Type of Protective Zoning: Increased Setbacks

Type of Protective Zoning: Increased Setbacks

Increased setbacks are a possible way to protect your community by addressing where fracking activity goes.

What it is

Setbacks are the distance between the infrastructure and other places like buildings or natural resources.  For example, a well pad may be "setback" 1,500 feet from a school. This can be a tricky and sometimes treacherous way to address infrastructure because it is also regulated by the Department of Environmental Protections. See the section titled "Considerations Before Introducing Protective Zoning” for a discussion on setbacks.

Places with that type of language:

Crescent Twp

Setbacks are usually a specific predetermined distance but interestingly, in Crescent Twp. they use height of the proposed infrastructure to determine the setback: “Drilling rigs shall be located a minimum setback distance of 1.5 times their height from any property line, public or private street, or building not related to the drilling operations on either the same lot or an adjacent lot."  

This situation specific language adds efficacy to the protective language.

Penn Township*

Injection Well Ordinance says that sites cannot be within 1380 feet of any protected use (residential dwelling, church, commercial building, public building, hospital, school, or public park).

Bell Acres

The setback distance varies depending on the nature of the surrounding area:

The boundary of a Related Operation shall be located Two Thousand Five Hundred Feet (2,500') from a Protected Structure. No waiver is available for a setback distance from a Protected Structure.

The boundary of a Related Operation shall be located Five Hundred Feet (500') from any Residential Structure outside of the M3 District.

Other than the intersection of the Access Road with a street or roadway, the entirely of a Related Operation shall be located at least Fifty feet (50') from the ultimate right-of-way or any public or private street. Pipelines shall be permitted to

traverse the required setback only where absolutely necessary to transport extracted product off site.

South Strabane

Forest Hills

West Pike Run

Oakmont Borough

Unconventional oil/gas wells must be 2,000 feet "from any lot or parcel of ground located in an R-1, R-2 or R-3 district."

*Although this version of the Penn Township Injection Well Ordinance says “draft” it is actually the finalized language

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