Share This Page

Tarentum billboards still OK with zoning change

| Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2013, 12:31 a.m.

Tarentum resident Ross Grimm can erect billboards on his property along Route 28 without affecting his neighbors.

Grimm wanted to erect the billboards on his property but could not because of the R-1 residential zoning. The borough added a special “overlay zoning district” to the R-1 district last year that allowed them.

But the overlay allowed numerous other non-residential uses in the R-1 residential area from north of Route 28 to the Fawn Township line.

The overlay designation permitted uses such as professional offices, banquet halls, indoor recreation and entertainment facilities, private schools, personal care homes, group homes, hospitals and planned commerce parks.

“The residents said they didn't want all that,” Solicitor David Strellec said.

So on Monday, council eliminated that overlay district.

But Grimm, whose family has owned Ross Welding Supplies in that area for years, will still be allowed to erect billboards.

That's because council approved creation of a Roadway Commercial District. Strellec said that district is much smaller than the previous, R-1 overlay district.

He said it's 750 feet deep, running along the north side of Route 28 from Bakerstown Road to Cedar Street for about a half-mile. It encompasses Ross' property along with property owned by the borough and one or two other landowners.

Council approved those changes to the zoning ordinance as well as a third one involving the location of adult businesses that would sell X-rated books and videos.

Strellec said the language in the original ordinance referred to “VCR (video cassette recorder) movie rental.” That phrase was eliminated to incorporate advances in technology and replaced with “X-rated video in any format.”

Nobody voiced any objections to the three changes during a public hearing that preceded council's meeting. All three, which Strellec said were recommended by the planning commission, were approved unanimously in the council meeting that followed.

Tom Yerace is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-226-4675 or tyerace@tribweb.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.