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Township of Muhlenberg, PA
Berks County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
A. 
Article V of this Part 1 of this chapter of the Code provides the design standards and specifications of the improvements for all proposed subdivision plans or land development plans within Muhlenberg Township.
B. 
The provisions established for design standards and specifications, as established under this chapter of the Muhlenberg Township Code, shall be subject to the interpretation of the Muhlenberg Township Board of Commissioners, Planning Commission and/or Engineer. Should a dispute arise concerning the interpretation of these regulations, the person aggrieved by the interpretation may file an appeal with the Board of Commissioners. In all cases, the burden of proof and submission of technical evidence shall be the responsibility of the applicant or person appealing the interpretation of the Muhlenberg Township Board of Commissioners, Planning Commission and/or Engineer.
C. 
The design standards and specifications contained within Article V are intended as the minimum for the promotion of the public health, safety and general welfare and shall be applied as such by the Muhlenberg Township Board of Commissioners, Planning Commission, Engineer and Zoning Officer in reviewing all subdivision and land development plans.
D. 
Whenever other regulations of the Muhlenberg Township Code impose more restrictive standards, specifications and requirements than those contained herein, such other regulations shall prevail.
E. 
Where, in the opinion of the Muhlenberg Township Planning Commission and Engineer, the literal application of these design standards and/or required improvements would, in certain cases, cause undue hardship and/or is clearly unreasonable, the Planning Commission and Engineer may recommend reasonable exceptions. All such exceptions shall be consistent with the community development objectives of this Part 1 of this chapter of the Code and the established goals, objectives and policies of the Muhlenberg Township Comprehensive Plan. The Muhlenberg Township Board of Commissioners shall have the power to grant such exceptions, as recommended by the Planning Commission, upon written request by the applicant.
F. 
The design standards and specifications identified within this Part 1 of this chapter of the Code may be modified by the applicant in the case of plans for complete communities, neighborhood units or other large-scale developments which, in the opinion of the Muhlenberg Township Board of Commissioners and Planning Commission, achieve substantially the objectives of these regulations and which are further protected by such covenants or other legal provisions as will assure conformity to and achievement of the subdivision or land development plan.
G. 
Land subject to hazards of life, health or property, such as may arise from fire, floods, disease or other causes, shall not be subdivided or developed unless such hazards have been eliminated or unless the subdivision or land development plan shall show adequate safeguards against them which shall be approved by the appropriate regulatory agencies.
H. 
Subdivision and land development plans shall give due recognition to the Muhlenberg Township Comprehensive Plan and Zoning Ordinance (Chapter 355 of the Code) or to such parts thereof as may have been adopted pursuant to the Muhlenberg Township Code.
I. 
All proposed improvements that are to be considered as part of the proposed subdivision or land development shall be planned and designed with consideration to nearby developments or neighborhoods.
J. 
All required improvements that are required to support a subdivision or land development shall be installed by the applicant or developer in accordance with the provisions of this Part 1 of this chapter of the Code and the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10101 et seq.
A. 
General standards. The following general design standards shall be applied to the proposed transportation system providing service to a subdivision or land development:
(1) 
The location, arrangement, extent, grade and width of all streets shall conform to the Muhlenberg Township Comprehensive Plan and/or to all other official transportation plans or such parts thereof as may have been adopted by Muhlenberg Township.
(2) 
All proposed subdivisions or land developments applications shall have adequate access to the public street system of Muhlenberg Township.
(3) 
The proposed street system shall extend existing or recorded streets at the same width as the existing or recorded streets, but in no case at less than the required minimum width identified within this part of this chapter of the Code.
(4) 
Where in the opinion of the Muhlenberg Township Planning Commission and Engineer it is desirable to provide for street access to an adjoining property, street stubs shall be extended to the boundary of such property. The street stub shall meet the width requirements for a minor street or cul-de-sac street. The developer of the tract shall properly grade the street stub and provide an eight-inch stone base. The street stub or right-of-way shall be granted as an easement to Muhlenberg Township.
(5) 
If required by the Muhlenberg Township Planning Commission or Engineer, new minor streets shall be designed and located to facilitate through traffic. In addition, the applicant shall give consideration to the extension and continuation of collector streets into and from adjoining properties.
(6) 
Where a proposed subdivision or land development is of sufficient size to warrant an interior circulation system, a clear hierarchy of streets shall be designed and established.
(7) 
Where a subdivision abuts an existing street of improper width, grade or alignment, the Muhlenberg Township Planning Commission and Engineer may require the dedication of land sufficient to widen the existing street or correct the improper grade or alignment.
(8) 
Proposed streets shall be logically adjusted to the topographic conditions of the site so as to produce reasonable grades, proper drainage, sufficient erosion control and suitable building sites.
(9) 
Proposed streets shall be laid out to avoid environmentally sensitive areas such as floodplains, wetlands, sinkholes and steep slopes.
(10) 
Where possible, proposed streets should be oriented in a general east-west direction to provide the opportunity for solar utilization and to maximize slopes or grades facing a southerly direction.
(11) 
Whenever a subdivision or land development encroaches upon the legal right-of-way of a state highway, a highway occupancy permit shall be issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation for the encroachment and related site improvements.
(12) 
Whenever a tract to be subdivided or developed abuts or contains an arterial or a major collector street, the Muhlenberg Township Planning Commission may require restriction of access to the street by one or more of the following methods:
(a) 
Provision of reverse frontage lots;
(b) 
Provision of service streets along the rear of the abutting lots, together with prohibition of private driveways intersecting the arterial or major collector streets;
(c) 
Provision of marginal access streets, provided that the reverse strips establishing such marginal access streets shall be definitely placed within the jurisdiction of Muhlenberg Township under an executed agreement meeting the approval of Muhlenberg Township;
(d) 
Provision of an internal street system on which the proposed lots would have proper frontage and access; or
(e) 
The restriction of ingress and egress involving left-hand turns onto or off of the arterial or major collector street.
(13) 
Private streets (streets not to be offered for dedication) are prohibited unless they meet the design standards of these regulations and are constructed to the specifications of Muhlenberg Township.
(14) 
Dead-end streets are prohibited unless designed and constructed as cul-de-sac streets.
(15) 
New half or partial streets shall be prohibited.
(16) 
Whenever a tract to be subdivided or developed borders on an existing half or partial street, the other part of the street shall be platted within such tract.
(17) 
Service streets (alleys) are prohibited in developments containing single-family dwelling units, except where required to avoid direct access onto an arterial street.
(18) 
Service streets (alleys) may be permitted in developments containing multifamily dwelling units (townhouses and apartments) and nonresidential land uses, provided that the service street is not the primary access point to the development. Where permitted, the service street shall have a minimum paved width of 24 feet.
(19) 
The developer of any residential land development or subdivision involving 15 or more dwelling units shall contact the Muhlenberg School District prior to municipal approval to establish an acceptable safe and convenient location for a school bus stop.
(20) 
A matrix chart summarizing the design standards and specifications for proposed streets servicing a subdivision or land development has been included within Appendix C of this part of this chapter of the Code.[1] The provisions specified within this matrix chart shall be subject to the interpretation of the Muhlenberg Township Planning Commission and Engineer.
[1]
Editor's Note: Appendix C is included as an attachment to this chapter.
B. 
Street widths. Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township, the width or profile view of all proposed streets shall be designed in accordance with the following requirements:
(1) 
Minimum street right-of-way and cartway widths shall conform to the Muhlenberg Township Comprehensive Plan and/or to all other official transportation plans or such parts thereof as may have been adopted by Muhlenberg Township, Berks County, or the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. If not shown on such plans, the required right-of-way and cartway widths shall be as follows:
Street Width Requirements
Functional Street Classification
Right-of-Way Width
(feet)
Cartway Width
(feet)
Minor or local access street
53
33
Cul-de-sac street
53
33
Collector street
60
36
Arterial street
100
12 per travel lane
Marginal access or service street
33
24
(2) 
Additional right-of-way and cartway widths may be required by the Muhlenberg Township Board of Commissioners or Planning Commission for the purpose of promoting the public safety and convenience or to provide on-street parking for certain developments.
(3) 
Where a subdivision or land development abuts or contains an existing street of inadequate right-of-way width and/or cartway width, additional right-of-way width and/or cartway width shall be dedicated and/or constructed to conform with the standards of this part of this chapter of the Code.
(4) 
Where a subdivision or land development abuts or contains an existing street of inadequate horizontal and/or vertical alignment, the Planning Commission may require additional right-of-way width or cartway width in order to improve public safety.
C. 
Center-line road grades. Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township, the center-line road grades shall be designed in accordance with the following requirements:
(1) 
With the exception of approaches at or through any street intersection, the minimum and maximum center-line road grade shall comply with the following design requirements:
Center-Line Road Grade Requirements
Functional Street Classification
Minimum Requirement
Maximum Requirement
Minor or local access street
1%
10%
Cul-de-sac street
1%
10%
Collector street
1%
8%
Arterial street
1
8%
Marginal access or service street
1%
10%
(2) 
All approaches to an intersection shall have a leveling area not exceeding 5% in grade for a distance of 100 feet, as measured from the center line of the intersecting street.
(3) 
A crown or cross-slope shall be maintained with a minimum slope of 2.08% or 1/4 inch per foot, as designed from the center line to the curb or edge of the cartway.
D. 
Horizontal and vertical curves. Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township, all horizontal and vertical street curves shall be designed in accordance with the following requirements:
(1) 
Whenever street lines are deflected in excess of 2°, the connection of such street lines shall be made by horizontal curve.
(2) 
Whenever the algebraic difference of the center-line street grade exceeds 1%, a vertical curve shall be designed to provide sufficient sight distance.
