Township of Leet, PA
Allegheny County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents

§ 27-601 Special Exceptions.

[Ord. 168, 7/10/1978, § 601]
1. 
The following additional requirements must be met for the granting of a special exception:
A. 
The special exception must be found to be beneficial to the public at the proposed location.
B. 
The special exception is more suitable at the proposed location than on other properties in the same district because of the size, shape, topography, surroundings and physical condition of the proposed location.
C. 
The special exception shall not involve any element or cause any element or condition that may be dangerous, injurious or noxious to any other property or persons, and shall comply with the performance standard of § 27-701.
D. 
The special exception shall be sited, oriented and landscaped to produce a harmonious relationship of buildings and grounds to adjacent buildings and properties.
E. 
The special exception must be approved by the Zoning Hearing Board, hereinafter referred to as "Board," after public hearing as in the case of variances and exceptions.
F. 
The special exception must also meet all special regulations or conditions, if same are set forth, for a particular special exception.
G. 
Traffic. In a residential district, for approval of a special exception, the use must abut a public street, except where the applicant agrees to pave and widen existing roads as required by the Planning Commission. In Commercial and Manufacturing Districts, all uses shall abut public streets.
H. 
The special exception shall organize vehicular access and parking to minimize traffic congestion in the neighborhood.
I. 
The Board may make such other and additional conditions and safeguards as they deem necessary to protect the best interests of the surrounding property or neighborhood.

§ 27-602 Motels.

[Ord. 168, 7/10/1978, § 602; as amended by Ord. 260, 3/11/1996, § 27-602]
1. 
Motels shall be permitted as a special exception in A and B Residential Districts providing:
A. 
No building or part of building shall exceed two stories. Motels shall include a restaurant, providing for dining facilities to patrons seated at tables, and adequate to serve at least the overnight guests of the motel.
B. 
No more than 40% of the ground area of the lot on which the motel is erected shall be occupied by buildings, and the lot shall be completely landscaped and planted with ornamental trees and shrubs.
C. 
No building shall be set nearer than 50 feet to the front, side and rear lot lines.
D. 
There shall be not less than 1,500 square feet of lot area for each sleeping unit. The minimum lot area for a motel shall be one acre.
E. 
At least one off-street parking space of not less than 200 square feet shall be provided on the same lot for each sleeping unit. Access driveways shall be not less than 20 feet wide. All driveways and parking areas shall be paved.
F. 
At least one-half of the sleeping units shall contain a bedroom with bath, having a floor area of not less than 300 square feet and the remaining sleeping units shall contain a bedroom and bath of not less than 240 square feet.
G. 
If the lot upon which a motel is erected abuts a residential district, the motel shall be screened by well-maintained landscaping not less than six feet nor more than 10 feet high or an ornamental fence within the same height limitations, the ratio of the solid portion to the open portion shall not exceed three to one.
H. 
A plot plan and front and side elevations, drawn to scale of the entire property upon which the motel is to be erected showing the exact location of all buildings, structures, exterior materials, driveways, parking spaces, outdoor lighting, landscaping, signs, and walls or fences shall be submitted to the Board and must be approved by same.

§ 27-603 Gasoline Stations and Automobile Dealerships.

[Ord. 168, 7/10/1978, § 603]
1. 
Gasoline stations and automobile dealerships shall be permitted as special exceptions in the A and B Residential Districts providing:
A. 
In the case of a gasoline station or garage, there shall be no major repair service on premises.
B. 
All driveways and parking areas shall be paved.
C. 
There shall be no parking of motor vehicles, trucks, tractors or trailers except for purpose of being serviced and for minor repairs and deliveries, limited to a period of eight hours, unless garaged.
D. 
Location, entrances, exits and design of buildings and structures are approved by the Board, and exits are approved by PennDOT if on a state highway.
E. 
No permit shall be issued for the erection or structural alteration of any such building, or for the conversion of any premises for such purposes, unless it is within the proper use district and the plans for such building have been approved by the Zoning Hearing Board. The Board shall not approve plans for such uses that in its judgment will produce excessive noise or endanger public safety or that are located within 200 feet of the nearest point of the adjacent properties.
F. 
No such building, pumps or equipment shall be located within 15 feet of any street line or within 25 feet of an adjacent property line. The Zoning Hearing Board, in passing upon the request of approval, may consider the type of operation employed and may require changes in relation to yards, location of pumps and buildings and construction of buildings as it may deem best suited to insure safety, to minimize traffic difficulties and to safeguard adjacent properties.

