Cases are listed below in chronological order:
*Click on case name to review case summary.
- Group of terminally ill persons living together fit within the ordinance's definition of family.
Hartman v. Zoning Hearing Bd. of Cumru Twp. (2016)
- Under the relevant zoning ordinance, a venue for events was not an accessory use for a large mansion in which Applicants resided in only a small portion.
Barnabei v. Chadds Ford Twp. Zoning Hearing Bd. (2015)
- A sign code is unconstitutional where it regulates signs based on their content, regardless of whether the sign code favors one speaker over another.
Reed v. Town of Gilbert (2015)
- "Family" may be legally defined as "[a] person living independently or a group of persons living as a single household unit using housekeeping facilities in common, but not to include more than three persons unrelated by blood, marriage or adoption" in a zoning ordinance.
Schwartz v. Phila. Zoning Bd. of Adjustment (2015)
- Methadone clinic constituted a medical office for the treatment of patients under the zoning ordinance definition.
THW Group, LLC v. Zoning Bd. of Adjustment (2014)
- Mulching operation is neither a forestry nor an agricultural use.
Tinicum Twp. v. Nowicki (2014)
- Land use controls in Act 13 rewrite of the Oil & Gas Act were unconstitutional.
Robinson Twp. v. Commonwealth (2013)
- Gasoline filling station not permitted as accessory use to retail store where outdoor sales were not permitted in that zoning district.
In re Appeal of Costco Wholesale Corp. (2012)
- Ordinance was not de facto exclusionary to billboards where it permitted billboards to be no more than 25 feet tall and 50 square feet in area.
Interstate Outdoor Adver., L.P. v. Zoning Hearing Bd. (2012)
- Halfway house not an accessory use to offices for the Board of Probation and Parole.
Phila. Suburban Dev. Corp. v. Scranton Zoning Hearing Bd. (2012)
- Smoker constituted a sign under the zoning ordinance definition.
Gulan v. Zoning Hearing Bd. of E. Berlin Borough (2011)
- Private wind turbine may be considered accessory use to residential use.
Tink-Wig Mt. Lake Forest Prop. Owners Ass'n v. Lackawaxen Twp. Zoning Hearing Bd. (2009)
- Industry standards indicative, but not necessarily controlling, for determining whether zoning ordinance is exclusionary.
Twp. of Exeter v. Zoning Hearing Bd. (2009)
- Allowing patrons to engage in sexual activity was not an accessory use to the operation of a restaurant
MAJ Entertainment, Inc. v. Zoning Board of Adjustment of the City of Philadelphia (2008)
- A crematory and funeral home are primary uses of land and not customary and incidental to a cemetery use under the Philadelphia Zoning Code
Arter v. Philadelphia Zoning Board of Adjustment (2007)
- A church has the burden of showing that its daycare center is a fundamental religious activity under the Commonwealth’s Religious Freedom Protection Act
Ridley Park United Methodist Church v. Ridley Park Borough Zoning Hearing Board (2007)
- Log processing does not fit within the MPC’s definition of a “forestry use” where the property does not contain a forest and trees are not cultivated on the property
Stoltzfus v. Eden Township Zoning Hearing Board (2007)
- A campground is not an accessory use to a worship center
City of Hope v. Sadsbury Twp. Zoning Hearing Board (2006)
- There is no particular percentage of a structure’s floor-area ratio that automatically defines the structure’s primary as opposed to accessory use; such a comparison is relevant, but not a controlling factor in any primary use inquiry
Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown v. Zoning Hearing Bd. of the Borough of State College (2006)
- A private grass landing strip is not a subordinate and incidental accessory use to a single-family residential use
Risker v. Smith Twp. Zoning Hearing Board (2005)
- “Family” is more then related persons, but there must be stability among residents
Albert v. ZHB of North Abington Twp. (2004)
- Communications towers are not a “public utility”
Earl Twp. v. Reading Broad Casting, Inc. (2001)
- Zoning of school recreational facilities used for non-educational purposes
Hazelton Area School District v. ZHB of Hazle Twp. (2001)
- Communications tower- not a semi-public use
McMahon v. Kingston Twp. Board of Supervisors (2001)
- Communications towers are protected under the Federal Telecommunications Act
Omnipoint Communications Enterprises v. ZHB of Easttown Township (2001)
- Communications tower fits in the definition of “radio transmitter”
Pearson v. Newlin Twp. ZHB (2001)
- Communications towers are not a public utility
Pennsylvania Cellular Telephone Corp. v. Buck Township ZHB (2001)
- School may go through special exception process
Council Rock School District v. Wrightstown Twp. ZHB (1998)
- The effect of zoning on Commonwealth agencies
Kee v. Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission (1998)
This site is designed to provide summary review of selected Pennsylvania and Federal Court decisions related to land use and land use controls. The information contained herein, although produced by professionals, is not intended to render any legal service. Nor should the materials herein be utilized as a substitute for professional services. If legal advice or other expert assistance is required, the service of an attorney or other professional should be sought. DCED makes no representations, warranties or guarantees as to the accuracy, completeness or suitability of the information provided herein.
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