Township of Upper Allen, PA
Cumberland County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Commissioners of the Township of Upper Allen 10-22-1975 as Ord. No. 221. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Building construction — See Ch. 97.
Zoning — See Ch. 245.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
ALTERATION
Any change, modification or addition to a part of or all of the exterior of any building or structure.
BUILDING
Any enclosed or open structure which is a combination of materials to form a construction that is safe and stable and designed and/or intended for the shelter, housing or enclosure of persons, animals or chattel and including covered porches or bay windows and chimneys.
[Amended 10-21-2020 by Ord. No. 798]
BUILDING AND/OR ZONING OFFICER
The officer or officers of this Township authorized to issue permits for the erection, reconstruction, alteration, restoration, demolition or razing of all or a part of any building (within an Historic District).
BUILDING PERMIT
An approval statement signed by the Building and/or Zoning Officer authorizing the erection, reconstruction, alteration, restoration, demolition or razing of all or a part of any building (within an Historic District).
BUILDING PERMIT APPLICATION
The request filed by any person with the Building and/or Zoning Officer that seeks authorization to erect, reconstruct, alter, restore, demolish or raze all or a part of any building (within an Historic District).
CERTIFICATE OF APPROPRIATENESS
The approval statement signed by the governing body which certifies the appropriateness of a particular request for the erection, reconstruction, alteration, restoration, demolition or razing of all or a part of any building within an Historic District and which authorizes the issuance of a building permit for said request.
DEMOLITION
The dismantling or tearing down of all or a part of any building and all operations incidental thereto.
ERECTION
Any or all work necessary for the construction of any building or structure from a combination of materials that form a safe and stable structure.
GOVERNING BODY
The Board of Commissioners of this Township.
HISTORICAL ARCHITECTURAL REVIEW BOARD (HARB)
The agency that advises on any requests for authorization to erect, reconstruct, alter, restore, demolish or raze all or a part of any building (within an Historic District).
PLANNING COMMISSION
The agency of this Township which advises the governing body on planning and zoning related matters.
RAZING
The dismantling or tearing down of all or a part of any building and all operations incidental thereto.
RECONSTRUCTION
Any or all work needed to remake or rebuild all or a part of any building to a sound condition, but not necessarily of original materials.
RESTORATION
Any or all work connected with the returning or restoring of a building or a part of any building to its original condition through the use of original or nearly original materials.
SIGN
Any object, device, display, or structure, or part thereof, situated outdoors or indoors, which is used to advertise, identify, display, direct, or attract attention to an object, person, institution, organization, business, product, service, event, or location by any means, including words, letters, figures, design, symbols, fixtures, colors, illumination or projected images. This excludes national or state flags, window displays, graffiti, athletic scoreboards, or the official announcements or signs of government. Included would be the following:
[Amended 10-21-2020 by Ord. No. 798]
A. 
A sign with action or motion, flashing lights or color changes requiring electrical energy or electronic or manufactured sources of supply, but not including wind-actuated elements such as flags, banners or pennants.
B. 
A sign which announces or directs attention to a business, product, service or activity sold or conducted on the premises where such sign is located.
C. 
A sign incorporating a source of light in order to make the message readable. Included are internally and externally lighted signs.
STRUCTURE
Anything constructed or erected, having a permanent or semipermanent location on another structure or in or upon the ground, including without limitation buildings, sheds, manufactured homes, garages, fences, walls, arbors, trellises, gazebos, signs, antennas, satellite sending or receiving dishes, gutters, downspouts, decks, patios, swimming pools and spas.
[Added 10-21-2020 by Ord. No. 798]
TOWNSHIP
The Township of Upper Allen, Cumberland County, Pennsylvania.
In accordance with the provisions of an Act entitled "An Act authorizing counties, cities, boroughs, incorporated towns and townships to create historic districts within their geographic boundaries; providing for the appointment of Boards of Historical Architectural Review; empowering governing bodies of political subdivisions to protect the distinctive historical character of these districts and to regulate the erection, reconstruction, alteration, restoration, demolition or razing of buildings within the historic districts," adopted by the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and approved by the Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania on the 13th day of June 1961, as amended,[1] and for the purpose of protecting portions of this Township which recall the rich architectural and cultural heritage of this Township and of the state, awakening in our people an interest in our historic past and promoting the general welfare, education and culture of this Township, there is hereby created in this Township historic districts to be known as "Upper Allen Historic Districts."
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 8001 et seq.
The Upper Allen Historic Districts are as follows:
A. 
Rosegarden Mill: consisting of the mill and miller's house and generally bounded by Gettysburg Pike on the west, the Yellow Breeches Creek on the south, U.S. Route 15 on the east, and on the north by a line approximately 1,200 feet from the Yellow Breeches Creek.