(3) 
All proposed horizontal and vertical street curves shall be designed in accordance with the following minimum requirements:
Horizontal and Vertical Street Curve Requirements
Functional Street Classification
Minimum Center-Line Radii for Horizontal Curves
(feet)
Minimum Sight Distance for Vertical Curves
(feet)
Minor or local access street
150
200
Cul-de-sac street
150
200
Collector street
300
300
Arterial street
500
400
Marginal access or service street
100
150
(4) 
A tangent of no less than 100 feet, as measured along the street center line, shall be provided between all horizontal street curves.
(5) 
To the greatest extent possible, combinations of the minimum horizontal and vertical street curves shall be avoided.
(6) 
Where in the best interest of the health, safety or general welfare of the community, the Muhlenberg Township Planning Commission or Engineer may require greater horizontal or vertical curve lengths in order to overcome obstacles such as, but not limited to, center-line street grades, street alignments, functional speed limits, existing land uses and proposed land development activities.
E. 
Street intersections and curb radii. Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township, all proposed street intersections shall be designed in accordance with the following requirements:
(1) 
The center lines of streets shall intersect at right angles unless existing conditions dictate otherwise. No street shall intersect another street at an angle of less than 70° nor more than 120°.
(2) 
Street intersections should be designed in a manner so the intersecting roads are directly opposite from each other. No more than two streets shall intersect at the same point.
(3) 
The minimum separation distance between street intersections shall be based upon the functional classification of the road to which the proposed street intersection is planned. The following design requirements shall apply to the minimum separation distance between all proposed street intersections and the minimum curb radii at all proposed street intersections.
Street Intersection and Curb Radius Requirements
Functional Street Classification
Minimum Separation Distance between Street Intersections
(feet)
Minimum Tangential Arc for Each Curb Radius
(feet)
Minor or local access street
150
20
Cul-de-sac street
150
20
Collector street
500
30
Arterial street
1,000
40
Marginal access or service street
100
15
(4) 
All proposed street right-of-way lines shall be parallel to (concentric with) curb arcs at intersections.
(5) 
Where in the best interest of the health, safety or general welfare of the community, the Muhlenberg Township Planning Commission or Engineer may require greater isolation distances and curb radii in order to overcome obstacles such as, but not limited to, center-line street grades, street alignments, functional speed limits, existing land uses and proposed land development activities.
F. 
Clear sight triangles. Clear sight triangles shall be provided at all street intersections. Within such triangles, nothing, except permitted street signs, traffic lights or signs, utility poles and mailboxes, which impedes vision between a height of 2 1/2 feet and 10 feet above the center-line grades of the intersecting streets shall be erected, placed, planted or allowed to grow. Such triangles shall be established as follows:
(1) 
For intersections involving a minor street, the dimension of the clear sight triangle shall be established for a distance of 75 feet, as measured from the middle of the intersection or where the center lines of the intersecting streets cross.
(2) 
For intersections involving a collector street, the dimension of the clear sight triangle shall be established for a distance of 100 feet, as measured from the middle of the intersection or where the center lines of the intersecting streets cross.
(3) 
For intersections involving an arterial street, the dimension of the clear sight triangle shall be established for a distance of 150 feet, as measured from the middle of the intersection or where the center lines of the intersecting streets cross.
G. 
Sight distance. All proposed intersections shall have sufficient horizontal and vertical sight distance in order to provide a safe and convenient point of ingress and egress. The following provisions shall apply:
(1) 
Sight distance measurements shall be made in each direction from a point 10 feet from the edge of the cartway and 3.5 feet above the road surface to a point 3.5 feet above the center line of the road.
(2) 
The minimum sight distance requirements shall be based on the functional classification, speed limit and grade of the intersecting street, utilizing the latest standards of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) and the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.
(3) 
A summary chart of the minimum sight distance requirements has been included within Appendix D of this part of this chapter of the Code.[2] Muhlenberg Township and/or the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation may require additional sight distances than those referenced on the summary chart by considering the functional classification of the road, traffic volumes, vehicular speed, pedestrian movements, land use and other relevant site conditions.
[2]
Editor's Note: Appendix D is included as an attachment to this chapter.
H. 
Cul-de-sac streets. The following provisions shall apply to the design of cul-de-sac streets:
(1) 
Cul-de-sac streets may be permitted if the physical development conditions and/or the tract configuration of the site limits the design options for a through street or a loop street.
(2) 
Dead-end streets are prohibited unless designed as cul-de-sac streets or designed for future access to adjoining properties.
(3) 
Any street dead-ended for access to an adjoining property or because of authorized stage development shall be provided with a temporary, all-weather turnaround within the subdivision, and the use of such turnaround shall be guaranteed to the public until such time as the street is extended.
(4) 
Cul-de-sac streets, permanently designed as such, shall not exceed 1,000 feet in length and shall not furnish access to more than 20 dwelling units.
(5) 
Cul-de-sac streets, permanently designed as such, shall have a minimum length of 250 feet measured from the edge of the cartway of an intersecting street to the center of the bulb of the cul-de-sac.
(6) 
Unless future extension is clearly impractical or undesirable, the turnaround right-of-way shall be placed adjacent to the tract boundary with sufficient additional width provided along the boundary line to permit extension of the street at full width.
(7) 
The center-line grade on a cul-de-sac street shall not exceed 10%, and the grade of the diameter of the turnaround shall not exceed 5%.
(8) 
All cul-de-sac streets, whether permanently or temporarily designed as such, shall be provided at the closed end with a fully paved turnaround having a minimum radius of 50 feet. The right-of-way shall have a minimum radius of 60 feet.
(9) 
Drainage of cul-de-sac streets shall preferably be towards the open end. If drainage is toward the closed end, water shall be conducted away in an underground storm sewer or other means acceptable to Muhlenberg Township.
A. 
All proposed streets shall be graded, improved and surfaced to the grades and dimensions on the approved plans, profiles and cross sections.
B. 
All proposed streets shall be constructed and improved in accordance with all applicable standards that are specified under Chapter 303, Streets and Sidewalks, of the Muhlenberg Township Code.
C. 
Additional right-of-way and cartway widths, beyond what is required within this Part 1 of this chapter of the Code, may be required by the Planning Commission in order to control traffic patterns, to lessen traffic congestion, to facilitate the adequate provision for future community or transportation improvements, and/or when clearly in the interest of the public health, safety, or general welfare.
D. 
Where a subdivision or land development abuts or contains an existing street of inadequate horizontal and/or vertical alignment, the Planning Commission may require adjustments in order to improve public safety.
E. 
All storm drainage facilities located within the ultimate right-of-way shall be designed and constructed in accordance with the provisions of the Muhlenberg Township Code.
A. 
All proposed street names shall be subject to the approval of Muhlenberg Township, the Berks County Emergency Management Coordinator and the postmaster having jurisdiction.
B. 
Proposed streets which are obvious extensions of existing streets shall bear the same name as the existing street.
C. 
In no case shall the name of a proposed street duplicate an existing street name in Muhlenberg Township and/or in the same postal district(s), irrespective of the use of the suffix "street," "road," "avenue," "boulevard," "drive," "way," "place," "court" or "lane."
D. 
Upon approval of the proposed subdivision plan or land development plan, Muhlenberg Township shall assign street addresses to all proposed lots or uses.
A. 
All street signs, including but not limited to traffic control signs, street signs, and directional signs, shall be acquired and installed by the applicant. All such street signs shall meet the minimum requirements of Muhlenberg Township and the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation as well as the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
B. 
Where traffic control signs are required, the applicant shall prepare and submit all studies, engineering reports, and documentation for procuring approval by Muhlenberg Township and/or the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.
C. 
Streetlights shall be provided at all street intersections within a proposed subdivision or land development. The Muhlenberg Township Planning Commission may require additional streetlights in order to provide safe and convenient vehicular and/or pedestrian circulation.
D. 
The type, quantity, positioning and illumination of the selected streetlight shall be subject to the approval of the Muhlenberg Township Planning Commission.
E. 
Electrical installations for all streetlights shall be in accord with prevailing regulations and specifications established under Chapter 303, Streets and Sidewalks, of the Code and by the local utility company providing service. It shall be the responsibility of the contractor or his agent to have final construction inspected by an electrical inspection agency, and a written report attesting to this fact shall be submitted to Muhlenberg Township and the local utility company providing service.
A. 
The length, width and shape of blocks shall be determined with due regard to zoning requirements, topographic conditions, environmentally sensitive lands, and requirements for safe and convenient vehicular and pedestrian circulation. Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township, the following provisions shall apply:
(1) 
Blocks shall have a maximum length of 1,600 feet and a minimum length of 500 feet.
(2) 
In the design of blocks longer than 1,000 feet, special consideration shall be given to the requirements of satisfactory fire protection.
(3) 
Residential blocks shall be of sufficient depth to accommodate two tiers of lots, except where reverse frontage lots are required along a major collector or arterial street, or where prevented by physical site conditions.
(4) 
Blocks in nonresidential areas may vary from the design criteria indicated above if the applicant demonstrates that the alternative design is essential to the proposed development. In all cases, however, adequate provisions shall be made for off-street parking, loading areas and traffic circulation.
B. 
The size, shape and orientation of proposed lots shall be appropriate for the type of development and use contemplated. Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township, the following provisions shall apply:
(1) 
Lots shall conform to the applicable minimum lot sizes, lot widths and setback requirements as set forth in Chapter 355, Zoning, of the Code.
(2) 
Side lot lines shall be at right angles to street-line tangents or radial to street-line curves.
(3) 
The depth-to-width ratio of a residential lot shall not be less than one to one or greater than three to one.
(4) 
The depth-to-width ratio of lots designated for nonresidential land development shall be adequate for the land use proposed and sufficient to provide satisfactory space for on-site parking, loading and unloading, setbacks, buffer yards and landscaping.
(5) 
Where feasible, lot lines shall follow municipal boundaries rather than cross them, in order to avoid jurisdictional problems.
