City of Poughkeepsie, NY
Dutchess County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
GENERAL REFERENCES
General powers of city enumerated — See Administrative Code Section 2.04.
General definitions and rules of construction — See Code of Ordinances Section 1-2.
Centralization of planning and urban renewal projects — See Code of Ordinances Section 2-6.
Provisions relative to Planning Board — See Code of Ordinances Section 2-17 et seq.
Zoning regulations relating to flood damage prevention — See Code of Ordinances Section 19-4.6.

Section 16-1 Authority of Planning Board.

[Ord. of 10-4-1952, § 1-A]
The Planning Board of the city shall have the authority to approve subdivision plats and to establish rules, regulations and conditions for such approval in accordance with the provisions of Article 3 of the General City Law of the State of New York.

Section 16-1.1 Greenway Connections.

[L.L. No. 1-2002, § 2]
The Common Council hereby finds that any City reviewing board, including, but not limited to, the Planning Board and the Zoning Board of Appeals, in its deliberations on any discretionary actions under this chapter shall consider the statement of policies, principles and guidelines in "Greenway Connections" as such reviewing board deems appropriate and relevant in its deliberations on such discretionary actions.

Section 16-2 Subdivider to file map with County Clerk. [1]

[Ord. of 10-4-1952, § 1-B]
Anyone who subdivides land shall file a map (plat) of the subdivision in the office of the County Clerk.
[1]
State law reference: Map to be filed with County Clerk, § 334 of the Real Property Law.

Section 16-3 Planning Board to approve map before filing. [1]

[Ord. of 10-4-1952, § 1-C]
It shall be unlawful to file or record a subdivision map in the office of the County Clerk until it has been approved by the Planning Board.
[1]
State law reference: Approval of map prerequisite to filing thereof, § 34 of the General City Law.

Section 16-4 Planning Board approval prerequisite to construction of street utility, improvement. [1]

[Ord. of 10-4-1952, § 1-D]
It shall be unlawful to construct a public municipal street utility or improvement by the city in any street in a new subdivision which has not been approved by the Planning Board.
[1]
State law references: Approval prerequisite to construction of municipal street utility or improvement, § 34 and 36 of the General City Law; requisites for approval of plats, § 32 and 33 of the General City Law; exemption of lots in approved subdivision plats from zoning restrictions, § 83-a of the General City Law.

Section 16-5 Planning Board approval prerequisite to building permit. [1]

[Ord. of 10-4-1952, § 1-E]
It shall be unlawful to issue a building permit for any construction on any street in a new subdivision which has not been approved by the Planning Board.
[1]
State law reference: Approval prerequisite to issuance of building permit, § 34 of the General City Law.

Section 16-6 Definitions.

[Ord. of 10-4-1952, § 2; Ord. of 5-4-1987, § 1; Ord. of 10-5-1987, § 1]
For the purpose of this Chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings respectively ascribed:
BOARD
The city Planning Board.
PLAT
The map, drawing or chart on which the subdivider's plan of subdivision is presented to the Planning Board for approval.
RECREATION FEE
Moneys required from subdividers in lieu of parkland donations. Recreation fees are allocated to a trust fund which is used to construct and/or improve recreational facilities in the City of Poughkeepsie.
ROADWAY
That portion of a street that is paved and ordinarily used for vehicular traffic.
STREET
A way for vehicular traffic, whether designated as a street, highway, throughway, thoroughfare, parkway, road, avenue, boulevard, right-of-way, lane, place or however designated.
(a) 
Those streets which in the judgment of the Board carry traffic from minor streets to major system of city streets and highways, including the principal entrance streets of a residential development and streets for circulation within such development.
(b) 
Those streets which are used primarily for access to the abutting properties.
(c) 
Minor ways which are used primarily for vehicular service access to the back or side of properties, otherwise abutting a street.
(d) 
Those streets providing for through traffic movement between areas and/or across the city with direct access to abutting property. Such streets are subject to required traffic control of entrances, exits and curb use.
SUBDIVISION
The division of any parcel of land into two or more lots, plot sites or other divisions of land for the purpose, whether immediately or future, of transfer of ownership or building development or, if a new street is involved, any division of a parcel of land.
SUPERINTENDENT
The duly designated Superintendent of Public Works of the city.