B. 
Trout Run: consisting of the properties generally located on both sides of West Lisburn Road west of the intersection with Stumpstown Road and surrounding Trout Run and the springs at the source thereof.
C. 
Shepherdstown: consisting of the properties generally located on both sides of Gettysburg Pike from a point approximately 900 feet northeast of the intersection with Fisher Road to a point approximately 300 feet northeast of the intersection with South York Street, and the properties on both sides of South York Street from the intersection with Gettysburg Pike to a point approximately 300 feet northwest thereof.
D. 
Yellow Breeches: consisting of an area along both sides of McCormick Road from the Nauman Bridge to McCormick's Mill, an area along the east side of Arcona Road from the intersection with McCormick Road to a point approximately 500 feet north thereof, and an area along the west side of Arcona Road from the intersection with McCormick Road to a point approximately 800 feet north thereof.
The Upper Allen Historic Districts shall be shown on a map which shall be known as the "Township Historic Districts Map" and which shall be a part of this chapter.[1] Where uncertainty and/or discrepancies exist as to the boundaries of the districts as shown on the Township Historic Districts Map and/or as described in this chapter, the following rules shall apply:
A. 
Boundaries indicated as approximately following the center lines of streets, highways or alleys shall be construed to follow such center lines.
B. 
Boundaries indicated as approximately following plotted lot lines shall be construed as following such lot lines.
C. 
Boundaries indicated as parallel to or extensions of features indicated in the above shall be so construed. Distances not specifically indicated on this map shall be determined by the scale of the map.
D. 
Where physical or cultural features existing on the ground are at variance with those shown on the map or in other circumstances not covered by the above, the governing body shall interpret the boundaries of the districts.
[1]
Editor's Note: Said map is on file in the office of the Township Secretary.
[Amended 6-17-1993 by Ord. No. 474]
When directed by the Board of Commissioners, the Township Secretary shall forward a copy of this chapter to the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission with a request for certification.
A. 
A Historical Architectural Review Board, hereinafter referred to as "HARB," is hereby established to be composed of seven members appointed by the governing body. One member shall be a registered architect; one shall be a licensed real estate broker; one shall be the Building Inspector of this Township; and four shall be persons who own property and reside in one of the Historic Districts and who have a knowledge of and interest in the preservation of the Historic Districts.
B. 
Members of HARB shall each be appointed for a term of five years, and the terms of no more than two members shall expire in any one year. Persons appointed to HARB shall show interest and/or knowledge in historical districts or structures. An appointment to fill a vacancy shall be only for the unexpired portion of the term.
[Amended 6-17-1993 by Ord. No. 474]
C. 
Any member of the Board once qualified and appointed may be removed from office for malfeasance, misfeasance or nonfeasance in office or for other just cause by a majority vote of the Board of Commissioners aforesaid taken after the member has received 15 days' advance notice of the intent to take such a vote. A hearing shall be held in connection with the vote if the member shall request it in writing. Any appointment to fill a vacancy created by removal shall be only for the unexpired term.
[Added 6-17-1993 by Ord. No. 474]
D. 
Members of HARB shall disqualify themselves from voting on any project in which they are, directly or indirectly, financially interested.
The powers and duties of HARB are the following:
A. 
Giving counsel to the governing body regarding the advisability of issuing any certificate of appropriateness required to be issued in accordance with said Act of June 13, 1961, as amended,[1] and this chapter.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 8001 et seq.
B. 
Making and altering rules and regulations for its own organization and procedure, consistent with this chapter and the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
C. 
Meeting at such intervals, at least bimonthly, as shall be specified in its rules and regulations or as shall be required to process expeditiously the matters pending before it. A majority of the members of HARB shall constitute a quorum. No action shall be taken without the affirmative vote of the majority of members.
[Amended 10-21-2020 by Ord. No. 798]
D. 
Serving without compensation.
E. 
Making an annual report of its transactions to the governing body.
F. 
Pursuant to appropriations which may be made by the governing body, employing secretarial assistants, paying their salaries and wages and incurring other necessary expenses.
G. 
Conducting a survey of buildings for the purpose of determining those of historic and/or architectural significance and pertinent facts about them; maintaining and periodically revising the detailed listings of historic sites and buildings and data about them, appropriately classified with respect to national, state or local significance, to period or field of interest or otherwise.
H. 
Proposing, from time to time as deemed appropriate, the establishment of additional historic districts and revisions to existing historic districts.
I. 
Formulating recommendations concerning the establishment of an appropriate system of markers for selected historic and/or architectural sites and buildings, including proposals for the installation and care of such historic markers.