(6) 
Where feasible, lots shall be orientated and sited to take advantage of solar energy.
(7) 
Double or reverse frontage lots shall be avoided except as needed to avoid direct vehicular access onto an arterial or major collector street by individual driveways or to overcome physical site conditions. All permitted residential reverse frontage lots shall have frontage onto a minor or minor collector street. The rear-yard setback shall be established 75 feet from the ultimate right-of-way line of the arterial or major collector street. Between the rear-yard setback and the ultimate right-of-way line, a ten-foot-wide planting screen easement shall be established in order to prohibit vehicular access onto the arterial or major collector street. The easement shall contain evergreen plantings meeting the standards of § 355-102 of the Muhlenberg Township Zoning Ordinance.
A. 
Unless otherwise required by Muhlenberg Township, vertical curbs shall be required for all subdivision and land development plans in accordance with the following provisions:
(1) 
Vertical curbs shall be installed along both sides of all proposed streets.
(2) 
Where it is in the interest of controlling drainage or traffic patterns, vertical curbs shall be installed along an existing or exterior street on which a subdivision or land development abuts.
(3) 
Vertical curbs shall be installed within common parking areas for developments containing multifamily uses or nonresidential uses.
(4) 
Vertical curbs shall be constructed and installed by the applicant in accordance with Chapter 303, Streets and Sidewalks, of the Muhlenberg Township Code or as directed by the Muhlenberg Township Engineer.
B. 
Unless otherwise required by Muhlenberg Township, sidewalks shall be required for all subdivision and land development plans in accordance with the following provisions:
(1) 
Sidewalks shall be installed along both sides of the cartway in all proposed residential subdivisions and land developments when the gross residential density is greater than two dwelling units per acre or when zoning district regulations permit the gross residential density to exceed two dwelling units per acre.
(2) 
Sidewalks shall be installed along one side of the cartway in all proposed residential subdivisions and land developments when the gross residential density is greater than one dwelling unit per acre but less than two dwelling units per acre or when zoning district regulations permit the gross residential density to exceed one dwelling unit per acre.
(3) 
At the discretion of the Muhlenberg Township Planning Commission, a concrete or macadam pedestrian pathway shall be installed along one side of the cartway in all proposed residential subdivisions (except where the lot width exceeds 200 feet) and land developments when the gross residential density is less than one dwelling unit per acre or when zoning district regulations do not permit the gross residential density to exceed one dwelling unit per acre. The pedestrian pathway shall be at least four feet in width.
(4) 
Where in the interest of public safety, sidewalks or a pedestrian pathway shall be installed along an existing or exterior street on which a residential subdivision or land development abuts.
(5) 
Where in the interest of public safety, sidewalks or a pedestrian pathway shall be installed along the interior and/or exterior street on which a proposed nonresidential subdivision or land development abuts.
(6) 
Sidewalks shall be constructed and installed by the applicant in accordance with Chapter 303, Streets and Sidewalks, of the Muhlenberg Township Code or as directed by the Muhlenberg Township Engineer.
C. 
Unless otherwise required by Muhlenberg Township, handicapped ramps shall be provided at all street intersection and crosswalks. All such handicapped ramps shall comply with the standards specified by Muhlenberg Township Code as well as the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
D. 
Crosswalks shall be required whenever necessary to facilitate pedestrian circulation and to provide access to community facilities. All such crosswalks shall have a minimum width of 10 feet with a paved walk not less than four feet wide.
A. 
Monuments, as defined under Article II of this Part 1 of this chapter of the Code, shall be accurately placed at the following locations within a development:
(1) 
At all external property corners forming the perimeter of the development;
(2) 
At each proposed street intersection;
(3) 
At the beginning and end of all horizontal street curves;
(4) 
At such places where topographical or other site conditions make it impossible to establish a line of sight between two otherwise required monuments; and
(5) 
At locations deemed necessary by the Muhlenberg Township Engineer.
B. 
Property markers, as defined under Article II of this Part 1 of this chapter of the Code, shall be accurately set at the following locations within a development:
(1) 
At all property corners and at all changes in course direction along a deed line;
(2) 
At all changes in course direction along the legal or ultimate right-of-way of an existing street; and
(3) 
At locations deemed necessary by the Muhlenberg Township Engineer.
C. 
All required monuments and markers shall be accurately set by a professional engineer or land surveyor, who shall be registered within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
A. 
Driveways or access lanes shall be required to permit accessibility between a public or private street to the existing or proposed use on the lot to which it provides service. Unless otherwise specified by this Code, the driveway or access lane shall be designed in accordance with the following provisions:
(1) 
No driveways or access lanes shall be located, designed and constructed so as to create a drainage or sedimentation problem on an adjacent property or street.
(2) 
All driveways or access lanes shall be so constructed and maintained that the materials of which the driveways are made will not wash nor be deposited upon public roads.
(3) 
Driveways serving single-family detached or single-family semidetached uses and/or two-family detached residential uses shall be located at least 50 feet from the nearest curbline of any existing or proposed street intersection. The center-line grade of all such driveways shall not exceed 12% and shall be designed with a leveling area of 5% within the street right-of-way.
(4) 
The following provisions shall apply to dimensional requirements for residential driveways:
(a) 
All proposed residential driveways and off-street parking areas located within the R-1 and R-2 Zoning Districts shall be located at least five feet from the side property line.
(b) 
All proposed residential driveways and off-street parking areas located within the R-3, R-4, R-5 and C-1 Zoning Districts may be permitted along the common property line, whereas no setback is required, provided that all design issues relative to lot coverage, stormwater management, erosion and sedimentation, and sight distance are resolved to the satisfaction of Muhlenberg Township.
(c) 
All preexisting driveways and off-street parking areas located along a common property line may expand up to 25% of the surface area, provided that all design issues relative to lot coverage, stormwater management, erosion and sedimentation, and sight distance are resolved to the satisfaction of Muhlenberg Township.
(d) 
Residential lots located within a development that was approved prior to the enactment of the Muhlenberg Township Zoning Ordinance of 2004 shall comply with the design standards specified on the approved plan.
(5) 
Unless otherwise specified by Muhlenberg Township, all residential driveways shall be constructed and paved to a width of 10 feet, which shall be subject to the review of the Muhlenberg Township Engineer and Zoning Officer.
(6) 
Driveways serving single-family detached residential uses with more than one acre of net land area may design and construct the driveway with a stone base, provided that it is not located within 100 feet from the nearest street or curbline of any existing or proposed street intersection. The center-line grade of all such driveways shall not exceed 8% and shall be designed with leveling areas of 5% within 20 feet of the street line as well as the garage. All such residential driveways shall be located at least 10 feet from the side property line and shall be constructed in a manner that is mud-free, stable, passable and meets the satisfaction of the Muhlenberg Township Engineer and Zoning Officer.
(7) 
The principal driveway or access lane serving multifamily developments containing more than 10 townhouse units or apartment units shall be located at least 150 feet from the nearest curbline of any existing or proposed street intersection. The center-line grade of all such driveways or access lanes shall not exceed 10% and shall be designed with leveling areas of 5% within 50 feet of any street line, common off-street parking area or where other private driveways or access lanes intersect. All such multifamily driveways or access lanes shall be located at least 15 feet from the side or rear property line and shall be paved to a minimum width of 24 feet, which is constructed to the satisfaction of the Muhlenberg Township Engineer and Zoning Officer.
(8) 
The principal driveway or access lane serving nonresidential uses shall be located at least 150 feet from the nearest curbline of any existing or proposed street intersection. The center-line grade of all such driveways or access lanes shall not exceed 10% and shall be designed with leveling areas of 5% within 50 feet of any street line, common off-street parking area or where other private driveways or access lanes intersect. All such nonresidential driveways or access lanes shall be located at least 15 feet from the side or rear property line and shall be paved with a minimum width of 24 feet, which is constructed to the satisfaction of the Muhlenberg Township Engineer and Zoning Officer.
(9) 
All driveways and access lanes shall be located, designed and constructed as to provide optimum sight distance and visibility at the intersection with the existing or proposed street. As part of this requirement, the minimum sight distance and safe stopping distance requirements specified by Muhlenberg Township and/or the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation shall be utilized to determine the optimum location for all driveways and access lanes.
(10) 
Clear sight triangles shall be provided for all driveways and access drives at all street intersections. Within such triangles, nothing, except permitted street signs, traffic control signs, traffic lights, street lights, mail boxes or utility poles, which impedes vision between a height of 2 1/2 feet and 10 feet above the center-line grades of the intersecting streets shall be erected, placed, planted or allowed to grow. The dimension of the clear sight triangle shall be established for a distance of 50 feet, as measured from the middle of the intersection or where the center lines of the driveways or access roads intersect with the intersecting street.
(11) 
Driveways or access lanes entrances shall not intersect the existing or proposed streets to which they intersect at angles of less than 60° or more than 120°. All such entrances shall be paved in accordance with the provisions of the Muhlenberg Township Code.
(12) 
A driveway occupancy permit, issued by Muhlenberg Township, shall be required for all proposed driveways entering onto a road which is currently owned by or to be dedicated to Muhlenberg Township.
(13) 
A highway occupancy permit, issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, shall be required for all proposed driveways entering onto a state road.
B. 
Where required by the Muhlenberg Township Fire Chief, Police Chief, Emergency Management Coordinator or Zoning Officer, a fire lane and/or fire apparatus access road shall be located, designed and constructed in accordance with the following provisions:
(1) 
The fire lane and/or fire apparatus access road shall comply with the requirements specified under Chapter 175, Article I (Fire Lanes), of the Muhlenberg Township Code.
(2) 
Where the provisions of Chapter 175, Article I, are not appropriate to the site conditions, the Muhlenberg Township Fire Chief, Police Chief, Emergency Management Coordinator or Zoning Officer may recommend alternative requirements to meet the requirements for fire lanes.
