Telephone: 717-632-7366          20 Wayne Avenue, Hanover, PA 17331                 Fax: 717-632-2464
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Public Works Department

Township Engineer
Eric J. Bortner, P.E.
976 Wilson Avenue
Hanover, Pa 17331

When Township residents plant shrubs, flowers, and split-rail fences in the front (or street) right of way, it impacts the utility easements on the remainder of the home or building lot.  

We continue to encounter more situations where folks have planted shrubs, trees, fences, sheds, etc. within the utility easement around their property. A utility easement is a right of way that exists solely for the purpose of maintaining, repairing, or replacing a utility located within it. That utility could be water, electric, natural gas, telephone, or cable. But more than likely it will be sanitary sewer. Most of the problems occur in the newer developments. The easements should be identified in your property deed and should be pointed out by your realtor when the house or lot is purchased. You run the risk of having to tear out those shrubs, trees, and fences if the Township or other utility company needs access to their lines. Since the Township doesn't allow those things placed in the right of way, we won't replace them.  

There are quite a few trees along streets and sidewalks that need trimmed in order to resolve problems with visibility. Accidents can easily occur if motorists can't see around an intersection because of tree limbs or shrub growth. To avoid this problem property owners and residents are asked to keep their street trees and shrubs trimmed. Ordinance No. 659 specifies the responsibilities of property owners regarding street tree trimming. Should property owners not keep trees properly trimmed the Township can trim and invoice the property owner.