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HASAGE v. PHILADELPHIA ZONING BOARD ADJUSTMENT (ET AL. (07/01/64)

July 1, 1964

HASAGE
v.
PHILADELPHIA ZONING BOARD OF ADJUSTMENT (ET AL., APPELLANT).



Appeal, No. 279, Jan. T., 1963, from order of Court of Common Pleas No. 5 of Philadelphia County, Dec. T., 1962, No. 3582, in case of William Hasage and Eunice Hasage v. Philadelphia Zoning Board of Adjustment and City of Philadelphia. Order reversed.

COUNSEL

Henry B. FitzPatrick, Jr., with him Broderick, Schubert & FitzPatrick, for protestants, appellants.

Levy Anderson, First Deputy City Solicitor, with him Edgar R. Einhorn, Assistant City Solicitor, James L. Stern, Second Deputy City Solicitor, Matthew W. Bullock, Jr., Deputy City Solicitor, and Edward G. Bauer, Jr., City Solicitor, for City of Philadelphia, intervenor, appellant.

Irvin Stander, for appellees.

Before Bell, C.j., Jones, Cohen, Eagen, O'brien and Roberts, JJ.

Author: Eagen

[ 415 Pa. Page 33]

OPINION BY MR. JUSTICE EAGEN

This is a zoning case. The property involved, 6345 Lancaster Avenue, in the City of Philadelphia, is located in a district zoned "R-4" Residential which permits single-family dwellings.

In the year 1951, the Philadelphia Zoning Board of Adjustment refused a request for permission to convert the property into a four-family dwelling. Despite this, conversion into a five-family dwelling was illegally effected some time later in the same year. Appellees herein purchased the property in September 1956 for $26,000, expended another $10,000 in improvements, and have operated it as a five-family dwelling ever since.

In 1962, the city, through a routine inspection, became aware for the first time of the existing violation and served the owners of the property with notice thereof. Subsequently, an application for a variance was filed which would permit the property to be used as a six-family dwelling. This later was amended to a request for a five-family dwelling.

The zoning board of adjustment refused to grant the variance. On appeal, the common pleas court reversed the action of the board and directed that the variance issue. An appeal to this Court followed.

Since the lower court took no additional testimony, our scope of review is limited to determining whether or not the board of adjustment abused its discretion or committed an error of law in refusing the requested variance: Peirce v. ...


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