C. 
Unless otherwise specified by Muhlenberg Township or the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, all subdivision and land development activity located along the frontage of collector streets and arterial streets shall comply with the following highway frontage and access management requirements:
(1) 
All areas for off-street parking, off-street loading and unloading, and the storage or movement of motor vehicles shall be physically separated from the public street or highway by a raised curb, planting strip or other suitable barrier against unchanneled motor vehicle entrance or exit, except for the necessary accessways or access roads which supply ingress and egress from such parking, loading or storage area.
(2) 
Each use with less than 100 feet of frontage along a public street shall have not more than one point of ingress and egress to each such street. No use with 100 feet or more frontage along a public street shall have more than two points of ingress and egress to any one street for each 300 feet of frontage. Where feasible, movement into and out of parking areas shall avoid direct access to or from an arterial street or major collector.
(3) 
Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township or the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, where there is more than one driveway to an off-street parking facility, the driveways shall be limited to one-way travel either as a point of ingress or a point of egress to the off-street parking facility. The width of such entrances and exits, as measured at the right-of-way line, shall conform to the following schedule:
(a) 
For one-way travel providing a point of ingress or egress, the minimum width shall be 12 feet and the maximum width shall be 24 feet.
(b) 
For two-way travel providing a point of ingress and egress, the minimum width shall be 24 feet and the maximum width shall be 36 feet.
(4) 
The radius of the edge or the driveway apron shall be designed at a minimum radius of 10 feet and a maximum radius of 30 feet.
(5) 
The location and width of the point of ingress and/or egress for all driveways and access lanes shall be planned so as not to interfere with the use of adjacent property and with pedestrian and vehicular traffic on the collector or arterial street. Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township or the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, the center line of the driveway or access lane driveway shall be located at least 150 feet from the intersection of any street lines.
D. 
In order to enhance mobility and limit accessibility along collector and arterial streets, the following access management strategies shall be considered as part of the subdivision and land development process:
(1) 
Driveway cuts along collector and arterial routes should be minimized or consolidated. Where appropriate, common driveways for certain land uses or developments may be considered.
(2) 
The lot width, type of land use, and the anticipated traffic volumes should determine how many driveway cuts should be permitted along a collector or arterial road. Where required, the traffic impact study should consider the impacts that could adversely reduce mobility along the collector or arterial route.
(3) 
Where appropriate to enhance safety conditions, traffic improvements shall be considered as part of the subdivision and land development plan application, which may include: the installation of traffic signals; the construction of separate right-turn lanes and/or left-turn lanes; the installation of median barriers to efficiently separate and direct vehicular traffic to its intended destination; and requiring the installation of sidewalks, handicapped ramps and crosswalks.
(4) 
Prohibit inappropriate turning movements along collector or arterial streets.
(5) 
Maintaining lines of sight and enhancing visibility at all driveways and access lanes by establishing setback requirements, limiting the size of signs, minimizing distractions, and establishing a horizontal profile that will provide sufficient right-of-way to accommodate future transportation improvements.
E. 
Muhlenberg Township may consider alternative methods of highway frontage development and/or access management strategies, provided that the alternative provides consideration for public safety, enhancing mobility and limiting accessibility along collector and arterial streets.
A. 
All proposed off-street loading areas and access drives shall be located, designed and constructed in accordance with the provisions of Article X of Chapter 355, Zoning, of the Muhlenberg Township Code.
B. 
All proposed off-street parking areas and access drives shall be located, designed and constructed in accordance with the provisions of Article X of Chapter 355, Zoning, of the Muhlenberg Township Code.
A. 
Where easements or rights-of-way are required to accommodate utility installations, such easements shall have a minimum width of 20 feet. New utility easements and rights-of-way shall be located only upon consultation with the appropriate utility company.
B. 
Where feasible, easements and rights-of-way shall be centered or adjacent to rear or side lot lines. No structures, materials and/or trees shall be placed within such easements and rights-of-way.
C. 
Where a proposed subdivision or land development is traversed by a watercourse, drainageway, channel or stream, there shall be provided a drainage easement or right-of-way conforming substantially with the line of such watercourse and of such width as will be adequate to preserve the natural drainage channel and provide sufficient width for maintenance. Stormwater management and drainageway easements shall be no less than 20 feet in width, or as directed by Muhlenberg Township, the County of Berks and/or the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Stream and watercourse easements shall be no less than 50 feet in width, or as specifically directed by Muhlenberg Township, the County of Berks and/or the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
D. 
Right-of-way standards and installation procedures for natural gas and petroleum product transmission lines shall conform to all applicable federal and state regulations, including regulations governing the width of the right-of-way, location of pipeline within the right-of-way, the proposed depth of the pipeline, and the pipe wall thickness. There shall be a minimum distance of 50 feet, measured in the shortest distance, between any proposed or existing dwelling and any petroleum products or natural gas transmission line.
E. 
Where feasible, sanitary sewer collection lines and water supply lines shall be located and installed within the right-of-way of a public street.
F. 
All easements or rights-of-way shall be properly described by bearings and distances. The area occupied by any required easement or right-of-way shall not be calculated as part of the net lot area.
G. 
No easement or right-of-way shall be created, recited and/or described in any deed unless the same has been shown on the approved subdivision plan or land development plan.
H. 
Any deed conveying a lot from an approved plan shall make reference to the approved plan, including all easements and encumbrances referenced on the approved plan. Where required by Muhlenberg Township, a representative description expressing the references by which easements and encumbrances will appear on all affected deeds shall be presented to the Muhlenberg Township Engineer and Solicitor for their review prior to action on the final plan.
A. 
As part of all subdivision and land development plan applications, the applicant shall prepare and submit a stormwater management plan considering the following criteria:
(1) 
The stormwater management plan shall be prepared considering all pertinent provisions relating to drainage, runoff, infiltration, erosion and discharge, as adopted by Muhlenberg Township.
(2) 
The stormwater management plan shall be prepared to consider all regional watershed management plans, studies and ordinances that have been adopted or endorsed by Muhlenberg Township.
(3) 
The stormwater management plan shall be prepared to consider the recommendations pertaining to natural resources, floodplains, wetlands, stormwater management and hydrological resource planning, as contained within the Muhlenberg Township Comprehensive Plan.
(4) 
The stormwater management plan shall be prepared to consider the National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Phase II Stormwater Permitting Regulations.
(5) 
The stormwater management plan shall consider the implementation of best management practices as endorsed within the Muhlenberg Township Comprehensive Plan and/or as recommended by the Muhlenberg Township Engineer.
(6) 
The stormwater management plan shall be prepared to consider all pertinent local, regional, state and federal permitting requirements.
B. 
Unless otherwise required by Muhlenberg Township, the stormwater management plan shall contain the following:
(1) 
Mapping of the watershed area or areas in which the proposed subdivision or land development is located.
(2) 
A study shall be performed of the watershed in which the subdivision or land development is located to assess the impact the proposal will have on downstream conditions. The stormwater management plan shall address all identified impacts to the satisfaction of Muhlenberg Township.
(3) 
Computations of the stormwater runoff for all points of runoff concentration before and after development, including all supporting data.
(4) 
Complete drainage systems for the subdivision or land development. All existing drainage features which are to be incorporated as part of the design shall be identified with a detailed explanation of the operations of the facilities.
(5) 
Plans showing all existing and proposed drainage facilities affecting the subject property, including plan views, profile views and/or detail sheets.
(6) 
Computations for all existing and proposed drainage structures that are associated with the development.
(7) 
Plans showing proposed grading, including typical structure footprint(s) with first-floor elevation(s).
(8) 
Construction details for all proposed facilities.
(9) 
If in the course of preparing or reviewing the stormwater management plan the Muhlenberg Township Engineer determines that off-site improvements are necessary to satisfactorily control the stormwater from the proposed development, the developer shall be responsible for the off-site improvements.
(10) 
A detailed plan of all required off-site drainage improvements.
(11) 
All other documentation that may be required to satisfy and address the compliance criteria specified under Subsection A of this section.
C. 
All stormwater management basins, ponds, pipes, structures and related site improvements shall be located, designed, constructed and installed in accordance with all requirements specified by Muhlenberg Township.
D. 
All permits that are required to satisfy the provisions of this chapter of the Muhlenberg Township Code shall be obtained prior to municipal approval of the subdivision or land development plan.
E. 
Where certain stormwater management improvements are inadvertently omitted from the approved plan or if any inconsistencies arise between the approved plan and the adopted requirements specified by Muhlenberg Township, the applicant shall be responsible for the design, construction and installation of those site improvements, as directed by the Muhlenberg Township Engineer.
F. 
All stormwater management improvements shall be inspected and approved by the authorized representative of Muhlenberg Township prior to the release of funds held in escrow and/or the issuance of permits.
A. 
No changes shall be made to the contour of the land, and no grading, excavating, removal or destruction of the topsoil, trees or other vegetative cover of the land shall be commenced, until such time as a plan for minimizing erosion and sedimentation has been processed and reviewed by the appropriate local, county, state and/or federal agencies.
B. 
All permits required to implement the erosion and sedimentation control plan shall be obtained from the appropriate agencies prior to municipal approval of the subdivision plan or land development plan.
C. 
The approval of a subdivision plan or land development plan does not relieve the developer's obligation to execute the erosion and sediment control measures, as specified on the approved plans or as otherwise required by local, state and federal laws.
D. 
When erosion and sedimentation control measures are required, the improvements shall be incorporated within the municipal improvements agreement and escrow.
E. 
During the development phase, the Muhlenberg Township Engineer or any other authorized representative of Muhlenberg Township shall be provided with the opportunity to inspect the site improvements and enforce compliance with the approved subdivision plan or land development plan.
F. 
