Street and Alley Tree Policy

Lancaster Township Street and Alley Tree Policy

Please direct any questions or inquiries to the Public Works Superintendent at (717) 293-1733.

  • The individual property owner is responsible for all trees and shrubs along any street or alley, whether in or out of the right of way. The property owner is responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of all trees and shrubs that may be hindering visibility at intersections, impinging on travel lanes, obscuring or interfering with street signs and or otherwise negatively impacting vehicular or pedestrian access or travel.
  • The property owner must maintain a minimum distance of 14 feet from the road surface to the bottom of the lowest hanging branch. The property owner is responsible for the pruning of trees/bushes that are blocking regulatory signs (i.e. stop signs, speed signs, etc.) or the line of sight at intersections. If the property owner fails to prune trees/bushes, the Township reserves the right to accomplish or contract for the necessary pruning at the homeowner’s expense.
  • When a tree or tree limb blocks or partially blocks a Township roadway and/or a Township Alley, every effort will be made by the Public Works Department to open the roadway for the safe passage of vehicles. It is the responsibility of the property owner to clean up the fallen tree, branches, and any debris after the reopening of the roadway.
  •  If a tree or branch is too large for the Public Works Department to handle, the roadway will be closed and the property owner will have 24 hours within which to contact and arrange for a tree removal contractor and have the tree removed. If the Public Works Department has been able to partially open the road allowing safe passage via at least one full lane, the homeowner will have 48 hours within which to accomplish the removal of the tree allowing opening of the full road. If the homeowner does not or cannot comply or if the homeowner cannot be contacted, Lancaster Township has the right to hire a tree removal contractor to perform the work and to invoice the property owner for any required services.
  • Further information regarding resident obligations are contained in the Zoning Ordinance of Lancaster Township which states: Section 1907, Vision Obstruction, “No building, structure, planting, or other obstruction shall be permitted on any corner lot that would obscure sight visibility within the clear sight triangle established by measuring one hundred (100) feet along the centerlines of the intersecting streets at a height of three (3) feet above the street surface.”