About the Planning/Zoning Department
The Planning and Zoning Department is responsible for evaluating land use in the Township. The Township is divided into several zoning districts ranging from conservation/residential to industrial. Requests for approval pass through the office to the desk of Cynthia Sopka, Director of Planning and Zoning. Residents whose requests are denied have the right to appeal to the Zoning Hearing Board.
The primary tools utilized by the Planning and Zoning Department are the codified Zoning Ordinance and Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance. The Zoning Ordinance governs how land may be used and developed in the Township. Any proposed plans for developing a property must meet the standards put forth for that property’s zoning district in the Zoning Ordinance (i.e. a property in a non-commercial residential area cannot suddenly become a commercial property). Decisions associated with use of land and placement of structures or developments are determined by the Planning and Zoning official. There are various aspects to zoning specifically for some uses that are permitted by right in their respective zoning district or permitted by special exception which are heard, by appeal, to the Zoning Hearing Board.
Land developments and subdivisions are governed by the Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance also known as (SALDO). Plans are presented for review and, in the case of minor subdivisions, final approval of the Planning Commission. In the case of major subdivisions and land developments, plans are first reviewed by the Planning Commission which provides its recommendations to the Board of Commissioners, who will then make the final decision.
Zoning Hearing Board
Use the following links for more information regarding the Zoning Board:
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