Prior to the issuance of an occupancy permit, the Muhlenberg Township Engineer or any other authorized representative of Muhlenberg Township shall conduct a site inspection to determine compliance with the approved subdivision plan or land development plan. The occupancy permit shall not be issued until all site improvements have been completed to the satisfaction of the Muhlenberg Township Engineer.
A. 
As part of all subdivision and land development plan applications, the applicant shall develop a plan for the collection, conveyance and treatment of wastewater considering the following criteria:
(1) 
The plan for sewage disposal shall be consistent with the most recent Sewage Facilities Plan, as adopted by the Muhlenberg Township Board of Commissioners under the provisions of the Pennsylvania Sewage Facilities Act (PA Act 537, as amended).
(2) 
The plan for sewage disposal shall consider the recommendations pertaining to land use, sewage disposal and water supply, as contained within the Muhlenberg Township Comprehensive Plan.
(3) 
The plan for sewage disposal shall be consistent with the provisions specified under Chapter 288, Sewers and Sewage Disposal, of the Muhlenberg Township Code.
(4) 
The plan for sewage disposal shall be consistent with all pertinent design requirements specified by the Muhlenberg Township Municipal Authority and Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.
(5) 
The plan for sewage disposal shall be prepared to consider all pertinent local, regional, state and federal permitting requirements.
B. 
Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township, all proposed land uses that are located within a designated sewer service district or planned growth area shall be required to connect to the municipal sewage disposal system, subject to the following provisions:
(1) 
The Muhlenberg Township Municipal Authority shall review all such subdivision or land development plan applications for the adequacy of the proposed sanitary sewer improvements. The Board of Commissioners shall not approve a proposed subdivision or land development plan until the Muhlenberg Township Municipal Authority has issued a letter of adequacy for the proposed sanitary sewer improvements.
(2) 
All proposed sanitary sewage disposal facilities shall be located, designed, constructed and installed in accordance with the standards and specifications of the Muhlenberg Township Municipal Authority and the Muhlenberg Township Code.
(3) 
The applicant shall be responsible for any required off-site sanitary sewage disposal improvements that may be necessary to accommodate the wastewater flow from the development. All such off-site improvements shall be coordinated with the Muhlenberg Township Municipal Authority.
(4) 
Where required, the appropriate planning modules or exemption requests shall be submitted to Muhlenberg Township and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection for review and consideration.
C. 
Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township, all land uses that are located outside of a designated sanitary sewer service district or planned growth area shall be required to utilize on-lot sewage disposal technology as the method for sewage disposal. All such on-lot sewage disposal systems shall be subject to the following provisions:
(1) 
The Muhlenberg Township Sewage Enforcement Officer shall review all subdivision or land development plans in which the proposed uses will utilize on-lot sewage disposal systems. All field-testing procedures and applications requirements shall be subject to the approval of the Sewage Enforcement Officer. The Board of Commissioners shall not approve a proposed subdivision or land development plan until the Sewage Enforcement Officer has issued a letter of adequacy for the proposed on-lot sewage disposal system.
(2) 
All proposed on-lot sewage disposal facilities shall be located, designed, constructed and installed in accordance with the standards and specifications of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and the Muhlenberg Township Code.
(3) 
Where required, the appropriate planning modules or exemption requests shall be submitted to Muhlenberg Township and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection for review and consideration.
D. 
If municipal sewage disposal service is not accessible to an approved subdivision or land development but is planned to be accessible within five years of final approval, the applicant shall install an approved capped collection system within the limits of the subdivision or land development in addition to the approved on-lot sewage facilities. The collection and conveyance system shall be capped at the limits of the subdivision or land development, and the laterals shall be capped at the street right-of-way.
A. 
As part of all subdivision and land development plan applications, the applicant shall develop a plan for water supply considering the following criteria:
(1) 
The plan for water supply shall be consistent with the most recent Sewage Facilities Plan, as adopted by the Muhlenberg Township Board of Commissioners under the provisions of the Pennsylvania Sewage Facilities Act (PA Act 537, as amended).
(2) 
The plan for water supply shall consider the recommendations pertaining to land use, sewage disposal and water supply, as contained within the Muhlenberg Township Comprehensive Plan.
(3) 
The plan for water supply shall be consistent with the provisions specified under Chapter 340, Water, of the Muhlenberg Township Code.
(4) 
The plan for water supply shall be consistent with all pertinent design requirements specified by the Muhlenberg Township Municipal Authority and Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.
(5) 
The plan for water supply shall be prepared to consider all pertinent local, regional, state and federal permitting requirements.
B. 
Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township, all proposed land uses that are located within a designated water supply service district or planned growth area shall be required to connect to the municipal water supply system, subject to the following provisions:
(1) 
The Muhlenberg Township Municipal Authority shall review all such subdivision or land development plan applications for the adequacy of the proposed water supply improvements. The Board of Commissioners shall not approve a proposed subdivision or land development plan until the Municipal Authority has issued a letter of adequacy for the proposed water supply improvements.
(2) 
All proposed water supply facilities shall be located, designed, constructed and installed in accordance with the standards and specifications of the Muhlenberg Township Municipal Authority and the Muhlenberg Township Code.
(3) 
The applicant shall be responsible for any required off-site municipal water supply improvements that may be necessary to provide a reliable supply of water to the development. All such off-site improvements shall be coordinated with the Muhlenberg Township Municipal Authority.
C. 
Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township, all proposed land uses that are located outside of a designated water supply service district or planned growth area shall be required to utilize on-lot water supply facilities through individual well(s). All such individual water supply wells shall be subject to the following provisions:
(1) 
All proposed individual on-lot wells shall be located, designed, drilled, constructed and installed in accordance with the standards and specifications of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and the Muhlenberg Township Code.
(2) 
Each lot to be served by individual on-lot water supply shall be of a size and shape to permit the safe location for each well. All proposed wells shall be located at least 100 feet from any on-lot sewage disposal system and 50 feet from any watercourse or surface waters. Where feasible, proposed wells shall not be located downgradient from any on-lot sewage disposal system.
(3) 
A hydrogeological study shall be required for subdivision plans involving 20 or more lots or for land development plans in which the estimated water usage shall exceed 5,000 gallons per day. The hydrogeological study shall be prepared by a professional hydrogeologist, who shall provide documentation to conclude that the proposed individual well(s) will be capable of supplying each lot or use(s) with a dependable supply of water and that the proposed well(s) will not adversely affect the groundwater table or existing wells near the project site.
D. 
Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township, all proposed land uses that are located outside of a designated water supply service district or planned growth area may utilize a community water supply system through individual well(s). All such community water supply systems shall be subject to the following provisions:
(1) 
All proposed community water supply wells shall be located, designed, drilled, constructed and installed in accordance with the standards and specifications of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, the Muhlenberg Township Municipal Authority, and the Muhlenberg Township Code.
(2) 
All proposed community water supply wells shall be located at least 200 feet from any sewage disposal system, 100 feet from any external property line, and 100 feet from any watercourse or surface waters.
(3) 
A detailed hydrogeological study shall be prepared by a professional hydrogeologist, who shall provide documentation to conclude the following:
(a) 
That the proposed community water supply well(s) will be capable of supplying each lot or use(s) with a dependable supply of water. At a minimum, the water source should be capable of supplying 150% of the average daily demand, based on 100 gallons per day per person and/or 400 gallons per day per dwelling unit, for the design population of the development or the service area.
(b) 
That the water supply shall be drawn from an adequate and reliable source which can supply the proposed storage facilities plus the water demands of the proposed service area at all times, including the fire flow demand during the average or peak daily consumption. A dynamic recovery rate and draw-down test shall be conducted prior to preliminary plan approval to demonstrate the capacity and safe daily yield of the community well sources.
(c) 
That the proposed community water supply well(s) will not adversely affect the groundwater table or existing wells near the project site.
(d) 
That the quality of the source shall conform to the minimum water quality requirements of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.
(e) 
That a minimum static pressure shall exceed 20 pounds per square inch at any point within the community water supply system during the average or peak daily consumption.
(4) 
All community water supply facilities shall be designed with a minimum of two well sources.
(5) 
The community water supply wells shall be located within an open space water protection zone with a minimum area of one acre in size. No structures other than community water facilities and accessory components shall be located within the protected zone.
E. 
Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township, all proposed subdivisions and land developments that are to be served by a public or community water supply system shall provide fire hydrants. The proposed fire hydrants shall comply with the following provisions:
(1) 
Fire hydrants shall be located no further than 1,000 feet apart, as measured along the center line of each road. All residential dwelling units and nonresidential principal buildings shall be located no farther than 600 feet from an active fire hydrant.
(2) 
Fire hydrants shall be located in a manner to provide complete accessibility and so that possibility of damage from vehicles or injury to pedestrians will be minimized. Unless otherwise directed by the Muhlenberg Township Municipal Authority, the barrel of the fire hydrant shall be set so that no portion of the pumper or hose nozzle cap will be less than 18 inches from the curbline.
(3) 
The type and location of all required fire hydrants are subject to the review and approval of the Muhlenberg Township Municipal Authority and the local fire departments.
A. 
All basic utility service lines for electric, natural gas, cable television, and telephone shall be placed underground.
B. 
The installation of all utilities shall be in strict accordance with the engineering standards and specifications of the public utility company.
C. 
Where such underground utilities are located under the proposed cartway, they shall be put in place, connected and approved before the streets are constructed and before any person is permitted to occupy any building to be served by such utilities.
D. 
Prior to municipal approval, the applicant shall be responsible for contacting all utility companies to determine the locations and depths of all underground utilities within the tract of land being subdivided or developed.
E. 
A complete list of the applicable utility companies and their phone numbers shall appear on the approved subdivision plan or land development plan.
A. 
