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Township of Millcreek, PA
Erie County
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[Adopted 2-21-1983 by Ord. No. 83-2]
This Part 2 shall be known and may be cited as "Millcreek Township Airport Zoning Ordinance."
As used in this Part 2, unless the context otherwise requires:
AIRPORT
Erie International Airport, owned by the City of Erie and operated by Erie Municipal Airport Authority.
AIRPORT ELEVATION
Seven hundred thirty-two feet above mean sea level.
APPROACH SURFACE
A surface longitudinally centered on the extended runway center line, extending outward and upward from the end of the primary surface and at the same slope as the approach zone height limitation slope set forth in § 70-15 of this Part 2. In plan, the perimeter of the approach surface coincides with the perimeter of the approach zone.
APPROACH, TRANSITIONAL, HORIZONTAL, AND CONICAL ZONES
These zones are set forth in § 70-14 of this Part 2.
CONICAL SURFACE
A surface extending outward and upward from the periphery of the horizontal surface at a slope of 20 to one for a horizontal distance of 4,000 feet.
HAZARD TO AIR NAVIGATION
An obstruction determined to have a substantial adverse effect on the safe and efficient utilization of the navigable airspace and can also mean any structure, or tree, or use of land, which obstructs the airspace required for the flight of aircraft in landing or taking off at an airport, or as otherwise hazardous to such landing or taking off of aircraft.
HEIGHT
For the purpose of determining the height limits in all zones set forth in this Part 2 and shown on the Zoning Map, the datum shall be mean sea level elevation unless otherwise specified.
HORIZONTAL SURFACE
A horizontal plane 150 feet above the established airport elevation, the perimeter of which in plan coincides with the perimeter of the horizontal zone.
LARGER-THAN-UTILITY RUNWAY
A runway that is constructed for and intended to be used by propeller-driven aircraft of greater than 12,500 pounds maximum gross weight and jet-powered aircraft.
MILLCREEK TOWNSHIP ZONING HEARING BOARD
A board consisting of three members appointed by the Millcreek Township Supervisors.
NONCONFORMING USE
Any preexisting structure, object of natural growth, or use of land which is inconsistent with the provisions of this Part 2 or an amendment thereto.
NONPRECISION INSTRUMENT RUNWAY
A runway having an existing instrument approach procedure utilizing air navigation facilities with only horizontal guidance, or area type navigation equipment, for which a straight-in nonprecision instrument approach procedure has been approved or planned.
OBSTRUCTION
Any structure, tree, growth, or other object, including a mobile object, or use of land which creates a hazard to air navigation which exceeds a limiting height set forth in § 70-15 of this Part 2.
PERSON
An individual, firm, partnership, corporation, company, association, joint stock association or government entity; includes a trustee, a receiver, an assignee, or a similar representative of any of them.
PRECISION INSTRUMENT RUNWAY
A runway having an existing instrument approach procedure utilizing an instrument landing system (ILS) or a precision approach radar (PAR). It also means a runway for which a precision approach system is planned and is so indicated on an approved airport layout plan or any other planning document.
PRIMARY SURFACE
A surface longitudinally centered on a runway. When the runway has a specially prepared hard surface, the primary surface extends 200 feet beyond each end of that runway; for military runways or when the runway has no specially prepared hard surface, or planned hard surface, the primary surface is set forth in § 70-14 of this Part 2. The elevation of any point on the primary surface is the same as the elevation of the nearest point on the runway center line.
RUNWAY
A defined area on an airport prepared for landing and takeoff of aircraft along its length.
STRUCTURE
An object, including a mobile object, constructed or installed by man, including but without limitation, buildings, towers, cranes, smokestacks, earth formation, and overhead transmission lines.
TRANSITIONAL SURFACES
These surfaces extend outward at ninety-degree angles to the runway center line and the runway center line extended at a slope of seven feet horizontally for each foot vertically from the sides of the primary and approach surfaces to where they intersect the horizontal and conical surfaces. Transitional surfaces for those portions of the precision approach surfaces, which project through and beyond the limits of the conical surface, extend a distance of 5,000 feet measured horizontally from the edge of the approach surface and at ninety-degree angles to the extended runway center line.
TREE
Any object of natural growth.
