall be two square feet for every one linear foot of the building facade or 200 square feet, whichever is less.
(6) 
Parking signs and directional signs shall be permitted but shall not exceed two square feet on any one side.
B. 
Commercial signs in conjunction with retail with gasoline service station use:
(1) 
Such signs shall be erected on the tract on which the use to which the sign pertains is conducted.
(2) 
One freestanding sign shall be permitted, provided that:
(a) 
The overall height of any such sign, including structural support, shall not exceed 25 feet.
(b) 
Such sign shall not exceed 100 square feet on one side. A portion, not exceeding 35 square feet on one side, may be a semi-permanent changeable sign which shall not have any of the attributes of signage prohibited under § 200-77.
(3) 
Two wall signs shall be permitted, provided that:
(a) 
The maximum total exposed sign area of the wall sign on the building frontage shall be 70 square feet.
(b) 
The second wall sign shall not be located on the same side of the building as the wall sign on the building frontage and shall have a maximum total exposed sign area of 40 square feet.
(c) 
Window signs shall not be considered in computing the total exposed sign area on a building but shall not cover more than 10% of the area of any window opening.
(4) 
Spanner signs, which are signs that span the support columns underneath a gasoline service station canopy, shall be permitted, provided that:
(a) 
A maximum of two spanner signs shall be affixed to one canopy.
(b) 
Each spanner sign shall not exceed 30 square feet on one side.
(5) 
Parking signs and directional signs shall be permitted but shall not exceed two square feet on any one side.
C. 
Development identification signs:
(1) 
A maximum of two single-faced freestanding signs shall be permitted per road entrance at an intersection with an arterial street per development identifying the name of the development, provided that:
(a) 
Each sign shall have a maximum area of 48 square feet.
(b) 
The lineal dimensions of each sign shall not exceed 24 feet in length and two feet in height.
(2) 
One additional freestanding sign shall be permitted per road entrance at an intersection with an arterial street per development identifying uses in the development, provided that:
(a) 
The overall ground height of the sign shall not exceed 10.5 feet in height.
(b) 
A maximum of three uses shall be identified on the sign.
(c) 
Each panel identifying a use on the sign shall be a maximum of six feet in length and two feet in height.
(3) 
Multifamily development identification signs shall be permitted in connection with a multifamily development on the premises containing the multifamily development in accordance with the requirements of § 200-83B(1) through (5).