Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of McKean County in the case of In Re: Appeal of Langmaid Homeowners Association, Wade Confer, Raymond Johnson, Kaye Brindley, et al., of the Granting of a Building Permit to H.C.F., Inc., No. 1322 of 1980.
Charles J. Duke, Pecora & Duke, for appellants.
Murray R. Garber, with him, I. E. McCommon, for appellees, Bradford Township and Bradford Township Zoning Hearing Board.
R. T. Mutzabaugh, Mutzabaugh, Mutzabaugh & Sanders, for appellee, Health Care Facilities, Inc., of Pennsylvania, also known as H.C.F., Inc. of Pennsylvania.
Judges Williams, Jr., MacPhail and Palladino, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Williams, Jr. Judge Palladino did not participate in the decision in this case. Concurring Opinion by Judge MacPhail.
In December 1980, the Court of Common Pleas of McKean County entered an order quashing the zoning appeal of the Langmaid Homeowners Association (Association) and certain named individuals.*fn1 From that order an appeal to our Court followed.
In 1979 Health Care Facilities, Inc. (HCF) had sought, unsuccessfully, to obtain zoning permission to construct a nursing home on Langmaid Lane in Bradford Township, McKean County. The site of the proposed facility is in a "R-10" zoning district; and under the ordinance then in effect a nursing home was not a permitted use in that district. Although the zoning authorities initially granted HCF a variance, the application for the variance was withdrawn after an appeal by the Association and a remand order by the Court of Common Pleas of McKean County.
On May 5, 1980, Bradford Township amended its zoning ordinance to permit the establishment of nursing homes in "R-10" and other zoning districts.*fn2 On May 21, 1980, HCF obtained from the township zoning officer approval of the preliminary plans for the proposed nursing home on Langmaid Lane. That approval brought forth an appeal by the Association to the Bradford Township Zoning Hearing Board (Board). In its appeal to the Board, the Association asserted that the ordinance amendments, permitting nursing homes in "R-10" districts, were not enacted pursuant to a comprehensive and rational plan of development as is required by the law of Pennsylvania. The Association also asserted to the Board that the zoning change constituted "spot" zoning, and that the zoning change was unconstitutional as an improper exercise of the police power.
On July 1, 1980, the Board held a hearing on the Association's appeal, and testimony was given by the protestants.
While the Association's appeal to the Board was awaiting a decision, HCF, on ...