§ 27-604 Mobile Home Parks, Planned Residential, Commercial and Industrial Protects.

[Ord. 168, 7/10/1978, § 604]
1. 
The regulations set forth in this section are adapted to encourage original and imaginative design patterns in the remaining reservoirs of open space within the Township and preserve the sense of space which is so inviting in the Township at the present time. The use of planned projects should be given favorable consideration in cases where a rigid pattern of development would create substantial difficulties in the installation and servicing of utilities or roads and destroy these natural site amenities. The flexibility afforded by provisions should produce pleasant results and permit the Township to acquire open land in a manner heretofore not possible. For example, flexibility would provide a mechanism for encouraging dedication of land for parks and permitting the preservation of contiguous steep slope areas.
A. 
The Township Board of Commissioners may permit mobile home parks, planned residential, commercial and industrial, projects, hereinafter referred to as "projects," as conditional uses or special exceptions if the project meets the following requirements:
(1) 
The area of land to be developed is not less than five acres.
(2) 
Must meet the performance standards under Part 7.
(3) 
The average density of the project is not greater than the density requirements in the district in which the plan is located.
(4) 
The use of the land does not differ substantially from the uses permitted in the district, except that limited commercial facilities intended to serve only the project area and fully integrated into the design of the project may be considered.
(5) 
The complete plan for the project is submitted for review of the Township Board of Commissioners. Final approval of the plan shall be obtained from the Township Board of Commissioners before recording the plan with the Recorder's Office of Allegheny County. The Township Board of Commissioners shall also determine if the proposed project is consistent with the Township's master plan and the best interest and welfare of the Township.
B. 
If the interest of promoting better land use than might be possible with conventional controls, the Planning Commission in its review of an application of a project shall consider the following standards:
(1) 
The protection of surrounding properties, persons and neighborhood values. Particular care should be taken to respect existing and future development on neighborhood property. No project shall be approved which shall have a detrimental effect on neighboring properties.
(2) 
The provisions for future public education, recreation, transportation, water supply, sewage disposal, surface drainage, flood control and soil conservation.
(3) 
The preservation of existing site amenities such as trees, ground cover, topsoil, streams, rock outcroppings and scenic or historic sites from ruin caused by indiscriminate grading for street and site improvements.
(4) 
Preservation of permanent natural areas suitable for use as recreational or scenic open space either by the owners in a particular subdivision or the public and Township at large.
C. 
The maximum number of dwellings permitted in a project and/or planned residential development shall not exceed the total allowable units for the density of the project area and the zoning district.
D. 
In order to promote the health and general welfare of the Township and to preserve and make available open space, the Township Planning Commission may grant a developer the right to transfer density by varying lot areas and lot widths, subject to final approval obtained from the Township Board of Commissioners.

§ 27-605 Public Hearings.

[Ord. 168, 7/10/1978, § 605; as amended by Ord. 260, 3/11/1996, § 27-605]
1. 
Within 60 days after the filing of an application for tentative approval of a planned residential development pursuant to this chapter, a public hearing pursuant to public notice on said application shall be held by the Board of Commissioners.
2. 
Public notice shall be given and written notice shall be given to the applicant, the Zoning Officer and to any person who has made timely request for the same. Written notices shall be given at such time and in such manner as shall be prescribed by rules of the Board of Commissioners. In addition to the written notice provided herein, written notice of said hearing shall be conspicuously posted on the affected tract of land at least one week prior to the hearing.
3. 
The parties to the hearing shall be the Township, any person affected by the application who has made timely appearance of record before the Board of Commissioners, and any other person including civic or community organizations permitted to appear by the Board of Commissioners. The Board of Commissioners shall have power to require that all persons who wish to be considered parties enter appearances in writing on forms provided by the Board of Commissioners for that purpose.
4. 
The chairman, or acting chairman in the absence of the chairman, of the Board of Commissioners shall have power to administer oaths and issue subpoenas to compel the attendance of witnesses and the production of relevant documents and papers, including witnesses and documents requested by the parties.
5. 
The parties shall have the right to be represented by counsel and shall be afforded the opportunity to respond and present evidence and argument and cross-examine adverse witnesses on all relevant issues.
6. 
Formal rules of evidence shall not apply, but irrelevant, immaterial, or unduly repetitious evidence may be excluded.
7. 
The Board of Commissioners shall keep a stenographic record of the proceedings. The appearance fee for a stenographer shall be shared equally by the applicant and the Board of Commissioners. The cost of the original transcript shall be paid by the Board of Commissioners if the transcript is ordered by the Board of Commissioners or shall be paid by the person appealing from the decision of the Board of Commissioners if such appeal is made, and in either event the cost of additional copies shall be paid by the person requesting such copy or copies. In other cases the party requesting the original transcript shall bear the cost thereof.
8. 
The Board of Commissioners shall not communicate, directly or indirectly, with any party or his representatives in connection with any issue involved except upon notice for all parties to participate, shall not take notice of any communication, reports, staff memoranda, or other materials, except advice from their solicitor, unless the parties are afforded an opportunity to contest the material so noticed and shall not inspect the site or its surroundings after the commencement of hearings with any party or his representative unless all parties are given an opportunity to be present.
9. 
The Board of Commissioners may continue the hearing from time to time, and may refer the matter back to the Planning Commission for a report; provided, however, that in any event, the public hearing or hearings shall be concluded within 60 days after the date of the first public hearing.

