Township of Lower Paxton, PA
Dauphin County
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[Adopted 9-13-1982 by Ord. No. 82-5 (Art. 905 of the 1960 Code)]
It is the intent of this article to provide regulatory and construction standards for the installation of curbing and sidewalks in Lower Paxton Township. The Township's overall goal is to provide a safe, equitable, functional, economical, comfortable and continuous pedestrian access network.
As used in this article, certain terms are defined as follows:
ACCESS DRIVE
A private street providing for vehicular movement between a public or private street and a parking area or service area within the land development.
ATTACHED SIDEWALKS
A sidewalk located against the interior edge of the curb.
CROSSWALK MARKINGS
Paint or other materials applied to the roadway surface to delineate a pedestrian route.
CURB CUT RAMP
A sloped portion of the sidewalk which permits movement from the sidewalk elevation to the street elevation by depressing the curb.
DENSITY
The number of dwelling units per acre based on the gross acreage in the development tract.
DETACHED SIDEWALK
A sidewalk separated from the interior edge of the curb by a mowing strip.
DRIVEWAY APRON
That portion of the driveway extending from the edge of the street paving or interior face of a curb to the street edge of the sidewalk.
GROSS ACREAGE
The total land area of a tract with no exclusions.
MOWING STRIP
The open space between the detached sidewalk and curb.
NET ACREAGE
Acreage remaining in a tract after the reduction of specified rights-of-way, easements or other land areas.
SIDEWALK WIDTH
The dimension of the sidewalk structure measured perpendicular to the edge of the sidewalk and excluding adjacent curbs.
SITE DISTANCE
The length of road visible to a driver of a vehicle or pedestrian at any given point in the road when viewing is unobstructed by vehicular traffic.
VERTICAL CURB
A curb designed so that the face adjacent to the street is at approximately 90° to the street surface.
A. 
These requirements control facilities intended for or used by the general public. Facilities intended and used for private on-lot movement, such as sidewalks providing access to individual structures, service walks and similar types of walks on private property with limited pedestrian traffic, are excluded.
B. 
Sidewalks shall be provided in accordance with Table A[1] which establishes the minimum standards for each Township zoning district. For residential streets, curbs shall be required in accordance with Chapter 203, Zoning, including instances where sidewalks are not required. Curbs shall be required in all instances for streets in nonresidential areas, including instances where sidewalks are not required. Additionally, sidewalks and/or curbs may be required as determined by the Board of Supervisors in the following circumstances:
[Amended 9-28-1989 by Ord. No. 89-12; 6-20-1994 by Ord. No. 94-17]
(1) 
To continue existing sidewalk and/or curb systems to the terminus of a service area or block.
(2) 
To provide access to vehicular parking compounds.
(3) 
Where unusual or particular conditions prevail with respect to prospective traffic and/or safety of pedestrians.
(4) 
Change of any residential building to any other use.
[1]
Editor's Note: Table A is included as an attachment to this chapter.
C. 
Curb cut ramps shall be provided on each corner of all intersections where sidewalks are constructed, reconstructed or altered, except as follows:
[Amended 6-20-1994 by Ord. No. 94-17]
(1) 
When safe operation of a wheelchair cannot be ensured due to hazards peculiar to the particular intersection; or
(2) 
When the sidewalk slope entering the intersection is in excess of 8% grade.
D. 
In situations where sidewalks are required on only one side of a street, the following prioritized considerations shall apply: in all instances the safety and continuity of the pedestrian access system should always be of foremost concern.
(1) 
The sidewalk shall be located on the side of the street generating the greatest pedestrian volume.
(2) 
If pedestrian volumes are equal, the side requiring the least grading and resulting in the lowest grades shall be used.
(3) 
In a cut-fill situation, locate the sidewalk on the side primarily in cut.
(4) 
Select the side requiring the fewest crosswalks.
(5) 
Select the side with the fewest anticipated obstacles.
(6) 
Select the side with permitted parking.
(7) 
Select the side best lit by night lighting.
(8) 
Select the side with parks or open spaces.
(9) 
Select the side with southern sun exposure.
(10) 
Select the side upwind from vehicle exhaust fumes.
Sidewalks, curbs and curb cut ramps required by § 176-9 shall be designed in accordance with the following standards:
A. 
Sidewalks.
(1) 
Sidewalks shall be located along the existing street frontage of the tract, along the side of proposed public and private streets within a project and adjacent to vehicular parking compounds. These sidewalk locations may be varied if, in the judgment of the Township, an alternate system meets the projected need for pedestrian circulation.
(2) 
All sidewalks shall be detached sidewalks; however, the Township may permit attached sidewalks under the following conditions upon request by the landowner:
(a) 
When existing natural or man-made conditions cause physical constraints, such as insufficient distance between an existing stream or structure and an existing roadway, which shall not accommodate detached sidewalks; or
(b) 
When the construction shall complete an existing attached sidewalk and the length of sidewalk to be completed is less than 100 feet.
(3) 
Sidewalks adjacent to public streets shall be located within the street right-of-way, beginning on the right-of-way line with the width extending toward the street.
