Appeal, No. 40, March T., 1962, from order of Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, Oct. T., 1957, No. 2747, in case of The Buhl Foundation v. Board of Property Assessment, Appeals and Review of Allegheny County. Order reversed.
Frank W. Ittel, with him A. Sieber Hollinger, and Reed, Smith, Shaw & McClay, for plaintiff, appellant.
James Victor Voss, Assistant County Solicitor, with him Francis A. Barry, First Assistant County Solicitor, and Maurice Louik, County Solicitor, for defendant, appellee.
Lloyd F. Engle, Jr., with him Wilner, Wilner and Kuhn, for intervenor.
Before Bell, C.j., Musmanno, Jones, Cohen, Eagen and O'brien, JJ.
OPINION BY MR. JUSTICE EAGEN
This appeal is from an order of the court below sustaining a triennial real estate tax assessment. The property involved is a private housing development in the nineteenth ward of the city of Pittsburgh, known as Chatham Village.
The Buhl Foundation was the original developer and continued in ownership until November 1, 1960, when it sold its interest to the intervening appellant, Chatham Village Homes, Inc. The assessment appealed from involves only that levied against the buildings; the land assessment is not in litigation.
The property comprises approximately forty-five acres of land, sixteen acres of which are used for structures, four acres for recreational facilities and there are twenty-five acres of woodland. It includes one hundred and ninety-seven dwelling units, one hundred and twenty-nine of which were constructed in the year 1931, sixty-eight units in 1934.
The assessment of the entire property was increased for the triennial years of 1957-1958-1959, from $911,450 to $1,282,360. All of this increase was on the buildings which were raised in valuation from $674,610 to $1,043,720, or fifty-five per cent.
Appellant argues that the assessment exceeds the fair market value of the property and is not uniform with other assessments.
At the hearing in the court below, the tax assessment records were offered in evidence. This made out a prima facie case showing the validity of the assessment: Lehigh and Wilkes Barre Coal Company's Assessment, 225 Pa. 272, 74 Atl. 65 (1909); Westbury Apartments, Inc. Appeal, 314 Pa. 130, 170 Atl. 267 (1934); Chatfield v. Board of Rev. of Taxes, 346 Pa. 159, 29 A.2d 685 (1943). The complaining real estate ...