Is Your Property Code Compliant?

By Swarthmore Borough Manager Jane Billings

Spring may have been slow in arriving, but it’s finally here. The Borough’s Code Enforcement Officer will soon begin the annual inspection of all properties for compliance with the Borough’s Property Maintenance regulations, which are intended to create a safe environment for pedestrians, bicyclists, and drivers in Swarthmore. Be a good neighbor and make sure your property conforms to the following:


• Trees trimmed a minimum of eight feet above the sidewalk or street.
• Hedges and shrubbery trimmed a minimum of six inches from the sidewalk or street.
• For corner properties, maintenance of a triangle of unobstructed vision at intersecting streets. Hedges, shrubs, trees (except street trees) within the triangle may not exceed 24 inches in height.
• Shrubbery and trees trimmed so that street signs, street lights, or traffic light are not obscured.


Replacement of any sidewalk slabs that are broken, dished, missing, severely cracked or disintegrated, have become excessively slippery or do not drain water. “Ramping” between slabs is permitted only if the height from the bottom to the top of the ramp does not exceed one inch.

If a violation is found by the Code Enforcement Officer, a correction notice with required completion date will be mailed to the property address. If the work is not completed within the required time frame, the Borough will issue a second notice and a $50 fine, followed by a third notice and $150 fine if the work remains uncompleted. After a third notice, all violations will be forwarded to the District Justice for such fines and penalties as allowed by law.

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