In baseball, if the base runner and the ball arrive at first base at the same time the tie is resolved in favor of the base runner and they are safe. Under the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code (MPC), if there is any ambiguity when interpreting a zoning ordinance provision, the ambiguity is interpreted in favor of the property owner and against the extension of any restriction in the ordinance provision. This rule was applied by the Commonwealth Court recently in the case of Alleman v. North Newton Township Board of Supervisors.
In the Alleman case, the property owner owned approximately 112 acres of split-zoned land in North Newton Township. Approximately forty acres of the property were in the Township’s Agricultural District and approximately seventy-two acres were in the Township’s Rural Residential District. The property owner had a hog feeding operation on a portion of the forty acres