§14-111. Determination of "Ground Level" in Computations of Additional Gross Floor Area. [14]


(1) In R-14, R-15, R-16, RC-2, RC-3, RC-4, C-4, and C-5 Districts, where additional gross floor area is given for creation of certain specified open areas and/or public space "at ground level," the term "at ground level" shall include all areas which are at sidewalk level, or not more than three feet above or below sidewalk level; provided that, when a lot is above or abuts a public transit concourse or station, "at ground level" shall include all areas which are at the station or concourse level and, further provided, that all such areas are connected to the sidewalk by stairs and/or ramps adequate for convenient public access. Benches, planting boxes, fine arts, and other ornamental devices and structures may be included in such open area without being considered to deduct from the size thereof, provided, such devices and/or structures shall conform to all other sections of this Title below, relating to access to public space. In residential districts, devices or structures used for the advertising or display of goods or merchandise, or portions of ground level open areas upon which a commercial use is conducted shall be deducted from the size of a ground level open area in computing the amount of additional gross floor area in the building permitted by such open area. In commercial districts, devices for the display and sale of goods or merchandise which is accessory to the public space of a building and complies with other regulations set forth in this Title shall not be deducted from the size of the ground level open area and/or public space.

(2) In C-4 and C-5 Districts, the following shall apply for additional and incentive gross floor area:

(a) All means of pedestrian and handicapped access to public space required in these districts shall not be deducted from the size of the public space;

(b) All seating, landscaping, and fine arts required in order to qualify for additional gross floor area shall not be deducted from the size of the public space;

(c) Any space or facility created to qualify for incentive gross floor area shall not be considered to be part of the amount of public space required in order to obtain additional gross floor area.

(3) In the districts that allow for the transfer of "unused gross floor area" from "historically certified" properties, all of the following shall apply:

(a) "Historically certified" property shall be limited to those properties certified as historic pursuant to the requirements of Section 14-2007 of this Title;

(b) "Unused gross floor area" shall be limited to the amount of gross floor area remaining after the total gross floor area of all buildings and structures existing on the lot of the historically certified property is deducted from the permitted gross floor area of the lot;

(c) The owners of the historically certified property and of the property to which unused gross floor area is transferred shall prepare and execute deed restrictions satisfactory to the Law Department of the City of Philadelphia, which indicate the amount of unused gross floor area transferred between the properties and which are so drafted as to prevent the future sale, transfer or use of that gross floor area by any party other than the owners, heirs or assigns of the property to which the unused gross floor area is transferred;

(d) The owners of the historically certified property shall execute documents satisfactory to the Law Department to assure that a portion of the proceeds from the transfer of the unused gross floor area is used for the restoration, rehabilitation, upkeep or renovation of the historically certified property.