UTILITY RUNWAY
A runway that is constructed for and intended to be used by propeller-driven aircraft of 12,500 pounds maximum gross weight and less.
VISUAL RUNWAY
A runway intended solely for the operation of aircraft using visual approach procedures.
In order to carry out the provisions of this Part 2, there are hereby created and established certain zones which include all of the land lying beneath the approach surfaces, transitional surfaces, horizontal surfaces, and conical surfaces as they apply to Erie International Airport. Such zones are shown on Millcreek Township Airport Zoning Map consisting of two sheets, prepared by the Millcreek Township Engineering Department, dated February 14, 1983, which is attached to this Part 2 and made a part thereof. An area located in more than one of the following zones is considered to be only in the zone with the more restrictive height limitation. The various zones are hereby established and defined as follows:
A. 
Utility runway visual approach zone. The inner edge of this approach zone coincides with the width of the primary surface and is 250 feet wide. The approach zone expands outward uniformly to a width of 1,250 feet at a horizontal distance of 5,000 feet from the primary surface. Its center line is the continuation of the center line of the runway.
B. 
Utility runway nonprecision instrument approach zone. The inner edge of this approach zone coincides with the width of the primary surface and is 500 feet wide. The approach zone expands outward uniformly to a width of 2,000 feet at a horizontal distance 5,000 feet from the primary surface. Its center line is the continuation of the center line of the runway.
C. 
Runway larger than utility visual approach zone. The inner edge of this approach zone coincides with the width of the primary surface and is 500 feet wide. The approach zone expands outward uniformly to a width of 1,500 feet at a horizontal distance of 5,000 feet from the primary surface. Its center line is the continuation of the center line of the runway.
D. 
Runway larger than utility with a visibility minimum greater than 3/4 mile nonprecision instrument approach zone. The inner edge of this approach zone coincides with the width of the primary surface and is 500 feet wide. The approach zone expands outward uniformly to a width of 3,500 feet at a horizontal distance of 10,000 feet from the primary surface. Its center line is the continuation of the center line of the runway.
E. 
Runway larger than utility with a visibility minimum as low as 3/4 mile nonprecision instrument approach zone. The inner edge of this approach zone coincides with the width of the primary surface and is 1,000 feet wide. The approach zone expands outward uniformly to a width of 4,000 feet at a horizontal distance of 10,000 feet from the primary surface. Its center line is the continuation of the center line of the runway.
F. 
Precision instrument runway approach zone. The inner edge of this approach zone coincides with the width of the primary surface and is 1,000 feet wide. The approach zone expands outward uniformly to a width of 16,000 feet at a horizontal distance of 50,000 feet from the primary surface. Its center line is the continuation of the center line of the runway.
G. 
Transitional zones. The transitional zones are the areas beneath the transitional surfaces.
H. 
Horizontal zone. The horizontal zone is established by swinging arcs of 5,000 feet radii for all runways designated utility or visual and 10,000 feet for all others from the center of each end of the primary surface of each runway and connecting the adjacent arcs by drawing lines tangent to those arcs. The horizontal zone does not include the approach and transitional zones.
I. 
Conical zone. The conical zone is established as the area that commences at the periphery of the horizontal zone and extends outward therefrom a horizontal distance of 4,000 feet.
Except as otherwise provided in this Part 2, no structure shall be erected, altered, or maintained, and no tree shall be allowed to grow in any zone created by this Part 2 to a height in excess of the applicable height herein established for such zone. Such applicable height limitations are hereby established for each of the zones in question as follows:
A. 
Utility runway visual approach zone. Slopes 20 feet outward for each foot upward beginning at the end of and at the same elevation as the primary surface and extending to a horizontal distance of 5,000 feet along the extended runway center line.
B. 
Utility runway nonprecision instrument approach zone. Slopes 20 feet outward for each foot upward beginning at the end of and at the same elevation as the primary surface and extending to a horizontal distance of 5,000 feet along the extended runway center line.
C. 
Runway larger than utility visual approach zone. Slopes 20 feet outward for each foot upward beginning at the end of and at the same elevation as the primary surface and extending to a horizontal distance of 5,000 feet along the extended runway center line.
D. 
