The purposes of this article are to adequately provide for the parking needs of all uses in the Township, to reduce traffic congestion on public streets by getting parking off streets and to allow faster emergency access. The secondary purposes include minimizing development problems with neighboring uses, providing for special parking needs of handicapped drivers and providing flexibility in meeting the Township's parking problems and needs by methods such as shared parking arrangements.
Basic requirements. Off-street parking shall be provided in accordance with the requirements in § 600-139 below.
Existing structures and uses. No building or use of land lawfully in existence prior to the effective date of this chapter shall be subject to the following requirements so long as the kind or extent of use is not changed so as to require additional parking.
Provision and retention of facilities. All required parking facilities shall be provided and maintained so long as the use exists which the facilities were designed to serve. Off-street parking facilities shall not be reduced in total extent except when such reduction is in conformity with this article.
Spaces for off-street parking shall be provided as required below:
Where a use is not specifically listed in this chapter, the Zoning Officer shall apply the standards of the most similar use listed to determine the number of parking spaces required.
If the computation of the parking ratios listed in § 600-139 of this chapter results in a fraction, an additional parking space shall be required.
All parking areas, loading areas and driveways shall be graded and surfaced with asphalt or other suitable materials to prevent dust and erosion. Such areas shall also be drained in conformance with municipal standards to prevent excessive water flow onto streets or adjoining properties.
In parking areas with five or more spaces, each space shall be clearly line-striped and maintained.
Freestanding establishments located adjacent to shopping centers or strip plazas shall have adequate parking as required in § 600-139 and will not rely on any parking in adjacent location to meet the aforementioned requirements.
All parking areas with five or more spaces shall be adequately lighted so as to assist in the safe maneuvering of motor vehicles and to provide security for users of the lot. All lighting shall be arranged to avoid glare on adjacent properties.
No commercial motor vehicle with more than single rear wheels or construction equipment may be stored on a lot in a residential district, unless such vehicle is stored in a private garage.
Parking or storage of disabled, partially dismantled or junk cars, trucks, boats or other vehicles shall be permitted on a lot for a continuous period of not more than seven days.
Parking as a primary use by right is permitted only in the Industrial Commercial District.
The size of a standard parking space shall be nine feet wide and 18 feet long, an area of 162 square feet.
Handicapped parking requirements shall comply with the Pennsylvania Uniform Construction Code (UCC) which contains the handicapped parking standards based on the current International Building Code (IBC) of the International Code Council.
All parking areas for three or more vehicles shall be designed so that vehicles need not back directly into a public street but can enter and leave the parking area in a forward motion.
All parking shall be accessible from a street or driveway.
Every parking lot or area with 10 or more off-street spaces shall be separated from the street or highway by a raised curb, planting strip, wall or other suitable barrier against unchanneled motor vehicle entrance or exit, except for necessary accessways or exits.
Drive-through establishments such as fast order and pickup, automatic bank teller, and similar uses shall provide not less than five waiting spaces for each drive-through lane. This is in addition to the space for the car being serviced.
Two-way driveways shall be a minimum of 22 feet wide and a maximum of 36 feet wide. One-way driveways shall be a minimum of 12 feet wide.
Nothing in this article shall be construed to prevent collective provision of off-street parking facilities for two or more nonresidential buildings or uses, provided that the total of such off street parking facilities provided collectively shall be not less than the sum of requirements for the various uses complied separately.
Two or more nonresidential uses may provide for required parking in a common parking area, provided such area is on or adjacent to such uses. The number of spaces required in such a common parking area may be reduced below the sum of the total requirements if it can be demonstrated to the Zoning Officer that the hours or days of peak parking demand for the uses are so different that a lower overall total of parking spaces will adequately provide for the uses to be served. In such case, sufficient parking shall be provided to meet the minimum needs of the use, which requires the greater parking area.
In addition to the off-street parking spaces required in this article, any building erected, converted and/or enlarged for any nonresidential use shall provide off-street areas for loading and unloading and commercial vehicle parking spaces.
The minimum size loading space shall be 50 feet long and 12 feet wide, with an overhead clearance of 14 feet, exclusive of drives and maneuvering space, and located entirely on the lot being served. Any overhead canopy should extend a minimum of four feet beyond a loading dock.
All loading space shall have adequate access from a street or way which does not block or interfere with the required parking as specified in § 600-139. This required space will be provided in addition to established requirements for patron and employee parking.
In no case shall public rights-of-way be used for loading or unloading of materials. Furthermore, no loading dock or space shall be located or arranged in such a way that it is necessary to back any vehicle into or off any public right-of-way or require the use of any public right-of-way for maneuvering space.
All accessory driveways and entranceways shall be graded, paved and drained to Township standards to the extent necessary to prevent nuisance of dust, erosion or excessive water flow across streets and adjoining properties.
All off-street loading berths shall be provided on either the side or rear of the lot. In no case shall off-street loading berths be provided in the front of the lot.
Such facilities shall be designed and used in such a manner so as to at no time constitute a nuisance, a hazard or an impediment to traffic.
Screening between any parking area and the street line shall be effective at the time of occupancy, subject to the following provisions:
All off-street parking areas, which provide more than five parking spaces, shall be screened from any abutting property in a more restrictive zoning district.
Effective screening may be accomplished through the use of the following: plant materials, fencing or walls and/or mounding through the use of an earthen berm forming a continuous visual buffer.
The area for planting and fencing, walls or earthen berms shall not extend beyond the street line.
When planted visual screens are employed, the following shall apply:
A buffer planting strip shall be provided. It shall be a minimum of 10 feet in width unless-specifically required otherwise in this chapter.
Planted visual screens shall be of sufficient height and density to constitute a continuous visual screen six feet in height at the time of planting except as provided below. The type and spacing of plant materials shall be subject to review and approval by the Township Commissioners.
Whenever fencing or walls are employed, the effective height of the continuous visual buffer shall be not less than five or more than six feet.
Whenever earthen berms are employed, the effective height of the continuous visual buffer shall be not less than five feet.
In the case of a parking lot which is the main use, such lot shall be enclosed, except for entrances and exits, by an ornamental fence or wall or by a compact evergreen ridge not less than four feet high, except when the boundary of such parking lot is an adjoining building.
Landscaping within any parking area which provides 20 or more parking spaces shall be subject to the following provisions:
Off-street parking areas shall be landscaped to reduce wind and air turbulence, heat, noise and the glare of automobile lights; to reduce the level of carbon dioxide; to provide shade; to improve stormwater drainage problems; to replenish the groundwater table; and to provide for a more attractive setting.
The interior of each parking lot shall have at least one three-inch caliper deciduous shade tree for every 10 parking spaces if there are no existing shade trees to satisfy this requirement. Shrubs and other plant materials are encouraged to be used to complement the trees but shall not be the sole contribution to the landscaping. These trees shall be in addition to those required as an effective screen. Trees selected for landscaping in parking areas shall be of a species proven to be salt and dust resistant.
Landscaped areas at least five feet wide shall be provided around the periphery of parking areas. Such areas shall, at a minimum, extend the full length and width of the parking areas, except for necessary accessways, to prevent the encroachment of moving vehicles into parking areas.
Landscaped islands between every 20 parking spaces or at the end of each parking row, whichever is less, shall be provided and shall be the length and width of the parking spaces.
Existing plant material and trees with a caliper of six inches or more shall be preserved wherever possible during construction. Such existing plants may be credited toward the amount of required plantings.