1284.01   PERMISSION OR DENIAL

Conditional uses may be permitted or denied by the Board of Township Commissioners after recommendations by the Planning Commission in accordance with the criteria and provisions of this chapter.

1284.02   APPLICATIONS

Applications for conditional uses shall be filed with the Zoning Administrator and shall be accompanied by:

(a)        Fee.  An application fee in an amount equal to that established by resolution of the Board of Township Commissioners.

(b)       Plans.  Seven copies of a site plan and supporting data, which show the size, location, and topography of the site, the use of adjacent land, the proposed size, bulk, use and location of buildings; the location, distance, and proposed function of all yards, open spaces, parking areas, driveways, storage areas and accessory structures; the location of all utilities, the provisions for parking, moving, or loading vehicles and the timing of construction proposed, as well as a copy of other permits or plans required for the particular use by respective County, State and/or Federal Government agencies, and any other pertinent information required by the Zoning Administrator.

1284.03   REVIEW

The Zoning Administrator shall forward a copy of the application to the Board of Township Commissioners and to the Planning Commission for review and approval.

(a)        Time.  The Board of Township Commissioners, with the review and recommendations of the Planning Commission, shall forward its decision to the applicant within ninety days of the application submission, unless the applicant agrees, in writing, to a time extension.

(b)       Conditions.  The Board of Commissioners may, in addition to those specifically provided in this Zoning Code, attach such reasonable conditions and safeguards as it determines necessary to meet the intent of this Zoning Code, to protect adjacent property, and to further the public interest.  All development, construction, and use shall be in accordance with the approved plan and all attached conditions, unless a revised plan is submitted and approved.  Any development contrary to the approved plan shall constitute a violation of the Zoning Code.

1284.04   CRITERIA FOR APPROVAL

A conditional use shall be approved only if it meets the following criteria:

(a)        Use.  The proposed use conforms to the district and conditional use provisions and all pertinent supplementary regulations of this Zoning Code.

(b)       Special Standards.  The proposed use meets all special standards which apply to its conditional use classification as is set forth in Chapter 1286.

(c)        Performance Standards.  The proposed use shall not involve any element or cause any condition that may be dangerous, injurious or noxious to any other property or persons, and shall comply with the performance standards of this Zoning Code.

(d)       Relationship.  The proposed use shall be sited, oriented, and landscaped to produce a harmonious relationship of buildings and grounds to adjacent buildings and properties.

(e)        Environment.  The proposed use shall produce a total visual impression and environment which is consistent with the environment of the neighborhood.

(f)        Objectives.  The proposed use shall preserve the community development objectives of this Zoning Code.

(g)       Standards for Communication Towers as Conditional Use.

(1)        The applicant shall demonstrate that it is licensed by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to operate a communications tower, if applicable, and communications antennas.

(2)        The applicant shall demonstrate that the proposed communications tower and communications antennas proposed to be mounted thereon comply with all applicable standards established by the FCC governing human exposure to electromagnetic radiation.

(3)        Communications towers shall comply with all applicable Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Commonwealth Bureau of Aviation and applicable airport zoning regulations.

(4)        Any applicant proposing construction of a new communications tower shall demonstrate that a good faith effort has been made to obtain permission to mount the communications antennas on an existing building, structure or communications tower.  A good faith effort shall require that all owners of potentially suitable structures within a one-quarter mile radius of the proposed communications tower site be contacted and that one or more of the following reasons for not selecting such structure apply:

(A)       The proposed antennas and related equipment would exceed the structural capacity of the existing structure and its reinforcement cannot be accomplished at a reasonable cost.

(B)       The proposed antennas and related equipment would cause radio frequency interference with other existing equipment for that existing structure and the interference cannot be prevented at a reasonable cost.

(C)       Such existing structures do not have adequate location, space, access or height to accommodate the proposed equipment or to allow it to perform its intended function.

(D)       The addition of the proposed antennas and related equipment would result in electromagnetic radiation from such structure exceeding applicable standards established by the FCC governing human exposure to electromagnetic radiation.

(E)       A commercially responsible agreement could not be reached with the owners of such structures.

(5)        Access shall be provided to the communications tower and communications equipment building by means of a public street or easement to a public street.  The easement shall be a minimum of twenty feet in width and shall be improved to a width of at least ten feet with a dust-free, all-weather surface for its entire length.

(6)        A communications tower may be located on a lot occupied by other principal structures and may occupy a leased parcel within a lot meeting the minimum lot size requirements for the zoning district.

(7)        Recording of a plat of subdivision or land development shall not be required for lease parcel on which a communications tower is proposed to be constructed, provided the communications equipment building is unmanned.

(8)        The applicant shall demonstrate that the proposed height of the communications tower is the minimum height necessary to perform its function.

(9)        In C-1 and I-1 Districts, the maximum height of any communications tower shall be 150 feet, provided, however, that such height may be increased to no more than 200 feet, provided the required setbacks from adjoining property lines (not lease lines) are increased by one foot for each one foot of height in excess of 150 feet.

(10)      The foundation and base of any communications tower shall be set back from a property line (not lease line) located in any Residential District at least 100 feet and shall be set back from any other property line (not lease line) at least fifty feet.

(11)      The base of a communications tower shall be landscaped so as to screen the foundation and base and communications equipment building from abutting properties.

(12)      The communications equipment building shall comply with the required yard and height requirements of the applicable zoning district for an accessory structure.

(13)      The applicant shall submit certification from a Pennsylvania registered professional engineer that a proposed communications tower will be designed and constructed in accordance with the current Structural Standards for Steel Antenna Towers and Antenna Supporting Structures, published by the Electrical Industrial Association/Telecommunications Industry Association and applicable requirements of the Township’s Building Code.

(14)      The applicant shall submit a copy of its current FCC license; the name, address, and emergency telephone number for the operator of the communications tower; and a certificate of insurance evidencing general liability coverage in the minimum amount of one million dollars ($1,000,000) per occurrence and property damage coverage in the minimum amount of one million dollars ($1,000,000) per occurrence covering the communications tower and communications antennas.

(15)      All guy wires associated with guyed communications towers shall be clearly marked so as to be visible at all times and shall be located within a fenced enclosure.

(16)      The site of a communications tower shall be secured by a fence with a maximum height of eight feet to limit accessibility by the general public.

(17)      No signs or lights shall be mounted on a communications tower, except as may be required by the FCC, the FAA or other governmental agency which has jurisdiction.

(18)      Communications towers shall be protected and maintained in accordance with the requirements of the Township’s Building Code.

(19)      IF a communications tower remains unused for a period of twelve consecutive months, the owner or operator shall dismantle and remove the communications tower within six months of the expiration of such twelve-month period.

(20)      One off-street parking space shall be provided within the fenced area.

1284.05   PUBLIC NOTICE

Public notice shall be given of the time and place of the meeting at which the Board of Township Commissioners will consider the request for a conditional use.  The notice shall clearly describe the nature of the requested conditional use.