MapLink™ | Procedures | Northeast Philadelphia Airport Zoning District (Permits)

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Northeast Philadelphia Airport Zoning District (Permits)
A. Permits. Applications for zoning and building permits shall be governed by the following:
(1) Future uses. Except as specifically provided in Subsection A(1)(a), (b) and (c) hereunder, no material change shall be made in the use of land, no structure shall be erected or otherwise established, and no tree shall be planted in any zone hereby created unless a permit therefor shall have been applied for and granted. Each application for a permit shall indicate the purpose for which the permit is desired, with sufficient detail to determine whether the resulting use, structure or tree would conform to the regulations herein prescribed. If such determination is in the affirmative, the permit shall be granted, subject to the other requirements and conditions of this section. No permit for a use inconsistent with the provisions of this section shall be granted unless a variance has been granted in accordance with Subsection A(4) below.
(a) In the area lying within the limits of the horizontal zone and conical zone, no permit shall be required for any tree or structure less than 75 feet of vertical height above the ground, except when, because of terrain, land contour or topographic features, such tree or structure would extend above the height limits prescribed for such zones.
(b) In areas lying within the limits of the approach zones, but at a horizontal distance of not less than 4,200 feet from each end of the runway, no permit shall be required for any tree or structure less than 75 feet of vertical height above the ground, except when such tree or structure would extend above the height limit prescribed for such approach zones.
(c) In the areas lying within the limits of the transitional zones beyond the perimeter of the horizontal zone, no permit shall be required for any tree or structure less than 75 feet of vertical height above the ground, except when such tree or structure, because of terrain, land contour or topographic features, would extend above the height limit prescribed for such transitional zones.
(d) Nothing contained in any of the foregoing exceptions shall be construed as permitting or intending to permit any construction or alteration of any structure or growth of any tree in excess of any of the height limits established by this section except as set forth in § 500-2201D.
(2) Existing uses. No permit shall be granted that would allow the establishment or creation of an obstruction or permit a nonconforming use, structure or tree to become a greater hazard to air navigation than it was on the effective date of this section or any amendments thereto or when the application for a permit is made.
(3) Nonconforming uses abandoned or destroyed. Whenever the Zoning Officer determines that a nonconforming tree or structure has been abandoned or more than 80% torn down, physically deteriorated or decayed, no permit shall be granted that would allow such structure or tree to exceed the applicable height limit or otherwise deviate from the zoning regulations.
(4) Variances. Any person desiring to erect or increase the height of any structure or permit the growth of any tree or use property not in accordance with the regulations prescribed in this section may apply to the Zoning Hearing Board for a variance from such regulations. The application for variance shall be accompanied by a determination from the Federal Aviation Administration and the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation as to the effect of the proposal on the operation of air navigation facilities and the safe, efficient use of navigable airspace. Such variances shall be allowed where it is duly found that a literal application or enforcement of the regulations will result in unnecessary hardship, and that the relief granted will not be contrary to the public interest or create a hazard to air navigation. Additionally, no application for variance to the requirements of this chapter may be considered by the Zoning Hearing Board unless a copy of the application has been furnished to the owner or manager of Northeast Philadelphia Airport for comments as to the aeronautical effect of the variance. If the owner or manager of Northeast Philadelphia Airport does not respond to the application within 15 days after receipt, the Zoning Hearing Board may act on its own to grant or deny said application.
(5) Obstruction marking and lighting. Any permit or variance granted may, if such action is deemed advisable to effectuate the purpose of this section and reasonable in the circumstances, be so conditioned as to require the owner of the structure or tree in question to install, operate and maintain, at the owner's expense, such markings and lights as may be necessary. If deemed proper by the Zoning Hearing Board, this condition may be modified to require the owner to permit Northeast Philadelphia Airport, at its own expense, to install, operate and maintain the necessary markings and lights.
(6) FAA regulations update. In the event any existing or future regulation of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), its successor agency or the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation is inconsistent with any provision of this section, then such FAA or state regulation shall prevail, and such provision of this section shall automatically be modified thereby.
See § 500-2201G for more information on permits for the Northeast Philadelphia Airport Zoning District.
See Applying For a Permit for more information.
See Building and Zoning for information on documents, forms and permits.