Section 16-7 Approval of subdivision plats.

[Ord. of 10-4-1952, § 3; Ords. (two) of 10-5-1987, § 1, 2, 3; Ord. of 8-14-2000, § 2]
(a) 
Preliminary discussion. Before any subdivision plat is prepared, the subdivider or his representative shall discuss preliminary sketches or problems with the Planning Director and the Superintendent of Public Works.
(b) 
Submission of preliminary plat. The subdivider shall then submit the preliminary plat and information required by Section 16-8 to the Zoning Administrator who will, within 30 days after filing, determine if said plat is in compliance with Chapter 19, Zoning and Land Use Regulations. Once a determination of compliance is made, the Zoning Administrator shall forward said application to the Planning Board's agenda for that month.
(c) 
Notice to subdivider. After the preliminary plat has been considered by the Board, the subdivider will be notified of:
(1) 
Any specific changes which it will require for the final plat.
(2) 
The general types and amounts of improvements which will be required to be installed in the subdivision.
(3) 
The required parkland or recreational space allotment or the recreational fee required in lieu of such allotment.
(d) 
Submission of final plat. Within six months thereafter, the subdivider shall submit to the Board the original and one copy of the final plat and information required by Section 16-9. A final plat may include only a part of the area shown on the preliminary plat.
(e) 
Hearing on final plat. Before the Board will approve the final plat, it will hold a public hearing thereon in compliance with § 32 of the General City Law. The subdivider shall advertise such hearing in a newspaper of general circulation in the city at least five days before the hearing date. The subdivider shall also cause notice of the hearing to be mailed by certified mail to the owners of all property within a two-hundred-foot radius of the parcel which is the subject to the hearing before the Board. Such notice shall be mailed not less than five days prior to the hearing date. The final plat and other exhibits required for approval must be submitted to the Zoning Administrator who will, within 30 days after filing, determine if said plat is in compliance with Chapter 19, Zoning and Land Use Regulations. Once a determination of compliance is made, the Zoning Administrator shall forward said application to the Planning Director by the first Tuesday of the month to assure scheduling on the Planning Board's agenda for that month. Public hearings will be scheduled for the fourth Tuesday of the month and will take place at the Planning Board meeting.
(f) 
Action of final plat. Within 45 days of the submission of the final plat, the Planning Board will approve, modify and approve or disapprove such plat. The date of submission of the final plat shall be deemed to be the date of the public hearing. Such approval shall be conditional, however, and not be deemed final until the subdivider has complied with the provisions of Subsection (i).
(g) 
Procedure to be followed by subdivider. The subdivider will be required to follow the procedure in either Subsection (g)(1) or (2) below:
(1) 
The subdivider will be required to file with the city a performance bond for the required improvements in the amount estimated by the Superintendent and approved by the Board and satisfactory to the Corporation Counsel as to form, sufficiency, manner of execution and surety. If the bond is not filed within 45 days of the conditional approval granted in Subsection (f), the final plat shall be deemed disapproved.
Said bond must contain a clause worded substantially as follows:
"The principal agrees that if he shall well and truly make and complete the improvements to the land covered by the subdivision in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Superintendent of Public Works, the Planning Board and the ordinances of the city within one year from the date of the submission of the final plat, then the obligation of the surety is to be null and void, otherwise to remain in full force and effect after said term".
(2) 
The subdivider will be required to complete to the satisfaction of the Superintendent all the required improvements. However, no building permits will be issued until the improvements have been completed. If the improvements are not completed within one year of the conditional approval granted in Subsection (f), the plat shall be deemed disapproved.
(h) 
Conditional approval of final plat. Prior to recording the final plat with the County Clerk, the Chairman of the Planning Board will sign the final plat as conditionally approved by the Board, provided that:
(1) 
Receipt of notification from the Superintendent that required improvements have been satisfactorily installed or a notification from the corporation counsel that a bond has been filed.
(2) 
Payment, if required, of the recreational fee, which will be the amount equal to $1,000 per subdivided lot, has been made.
Such Planning Board approvals do not accept streets as public streets.
(i) 
Duration of approval. The approval of the Planning Board as evidenced by the signed plat will expire within 90 days of the date of signing, unless such plats all have been duly filed or recorded by the owner in the office of the County Clerk, or unless an application for an extension of time if made, in writing, during said ninety-day period to the Planning Board and granted.
(j) 
Recordation of final plat. The subdivider shall file the plat in the County Clerk's office and obtain the county file number. He shall then enter the number and date of filing on three black or blue lines on white paper prints and deliver them to the office of the Planning Director.
(k) 
Duty of Planning Director after recordation. Upon receipt of the prints and of written notice from the County Clerk's office that the final plat has been filed, the Planning Director will deliver a print to the Superintendent and to the City Building Inspector.
(l) 
Issuance of building permits. Upon receipt of the print, the Building Inspector may issue building permits for lots within the subdivision.

