KS Dev. Co., L.P. v. Lower Nazareth Twp

A claim that zoning restrictions render development of some use economically infeasible is a claim of de facto exclusion, not de jure exclusion. Where de facto exclusionary claims exist, analysis under Surrick is appropriate. In addition, where a zoning ordinance defines the term “apartment,” and other uses are individually restricted so as to preclude inclusion as an apartment nor included in the definition of apartment, the other uses are not apartments. However, a use permitting residential multifamily/apartment dwelling on upper floors and commercial uses on the first floor is an apartment use.

KS Dev. Co., L.P. v. Lower Nazareth Twp., 149 A.3d 105 (Pa. Commw. Ct. 2016)

Date of Decision: 11/4/16


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London v. Zoning Bd. of Phila.

Legislation is presumed to be constitutional, therefore, constitutional challengers must overcome a heavy burden to prevail. A challenged provision is invalid, as being overbroad, if it prohibits a substantial amount of protected speech. Provisions are only void for vagueness if “persons of common intelligence must necessarily guess at [the law’s] meaning and differ as to its application.”

London v. Zoning Bd. of Phila., 173 A.3d 847 (Pa. Commw. Ct. 2017)

Date of Decision: 11/15/17


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Delchester Developers, L.P. v. Zoning Hearing Bd.

Where a stormwater ordinance is limited to regulating stormwater, zoning hearing boards do not have jurisdiction under the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code (MPC) to hear substantive validity challenges because such an ordinance is not a land use ordinance as defined by the MPC. Also, municipalities may except eased and constrained areas of a lot from the calculation when determining the percentage of the lot that is developable.

Delchester Developers, L.P. v. Zoning Hearing Bd., 161 A.3d 1081 (Pa. Commw. Ct. 2017)

Date of Decision: 5/9/17


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Davis-Haas v. Exeter Twp. Zoning Hearing Bd.

Where a procedural validity challenge is filed within 30 days of an ordinance’s effective date, the challenger need only prove the municipality failed to strictly comply with the required procedures set forth in the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code (MPC). Also, a challenger does not lose standing for a procedural validity challenge where the challenger sells a portion of the relevant property but maintains an ownership interest in the property during the proceedings.

Davis-Haas v. Exeter Twp. Zoning Hearing Bd., 166 A.3d 527 (Pa. Commw. Ct. 2017)

Date of Decision: 7/12/17


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In re Appeal of Chestnut Hill Cmty. Ass’n

Variances may be granted where the applicant proves strict compliance with the ordinance would create a hardship due to the unique physical circumstances or conditions of the lot. The hardship cannot be one that arises from the impact of zoning regulations in the district.

In re Appeal of Chestnut Hill Cmty. Ass’n, 155 A.3d 658 (Pa. Commw. Ct. 2017)

Date of Decision: 3/3/17


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Coyle v. City of Leb. Zoning Hearing Bd.

Applicants for temporary variances must meet the same standards of proof as are required for permanent variances. In addition, de minimis variances may only be granted for dimensional variances.

Coyle v. City of Leb. Zoning Hearing Bd., 135 A.3d 240 (Pa. Commw. Ct. 2016)

Date of Decision: 3/23/16


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Dunn v. Middletown Twp. Zoning Hearing Bd.

If applicant’s subdivision plans would create the non-conformity that the applicant seeks to resolve by variance, the applicant should not be granted a variance. Also, de minimis variances may be granted if applicants show that (a) minor deviation from the dimensional uses of a zoning ordinance is sought and (b) rigid compliance with the zoning ordinance is not necessary to protect the public policy concerns inherent in the ordinance. In addition, there is no precise mathematical percentage that marks the dividing line between de minimis and significant deviation.

Dunn v. Middletown Twp. Zoning Hearing Bd., 143 A.3d 494 (Pa. Commw. Ct. 2016)

Date of Decision: 11/29/16


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