In the case of a simple subdivision, as defined by this chapter, which will not adversely affect the development of the remainder of the parcel or adjoining property, the preliminary application and filing fee as required by § 252-11 of this chapter shall not be required, provided that all requirements for submission of a final application specified in § 252-12 of this chapter are met. Topography, if warranted, shall be based on the United States Geodetic Survey (USGS) data. Stormwater management requirements of § 252-38 shall not apply to simple subdivisions as defined herein.
In any particular case where the developer can show by plan and written statement that, by reasons of exceptional topographic or other physical conditions, strict compliance with any requirement of this chapter would cause practical difficulty or exceptional and undue hardship, the Board of Commissioners may relax such requirements to the extent deemed just and proper, so as to relieve such difficulty or hardship, provided that such relief may be granted without detriment to the public good and without impairing the intent and purpose of this chapter of the desirable general development of the neighborhood and the community in accordance with the Township's Comprehensive Plan.
No such modification from the provisions of these regulations shall be authorized by the Board of Commissioners unless all the following conditions pertain:
There are unique physical circumstances or conditions present on the property, including peculiar shape or exceptional topographical or other physical conditions and the reasons for which a modification is sought are due to these conditions and not the provisions of these subdivision regulations;
Because of the physical circumstances there is no possibility that the property can be developed in strict conformity with these regulations, if reasonable use is to be made of it;
The reasons for request of a modification have not been created by the applicant;
The modification, if granted, will not alter the essential character of the neighborhood or district in which the property is located, nor substantially or permanently impair the appropriate use or development of adjacent property nor be detrimental to the public welfare; and
The modification, if authorized, will represent the minimum modification that will afford relief and will represent the least modification possible of the regulations in issue.
Economic hardship alone shall not be sufficient justification for granting a modification.
When, owing to special site or engineering conditions, the developer can demonstrate by plan and written statement than an equal or better method or material is available to meet the intent of the design standards in Article V of this chapter, the Board of Commissioners may make such reasonable modifications to any of the requirements of this chapter as will not be contrary to the public interest and may approve a subdivision or land development plan subject to conditions necessary to assure adequate public improvements.
The owner and/or developer of a subdivision or land development proposal shall submit to the Township Zoning Officer or his authorized representative, at least 10 working days prior to a regular Planning Commission meeting, any application for a modification to the provisions of this chapter, citing specifically the deviations from a particular section or sections of these regulations requested.
The Planning Commission shall consider the application and may call a public hearing, pursuant to public notice, as defined by this chapter, to obtain additional information and public comments regarding the request.
Any request for a modification or exception to this chapter authorized by this article shall be considered by the Board of Commissioners at a public meeting. If the Planning Commission or Township Engineer has made a recommendation on the request, the recommendations shall be entered into the official record of the meeting. The reasons relied upon by the Board of Commissioners in approving or disapproving the request shall be entered into the minutes of the meeting, and any resolution or ordinance adopted governing an application which contains a request for a modification shall include reference to the modification and the reasons for approval or disapproval.
The landowner and/or developer may appeal an unfavorable decision to the Zoning Hearing Board or may modify the application for another submission to the Planning Commission. The landowner and/or developer may not reapply for the same modification, once finally denied, for at least one year after such rejection.
A notation regarding the substance of any approved modification and/or zoning variance and the date of approval shall be lettered in ink upon the recording tracing and signed and dated by the President of the Board of Commissioners.