Section 16-8 Preliminary plat; submission, contents.

[Ord. of 10-4-1952, § 5; Ord. of 10-5-1987, § 3]
Subdividers shall present to the Zoning Administrator, who will, within 30 days, determine if said application is in compliance with Chapter 19, Zoning and Land Use Regulations, the following information:
(a) 
Proposed subdivision name, date, North point, scale, name and address of record owner, subdivider and engineer or surveyor. The scale should be at 200 feet to the inch or larger.
(b) 
The names of all owners of record of all adjacent property.
(c) 
Location of existing property lines, streets, easements, buildings, watercourses, marshes and other essential existing features.
(d) 
Location of any existing sewers and water mains, culverts and drains on the property with pipe sizes and grades.
(e) 
Topography. Contour intervals shall not be more than five feet and must be based on United States Geological Survey datum. The nearest bench mark must be secured from the Department of Public Works. In certain cases, topographical information may be required on adjacent property.
(f) 
All proposed streets, lots, easements and public areas with approximate dimensions.
(g) 
The approximate location of all proposed water lines and sanitary sewer lines, together with plans for connecting to existing mains.
(h) 
Preliminary plans for storm water drainage, including the approximate location of storm sewer lines, catch basins and manholes.

Section 16-8.1 Subdivision proposals in areas of special flood hazards. [1]

[Ord. of 12-19-1983, § 1]
(a) 
All subdivision proposals shall be consistent with the need to minimize flood damage;
(b) 
All subdivision proposals shall have public utilities and facilities such as sewer, gas, electrical and water systems located and constructed to minimize flood damage;
(c) 
All subdivision proposals shall have adequate drainage provided to reduce exposure to flood damage; and
(d) 
Base flood elevation data shall be provided for subdivision proposals and other proposed development which contain at least 50 lots or five acres (whichever is less).
[1]
Editor's Note: An ordinance adopted 12-19-1983, Section 1, provided for the addition to Ch. 16 of provisions relative to subdivision proposals in areas of special flood hazards. Such provisions have been codified herein as Section 16-8.1.

Section 16-9 Final plat; submission, contents.

