Marcus Hook Zoning Ordinance

One of the most important functions of municipal government is the enforcement of the Borough’s Zoning Code. On October 3, 2005 Borough Council adopted the current Marcus Hook Zoning Ordinance. The zoning ordinance is the principle tool for implementing the comprehensive plan and for regulating the use of land. The preparation of the zoning ordinance followed the completion of the Marcus Hook Comprehensive Plan.

The zoning ordinance is composed of two parts: the text and the zoning map. The text of the ordinance contains the community development objectives and the necessary technical provisions to regulate the use of land and structures and to establish bulk, height, area, setback, and other standards. The zoning map delineates the boundaries of the specific districts or zones created in the ordinance. The zoning ordinance can be a confusing and little understood document.

The basic aim of the zoning ordinance is the designation of specific areas of the municipality for different types of land uses. Consequently, the bulk of the zoning ordinance is devoted to the districts created and the regulations pertinent to those districts. There are, however, other elements that are commonly included in zoning ordinances. They are not always limited to any one district, but apply uniformly to the municipality as a whole or to more than one district. The most familiar of these requirements cover parking, signs, procedures and standards for conditional uses, non-conforming uses, performance standards, administration and enforcement, and zoning hearing board. The Chapter entitled General Regulations includes provisions for decks, satellite antennas, family day care homes, swimming pools, refuse, lighting, trailers, fences and walls, home base businesses, accessory uses and structures, and others.

Zoning permits are required prior to the erection or change to any building or structure, before the construction of any accessory structure, prior to the use or change of use of a building or land, prior to the change or extension of a nonconforming use or structure, and also for any signs, fences and walls, decks, porches, swimming pools, home based businesses, and construction/office trailers. This is not an inclusive list but it covers the majority of activities that require the issuance of a zoning permit.

Residents and business owners are advised to contact the Borough’s Zoning Officer prior to making any changes to their property. The most common areas where conflicts arise involve signing, off-street parking, garages, decks, porches, patios, fences, and swimming pools. The best policy is always to ask first before proceeding. The Zoning Officer is charged with administering the zoning ordinance by its literal terms. He does not have any discretionary power and can neither waive nor tighten any requirement of the ordinance.


Zoning Code: Borough of Marcus Hook eCode360

Copyright © 2006 Borough of Marcus Hook, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, US. All Rights Reserved.