Unsafe buildings — See Ch. 59.
Uniform construction codes — See Ch. 71.
Housing standards — See Ch. 113.
Plumbing — See Ch. 137.
Zoning — See Ch. 193.
ARTICLE IAdoption of Plumbing, Electrical and Building Codes (§ 55-1 — § 55-22)
ARTICLE IIFloodplain Districts (§ 55-23 — § 55-47)
§ 55-1Adoption of standards.
It is hereby adopted by the Borough of Baden, for the purpose of prescribing regulations governing conditions hazardous to life and property from plumbing, electrical and building, those certain codes known as the "BOCA National Plumbing, Electrical and Building Codes," in their entirety, being particularly the most current editions available thereof, copies of which have been and are now filed with the Borough Secretary. The same are hereby adopted and incorporated as fully as if set out at length herein, and from the date on which this article shall take affect, the provisions thereof shall be controlling within the geographical limits of the Borough of Baden.
§ 55-25Lowest floor of residential structure.
§ 55-26Lowest floor of nonresidential structures.
§ 55-28Placement of buildings and structures.
§ 55-30Floors, walls and ceilings.
§ 55-31Electrical systems.
§ 55-33Paints and adhesives.
§ 55-35Drainage facilities.
§ 55-36Sanitary sewer facilities.
§ 55-37Water facilities.
§ 55-40Mobile homes and mobile home parks.
§ 55-41Existing structures.
§ 55-43Plan requirements.
§ 55-44Review by County Conservation District.
§ 55-45Additional permit issuance requirements.
§ 55-46Start of construction.
§ 55-47Permit requirement.
The following are special definitions which shall be used in making reasonable interpretations of the provisions contained in this article. As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- Any area of the building having its floor subgrade (below ground
level) on all sides.[Added 5-19-1993 by Ord. No. 808]
- COMPLETELY DRY SPACE
- A space which will remain totally dry during flooding; the structure is designed and constructed to prevent the passage of water and water vapor.
- The construction, reconstruction, renovation, repair, extension, expansion, alteration or relocation of a building or structure, including the placement of mobile homes.
- DESIGNATED FLOODPLAIN DISTRICTS
- Those Floodplain Districts specifically designated in the Borough Zoning Ordinance
- DESIGNATED FLOODWAY DISTRICT OR AREA
- The channel of a river or other watercourse and the adjacent land areas required to carry and discharge a flood of the one-hundred-year magnitude as specifically defined in the Borough Zoning Ordinance.
- Any man-made change to improved or unimproved real estate, including but not limited to buildings or other structures, the placement of mobile homes, streets and other paving, utilities, mining, dredging, filling, grading, excavation or drilling operations and the subdivision of land.
- ESSENTIALLY DRY SPACE
- A space which will remain dry during flooding, except for the passage of some water vapor or minor seepage; the structure is substantially impermeable to the passage of water.
- A temporary inundation of normally dry land areas.[Added 6-19-1985 by Ord. No. 761]
- Any combination of structural and nonstructural additions, changes or adjustments to structures which reduce or eliminate flood damage to real estate or improved real property, water and sanitary facilities, structures and their contents.
- IDENTIFIED FLOODPLAIN DISTRICT
- The floodplain area specifically identified in this article as being
inundated by the one-hundred-year flood; included would be districts identified
as Floodway (FW), Flood Fringe (FF) and General Floodplain (FA).[Added 6-19-1985 by Ord. No. 761]
- LOWEST FLOOR
- The lowest floor of the lowest enclosed area (including basement).
An unfinished or flood-resistant enclosure usable solely for the parking of
vehicles, building access or storage in an area other than a basement area
is not considered a building's lowest floor, provided that such enclosure
is not built so as to render the structure in violation of the applicable
nonelevation design requirements of Section 60.3 of the Federal Emergency
Management Agency National Flood Insurance Program and related regulations.[Added 5-19-1993 by Ord. No. 808]
- MOBILE HOME
- A transportable, single-family dwelling intended for permanent occupancy, office or place of assembly, contained in one or more sections, built on a permanent chassis, which arrives at a site complete and ready for occupancy except for minor and incidental unpacking and assembly operations, and constructed so that it may be used with or without a permanent foundation. The term does not include recreational vehicles or travel trailers.
