Permit to Extend Front Porch Upward In Pennsylvania

In Yocum Zoning Case, 393 Pa. 148, 141 A.2d 601 (1958), a residential home built before the passage of the zoning ordinance violated front yard and side yard setback requirements. The owners sought an extension of the front porch upward to conform in height with the rest of the building and an extension of the second floor forward to the current edge of the first floor. The court noted that the vertical construction did not violate the zoning ordinance, which was silent on a maximum height for buildings, and the horizontal forward construction of the second floor would not violate the setback any more than the first floor of the building already violated it. The court approved the building permit without the need for a variance or exception because the expansion was "a logical, reasonable and natural structural change in the building which neither increases any nonconformity of its use nor violates any provision of the zoning ordinance and in nowise affects the general welfare of the neighborhood or of the adjoining property owners." Yocum, 393 Pa. at 155, 141 A.2d at 605-606.