Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Chester County in case of Southland Corporation v. East Cain Township Zoning Hearing Board, No. 93 June Term, 1977.
W. Robert Landis, for appellant.
Daniel E. Monagle, with him John J. Musewicz, and Dechert, Price & Rhoads, for appellee.
Judges Mencer, Rogers and Craig, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Craig.
[ 45 Pa. Commw. Page 592]
In this zoning variance case, Southland Corporation (Southland), equitable owner of a corner lot two-thirds
[ 45 Pa. Commw. Page 593]
of an acre in area, in a C-1 Commercial zoning district of East Caln Township (Township), applied to the township zoning hearing board (board) for variances from area, width, yard and off-street parking requirements, in order to erect and operate a neighborhood convenience market ("7-Eleven Store"), which would be a permitted use in that district.
According to Southland's plan in the record, the rectangular lot measures 148.52 feet by 159.65 feet.*fn1 Because the zoning ordinance requirements include a minimum lot area of not less than two acres, a lot width of not less than 200 feet at the building line, 70-foot setbacks for the building and a 20-foot setback for an off-street parking area, Southland requested a variance of 7 feet from front yard requirement, 50 and 60-foot variances from the side yard requirements, and a 5-foot variance from the parking lot setback requirement. Southland also requested a 25-foot variance from a 100-foot requirement governing the minimum distances between driveways and street intersections.
The variance requests were based upon Southland's proposal to construct a store building 80 feet by 34 feet (2,720 square feet) the largest of its three sizes of standard designs; the other two sizes are 60 feet by 44 feet (2,640 square feet) and 70 feet by 35 feet (2,450 square feet).*fn2
The board denied the variances because of the absence of exceptional physical conditions other than
[ 45 Pa. Commw. Page 594]
lot size, the absence of impossibility of development for commercial purposes in conformity with the ordinance, the absence of unnecessary hardship and because the proposal did not ...