Pursuant to the provisions of the Muhlenberg Township Zoning Ordinance in Chapter 355 of the Code, certain subdivision and/or land development applications may require specific landscaping criteria to be incorporated as part of the subdivision plan and/or land development plan. The following chart provides a summary of these requirements:
Landscaping Requirements for Subdivision and Land Development Activity
Type of Development
Minimum Landscaping Requirements
Buffer Yard
Landscaping Plan
Conventional single-family developments containing 10 or fewer dwelling units
3 trees per residential lot or unit
No
No
Conventional single-family residential developments containing more than 10 dwelling units
3 trees per residential lot or unit
No
Yes
Multifamily townhouse developments containing 10 or fewer dwelling units
2 trees per townhouse unit
No
No
Multifamily townhouse developments containing more than 10 dwelling units
3 trees per townhouse unit
Yes
Yes
Multifamily apartment developments
3 trees per apartment unit
Yes
Yes
Single-family residential cluster developments
3 trees per residential lot or unit
Yes
Yes
Age-qualified or continuing care retirement communities
3 trees per residential lot or unit
Yes
Yes
Mobile home parks
3 trees per residential unit
Yes
Yes
Nonresidential uses and developments with less than 5,000 cumulative square feet of gross floor area
4 trees per acre
Optional
No
Nonresidential uses and developments with 5,000 cumulative square feet of gross floor area or more
4 trees per acre
Optional
Yes
General notes concerning this chart:
Note 1: The provisions specified on this chart are intended to be the basic landscaping requirements. Additional provisions for landscaping, buffer yards and other general requirements may apply.
Note 2: Muhlenberg Township may consider alternative design requirements as part of the subdivision plan application or land development plan application
Note 3: The landscaping materials and trees shall be selected from the approved list of landscaping material, as referenced under § 310-48C of this Subdivision and Land Development Chapter.
Note 4: All subdivision and land development applications shall be subject to the provisions of woodland extraction and replacement, as specified under § 355-33 of the Zoning Chapter.
Note 5: All subdivision and land development applications shall be subject to the provisions of tree protection and replacement, as specified under the Muhlenberg Township Code.
B. 
Where zoning district or development regulations require landscaping, trees, buffer yards, screening and/or planting strips, the applicant shall prepare and submit a landscaping plan to comply with the following provisions:
(1) 
The landscaping plan shall show the following information: the location and arrangement of each buffer yard; the species, placement and size of all plant material selected; the type, placement and size of all fences to be placed in such buffer yards; and the type and density of planting, which shall adequately provide the screening effect required.
(2) 
The plant materials utilized shall be selected from the approved list, as contained under § 310-48C of this chapter.
(3) 
Unless otherwise permitted by Muhlenberg Township, all plant materials shall be permanently maintained and any plant material which does not survive shall be replaced within six months.
(4) 
Any portion of a site which is not utilized for buildings, accessory structures, loading or parking spaces, aisles, sidewalks and designated storage areas shall be planted with an all-season ground cover and shall be landscaped according to an overall plan.
(5) 
Off-street parking areas shall be suitably landscaped in order to enhance or buffer the surrounding area. The design provisions specified under § 355-115W of the Zoning Chapter are intended to provide basic criteria for landscaping. Muhlenberg Township may consider alternative designs as part of the subdivision plan or land development plan. All such alternatives shall be considered as part of a waiver request in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 310 of the Code.
(6) 
All buffer yards shall be maintained and kept clean of debris, rubbish, weeds and tall grass.
(7) 
If permitted by Muhlenberg Township, natural berms may be provided as a buffer yard. The applicant shall demonstrate that the soil type, hydrology, topography and selected landscaping material are appropriate for the area in which the buffer yard is to be located. All such natural berms shall be properly graded to a maximum side slope ratio of 4:1. The natural berms shall be properly stabilized by the developer in accordance with the standards specified by Muhlenberg Township and the Berks County Conservation District.
(8) 
Buffer yard or screening requirements between nonresidential uses shall be subject to the review of Muhlenberg Township as part of the subdivision plan or land development plan.
(9) 
Muhlenberg Township shall have the right to modify or consider alternatives to any of the above specifications if the applicant can demonstrate that the existing conditions of the site exceeds all applicable requirements listed under this section of the Subdivision and Land Development Chapter.
(10) 
All selected trees shall be planted a minimum of 10 feet outside of the legal right-of-way of all existing and proposed streets.
(11) 
All selected plant or tree materials shall be located so as not to interfere with the installation and maintenance of sidewalks, drainage facilities and/or utilities.
(12) 
The strategic placement of trees throughout the development to serve as a buffer against the wind and sun is encouraged for energy conservation purposes.
(13) 
All plant materials shall be located so as not to create an existing or potential traffic hazard.
(14) 
All selected trees and/or all other plant materials exceeding two feet in height above average ground elevation at maturity shall not be located within the limits of the clear sight triangle, as further defined and regulated under § 355-96 of the Zoning Chapter and § 310-33 of this Subdivision and Land Development Chapter.
(15) 
Landscaping plans shall be prepared by a professional landscape architect or other qualified professional with experience in landscape architecture.
C. 
Unless specifically stipulated within this chapter, the following is an approved list of selected trees, hedges and/or shrubs which may be utilized to meet the standards and specifications for buffer yards and landscaping. Species selection shall be based upon the existing physical and natural conditions of the site.
(1) 
Canopy trees are permitted, provided they are a minimum of two inches in caliper as measured at breast height. The following is an approved list of canopy trees:
Acer ginnala - Amur maple
Acer rubrum - red maple
Acer saccharum - sugar maple
Betula alba - European white birch
Fagus grandifolia - American beech
Fagus sylvatica - European beech
Fraxinus americana - white ash
Fraxinus pennsylvania lanceolata - green ash
Ginkgo Biloba - Ginkgo (male only)
Gleditsia triacanthos inermis - thornless honey locust
Liquidambar styraciflua - sweet gum
Liriodendron tulipifera - tulip tree
Phellondendron amurense - Amur cork tree
Platanus acerifolia - London plane tree
Quercus alba - white oak
Quercus borealis - red oak
Quercus coccinea - scarlet oak
Quercus palustris - pin oak
Quercus phellos - willow oak
Robina psuedoacaia inermis - thornless black locust
Sophora japonica - Japanese zelkova
(2) 
Flowering trees are permitted, provided they are a minimum of 10 feet in height. The following is an approved list of flowering trees:
Amelanchier canadensis - shadblow serviceberry
Cornus florida - flowering dogwood
Cornus kousa - Kousa dogwood
Cornus mas - Cornelian cherry
Crataegus phaenopyrum - Washington hawthorn
Koelreuteria paniculata - golden rain tree
Laburnum vossi - goldenchain
Magnolia soulangeana - saucer magnolia
Malus baccata - Siberian crab
Malus floribunda - Japanese flowering crab
Malus hopa - Hopa red-flowering shrub
Oxydendrum arboreum - sourwood
Prunus calleryana - Kwanzan cherry
Prunus yedoensis - Yoshino cherry
(3) 
Evergreen trees are permitted, provided they are a minimum of six feet in height. The following is an approved list of evergreen trees:
Ilex opaca - American holly
Picea abies - Norway spruce
Picea omorika - Serbian spruce
Picea pungens - Colorado spruce
Pinus nigra - Austrian pine
Pinus strobus - Eastern white pine
Pinus sylvestris - Scotch pine
Pinus thunbergii - Japanese black pine
Pseudotsuga menziesli - Douglas fir
Tbuja occidentlis - arborvitae
Tsuga canadensis - Canada hemlock
Tsuga caroliniana - Carolina hemlock
(4) 
Hedges or hedgerows are permitted for buffer and screening purposes, provided they are a minimum of four feet in height. The following is an approved list:
Crataegus crus-galli - cockspur thorn
Crataegus intricata - thicket hawthorn
Crataegus phaenopyrum - Washington hawthorn
Elaeagnus augustifolia - Russian olive
Forsythia intermedia - border forsythia
Syringa chinensis - Chinese lilac
Syringa vulgaris - common lilac
Tbuja occidentlis - arborvitae
Viburnum alatus - viburnum
Viburnum sieboldii - Siebold viburnum
Viburnum tomentosum - doublefile viburnum
(5) 
Shrubs are permitted for buffer and screening purposes, provided they are a minimum of three feet in height. The following is an approved list of shrubs:
Hamamelis vernalis - vernal witch hazel
Hamamelis virginiana - common witch hazel
Ilex verticillata - winterberry
Juniper virginiana - upright juniper
Phyacantha lalandi - Laland firethorn
Taxus capitata - upright yew
Taxus hicksi - Hicks yew
Viburnum dentatum - arrowwood viburnum
Viburnum lantana - wayfaring tree viburnum
D. 
As part of the application phase for a subdivision plan or land development plan, Muhlenberg Township may permit alternative trees, hedges and/or shrubs from those specified under § 310-48C, provided the applicant or developer provides sufficient evidence from a landscape architect or other qualified professional to demonstrate that the alternative tree, hedge and/or shrub will be more effective to meet the standards and specifications for buffer yards and landscaping. Species selection shall be based upon the existing physical and natural conditions of the site.
E. 
Where compliance with the landscaping provisions of this Code cannot be achieved, Muhlenberg Township may permit the required trees or landscaping materials to be planted at an off-site location deemed appropriate by Muhlenberg Township or accept a contribution in lieu of the landscaping requirements.
F. 
Chapters 310 and 355 of the Muhlenberg Township Code contain provisions for landscaping, trees, buffer yards, screening and/or planting strip. Should conflicts exist between any design or procedural requirements, Muhlenberg Township may consider the most prudent design for the site as part of the subdivision plan or land development plan. All such alternatives shall be considered as part of a waiver request in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 310 of the Code.
G. 
Any tree, plant, shrub, flower, vine or grass species which has been classified as invasive, noxious or destructive by any local, county, state or federal agency, including the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, shall be specifically prohibited for use in landscaping and ground cover.