J. 
Formulating recommendations concerning the preparation and publication of maps, brochures and descriptive material about the Township's historic and/or architectural sites and buildings.
K. 
Cooperating with and advising the governing body, the Planning Commission and other Township agencies in matters involving historically and/or architecturally significant sites and buildings (such as appropriate land usage, parking facilities and signs, as well as adherence to lot dimensional regulations and minimum structural standards).
L. 
Cooperating with and enlisting assistance from the National Park Service, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission and other agencies, public and private, from time to time, concerned with historic sites and buildings.
M. 
Advising owners of historic buildings on problems of preservation.
N. 
Promoting public interest in the purposes of this chapter by carrying on a public relations program.
Upon receipt of an application for a building permit for work to be done in an Historic District, the Building and/or Zoning Officer shall act in accordance with the procedures then being followed in that office, except those procedures that are necessarily modified by the following requirements:
A. 
He/she shall forward copies of the application for a building permit, together with copies of any plot plan, building plans and specifications filed by the applicant, to HARB.
B. 
He/she shall not issue a permit for any erection, reconstruction, alteration, restoration, demolition or razing of all or a part of any building in an Historic District until the governing body has issued a certificate of appropriateness.
C. 
He/she shall require applicants to submit a sufficient number of additional copies of material required to be attached to an application for a building permit to permit compliance with the foregoing.
D. 
He/she shall maintain in his/her office a record of all such applications and of his/her handling and final disposition of the same which shall be in addition to, and appropriately cross-referenced with, his/her other records.
Upon receipt of any building permit application under the jurisdiction of this chapter, HARB shall proceed as follows:
A. 
HARB shall consider such application at a regular or special meeting which shall be held within thirty (30) days after receipt of such application.
B. 
At least 10 days prior to the meeting, HARB shall advise the person(s) applying for the permit of the time and place of the meeting and shall invite such person(s) to appear and explain his/her reasons for the application. HARB may also invite other persons to attend the meeting.
C. 
In determining the counsel to be presented to the governing body concerning the issuing of a certificate of appropriateness of authorizing a permit for the erection, reconstruction, alteration, restoration, demolition or razing of all or a part of any building within an Historic District, HARB shall consider the following matters:
(1) 
The effect of the proposed change upon the general historic and architectural nature of the district;
(2) 
The appropriateness of exterior architectural features which can be seen from a public street or way only; and
(3) 
The general design, arrangement, texture, material and color of the building or structure and the relation of such factors to similar features of buildings or structures in the district.
D. 
Within 10 days after the meeting, HARB shall reach a decision on the application and communicate it to the person(s) applying for the permit. If HARB decides to advise against the granting of a certificate of appropriateness on the basis of the application as filed, it shall indicate to the person(s) applying for the permit the changes in plans and specifications, if any, which, in the opinion of HARB, would protect the distinctive historical character of the district. If the person(s) applying for the permit is willing to make the changes, he/she shall so advise HARB within five days after the decision of HARB was made.
E. 
Within 20 days after making its decision or, if changes specified in the decision are made in the plans and specifications, then within 10 days after the revised plans and specifications are filed, HARB shall submit, in writing, to the governing body its counsel concerning the issuance of a certificate of appropriateness. The following matters shall be set forth:
(1) 
The exact location of the area in which the work is to be done.
(2) 
The exterior changes to be made or the exterior characters of the structure to be erected,
(3) 
A list of the surrounding structures with their general exterior characteristics.
(4) 
The effect of the proposed change upon the general historic and architectural nature of the district.
(5) 
The appropriateness of exterior architectural features of the building which can be seen from a public street or way.
(6) 
The general design, arrangement, texture, material and color of the building or structure and the relation of such factors to similar features of buildings or structures in the district.
(7) 
The opinion of HARB (including any dissent) as to the appropriateness of the work proposed as it will preserve or destroy the historic aspect and nature of the district.
(8) 
The specific recommendations of HARB as to the issuance by the governing body of or its refusal to issue a certificate of appropriateness. If the application is for the demolition or razing of a building, HARB shall, where deemed necessary, recommend to the governing body that the proposed demolition be postponed for a period not exceeding nine months. However, in the event that demolition or razing cannot be avoided, then the moving of a building shall be encouraged as an alternative to demolition if there is no other way to preserve the building.
Upon receipt of the written counsel of HARB as provided in § 155-9E of this chapter, the governing body shall proceed as follows:
A. 
The application shall be considered at the next regular or special meeting of the governing body held at least 15 days after receipt of the written counsel of HARB.
B. 
At least 10 days prior to the meeting, the governing body shall advise the person(s) applying for the permit of the time and place of the meeting and of his/her right to attend and to be heard as to the reasons for filing the application.