- MOBILE HOME PARK
- A parcel of land under single ownership which has been planned and improved for the placement of two or more mobile homes for nontransient use.
- Any wall, dam, wharf, embankment, levee, dike, pile, abutment, projection, excavation, channel, rectification, culvert, building, fence, stockpile, refuse, fill, structure or matter in, along, across or projecting into any channel, watercourse or designated floodplain districts which may impede, retard or change the direction of the water either in itself or by catching or collecting debris carried by such water or is placed where the flow of the water might carry the same downstream to the damage of life and property.
- ONE-HUNDRED-YEAR FLOOD
- A flood that, on the average, is unlikely to occur once every 100 years (i.e., that has a one-percent chance of occurring each year, although the flood may occur in any year). This is more precisely defined/delineated in the Borough Zoning Ordinance.
- RECREATIONAL VEHICLE
- A vehicle which is:[Added 5-19-1993 by Ord. No. 808]
Built on a single chassis;
Four hundred square feet or less when measured at the largest horizontal projections;
Designed to be self-propelled or permanently towable by a light-duty truck; and
Designed primarily not for use as a permanent dwelling but as temporary living quarters for recreational, camping, travel or seasonal use.
- REGULATORY FLOOD ELEVATION
- The one-hundred-year flood elevation, plus a freeboard safety factor of 1 1/2 feet.
- SUBSTANTIAL DAMAGE
- Damage of any origin sustained by a structure whereby the cost of
restoring the structure to its before-damaged condition would equal or exceed
50% of the market value of the structure before the damage occurred.[Added 5-19-1993 by Ord. No. 808]
- SUBSTANTIAL IMPROVEMENT
- Any repair, reconstruction or improvement of a structure, the cost
of which equals or exceeds 50% of the market value of the structure either
before the improvement or repair is started or, if the structure has been
damaged and is being restored, before the damage occurred.[Added 6-19-1985 by Ord. No. 761]
In order to prevent excessive damage to buildings and structures due to flooding conditions, the following provisions shall apply to all proposed construction or development occurring in any of the Floodplain Districts designated in the Borough Zoning Ordinance, as amended.
Within any designated Floodway District (FW), Flood Fringe District (FF) or General Floodplain District (FA), the lowest floor, including basement, of any new or improved residential structures shall be at least 1 1/2 feet above the one-hundred-year-flood elevation.
Fully enclosed areas below the lowest floor, including basements, are prohibited.
Within any designated Floodway District (FW), Flood Fringe District (FF) or General Floodplain District (FA), the lowest floor, including basement, shall be at least 1 1/2 feet above the one-hundred-year-flood elevation or shall be designed and constructed so that the space enclosed by such structure shall remain either completely or essentially dry during any flood up to that height.
Any structure, or part thereof, which will not be completely or adequately elevated shall be designed and constructed to be completely or essentially dry in accordance with the standards contained in the publication entitled "Floodproofing Regulations (United States Army Corps of Engineers, June 1972)" or some other equivalent standard for that type of construction.
Fully enclosed areas below the lowest floor, including basements, are prohibited.
If fill is used, it shall:
Extend laterally at least 15 feet beyond the building line from all points.
Consist of soil or small rock materials only. Sanitary landfills shall not be permitted.
Be compacted to provide the necessary permeability and resistance to erosion, scouring or settling.
Be no steeper than one vertical to two horizontal, unless substantiated data justifying steeper slopes is submitted to and approved by the Building Inspector.
Be used to the extent to which it does not adversely affect adjacent properties.
All buildings and structures shall be constructed and placed on the lot so as to offer the minimum obstruction to the flow of water. In so doing, consideration shall be given to their effect upon the flow and height of floodwaters.
All buildings and structures shall be firmly anchored in accordance with accepted engineering practices to prevent flotation, collapse or other movement, thus reducing the threat to life and property and decreasing the possibility of the blockage of bridge openings and other restricted sections of the watercourse.
All air ducts, large pipes and storage tanks located at or below the regulatory flood elevation shall be firmly anchored in accordance with accepted engineering practices to prevent flotation.
Where located at or below the regulatory flood elevation:
Wood flooring shall be installed to accommodate a lateral expansion of the flooring, perpendicular to the flooring grain, without incurring structural damage to the building.
