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SUN OIL COMPANY v. ZONING BOARD ADJUSTMENT. (03/23/61)

March 23, 1961

SUN OIL COMPANY, APPELLANT,
v.
ZONING BOARD OF ADJUSTMENT.



Appeal, No. 37, March T., 1961, from order of County Court of Allegheny County, No. A 2089 of 1959, in case of Sun Oil Company v. Zoning Board of Adjustment of the City of Pittsburgh. Order affirmed.

COUNSEL

Clair V. Duff, with him Robert A. Doyle, and Duff & Doyle, for appellant.

Frederick A. Boehm, Assistant City Solicitor, with him David Stahl, City Solicitor, for zoning board of adjustment, appellee.

Before Jones, C.j., Bell, Musmanno, Jones, Cohen, Bok and Eagen, JJ.

Author: Jones

[ 403 Pa. Page 410]

OPINION BY MR. JUSTICE BENJAMIN R. JONES.

Sun Oil Company (Sun) is the equitable owner of a tract of land located at the corner of Saw Mill Run Boulevard and Edgebrook Avenue in Pittsburgh. This tract extends 151 feet along the northerly side of Saw Mill Run Boulevard and 50 feet along the westerly side of Edgebrook Avenue and is within a district zoned as an "M-1" Limited Industrial District wherein an automobile and gasoline service station is a permissive use.*fn1 Saw Mill Run Boulevard, a four-lane highway, is a major traffic approach to downtown Pittsburgh and bears very heavy vehicular traffic.

Proposing to use this land as the site of an automobile and gasoline service station, on June 3, 1959 Sun submitted a "site plan application" to the Department of City Planning of Pittsburgh and, on July 17, 1959, Sun was notified that its application had been disapproved because the proposed distance between

[ 403 Pa. Page 411]

    vehicular "access points on the land" represented too great a departure from the requirements of section 2401-6, article 24 of the zoning ordinance which provides, inter alia, that "vehicular access points shall be limited, where possible, to intervals of not less than three hundred (300) feet when on a major traffic thorofare."

On August 28, 1959, Sun applied to the Superintendent of Building Inspection for a building and occupancy permit which application was denied because the "site plan application" had been disapproved. On August 31, 1959 Sun appealed to the board of adjustment (board). After a hearing, the board upheld the denial of the permit and from that decision Sun appealed to the County Court of Allegheny County which on March 26, 1960 remanded the matter to the board for the taking of further testimony. After taking additional testimony, the board again upheld the denial of this permit and, without taking any further testimony, the County Court of Allegheny County entered an order which sustained the board's decision and dismissed Sun's appeal. From that order this appeal has been taken.

Sun contends both that section 2401-6, article 24, of the zoning ordinance is unconstitutional and that the board abused its discretion in the denial of a permit.

Section 2401-6 of the ordinance requires that applicants must submit to the Planning Commission a "site plan" upon which must be shown, inter alia, "the location of vehicular access onto the site". The focal point of Sun's attack is the second paragraph of section 2401-6 which provides: "In considering any site plan hereunder, the Commission shall endeavor to assure safety and convenience of traffic movement, ...


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