C. 
In determining whether or not to certify to the appropriateness of the proposed erection, reconstruction, alteration, restoration, demolition or razing of all or a part of any building within an Historic District, the governing body shall consider the same factors set forth in § 155-9C of this chapter and the report of HARB.
D. 
If the governing body approves the application, it shall issue a certificate of appropriateness authorizing the Building and/or Zoning Officer to issue a permit for the work covered.
E. 
If the governing body disapproves, it shall do so in writing and copies shall be given to the person(s) applying for the permit and to the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission within five days after the decision is made. The disapproval shall indicate what changes in the plans and specifications would meet the conditions for protecting the distinctive historical character of the district.
Upon receipt of the written disapproval of the governing body, the Building and/or Zoning Officer shall disapprove the application for a building permit and so advise the applicant. The applicant may appeal from the disapproval as provided by law and the Building Code of the Township.
In addition to the creation of Historic Districts, the governing body may establish a listing of individual sites or structures of historic value. Such sites or structures shall not be governed by the provisions of this chapter pertaining to Historic Districts, but the governing body may establish such reasonable restrictions on the use of such sites or structures and land adjacent thereto as will tend to preserve their historic character.
Signs in Historic Districts shall comply with the following requirements:
A. 
No sign or display of any kind shall be erected, altered or used in Historic Districts until an application for a permit to make such erection or alteration has been reviewed by HARB for its conformity in exterior material composition, exterior structural design, and external size with similar signs or displays used in the architectural period of the districts and a permit granted thereon.
[Amended 10-21-2020 by Ord. No. 798]
B. 
In addition to the above, and those matters considered in § 155-9C, the following shall be adhered to:
(1) 
No animated, revolving or moving signs shall be permitted.
(2) 
Illumination of any sign shall be indirect, shielded or otherwise arranged to prevent direct glare.
(3) 
No freestanding sign shall be more than 15 feet high.
(4) 
Projecting signs extending more than two feet over any public walk or right-of-way shall be at least 10 feet above the walk grade and at least 14 feet above any vehicular right-of-way.
(5) 
No sign shall be erected at the intersection of any streets in such a manner as to obstruct free and clear vision or at any location where by reason of its position, shape or color it may interfere with, obstruct the view of or be confused with any authorized traffic sign, signal or device.
(6) 
No sign shall be located so as to prevent or hinder free ingress to or egress from any door, window or fire escape. No sign shall be attached to a standpipe or fire escape.
(7) 
No signs shall be attached to or placed on any public utility pole or tree located within any public right-of-way.
C. 
Furthermore, all other requirements of any Township ordinance must be complied with. Historical markers may be authorized by HARB subject to the provisions stipulated, and such markers shall not be considered as signs but are to be erected in accordance with the requirements established for historic markers by HARB.
[Added 10-21-2020 by Ord. No. 798[1]]
The following activities shall be exempt from the provisions of this chapter regardless of visibility from a public street or way, including but not limited to the following:
A. 
Installation of swimming pools and spas, including associated fencing as required under Pennsylvania State Law or the International Building Code (IBC);
B. 
Construction or expansion of an unenclosed or uncovered patio in the rear yard;
C. 
Fences, walls not exceeding four feet in height, gates, arbors and trellises;
D. 
General maintenance of a building or structure or part thereof;
E. 
Repointing and masonry repair using materials, mortar composition, color, joint profile and width that closely match historic materials;
F. 
Replacement of gutters and downspouts, provided that the new gutters and downspouts match the existing features in design and materials;
G. 
Installation of flower boxes, window boxes, immovable planters or other plant containers affixed to a building or porch;
H. 
Painting of exterior walls or trim or removal of paint from any exterior surface;
I. 
Heating or cooling units, excluding solar fixtures;
J. 
Personal antennas and satellite dishes; excluding wireless communication facilities;
K. 
Other ancillary or decorative elements;
L. 
Demolition of any structure deemed by the Building Code Official to be in imminent danger of failure or collapse and where the Building Code Official orders the demolition in order to protect public health, safety and welfare.
[1]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also redesignated former §§ 155-14 and 155-15 as §§ 155-15 and 155-16, respectively.
The Building and/or Zoning Officer shall have the power to institute any proceedings at law or in equity necessary for the enforcement of this chapter in the same manner as in his/her enforcement of Ch. 97, Building Construction, as presently enacted or as the same may from time to time be amended.
[Added 6-17-1993 by Ord. No. 474]
Any person or persons who shall violate any of the provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction, be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than $1,000, plus costs of prosecution, and, in default of payment of such fine and costs, shall be imprisoned for a term not to exceed 30 days.