§ 27-606 The Findings.

[Ord. 168, 7/10/1978; as added by Ord. 260, 3/11/1996, § 27-606]
1. 
The Board of Commissioners within 60 days following the conclusion of the public hearing shall, by official written communication to the landowner, either:
A. 
Grant tentative approval of the development plan as submitted.
B. 
Grant tentative approval subject to specified conditions not included in the development plan as submitted.
C. 
Deny tentative approval to the development plan.
2. 
Failure to so act with said sixty-day period shall be deemed to be a grant of tentative approval of the development plan as submitted. In the event, however, that tentative approval is granted subject to conditions, the landowner may, within 30 days after receiving a copy of the official written communication of the Board of Commissioners notify such Board of Commissioners of his refusal to accept all said conditions, in which case, the Board of Commissioners shall be deemed to have denied tentative approval of the development plan. In the event the landowner does not, within said period, notify the Board of Commissioners of his refusal to accept all said conditions, tentative approval of the development plan, with all said conditions, shall stand as granted.
3. 
The grant or denial of tentative approval by official written communication shall include not only conclusions but also findings of fact related to the specific proposal and shall set forth the reasons for the grant, with or without conditions, or for the denial, and said communication shall set forth with particularity in what respects the development plan would or would not be in the public interest, including, but not limited to, findings of fact and conclusions on the following:
A. 
In those respects in which the development plan is or is not consistent with the comprehensive plan for the development of the Township.
B. 
The extent to which the development plan departs from zoning and subdivision regulations otherwise applicable to the subject property, including but not limited to density, bulk and use, and the reasons why such departures are or are not deemed to be in the public interest.
C. 
The purpose, location and amount of the common open space in the planned residential development, the reliability of the proposals for maintenance and conservation of the common open space, and the adequacy or inadequacy of the amount and purpose of the common open space as related to the proposed density and type of residential development.
D. 
The physical design of the development plan and the manner in which said design does or does not make adequate provision for public services, provide adequate control over vehicular traffic, and further the amenities of light and air, recreation and visual enjoyment.
E. 
The relationship, beneficial or adverse, of the proposed planned residential development to the neighborhood in which it is proposed to be established.
F. 
In the case of a development plan which proposes development over a period of years, the sufficiency of the terms and conditions intended to protect the interests of the public and of the residents of the planned residential development in the integrity of the development plan.
4. 
In the event a development plan is granted tentative approval, with or without conditions, the Board of Commissioners may set forth in the official written communication the time within which an application for final approval of the development plan shall be filed or, in the case of development plan which provides for development over a period of years, the periods of time within which applications for final approval of each part thereof shall be filed. Except upon the consent of the landowner, the time so established between grant of tentative approval and an application for final approval shall not be less than three months and, in the case of development over a period of years, the time between applications for final approval of each part of a plan shall be not less than 12 months.

§ 27-607 Status of Plan After Tentative Approval.

[Ord. 168, 7/10/1978; as added by Ord. 260, 3/11/1996, § 27-607]
1. 
The official written communication shall be certified by the Township Secretary and shall be filed in his office, and a certified copy shall be mailed to the landowner. Where tentative approval has been granted, it shall be deemed an amendment to the zoning map, effective upon final approval, and shall be noted on the zoning map.
2. 
Tentative approval of a development plan shall not qualify a plat of the planned residential development for recording nor authorize development or the issuance of any building permits. A development plan which has been given tentative approval as submitted, to which has been given tentative approval with conditions which have been accepted by the landowner (and provided that the landowner has not defaulted nor violated any of the conditions of the tentative approval), shall not be modified or revoked nor otherwise impaired by the action of the Township pending an application or applications for final approval, without the consent of the landowner, provided an application or applications for final approval is filed or, in the case of development over a period of years, provided applications are filed, within the periods of time specified in the official written communication granting tentative approval.
3. 
In the event that a development plan is given tentative approval and thereafter, but prior to final approval, the landowner shall elect to abandon said development plan and shall so notify the Board of Commissioners in writing, or in the event the landowner shall fail to file application or applications for final approval within the required period of time or times, as the case may be, the tentative approval shall be deemed to be revoked and all that portion of the area included in the development plan for which final approval has not been given shall be subject to those ordinances otherwise applicable thereto as they may be amended from time to time, and the same shall be noted on the zoning map and in the records of the Township Secretary.