[Ord. of 10-4-1952, § 6; Ord. of 10-5-1987, § 4]
(a) 
The final plat shall conform substantially to the preliminary plat as approved but, if desired by the subdivider, it may constitute only that portion of the approved preliminary plat which he proposes to record and develop at the same time. The final plat and other exhibits required for approval must be submitted to the Zoning Administrator who will, within 30 days after filing, determine if said plat is in compliance with Chapter 19, Zoning and Land Use Regulations. Once a determination of compliance is made, the Zoning Administrator shall forward said application to the Planning Director by the first Tuesday of the month to assure scheduling on the Planning Board's agenda for that month.
(b) 
The final plat shall be clearly drawn in ink upon tracing cloth at a scale of 100 feet to the inch or larger. The size of the sheets shall not be larger than 34 inches by 46 inches. With the original tracing there shall be submitted three print copies.
(c) 
Information. The final plat shall contain the following information:
(1) 
Subdivision name, date, scale and North point.
(2) 
Certification of title showing the ownership.
(3) 
Names of owners of adjacent land.
(4) 
Certification by a licensed engineer or surveyor certifying to the accuracy of the survey and plat.
(5) 
Primary control points, approved by the Superintendent, or descriptions and ties to such control points to which all dimensions, angles, bearing and similar data on the plat shall be referred.
(6) 
Tract boundary lines, right-of-way lines of streets, easements and other rights-of-way and property lines of residential lots and other sites with accurate dimensions, bearings or deflection angles and radii, arcs, tangents and central angles of all curves.
(7) 
The location of all monuments.
(8) 
Street names, block and lot numbers.
(9) 
Designation of any areas to be dedicated or reserved for public use and of any streets which are not to be dedicated.
(d) 
Exhibits. The following items shall accompany the final plat:
(1) 
A statement by the owner dedicating streets, rights-of-way, easements and any sites for public use.
(2) 
Cross sections and profiles of streets showing existing and proposed grades approved by the Superintendent. The profiles must be based on a datum plane approved by the Superintendent. The cross sections shall show pavements, and, where required, they shall show gutters, curbs and sidewalks.
(3) 
Information as required by the Superintendent for the planning of water lines, sanitary sewer lines, storm sewer lines and other drainage facilities.
(4) 
If sewer lines or water lines are not to be installed, a certificate must be obtained from the Board of Health as to the adequacy of plans for private systems.
(5) 
An affidavit of publication of the notice of the public hearing.
(6) 
If street trees are to be planted by the subdivider, planting plans showing the types and spacing of trees must be submitted.

Section 16-10 General requirements and design standards.