(4) 
Sidewalks adjacent to private streets, access drives and parking compounds need not be located at any prescribed setback.
(5) 
Pedestrian easements provided in lieu of sidewalks along public or private streets or to give access to community facilities shall have a minimum width of 10 feet and a minimum walkway width of four feet. These walkways shall be improved to the standards required by the Township.
B. 
Curbs.
(1) 
All new curbs shall be the vertical type. (See Figure A.)
(2) 
Curbs which continue, replace or become an integral part of an existing curb system may be a type resembling the existing curbing when the total length of new curbing is less than 100 feet. Curb lengths in excess of 100 feet shall require vertical curbs.
C. 
Curb cut ramps.
(1) 
The preferred location of the ramps shall be the point of curvature of the curb intersection radius. (See Figure B.)
(2) 
For the safety of the blind, the location of curb cut ramps shall be uniform within a general area.
Construction of sidewalks, curbs and curb cut ramps as required in § 176-9 shall conform to the following specifications. Any reference to the "Department" in Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) Form 408 shall be understood to mean Lower Paxton Township.
A. 
Sidewalks.
(1) 
Sidewalks shall have a minimum width of four feet unless otherwise indicated in Table A.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Table A is included as an attachment to this chapter.
(2) 
Cross slope on sidewalks shall be as follows unless otherwise directed to meet special requirements:
(a) 
Walks abutting building structures shall slope away from the building at a 1/4 inch per foot slope.
(b) 
All other walks and adjacent mowing strips shall be constructed to discharge drainage with a 1/4 inch per foot cross slope. Mowing strips shall always drain toward the street.
(3) 
Sidewalks adjacent to public streets may be constructed of any appropriate paving material approved by the Township. Concrete used in sidewalk work shall be as specified in PennDOT Form 408 for cement concrete sidewalks.
(4) 
All sidewalks shall be laid to the line and grade shown on the approved construction plans and shall be constructed in accordance with PennDOT Form 408 for cement concrete sidewalks, except that pre molded expansion joints shall be 1/4 of an inch in thickness.
(5) 
All concrete sidewalks shall have a minimum thickness of four inches, except at driveways, where the sidewalks shall have a minimum thickness of six inches and shall contain one layer of 6 x 6 W 2.9 x W 2.9 welded wire fabric. (See Figure C2.)
(6) 
In residential areas, sidewalks not adjacent to public streets may be constructed of bituminous surfacing on a stone base. (See Figure C3.) Bituminous walks shall be laid to the line and grade shown on the approved construction plans and shall be constructed in accordance with PennDOT Form 408 for ID-2 bituminous wearing course and subbase.
B. 
Curbs.
(1) 
All curbs shall be of stone, granite or concrete construction. All materials used in construction of curbs shall be as specified in PennDOT Form 408 for plain cement concrete curb, granite curb or stone curb.
(2) 
All concrete curbs shall be treated with an anti-spalling compound, resistant to deicing chemicals.
(3) 
Vertical curbs shall be 18 inches deep, seven inches wide at the top and eight inches wide at the base. The distance from the top of the curb to the flow line of the gutter shall be eight inches. (See Figure A.)
(4) 
Curbs shall be constructed in accordance with PennDOT Form 408 for the applicable type curb, except as noted.
(5) 
To provide for driveways, depressions in the curb may be constructed and finished during the time of construction. The curb shall be depressed to 11/2 inches above the street surface for driveways. (See Figure D.)
(6) 
If changes must be made to driveway locations, the existing curb depression shall be completely removed and replaced with the standard vertical curb. Any damage to the street paving resulting from the removal of the existing driveway depression shall be repaired to the satisfaction of the Township.
(7) 
At all intersections with curbs, the curbs shall be constructed with a smooth, continuous radius, with expansion joints provided at the beginning and end of all radii.
C. 
Curb cut ramps.
(1) 
Curb cut ramps shall be constructed of concrete as specified in Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) Form 408 for cement concrete sidewalks.
(2) 
Curb cut ramps shall have a minimum width of two feet six inches and a maximum grade of 17%. (See Figure E1.)
(3) 
A one-half-inch curb face with a tolerance of 1/8 inch in the ramp width portion of the curb cut shall be provided. (See Figure E2.)
(4) 
The concrete shall be a minimum of four inches thick on a four-inch subbase as required for sidewalks. (See Figure C1.) The surface texture of the ramp should be rougher than the texture used on the surrounding sidewalk and be obtained by a course brooming, transverse to the slope of the ramp.
(5) 
A one-fourth-inch expansion joint shall be required where the ramp joins any rigid pavement or structure. The top of the joint filler shall be flush with the adjacent concrete.
(6) 
Care should be taken to assure a uniform grade on the ramp, free of sags and abrupt grade changes.
(7) 
The pedestrian crosswalk lines at intersections with curb cut ramps shall be as shown in Figure B.
A. 
Plans for construction, reconstruction or alteration of any sidewalks, curbs or curb cut ramps required by this article, except those included as part of an approved subdivision or land development plan, shall be filed with the Codes Enforcement Office during normal business hours and at no other time.