H. 
The following provisions shall be considered as a guarantee concerning the survival of all buffer yards and landscaping, which are required as part of the subdivision and/or land development plan application:
(1) 
Any tree or shrub, which dies within 18 months of planting shall be replaced within a six-month time period. Any tree or shrub which within 18 months of planting or replanting is deemed, in the opinion of Muhlenberg Township, to have grown in a manner uncharacteristic of its type shall be replaced.
(2) 
Substitutions for certain species may be permitted only when approved by the Board of Commissioners.
(3) 
The developer or landowner shall deposit with Muhlenberg Township a sum of money equal to the amount necessary to cover the cost of purchasing, planting, maintaining and replacing all vegetative materials for a period of 18 months. This condition shall be satisfied through an executed agreement between Muhlenberg Township and the developer.
A. 
During the review phase of any subdivision or land development plan, the Muhlenberg Township Planning Commission shall consider the adequacy of existing or proposed community facilities to serve the proposed development. The Planning Commission shall utilize the applicable components of the Muhlenberg Township Comprehensive Plan as well as the Muhlenberg Township Code to provide background support and guidance.
B. 
The applicant shall give earnest consideration to the desirability of providing or reserving areas for community facilities normally required in residential neighborhoods, including educational facilities, utility services, emergency management facilities and recreational facilities.
C. 
Land or water areas provided or reserved for community facilities should provide sufficient area to accommodate any proposed buildings, structures and off-street parking areas. All such areas should be located in an area of the development which is accessible to the general public.
A. 
Pursuant to the procedures and requirements of the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code,[1] Muhlenberg Township has prepared and enacted the Muhlenberg Township Comprehensive Recreation Open Space Plan. This particular plan has been developed for the following purposes:
(1) 
To guide, control and manage growth within Muhlenberg Township.
(2) 
To examine the existing parks, recreational facilities and open space areas in relationship to the current and projected demands.
(3) 
To establish the future need for parks, open space, and recreation areas and facilities.
(4) 
To establish priorities for acquisition, development, and improvement of parks and recreation facilities.
(5) 
To analyze the recreation programs as well as the administration and management of facilities and services to determine their level of efficiency and recommend improvements.
(6) 
To examine funding options in order to acquire, develop, construct and/or maintain recreation facilities and open space.
(7) 
To implement the established goals, objectives and policies identified within the Muhlenberg Township Comprehensive Plan.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10101 et seq.
B. 
During the review phase of a subdivision or land development plan, Muhlenberg Township shall refer to the Muhlenberg Township Comprehensive Recreation Open Space Plan to determine if the existing or proposed recreational facilities and/or common open space areas are sufficient to serve the proposed development.
C. 
Muhlenberg Township shall determine if land within the proposed development should be devoted for recreation and open space or if a fee in lieu of recreation land should be required from the applicant, as permitted under the authority of the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code and Muhlenberg Township Code. All guidelines, standards and formulas for land dedication and/or fees in lieu of land dedication are recommended as part of the Muhlenberg Township Comprehensive Recreation Open Space Plan and as further established within Muhlenberg Township Ordinance No. 350, as amended.[2]
[2]
Editor's Note: See § 310-52 of this chapter.
D. 
If land or water areas are to be dedicated as parks, recreation areas and/or open space, the applicant shall make arrangements (suitable to Muhlenberg Township) for the perpetual ownership and maintenance of such land. Muhlenberg Township may, at its discretion, accept land for dedication.
E. 
The applicant shall consult with Muhlenberg Township concerning any applicable review fees which may be required as a result of the proposed subdivision or land development. If review fees are required, the applicant shall comply with the established procedures specified by Muhlenberg Township.
A. 
This section sets forth minimum criteria for the installation, use and maintenance of exterior lighting, the purposes of which are to require lighting in outdoor public places where safety and security are concerns; protect drivers and pedestrians on nearby streets from glare from nonvehicular light sources that shine directly into their eyes and thereby impair safe travel; shield neighboring properties from glare resulting from excessive light sources and from nonexistent or improperly directed or shielded light sources; limit the height of light standards to preclude or lessen light pollution; and promote efficient design and operation with regard to energy conservation.
B. 
Unless otherwise specified by the Muhlenberg Township Code, exterior lighting facilities shall be required for access drives, off-street parking areas and off-street loading areas involving nonresidential uses, multifamily residential uses, and other permitted uses that may require exterior lighting, as determined by Muhlenberg Township. Pursuant to the approval of any plans or permits, Muhlenberg Township shall have the authority to require lighting to be incorporated for other uses or locations where, in its reasonable discretion, such lighting is warranted.
C. 
Where required by Muhlenberg Township to demonstrate compliance with the provisions of the Code, a lighting plan shall be prepared and submitted in accordance with the following criteria:
(1) 
A lighting plan shall be submitted for review and approval for all applications and uses which require exterior lighting.
(2) 
The lighting plan shall include a schematic layout of all proposed exterior fixture locations, footcandle data, and a plat demonstrating intensities and uniformities within the limitations established within the Code, as well as the manufacturer's description of the equipment (catalog cuts), glare control devices, lamps, mounting heights and means, proposed hours of operation of the lighting, and maintenance schedule. Illumination intensities shall be plotted on a ten-foot-by-ten-foot grid.
(3) 
The applicant shall submit a visual impact photometric plan that demonstrates both light coverage and light spillage resulting from the proposed lighting plan and the provision for adequate measures to mitigate nuisance from light pollution and disabling glare, both on the use or development site and on adjacent properties.
D. 
The following design standards and illumination specifications shall apply to driveways, access drives, off-street loading areas and off-street parking areas:
(1) 
Lighting facilities located within off-street parking areas and loading areas for all uses and developments requiring exterior lighting, or in connection with signs and recreational and institutional activities, shall provide an illumination level utilizing the current recommended standards of the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IESNA), except as otherwise required by the provisions of this chapter.
(2) 
For all applications, Muhlenberg Township may impose a more stringent lighting standard requiring less illumination as a condition of any such approval when it determines the same to be necessary to protect adjoining properties or streets from light pollution and/or glare.
(3) 
Where exterior illumination is required to comply with this chapter, the most current intensities and uniformity ratios, as established in the Lighting Handbook of the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IESNA), shall apply. As part of any application, Muhlenberg Township may consider alternative design methods and specifications, provided that such alternative meets the purpose statement and community development objectives of this chapter.
(4) 
In no case shall illumination exceed 0.5 footcandle measured at the property lines, except at driveway entrances, provided the illumination at the cartway center line of the contiguous street shall not exceed 1.0 footcandle, unless a more stringent standard is ordered by Muhlenberg Township.
(5) 
The lighting standards within off-street parking areas shall be located no more than 100 feet apart. The applicant shall consider the spacing and height of the lighting standards as well as the intensity of the illumination to disperse the desired lighting in a uniform manner within the off-street parking area.
E. 
The following design standards, illumination specifications, installation provisions and maintenance requirements shall apply for exterior lighting for residential and/or nonresidential uses:
(1) 
Lamp types and colors shall be in harmony within the adjacent community, any special circumstances existing on the site, and with surrounding lighting facilities. The lamps shall be consistent and shall not create a mix of types, colors, heights and/or illumination.
(2) 
Canopy lighting shall be located on the undersurface (ceiling) of the canopy and shall be limited to flush-lens fixtures mounted on the canopy ceiling. Drop-lens fixtures shall be prohibited. In no event shall any other lighting fixtures be located on or otherwise attached to or used to light a canopy or any area of the property adjacent to the canopy. Outdoor canopies include, but are not limited to, the following applications: fuel island canopies associated with service stations and convenience stores; exterior canopies above storefronts, mini malls, shopping centers and shopping malls; exterior canopies above driveways and building entrances; soffits; pavilions; and gazebos.
(3) 
With the exception of security lighting, all exterior lighting for any commercial, industrial, institutional and recreational use shall be reduced by 50% between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. Security lighting shall only be considered to illuminate specified areas between a building and off-street parking area, as considered necessary and appropriate by Muhlenberg Township.
(4) 
All lighting fixtures shall meet IESNA full cutoff criteria. No lighting shall be permitted which shines directly into residential units, or results in glare beyond an angle of 30° from a vertical plane, measured from the light source.
(5) 
Light fixtures, including mounting base, shall not exceed 25 feet in height above finished grade. The applicant shall consider the spacing and height of the lighting standards as well as the intensity of the illumination to disperse the desired lighting in a uniform manner within the off-street parking area.
(6) 
All lighting sources shall be effectively shielded and shall be installed and/or aimed so as to shield nearby public or private streets and neighboring properties from direct-glare light radiation, or light pollution which may create a safety hazard or a nuisance.
(7) 
Illuminated signs shall have an indirect lighting source or shielded source.
(8) 
The use of vegetation, fences and similar screening methods shall be utilized to supplement glare or cutoff control devices.
(9) 
Fixtures used for architectural lighting, such as facade, feature and landscape lighting, shall be directed so as to preclude light projection beyond the immediate objects, which are intended to be illuminated as an architectural feature.
(10) 
Within the R-1, R-2, R-3, R-4 and R-5 Zoning Districts, the use of floodlighting, spotlighting, or other high-intensity lighting over 100 watts shall be located, directed and aimed in a manner so that it does not produce light trespass in excess of 0.2 footcandle at the lot line of any adjacent property line. All such lighting fixtures shall be installed and directed so that they do not project their output into adjacent uses, skyward or public street. All such lighting shall be reduced by 50% between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m.
(11) 
With the exception of all-night operations, lighting for commercial, industrial, municipal, recreational and institutional uses shall be controlled by automatic switching devices, such as time clocks or combination motion detectors and photocells, to permit the reduction of exterior lighting by 50% between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. in order to mitigate nuisance glare and sky lighting consequences.
