Attached is Art. V of the Allegheny County Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance. Also attached isArticle IV, which is the required information for sketch plans, and preliminary and final applications.
Chapt. 1, Part 2 contains model regulations for environmetal protection and hazrd control. Pgs. I-56 and I-62 are the model regulations for geologic hazards and steep slopes.
This 26 page research paper address the economics of hillside slope development. It includes topics such as the ecological values of hillside slopes, public and private values of hillsides, tax issues and economic valuation studies.
Zoning ordinances for East Vincent Township, Chester County, PA, Chapter 27, which include steep slope ordinances. The township excludes steep slopes, floodplains, and jurisdictional wetlands from its definition of “net tract area,” which is used to establish the maximum number of dwelling units permitted on a tract of land.
Zoning ordinance for Lower Milford Township, Lehigh County, which include steep slope ordinances. Lower Milford Township takes a more performance-oriented approach to steep slope regulation; within its four-tiered steep slope area, disturbance (i.e. grading, clearing, construction, etc…) is limited to a percentage of the land area occupied by each tier. Use restrictions – in addition to those imposed by the underlying zoning district – only apply to prohibitive slopes.
An excellent model ordinance prepared by the 10 Towns Great Swamp Watershed Committee as a prototype for adoption by its municipal government members in the Passaic River Basin.
Chapters 905 & 906 of Pittsburgh's zoning ordinances, which contain the city's steep slope ordinances. Pittsburgh's scenic hillsides play a major role in defining its visual character. In addition to a traditional steep slope overlay district, Pittsburgh has both a Hillside District, a base zoning district with unique hillside-appropriate site development standards, and a View Protection Overlay District, which enables the City Planning Commission to create supplemental design guidelines for View Protection Districts, which may include hillsides. (Chapter 905 updated in 2010).
The Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission completed a survey of municipal natural resource protection tools in its service area in 2002, which was systematically updated in 2006. Outstanding examples of ordinances related to natural resources, including steep slopes, are posted on this website and are saved as part of this library item.
Zoning regulations for development on and disturbance of steep slopes can prevent erosion and reduce the risk of landslides that endanger lives, damage property and infrastructure, harm water quality, and degrade wildlife habitat. These regulations can also preserve the aesthetic character of visually prominent hillsides by discouraging vegetative clearing and excessive earthwork to accommodate development.
A concise example of a steep slope ordinance, this ordinance includes standards and criteria for reviewing special exceptions.
Ferguson Township, Centre County, PA zoning ordinance, which includes steep slope ordinance. The steep slope ordinance has both “Slope Controls” (page 405), and a “Ridge Overlay District (page 64)” designed to limit disturbance to Colluvial soils
The Munipalities Planning Code allows the use of steep slopes to be regulated through a zoning overlay district, which enables their uniform regulation regardless of each municipality’s base zoning district provisions. Upper Salford Township, Montgomery County, employs this approach, typical of many municipalities across the Commonwealth, and its Overlay District comprises all areas of the Township with slopes greater than 15%. Four categories of slopes are differentially restricted, and a combination of disturbance (i.e., grading and vegetation removal) and lot size and design standards take precedence over the regulations of underlying districts.
The Lehigh Valley Planning Commission’s model steep slope regulations are primarily use-based in that each slope tier (15 to 25 percent and 25 percent and greater) has a series of permitted, prohibited, and conditional uses. Performance-based standards are embedded in the model ordinance’s “General Provisions” section.
A major landslide in Kilbuck Township, Beaver County, Pennsylvania, in September of 2006, demonstrates the disastrous consequences of failing to protect the municipality’s steep slopes from disturbance. This report presents the findings and recommendations of the Joint State Government Commission's Task Force on the Kilbuck Township Landslide, which conducted an in-depth investigation into the landslide.
Commonwealth Court ruling upholding the steep slope ordinances of a municipality. Appellant wanted to disturb nearly 6 acres of land for development, but the township’s steep slope ordinances only permitted the disturbance of just over two on this parcel.
The Pennsylvania Appalachian Trail Act requires Pennsylvania municipalities along the Appalachian National Scenic Trail to adequately protect it as a public natural resource. Planning and architecture firm Wallace, Roberts, and Todd was hired by a steering committee of municipalities subject to the Act to develop strategies and guidelines for trail corridor protection. This website describes various zoning tools for landscape protection and includes examples of steep slope and ridge regulations.