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ROBERT T. WOOD v. CITY PITTSBURGH (05/25/83)

decided: May 25, 1983.

ROBERT T. WOOD, APPELLANT
v.
CITY OF PITTSBURGH, A MUNICIPAL CORPORATION AND PAUL J. IMHOFF, SUPERINTENDENT OF BUREAU OF BUILDING INSPECTION, APPELLEES



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County in the case of City of Pittsburgh, a municipal corporation, Paul J. Imhoff, Superintendent of Bureau of Building Inspection v. Robert T. Wood, No. GD 81-02112.

COUNSEL

Robert T. Wood, appellant, for himself.

Kathryn E. Hanna Katsafanas, Assistant City Solicitor, with her D. R. Pellegrini, City Solicitor, for appellees.

Judges Rogers, Williams, Jr. and Doyle, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Williams, Jr.

Author: Williams

[ 74 Pa. Commw. Page 451]

Robert T. Wood (appellant) appeals from an order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County granting the City of Pittsburgh's (city) request for a preliminary injunction restraining appellant from occupying or using his apartment building*fn1 in violation of the city's Building Code requirement that

[ 74 Pa. Commw. Page 452]

    buildings of appellant's type have two means of egress from each story.*fn2

On January 1981, the city filed a Complaint in Equity requesting preliminary and permanent injunctions enjoining appellant from occupying, altering or using the subject property in violation of the Building Code. By preliminary objections, appellant alleged selective enforcement and harassment by the city, and asserted that the Building Code provisions should not be applied retroactively to appellant's property which was constructed prior to the enactment and effective date of the Code. Appellant failed to specifically deny the city's averment that his building had only one means of egress.

On April 13, 1981, a preliminary injunction hearing was held at which counsel for the city and appellant, representing himself, attended. Without taking testimony and upon consideration of the complaint, preliminary objections and oral arguments the court

[ 74 Pa. Commw. Page 453]

    found appellant to be in violation of the Building Code for failing to provide a second means of egress, and ordered appellant to install a second exit within thirty days of the entry of the order or vacate the top floor.*fn3

In raising a plethora of questions,*fn4 appellant properly raises two issues for our consideration. First, appellant contends that the city may not retroactively apply the minimum egress provisions of the Building ...


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