B. 
Plans submitted for approval shall consist of four clear blue- or black-line prints, all of which shall be filed with the Township.
C. 
The plans shall include the following:
(1) 
The name and address of the property owner or developer and the contractor responsible for construction.
(2) 
A map providing sufficient detail to show the location of the work within the Township.
(3) 
A plan providing sufficient detail to show the dimensional location of the work with regard to existing improvements, property lines and rights-of-way.
(4) 
A profile showing the elevation of proposed sidewalks and curbs in relationship to the existing street elevations. Elevations shall be shown at twenty-five-foot stations.
(5) 
Cross sections and details as necessary to indicate that the proposed facility complies with the design standards and construction specifications of this article.
D. 
The Township shall act on all submissions within 10 calendar days from the date of submission of complete plans.
E. 
The contractor shall notify the Township for final inspection of elevation stakes prior to installing construction materials.
F. 
Any monuments or property corners which would be covered or disturbed by the construction shall be reset by a licensed surveyor at the contractor's expense.
G. 
The contractor shall clean and remove from the project and adjacent property all surplus and discarded materials, equipment and temporary structures within 48 hours after completion of the work.
H. 
Suitable barricades shall be placed around the work area in such a manner as to protect both pedestrian and vehicular traffic. Such barricades shall be properly lighted during the night hours.
I. 
When construction covers only curbs, it shall be the duty of the contractor to restore all damaged sidewalks, lawn areas, landscaping, curb cut ramps and street paving. The foundation of the facility shall be thoroughly compacted before the facility is replaced.
J. 
It shall be the responsibility of the developer to relocate all existing utilities which shall be affected by or which shall affect the installation of sidewalks and also to obtain necessary permits.
A. 
It is the obligation of the adjacent property owner to maintain sidewalks, curbs and mowing strips and eliminate any conditions which, in the opinion of the Township, may be a hazard to the public. The following conditions shall be considered sufficient cause for requiring repair or replacement of sidewalks or curbs:
(1) 
Movement out of vertical alignment in excess of 11/4 inches resulting in an abrupt change in height of the walking surface which causes a tripping hazard or permits the accumulation of stormwater.
(2) 
The surface is broken up, pitted or disintegrating, causing a safety hazard.
(3) 
Movement out of horizontal alignment creating a safety hazard or drainage problem.
B. 
The Township shall determine the extent of repairs necessary to eliminate hazards. When the repair work includes the removal of sidewalk, the removal or cutback shall only be done with a saw, and the sidewalk replacement shall follow a neat, straight line in joining old work.
C. 
Where the existing condition to be repaired includes a drainage depression in the sidewalk surface, every attempt shall be made to replace the depression with a drain pipe under the sidewalk.
[Added 6-20-1994 by Ord. No. 94-17]
A. 
The requirement for sidewalks and curbs may be modified by the Board of Supervisors. Modifications of these requirements shall not nullify the intent and purpose of this article, and the Board of Supervisors shall not grant modifications unless the request complies with each of the six conditions listed below:
(1) 
Where sidewalks and curbs are deemed inconsistent with the intent of this article.
(2) 
Where unique physical circumstances or conditions exist providing no possibility that sidewalks or curbs can be installed.
(3) 
Where the need for a modification has not been created by the actions of the applicant.
(4) 
Where the modification, if granted, will not alter the essential character of the transportation network or land development activities existing in the vicinity of the request.
(5) 
Where the modification, if granted, will not impair either pedestrian movement or roadway drainage.
(6) 
Where the modification, if granted, will represent the minimum deviation from the requirements of this article that will afford relief to the applicant.
B. 
Applications for any modification of these requirements shall be submitted in writing. The applicant shall state fully the grounds and facts of unreasonableness or hardship on which the request is based, the provision or provisions of this Code involved and the minimum modification necessary.
C. 
The applicant shall submit a plan and detail providing for the alternative design should the request for modification be granted.
D. 
The request for modifications shall be reviewed by the Township Planning Staff, Township Engineer and the Township Planning Commission. Advisory comments from these reviews shall be provided to the Board of Supervisors for consideration. In granting a modification, the Board may attach such reasonable conditions and safeguards as it deems necessary.
E. 
The Board of Supervisors may consider requests for modifications in conjunction with the associated subdivision or land development plans when applicable.
F. 
The Township shall keep a written record of all action on all requests for modifications.
Any person, firm or corporation who or which violates or permits a violation of this article, upon being found liable therefor in a civil enforcement proceeding, shall pay a fine of not more than $600, plus all court costs, including reasonable attorney's fees, incurred by the Township in the enforcement of this article. No judgment shall be imposed until the date of the determination of the violation by the District Justice and/or Court. If the defendant neither pays nor timely appeals the judgment, the Township may enforce the judgment pursuant to the applicable rules of civil procedure. Each day a violation exists shall constitute a separate offense. Further, the appropriate officers or agents of the Township are hereby authorized to seek equitable relief, including injunction, to enforce compliance herewith.