[Ord. of 6-18-1973; Ord. of 10-4-1952, § 4; Ord. of 6-17-1991, § 1]
(a) 
Streets.
(1) 
Generally. The arrangement, character, extent, width, grade and location of all streets shall conform to the general plans of the Planning Board and shall be considered in their relation to existing and planned streets, to topographical conditions, to public convenience and safety and in their appropriate relation to the proposed uses of the land to be served by such streets.
(2) 
Arrangement. Where such is not shown in the general plans of the Planning Board, the arrangement of streets in a subdivision shall either:
a. 
Provide for the continuation or appropriate projection of existing principal streets in surrounding areas; or
b. 
Conform to a plan for the neighborhood approved or adopted by the Planning Board to meet a particular situation where topographical or other conditions make continuance or conformance to existing streets impracticable.
(3) 
Minor streets. Minor streets shall be so laid out that their use for through traffic will be discouraged.
(4) 
Arterial streets. Where a subdivision abuts or contains an existing or proposed arterial street, the Planning Board may require marginal access streets, reverse frontage with screen planting contained in a nonaccess reservation along the rear property line, deep lots with rear service alleys or such other treatment as may be necessary for adequate protection of residential properties and to afford separation of through and local traffic.
(5) 
Railroad rights-of-way. Where a subdivision borders on or contains a railroad right-of-way, the Planning Board may require a street approximately parallel to and on each side of such right-of-way at a distance suitable for the appropriate use of the intervening land, as for park purposes in residential districts or for commercial or industrial purposes in appropriate regard for the requirements of approach grades and future grade separation.
(6) 
Reserve strips. Reserve strips controlling access to streets shall be prohibited, except where their control is definitely placed in the city under conditions approved by the Planning Board.
(7) 
Street jogs. Street jogs with center-line offsets of less than 125 feet shall not be permitted, except with the approval of the Planning Board.
(8) 
Tangent for reverse curves. A tangent at least 100 feet long shall be introduced between reverse curves on arterial and collector streets.
(9) 
Curve functions. When connecting street lines deflect from each other at any one point by more than 5°, they shall be connected by a curve.
a. 
The following curve functions shall be used in all street layouts. Curve functions apply to the center lines of streets. The limitations below shall be for the run of the street and do not apply to street intersections.
Central Angle
Tangent
(feet)
01' — 15°00'
100
15°01 — 30°00'
150
30°01' — 40°00'
200
b. 
Every curve shall show the following functions: central angle, tangent distance, degree of curve and long chord.
(10) 
Angle of intersection. Streets shall be laid out so as to intersect as nearly as possible at right angles, and no street shall intersect any other street at less than 60°.
(11) 
Radii at intersections. Property lines at street intersections shall be rounded with a radius of 25 feet or of a greater radius where the Planning Board may deem it necessary. The Planning Board may permit comparable cutoffs or chords in place of rounded corners. Curb radii at intersections shall not be less than 25 feet.
(12) 
Right-of-way widths. Street right-of-way widths shall be as shown in the general plans of the Planning Board and where not shown therein shall be not less than as follows:
Street Type
Right-of-Way Width
(feet)
Collector
60
Minor, for row houses and apartments
60
Minor for other residences
50
Minor for commercial one-way streets in the Central Business District
73
(13) 
Half-streets. Half-streets shall be prohibited, except where essential to the reasonable development of the subdivision, in conformity with the other requirements of these regulations and where the Planning Board finds it will be practicable to require the dedication of the other half when the adjoining property is subdivided. Wherever a half-street is adjacent to a tract to be subdivided, the other half of the street shall be platted within such tract.
(14) 
Dead-end streets. Dead-end streets, designed to be so permanently, shall not be longer than 400 feet and shall be provided at the closed end with a turnaround having an outside roadway diameter of at least 80 feet and a street property line diameter of at least 100 feet.
(15) 
Street names. All streets shall be named by the Common Council upon acceptance of the street by the city. Temporary designations of streets to be used prior to acceptance shall be submitted to the Planning Board for approval.
(16) 
Street grades. Street grades, wherever feasible, shall not exceed the following, with due allowance for vertical curves of a minimum length, equivalent to 15 times the algebraic difference in the rate of grade:
Street Type
Percent Grade
Collector
6
Minor
8
(17) 
Minimum grade. No street grade shall be less than 1%.
(b) 
Alleys.
(1) 
Location. Alleys shall be provided in commercial and industrial districts, except that the Planning Board may waive this requirement where other definite and assured provisions are made for service access, such as off-street loading, unloading and parking consistent with and adequate for the uses proposed; except when justified by unusual conditions, alleys will not be approved in residential districts.
(2) 
Width. The width of any alley shall be at least 20 feet.
(3) 
Corners. Alley intersections and sharp changes in alignment shall be avoided, but where necessary, corners shall be cut off sufficiently to permit safe vehicular movement.
(4) 
Dead-end alleys. Dead-end alleys shall be avoided where possible, but if unavoidable, shall be provided with adequate turnaround facilities at the dead end, as determined by the Planning Board.
(c) 
Easements.
(1) 
Required. Easements across lots or centered on rear or side lot lines shall be provided for utilities where necessary and shall be at least 12 feet wide.
(2) 
Stormwater easements. Where a subdivision is traversed by a watercourse, drainageway, channel or stream, there shall be provided a stormwater easement or drainage right-of-way conforming substantially with the lines of such watercourse and further width or construction, or both, as will be adequate for the purpose. On parallel streets, parkways may be required in connection therewith.
(d) 
Blocks.
(1) 
Generally. The lengths, widths and shapes of blocks shall be determined with due regard to:
a. 
Provisions of adequate building sites suitable to the special needs of the type of use contemplated.
b. 
Zoning requirements as to the lot size and dimensions.
c. 
Needs for convenient access, circulation, control and safety of street traffic.
d. 
Limitations and opportunities of topography.
(e) 
Lots.
(1) 
Generally. The size, width, depth, shape and orientation of the lot and minimum building setback lines shall be appropriate for the location of the subdivision and for the type of development and use contemplated.
(2) 
Dimensions. Lot dimensions shall conform to the requirements of Chapter 19, Zoning and Land Use Regulations, and:
a. 
Residential lots where not served by a public sewer shall be not less than the size required by the Board of Health.
b. 
The area shall be sufficient to provide adequate parking space as required by the Chapter 19, Zoning and Land Use Regulations.
c. 
Approval of the plat by the Planning Board shall not be taken as approval of any lot which may later prove to be nonconforming with Chapter 19, Zoning and Land Use Regulations.
(3) 
Corner lots. Corner lots for residential use shall have extra width to permit appropriate building setback from and orientation to both streets.
(f) 
General grading.
(1) 
No final slope on property shall exceed a ratio of one to three unless it is sodded and/or supported by a retaining wall of adequate design.