Runway larger than utility with a visibility minimum greater than 3/4 mile nonprecision instrument approach zone. Slopes 34 feet outward for each foot upward beginning at the end of and at the same elevation as the primary surface and extending to a horizontal distance of 10,000 feet along the extended runway center line.
E. 
Runway larger than utility with a visibility minimum as low as 3/4 mile nonprecision instrument approach zone. Slopes 34 feet outward for each foot upward beginning at the end of and at the same elevation as the primary surface and extending to a horizontal distance of 10,000 feet along the extended runway center line.
F. 
Precision instrument runway approach zone. Slopes 50 feet outward for each foot upward beginning at the end of and at the same elevation as the primary surface and extending to a horizontal distance of 10,000 feet along the extended runway center line; thence slopes upward 40 feet horizontally for each foot vertically to an additional horizontal distance of 40,000 feet along the extended runway center line.
G. 
Transitional zones. Slope seven feet outward for each foot upward beginning at the sides of and at the same elevation as the primary surface and the approach surface, and extending to a height of 150 feet above the airport elevation which is 732 feet above mean sea level. In addition to the foregoing, there are established height limits sloping seven feet outward for each foot upward beginning at the sides of and the same elevation as the approach surface, and extending to where they intersect the conical surface. Where the precision instrument runway approach zone projects beyond the conical zone, there are established height limits sloping seven feet outward for each foot upward beginning at the sides of and the same elevation as the approach surface, and extending a horizontal distance of 5,000 feet measured at ninety-degree angles to the extended runway center line.
H. 
Horizontal zone. Established at 150 feet above the airport elevation or at a height of 882 feet above mean sea level.
I. 
Conical zone. Slopes 20 feet outward for each foot upward beginning at the periphery of the horizontal zone and at 150 feet above the airport elevation and extending to a height of 350 feet above the airport elevation.
J. 
Excepted height limitations. Nothing in this Part 2 shall be construed as prohibiting the construction or maintenance of any structure, or growth of any tree to a height up to 35 feet above the surface of the land.
Notwithstanding any other provisions of this Part 2, no use may be made of land or water within any zone established by this Part 2 in such a manner as to create electrical interference with navigational signals or radio communication between the airport and aircraft, make it difficult for pilots to distinguish between airport lights and others, result in a glare in the eyes of pilots using the airport, impair visibility in the vicinity of the airport, create bird strike hazards, or otherwise in any way endanger or interfere with the landing, takeoff, or maneuvering of aircraft intending to use the airport.
A. 
Regulations not retroactive. The regulations prescribed in this Part 2 shall not be construed to require the removal, lowering, or other change or alteration of any structure or tree not conforming to the regulations as of the effective date of this Part 2, or otherwise interfere with the continuance of a nonconforming use. Nothing contained herein shall require any change in the construction, alteration, or intended use of any structure, the construction or alteration of which was begun prior to the effective date of this Part 2, and is diligently prosecuted.
B. 
Marking and lighting. Notwithstanding the preceding provision of this section, the owner of any existing nonconforming structure or tree is hereby required to permit the installation, operation, and maintenance thereon of such markers and lights as shall be deemed necessary by the Erie Municipal Airport Authority or its successor to indicate to the operators of aircraft in the vicinity of the airport the presence of such airport obstruction. Such markers and lights shall be installed, operated, and maintained at the expense of the Erie Municipal Airport Authority or its successor.
A. 
Future uses.
(1) 
Except as specifically provided in Subsection A(1)(a), (b) and (c) hereunder, no material change shall be made in the use of land, no structure shall be erected or otherwise established, and no tree shall be planted in any zone hereby created unless a permit therefor shall have been applied for and granted. Each application for a permit shall indicate the purpose for which the permit is desired, with sufficient particularity to permit it to be determined whether the resulting use, structure, or tree would conform to the regulations herein prescribed. If such determination is in the affirmative, the permit shall be granted. No permit for a use inconsistent with the provisions of this Part 2 shall be granted unless a variance has been approved in accordance with § 70-18D.
(a) 
In the area lying within the limits of the horizontal zone and conical zone, no permit shall be required for any tree or structure less than 35 feet of vertical height above the ground, except when, because of terrain, land contour, or topographic features, such tree or structure would extend above the height limits prescribed for such zones.