§ 27-608 Application for Final Approval.

[Ord. 168, 7/10/1978, § 607; as amended by Ord. 260, 3/11/1996, § 27-608]
1. 
An application for final approval may be for all the land included in a project or, to the extent set forth in the tentative approval, for a section thereof. Said application shall be made to the Zoning Officer of the Township within the times specified by the official written communication granting tentative approval. The application shall include any drawings, specifications, covenants, easements, performance bonds and such other requirements as may be specified by this chapter or any other ordinance of the Township, as well as any conditions set forth in the official written communications by the Township Board of Commissioners at the time of tentative approval. A public hearing on application for final approval of the project, or part thereof, shall not be required provided the project, or part thereof, submitted for final approval is in compliance with the project theretofore given tentative approval and with any specified conditions attached thereto.
2. 
In the event the application for final approval has been filed, together with all drawings, specifications and other documents in support thereof, and as required by this chapter and the official written communication of tentative approval, the Township Board of Commissioners shall, within 30 days of such filing, grant such project final approval.
3. 
In the event the project as submitted contains variations from the project given tentative approval, the Township Board of Commissioners may refuse to grant final approval and shall, within 30 days from the filing of the application for final approval, so advise the landowner in writing of said refusal, setting forth in said notice the reasons why one or more of said variations are not in the public interest. In the event of such refusal, the landowner may either:
A. 
Refile his application for final approval without the variations objected.
B. 
File a written request with the Township Board of Commissioners that it hold a public hearing on his application for final approval. If the landowner wishes to take either such alternate action, he may do so at any time within which he shall be entitled to apply for final approval, or within 30 days additional if the time for applying for final approval shall have already passed at the time when the landowner was advised that the project was not in substantial compliance. In the event that the landowner shall fail to take either of these alternate actions within said time, he shall be deemed to have abandoned the project. Any such public hearing shall be held pursuant to public notice within 30 days after request for the hearing is made by the landowner, and the hearing shall be conducted in the manner prescribed in this chapter for public hearings on applications for tentative approval. Within 30 days after the conclusion of the hearing, the Township Board of Commissioners shall by official written communication either grant final approval to the project or deny final approval. The grant or denial of final approval of the project shall, in cases arising under this section, be in the form and contain the findings required for an application for tentative approval set forth in this chapter.
4. 
A development plan, or any part thereof, which has been given final approval shall be so certified without delay by the Township Board of Commissioners and shall be filed of record forthwith in the office of the recorder of deeds before any development shall take place in accordance therewith. Upon the filing of record of the development plan the zoning and subdivision regulations otherwise applicable to the land included in such plan shall cease to apply thereto. Pending completion, in accordance with the time provisions stated in § 508 of the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code (hereinafter "MPC"), 53 P.S. § 10508, of said planned residential development or of that part thereof, as the case may be, that has been finally approved, no modification of the provisions of said development plan, or part thereof, as finally approved, shall be made except with the consent of the landowner. Upon approval of a final plat, the developer shall record the plat in accordance with the provisions of § 513(a) of the MPC, 53 P.S. § 10513(a), and post financial security in accordance with § 509 of the MPC, 53 P.S. § 10509, and in accordance with the Township's subdivision regulations.
5. 
In the event that a development plan, or a section thereof, is given final approval and thereafter the landowner shall abandon such plan or the section thereof that has been finally approved, and shall so notify the Board of Commissioners in writing; or, in the event the landowner shall fail to commence and carry out the planned residential development in accordance with the time provisions stated in § 508 of the MPC, 53 P.S. § 10508, after final approval has been granted, no development or further development shall take place on the property included in the development plan until after the said property is reclassified by enactment of an amendment to this chapter in the manner prescribed for such amendments in Article VI of the MPC, 53 P.S. § 10601 et seq., and this chapter.