Plywood shall be of any exterior or marine grade and of a water-resistant or waterproof variety.
Walls and ceilings in nonresidential structures shall have sufficient wet strength and shall be so installed as to survive inundation.
Window frames, door frames, door jambs and other components shall be made of metal or other water-resistant material.
All electric water heaters, electric furnaces, electric air-conditioning and ventilating systems and other electrical equipment or apparatus shall be permitted only at elevations above the regulatory flood elevation.
No electrical distribution panels shall be allowed at an elevation less than three feet above the level of the one-hundred-year-flood elevation.
Separate electrical circuits shall serve lower levels and shall be dropped from above.
Water heaters, furnaces and other mechanical equipment or apparatus shall be permitted only at elevations above the regulatory flood elevation.
No part of any on-site sewage disposal system shall be constructed within any designated floodplain districts.
Water supply systems and sanitary sewage systems shall be designed to preclude infiltration of floodwaters into the systems and discharges from the system into floodwaters.
All gas and oil supply systems shall be designed to preclude the infiltration of floodwaters into the systems and discharges from the systems into floodwaters. Additional provisions shall be made for the drainage of these systems in the event that floodwater infiltration occurs.
Where located at or below the regulatory flood elevation:
Adhesives shall have a bonding strength that is unaffected by inundation (i.e., marine or water-resistant quality).
All wooden components (doors, trim, cabinets, etc.) shall be sealed with a marine or water-resistant quality of similar product.
Paints or other finishes shall be capable of surviving inundation (i.e., marine or water-resistant quality).
No materials that are buoyant, flammable, explosive or, in time of flooding, could be injurious to human, animal or plant life shall be stored below the regulatory flood elevation.
Storm drainage facilities shall be designed to convey the flow of surface waters without damage to persons or property. The system shall ensure drainage at all points along streets and provide positive drainage away from buildings. The system shall also be designed to prevent the discharge of excess runoff onto adjacent properties.
All new or replacement sanitary sewer facilities and private package sewage treatment plants, including all pumping stations and collector systems, shall be designed to minimize or eliminate infiltration of floodwaters into the systems and discharges from the systems into the floodwaters. In addition, they should be located and constructed to minimize or eliminate flood damage and impairment.
All new or replacement water facilities shall be designed to minimize or eliminate infiltration of floodwaters into the system and shall be located and constructed to minimize or eliminate flood damages.
The finished elevation of proposed new streets shall be no more than one foot below the regulatory flood elevation. The Borough shall require profiles and elevations of proposed new streets to determine compliance with this requirement.
All utilities, such as gas lines, electrical and telephone systems, being placed in designated floodplain districts should be located, elevated (where possible) and constructed to minimize the chance of impairment during a flooding occurrence.
All mobile homes and any additions thereto shall be anchored to resist flotation, collapse or lateral movement by providing over-the-top and frame ties to ground anchors, in accordance with the American National Standards Institute and National Fire Protection Association Standards as specified in the Standard for the Installation of Mobile Homes including Mobile Home Park Requirements (NFPA No. 501A-1974) (ANSI A119.3-1975), as amended for Mobile Homes in Hurricane Zones, or other appropriate standards such as the following:
Over-the-top ties shall be provided at each of the four corners of the mobile home with two additional ties per side at intermediate locations for units 50 feet or more in length and one additional tie per side for units less than 50 feet in length.
Frame ties shall be provided at each corner of the mobile home, with five additional ties per side at intermediate locations for units 50 feet or more in length and four additional ties per side for units less than 50 feet in length.
All components of the anchoring system shall be capable of carrying a force of 4,800 pounds.
Where permitted within any identified floodplain area, all manufactured homes and additions thereto shall be:
Placed on a permanent foundation.
Elevated so that the lowest floor of the manufactured home is 1 1/2 feet or more above the elevation of the one-hundred-year flood.
Anchored to resist flotation, collapse or lateral movement.
Within any identified floodway area, all manufactured homes and any addition thereto shall be prohibited.
An evacuation plan indicating alternate vehicular access and escape routes shall be filed with the appropriate Borough officials for mobile homes parks and mobile home subdivisions, where appropriate.