Section 16-11 Improvements.

[Ord. of 10-4-1952, § 7; Ord. of 10-5-1987, § 4; Ord. of 6-17-1991, § I]
(a) 
Required improvements. In accordance with Section 33 of the General City Law, the Planning Board shall require the following improvements in new subdivisions. The Board may waive the provision of any of these improvements as in its judgment of the special circumstances of a particular plat or plats are not requisite in the interests of public health, safety and welfare.
(1) 
Monuments. Monuments of a type approved by the Superintendent shall be placed on street lines at all block corners, angle points, points of tangency and points of curvature.
(2) 
Utilities.
a. 
Sanitary sewer lines and water lines shall be installed in accordance with the plans and specifications approved by the Superintendent. Connections and service lines for each lot shown on the plat shall be installed from the mains in the street to the curblines.
b. 
Wherever it is necessary to extend a sanitary sewer line, a storm sewer line or a water line in order to connect with the system of the property to be subdivided, such extensions shall be installed by the subdivider, or, alternately, the Planning Board shall have written notice of the City Administrator that such extension will be installed by the city.
c. 
If a connection to the city's sanitary sewerage system or water system is believed impractical by the Planning Board, then the Board must have written notice from the Board of Health that adequate arrangements have been made for the installation of private systems.
d. 
The installation of all utilities, including gas lines, if such are to be provided, and other subsurface work, must be completed before streets are paved.
(3) 
Drainage.
a. 
A storm sewer system and other drainage improvements shall be installed in accordance with the plans and specifications approved by the Superintendent.
b. 
Wherever proper drainage of the property requires changes in grades, other than in streets, such grading shall be done in accordance with the plans approved by the Superintendent.
c. 
Wherever a final ground slope is to exceed a ratio of one to three, it shall be sodded and/or supported by a retaining wall of adequate design.
(4) 
Streets.
a. 
Grading. Streets must be graded to their full width and must conform to the standards and sections of a city street as approved by the Superintendent.
b. 
Paving. All traveled portions of roadways must be paved with six inches of gravel thoroughly compacted by an eight-by-ten-ton roller and the surface treated as required by the Superintendent.
Street Type
Width
(feet)
Collector
36
Minor, for row houses and apartments
36 (inclusive of parking)
Minor for other residences
30 (inclusive of of parking)
Minor, for commercial one-way streets in the central business district district
20 (exclusive of parking)
Dead-end
30
(5) 
Curbs. Curbs shall be installed in conformity with the standards and specifications approved by the Superintendent.
(6) 
Sidewalks. Sidewalks shall be located and installed in accordance with standards and specifications approved by the Superintendent.
(7) 
Streetlighting standards and street trees. A coordinated plan for streetlighting standards and street trees must be submitted to the Superintendent and receive his approval as to type, location and spacing.
(8) 
Fire alarm cables, ducts and fire signal boxes. Fire alarm cables and necessary ducts and fire signal boxes shall be installed in accordance with plans approved by the Fire Chief.
(9) 
Recreation. The Planning Board may require that a subdivider allot a park or parks suitable in location and of reasonable size for playground or other recreational purposes or, at the Board's option, pay the city a fee in lieu of such allotment.
(b) 
Inspection. The subdivider will be charged with the cost of inspecting the improvements during their installation.

Section 16-12 Exceptions to subdivision regulations.

[Ord. of 10-4-1952, § 8]
(a) 
Hardships. Where the Planning Board finds that extraordinary hardships may result from strict compliance with these land subdivision regulations, it may change the regulations so that substantial justice may be done and the public interest secured, provided that such exceptions will not have the effect of nullifying the intent and purpose of these regulations or general plans for the city.
(b) 
Zone changes. In accordance with Section 37 of the General City Law, the Planning Board may, simultaneously with the approval of a plat, make a reasonable change of the zoning regulations of the land so platted. The owner of the land shown on the plat must submit with the plat a proposed building plan indicating where group houses for residences or apartment houses or local stores and shops are proposed to be built.
(c) 
Conditions. In granting exceptions and zone changes, the Planning Board may require such conditions as will, in its judgment, secure substantially the objectives of the standards or requirements so varied or changed.