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MEDINGER APPEAL (03/24/54)

March 24, 1954

MEDINGER APPEAL


Appeal, No, 22, Jan. T., 1954, from order of Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County, Feb. T., 1952, No. 5, in Appeal of Russell L. Medinger et ux., from Zoning Board of Adjustment of Springfield Township. Order affirmed.

COUNSEL

David E. Groshens, with him John E. Landis, for appellant.

Harold W. Spencer, with him Wright, Mauck, Hawes & Spencer, for appellees.

James S. Clifford, Jr. and John E. Forsythe, Solicitor of Lower Merion Township, filed a brief for amicus curiae.

William F. Bohlen and Robert v. Massey, Jr., filed a brief for amicus curiae.

Frederick A. VanDenbergh, Jr., Joseph P. Flanagan, Jr. and Saul, Ewing, Remick & Saul, filed a brief for amicus curiae.

Before Stern, C.j., Stearne, Jones, Bell, Chidsey, Musmanno and Arnold, JJ.

Author: Bell

[ 377 Pa. Page 218]

OPINION BY MR. JUSTICE BELL

A narrow question is presented in this zoning appeal. Was the sliding scale of minimum habitable floor area which varied in different districts of the township constitutional?

[ 377 Pa. Page 219]

A Zoning Ordinance, No. 309, dated December 16, 1940, as amended August 11, 1948, passed pursuant to the enabling Act of June 24, 1931, as amended by the Act of May 27, 1949,*fn1 divides Springfield Township into various districts and prescribes a different requirement as to minimum habitable floor area in each district. Section 200 provides for two-story houses as follows: "AA" -- 1800 feet minimum habitable floor area, "A" -- 1400, "B" -- 1125 feet, "C" -- 1000 feet, "D" -- 1000 feet.

In 1949 Mr. and Mrs. Medinger purchased a parcel of ground in Springfield Township containing approximately 300 feet on Montgomery Avenue, and approximately 201 feet in depth on Evergreen Avenue. The premises which comprise approximately 1 1/2 acres are situated in a residential district zoned "AA". Mr. and Mrs. Medinger petitioned for a building permit to erect a residence which contained only 1125 square feet of habitable floor area. They wished and planned to erect an early 1700 Colonial Bucks County farmhouse. For over 20 years they had been collecting materials to ...


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