(b) 
In areas lying within the limits of the approach zones but at a horizontal distance of not less than 4,200 feet from each end of the runway, no permit shall be required for any tree or structure less than 35 feet of vertical height above the ground, except when such tree or structure would extend above the height limit prescribed for such approach zones.
(c) 
In the areas lying within the limits of the transition zones beyond the perimeter of the horizontal zone, no permit shall be required for any tree or structure less than 35 feet of vertical height above the ground, except when such tree or structure, because of terrain, land contour, or topographic features, would extend above the height limit prescribed for such transition zones.
(2) 
Nothing contained in any of the foregoing exceptions shall be construed as permitting or intending to permit any construction, or alteration of any structure, or growth of any tree in excess of any of the height limits established by this Part 2 except as set forth in § 70-15J.
B. 
Existing uses. No permit shall be granted that would allow the establishment or creation of an obstruction or permit a nonconforming use, structure, or tree to become a greater hazard to air navigation than it was on the effective date of this Part 2 or any amendments thereto or than it is when the application for a permit is made. Except as indicated, all applications for such a permit shall be granted.
C. 
Nonconforming uses abandoned or destroyed. Whenever the Millcreek Township Code Enforcement Officer determines that a nonconforming tree or structure has been abandoned or more than 80% torn down, physically deteriorated, or decayed, no permit shall be granted that would allow such structure or tree to exceed the applicable height limit or otherwise deviate from the zoning regulations.
D. 
Variances. Any person desiring to erect or increase the height of any structure, or permit the growth of any tree, or use property, not in accordance with the regulations prescribed in this Part 2, may apply to the Zoning Hearing Board for a variance from such regulations. The application for variance shall be accompanied by a determination from the Federal Aviation Administration or its successor as to the effect of the proposal on the operation of air navigation facilities and the safe, efficient use of navigable airspace. Such variances shall be allowed where it is duly found that a literal application or enforcement of the regulations will result in unnecessary hardship and relief granted, will not be contrary to the public interest, will not create a hazard to air navigation, will do substantial justice, and will be in accordance with the spirit of this Part 2. Additionally, no application for variance to the requirements of this Part 2 may be considered by the Millcreek Township Hearing Board unless a copy of the application has been furnished to the Airport Manager for advice as to the aeronautical effects of the variance. If the Airport Manager does not respond to the application within 15 days after receipt, the Zoning Hearing Board may act on its own to grant or deny said application.
E. 
Obstruction marking and lighting. Any permit or variance granted may, if such action is deemed advisable to effectuate the purpose of this Part 2 and be reasonable in the circumstances, be so conditioned as to require the owner of the structure or tree in question to install, operate, and maintain, at the owner's expense, such markings and lights as may be necessary. If deemed proper by the Zoning Hearing Board, this condition may be modified to require the owner to permit the City of Erie, at its own expense, to install, operate, and maintain the necessary markings and lights.
It shall be the duty of the Millcreek Township Code Enforcement Officer to administer and enforce the regulations prescribed herein. Applications for permits and variances shall be made to the Millcreek Township Code Enforcement Officer upon a form published for that purpose. Applications required by this Part 2 to be submitted to the Millcreek Township Code Enforcement Officer shall be promptly considered and granted or denied. Application for action by the Zoning Hearing Board shall be forthwith transmitted by the Code Enforcement Officer. The Code Enforcement Officer shall issue to a person believed to have violated this Part 2 and enforcement notice in a form adopted by the Board of Supervisors. If a person fails to rectify cited violations by the date(s) set forth in the enforcement notice, violations of this Part 2 shall be enforced as civil matters in accordance with the procedure set forth in § 48-10.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
Any person aggrieved, or any taxpayer affected, by any decision of the Township's Code Enforcement Officer, made in the administration of this Part 2, may appeal to the Millcreek Township Zoning Hearing Board in accordance with the provisions of the Municipalities Planning Code.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10101 et seq.
[Amended 8-28-2007 by Ord. No. 2007-6[1]]
A person found to have committed a first violation of this Part 2 shall pay a fine for violation in the sum of $600. In addition, persons found to have violated this Part 2 shall pay all costs of the enforcement, including attorney's fees incurred by the Township in enforcement.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).