(12) 
Electrical feeds to all lighting standards shall be installed underground and not overhead.
(13) 
The lighting support structures and poles utilized to illuminate an off-street parking area or loading area shall be placed a minimum of five feet from the curb stops or curbline, or placed on a concrete pedestal at least 30 inches above the surface of the pavement.
(14) 
The applicant or landowner shall be responsible for the replacement of any damaged or nonfunctional lighting standards, bulbs, light shields or cutoff fixtures, lens, timing devices, electrical components and/or other lighting feature.
(15) 
The applicant or property owner shall install all required lighting fixtures and facilities at his expense. Light fixtures and poles shall be in accordance with a lighting plan approved by the Muhlenberg Township, as part of the application for subdivision, land development, conditional use, special exception and/or building permit.
(16) 
The applicant or property owner shall be responsible for all costs involved in the maintenance, upkeep and operation of all required lighting facilities.
F. 
Muhlenberg Township reserves the right to conduct a post-installation nighttime inspection to verify compliance with the requirements of this chapter. If it is determined that any lighting source or installation creates a safety or personal security hazard due to insufficient illumination levels or produces unacceptable levels of nuisance glare, light pollution, or skyward light, the property owner shall be so notified and required to take timely remedial action at his expense to resolve the problem. If the appropriate remedial or corrective action has not been completed within 30 days of notification, the property owner shall be issued an enforcement notice and shall be subject to the penalty provisions specified by Muhlenberg Township.
G. 
Muhlenberg Township may consider optional design and site development alternatives if the standard requirements are determined to be unwarranted or inappropriate based upon the existing site conditions. If approved, the optional design and site requirements shall be considered as part of the zoning permit, subdivision or land development plan.
A. 
Purpose. The purpose of this section is to better ensure that adequate park and recreational areas and facilities are available to meet the needs of all future residents in accordance with the Comprehensive Open Space, Parks and Recreation Plan of Muhlenberg Township.
B. 
Definitions.
(1) 
The sections of this chapter governing word usage and definitions are included herein as if written.
(2) 
The term "subdivision" shall be as defined in the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code.
C. 
Applicability.
(1) 
The provisions of this section shall apply to all subdivisions that propose dwelling units.
(2) 
The provisions shall apply to:
(a) 
All subdivisions or portions thereof that have not received final plan approval from the Township Commissioners prior to the effective date of this section.
(b) 
All subdivisions or portions thereof that have received final plan approval prior to the effective date of this section, whenever these subdivisions or portions thereof have not been fully improved or the mandatory dedication requirements were not satisfied within five years of final plan approval.
D. 
Amount of land to be dedicated and transfer requirements.
(1) 
The amount of land required to be dedicated in each subdivision shall be determined by utilizing the following formula: 0.03 acre of land for each dwelling unit proposed or possible to be constructed as shown on the final plan application.
(2) 
The amount of land required to be dedicated shall be transferred to the Township by deed of dedication in fee simple or otherwise as determined by the Township Commissioners at the time of final plan approval. Title to land shall be good and marketable for single title, free and clear of all liens and encumbrances, and insurable as such at regular rates by a title insurance company doing business in Berks County, Pennsylvania.
E. 
Minimum conditions and requirements governing the Township Commissioners acceptance of land proposed for dedication.
(1) 
The land to be dedicated must be compatible with the goals, objectives and recommendations of the Township Comprehensive Open Space, Parks and Recreation Plan.
(2) 
The Township Commissioners shall consider the following criteria in determining whether the land is suitable for recreational purposes:
(a) 
A minimum of 20% of the total land area required by this section to be provided for recreation may be located within the one-hundred-year floodplain area or have a slope in excess of 7% or any combination thereof.
(b) 
A minimum of 80% of the land will be relatively flat topography that does not exceed 7%, on dry ground not considered floodplain or wetlands by any state or federal agency, with suitable soil conditions for development and use as a recreation area.
(c) 
The dedicated land must be readily and safely accessible to all residents. The site must have good ingress and egress, and one side must abut a public street for a minimum distance of 53 feet.
(d) 
Size, dimensions and shape of the site shall be suitable to accommodate those park and recreation activities deemed appropriate to the location as determined by the Township Parks and Recreation Department.
(e) 
Site(s) must be complete with all improvements (e.g., storm drainage, sidewalk, curbing, streets, utilities, etc.) required in the subdivision. Site(s) must also be cleared and graded as required by the Township Commissioners to blend into the subdivision and to be prepared for the intended recreational use.
(f) 
Land shall not be subject to or in any way encumbered by rights-of-way streets, easements or any restrictive covenants, unless the Township Commissioners determine that such items shall not interfere with the use of said land for recreational purposes.
(g) 
The subdivider shall provide and pay for any tests, investigations, inspections, or surveys as required by the Township Commissioners so as to assure the Township Parks and Recreation Department of the immediate availability of the land for recreational use. Such tests, investigations, inspections or surveys may include, but not be limited to:
[1] 
Phase I environmental study.
[2] 
Wetlands delineation study (state and federal).
[3] 
Floodplain delineation.
[4] 
Archaeological study.
[5] 
Survey description of tract with pins installed.
F. 
Fees in lieu of land dedication
(1) 
In the event a suitable recreational site cannot be properly located in the development, as determined by the Township Commissioners, then the owner, developer or subdivider shall pay a fee to the Township Parks and Recreation Department equal to the value of the land and improvements prescribed for dedication but not accepted.
(2) 
Payment of all fees shall be made and completed at the time of final subdivision or land development approval and prior to recording of such final plan in the office of the Recorder of Deeds.
(3) 
All fees paid to the Township Parks and Recreation Department shall be deposited into the Parks Development Fund and used solely for the purpose of providing park and recreational facilities reasonably related to serving the subdivision. Interest earned on said account shall become part of that account.
(4) 
Fees may be used by the Township Parks and Recreation Department for land acquisition or improving existing parkland, including costs incidental and ancillary to such purposes, such as but not limited to planning, engineering, and design.
(5) 
The amount of such fee shall be based upon the average estimated fair market value of improved residential land as established by resolution of the Township Commissioners. This average estimated fair market figure shall be adjusted as deemed necessary to keep current with land value.
(6) 
If the subdivider objects to the fair market value determination, then the subdivider may, at his/her own expense, obtain an appraisal of the subdivision land by a qualified real estate appraiser mutually agreed upon by the Township Parks and Recreation Department and the subdivider, which appraisal may be considered by the Township Commissioners in determining the fair market value.
G. 
Determination of land or fee.
(1) 
The Township Commissioners following recommendation by the Township Parks and Recreation Department shall determine whether to accept land dedication, require payment of a fee in lieu thereof, or a combination of both.
(2) 
The Township Parks and Recreation Department shall develop its recommendation after consideration of the following:
(a) 
Minimum site conditions and subdivider requirements specified in this section.
(b) 
Availability and accessibility of existing parkland.
(c) 
Compatibility of dedication with the Township Comprehensive Open Space, Park and Recreation Plan.
(d) 
Impact of adjoining land uses on the recreational use of land proposed for dedication.
(3) 
The determination of the Township Commissioners as to whether land shall be dedicated or a fee charged, or a combination thereof, shall be final and conclusive.
H. 
Credit for private recreation improvement. Where a substantial private park and recreational area is provided in a proposed subdivision and such space is to be privately owned and maintained by the future residents of the subdivision, partial credit, not to exceed 50%, may be given against the requirement of land dedication or payment of fees in lieu thereof, approved by the Township Commissioners after determination by the Township Parks and Recreation Department that it is in the public interest to do so and that all the following standards are met:
(1) 
That yards, court areas, setbacks, and other open areas required to be maintained by the zoning and building ordinances and regulations shall not be included in the computation of such private open space.
(2) 
That the private ownership and maintenance of the open space is adequately provided for by recorded written agreement, conveyance or restrictions.
(3) 
That the use of the private open space is restricted for park and recreational purposes by recorded covenant, which runs with the land in favor of the future owners of property and which cannot be defeated or eliminated without the consent of the Township Commissioners or its successors.
(4) 
That the proposed private open space is reasonably adaptable for use for park and recreational purposes, taking into consideration such factors as size, shape, topography, geology, access, and location.
(5) 
That the open space for which credit given is a minimum of two acres and provides recreational improvements that will meet the specific recreation and park needs of the future residents of the subdivision.
(6) 
That the private recreational improvements specified be completed as required by the Township Commissioners during the first phase of subdivision construction.
I. 
Procedure.
(1) 
The Township Engineer, upon receipt of a preliminary plan submission, shall distribute one copy to the Township Parks and Recreation Department for review and recommendation. The review and recommendation shall include the following:
(a) 
The amount of land required, or that a fee shall be charged in lieu of land, or that land and a fee shall be required, and/or that a stated amount of credit shall be given for private recreation facilities or unique natural and special features, etc.
(b) 
The location of the land to be dedicated or use of in-lieu fees.
(2) 
A copy of the Township Parks and Recreation Department's review and recommendation shall be forwarded to the Township Planning Commission and the Township Commissioners within 30 days of the submission date on the plan.
(3) 
The subdivider/land developer/owner shall dedicate the land and/or pay the fees as determined by the Township Commissioners before the recording of a final plan in the Recorder of Deeds' office.
(4) 
The deed for dedicated land shall be recorded and shall contain the following restrictive clause: "This land was acquired for perpetual public park and open space purposes through the implementation of Township Subdivision Regulations."
(5) 
Open space covenants for private park or recreational facilities shall be submitted to the Township Parks and Recreation Department prior to approval of the final subdivision plan and shall be recorded contemporaneously with the final subdivision plan.
[1]
Editor's Note: The provisions of this section were adopted 6-19-2000 by Ord. No. 350. Said ordinance was included as this section of the Code at the direction of the Township.