No mobile home shall be placed in any designated floodway district or area.
A structure or use of a structure or premises which lawfully existed before the enactment of these provisions but which is not in conformity with these provisions may be continued, subject to the following conditions:
No expansion or enlargement of an existing structure and/or use shall be allowed within any floodway district that would cause any increase in flood heights.
Any modification, alteration, reconstruction or improvement of any kind to an existing structure and/or use to an extent or amount of 50% or more of its market value shall constitute a substantial improvement and shall be undertaken only in full compliance with the provisions of this article.
Any modification, alteration, reconstruction or improvement of any kind to an existing structure and/or use to an extent or amount of less than 50% of its market value shall be elevated and/or floodproofed to the greatest extent possible.
If compliance with the elevation or floodproofing requirements stated above would result in an exceptional hardship for a prospective builder, developer or landowner, the Borough may, upon request, grant relief from the strict application of the requirement.
Requests for variances to the strict application of the provisions of this article may be granted by the Borough in accordance with the following procedures and criteria:
No variances shall be granted for any construction, development, use or activity within any floodway area that would cause any increase in the one-hundred-year elevation.
If granted, a variance shall involve only the least modification necessary to provide relief.
In granting any variance, the Borough may attach whatever reasonable conditions and safeguards it considers necessary in order to protect the public health, safety and welfare and to achieve the objectives of this article.
In reviewing any request for a variance, the Borough shall consider but shall not be limited to the following:
That there is good and sufficient cause.
That failure to grant the variance would result in exceptional hardship to the applicant.
That the granting of the variance will not result in any unacceptable or prohibited increased flood heights, additional threats to public safety, extraordinary public expense, create nuisances, cause fraud on or victimization of the public or conflict with any other applicable local or state ordinances and regulations.
A complete record of all variance requests and related actions shall be maintained by the Borough. In addition, a report of all variances granted during the year shall be included in the annual report to the Federal Insurance Administration.
Notwithstanding any of the above, however, all structures shall be designed and constructed so as to have the capability of resisting the hydrostatic and hydrodynamic loads and pressures and effects of buoyancy of the one-hundred-year flood.
In addition to the permit application requirements normally required under the Borough Building Code, as amended,
A plan which details the existing and proposed contours and elevation, in relation to mean sea level, of the ground and the lowest floor of proposed construction; one-hundred-year flood elevations and other associated factors, such as pressures and impact forces, etc.; storage elevations; size of the structure; location and elevations of streets; water supply; sanitary facilities; soil types and floodproofing measures, including specific reference to the level of the floodproofing in relation to the one-hundred-year flood.
A document certified by a registered professional engineer or architect, which states that the proposed construction has been adequately designed to withstand the flood depths, pressures, velocities, impact and uplift forces and other hydrostatic and hydrodynamic and buoyancy factors associated with the one-hundred-year flood. Such statement shall include a description of the type and extent of floodproofing measures which have been incorporated into the design of the structure.
A copy of all applications and plans for construction or development in any designated floodplain district to be considered for approval shall be submitted by the Borough Building Inspector to the County Conservation District for review and comment prior to the issuance of a building permit. The recommendations of the Conservation District shall be considered by the Borough Building Inspector for possible incorporation into the proposed plan.
Prior to the issuance of any building permit, the Borough Building Inspector shall review the application for permit to determine if all other necessary governmental permits, such as those required by state and federal laws, have been obtained, including those required by Act 537, the Pennsylvania Sewage Facilities Act,
For purposes of implementation of these provisions, construction shall be considered to have started with the first placement of permanent construction on the site, such as the pouring of slabs or footings or any work beyond the stage of excavation. For a structure without a basement or poured footings, the "start of construction" includes the first permanent framing or assembly of the structure or any part thereof on its pilings or foundation or the affixing of any prefabricated structures or mobile home to its permanent site. Permanent construction does not include land preparation, land clearing, grading, filling, excavation for basement, footings, piers or foundations, erection of temporary forms, the installation of piling under proposed subsurface footings or the installation of sewer, gas and water pipes or electric or other service lines from the street.
A building permit shall be required for all construction and development, which includes but is not limited to buildings or other structures, paving, filling, grading, excavation, mining, dredging or drilling operations.