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§ 10-611. Sidewalk Behavior.

(1) Scope. The provisions of this Section shall apply as follows:

(a) The following provisions shall apply city-wide: subsections (2)(a), relating to parking a motorized vehicle on the sidewalk; (2)(b), relating to gambling on the sidewalk; (2)(f), relating to unlicensed sale of goods or services on the sidewalk; (2)(i), relating to the sale of goods or services, or solicitation of funds, on the highway; (2)(j), relating to displaying for sale objectionable material; (2)(l), relating to unreasonable obstructions on the sidewalk; (5)(a), relating to honor boxes on the sidewalk without a permit; (5)(b), relating to littering on the sidewalk; (5)(c), relating to excessive noise on the sidewalk; (6)(a), relating to owner/occupier of private property keeping the sidewalk clear of litter and obstructions; and (6)(b), relating to owner/occupier of private property keeping the sidewalk in good repair.

(b) The following provisions shall apply only in the zones designated by Council: (2)(c), relating to riding a bicycle on the sidewalk; (2)(d), relating to riding a scooter, roller skates or skateboard on the sidewalk; (2)(e), relating to loading or unloading a commercial vehicle on the sidewalk; (2)(g), relating to lying on the sidewalk; (2)(h), relating to sitting on the sidewalk; (2)(k), relating to unlicensed placement of any bench, planter, fixture or street furniture on the sidewalk; (2)(m), relating to unattended belongings on the sidewalk; (2)(n), relating to unrestrained animals on the sidewalk; (4)(a), (b) and (c), relating to aggressive solicitation; and (6)(c), relating to owner of take-out restaurants care of trash receptacles on the sidewalk.

(c) The provisions identified in subsection (b) above shall apply in the following designated zones only:

(.1) The area bounded by the north side of Vine street on the north, the west side of Broad street on the east, the south side of Lombard street on the south, and the Schuylkill River on the west.

(.2) Broad street, from the south side of City Hall-South to the Philadelphia Naval Business Center.

(.3) South street, from the west side of Broad street to the Schuylkill River.

(.4) Washington avenue, from the west side of Broad street to Grays Ferry avenue.

(.5) Grays Ferry avenue, from Washington avenue to Forty-ninth street.

(.6) Woodland avenue from Fifty-eighth street to Seventy-fourth street.

(.7) Passyunk avenue, from Broad street to Sixty-third street.

(.8) Essington avenue, from Sixty-third street to the Bartram Avenue Airport District.

(.9) The First Councilmanic District.

(.10) The Sixth Councilmanic District.

(.11) The area bounded by the Schuylkill River on the east running west on Spring Garden street to Fortieth street, then south to Market street, then west to Fifty-second street, then south to Woodland avenue, then east to University avenue, then south to the Schuylkill River.

(.12) The Seventh Councilmanic District.

(.13) The Fourth Councilmanic District.

(2) Obstructing the Sidewalk Prohibited. No person shall:

(a) Park any motorized vehicle on the public sidewalk.

(b) Conduct any gambling or other games of chance on the public sidewalk.

(c) Ride a bicycle upon any public sidewalk, subject to the provisions of Chapter 12-800.

(d) Ride a scooter, roller skates or skateboard on any public sidewalk.

(e) Obstruct the public sidewalk while loading or unloading a commercial or other vehicle, except as shall be necessary for the safe and expeditious loading or unloading of such vehicle.

(f) Sell or offer for sale any goods, wares or services on the public sidewalk, without a license from the Department of Licenses and Inspections pursuant to Chapter 9-200.

(g) Lie on the public sidewalk, or on any object placed on the public sidewalk.

(h) Sit on the public sidewalk, or on any object placed on the public sidewalk, for more than one hour in any two hour time period.

(i) Sell or offer for sale any goods, wares or services, or solicit funds for any purpose, in or on the public highway, except for licensed vendors.

(.1) If the Department of Licenses and Inspections determines, in its discretion, that particular locations or particular vending or solicitation activities do not present a safety hazard to either the vendor or solicitor or the public, the Department may issue regulations permitting such activities and/or activities at certain designated locations, subject to such restrictions as the Department deems necessary to protect the vendor or solicitor and the public from unnecessary hazards.

(j) Display for sale any objectionable material, as defined in Section 10-1301, if such objectionable material may be visible by pedestrians on or from the public sidewalk.

(k) Place or maintain any bench, planter, fixture or other street furniture on the public sidewalk without a permit from the Department of Licenses and Inspections.

(.1) The Department of Licenses and Inspections shall issue regulations setting forth the standards for such permit issuance, which standards shall insure that such street furniture does not obstruct the free passage of the sidewalks, and shall insure that such street furniture is maintained and situated in such manner as to promote a safe and attractive sidewalk environment. The permit requirement set forth in this subsection shall not become effective until such regulations are in effect.

(.2) Mechanical vending boxes for the distribution of newspapers or other printed material shall not be subject to the provisions of this subsection.

(l) Sit, stand, lie or otherwise use the public sidewalk, or place one's belongings or other objects upon the public sidewalk, in such manner as to unreasonably and significantly impede or obstruct the free passage of pedestrians.

(m) Allow his or her belongings or other objects to remain unattended on the public sidewalk for more than fifteen minutes.

(n) Allow any dogs, guard cats, pigs or snakes on the public sidewalk unless properly restrained by leash or, in the case of snakes, in a cage.

(i) Any animal with a known vicious propensity shall be muzzled.

(3) Exceptions.

(a) The prohibitions set forth in subsections (2)(g) and (2)(h), relating to sitting or lying, shall not apply to any person sitting or lying due to a medical emergency.

(b) The prohibitions set forth in subsection (2)(h), relating to sitting, shall not apply to any person:

(.1) Who requires the use of a wheelchair or other similar device to move about the sidewalk.

(.2) Operating or patronizing a commercial establishment properly licensed for business on the public sidewalk.

(.3) Participating in or attending a properly permitted parade, procession or assemblage under Section 12-1109.

(.4) Sitting on a chair or bench supplied by a public agency, for a period not to exceed six hours in any twenty-four hour period.

(.5) Sitting on a chair supplied by the abutting property owner.

(.6) Sitting within a transit stop, waiting for public or private transportation.

(c) The prohibitions set forth in subsections (2)(c) and (d), relating to bicycles, scooters, roller skates and skateboards, shall not apply to any person under the age of twelve (12). Nor shall it apply to any person on inline skates who is (a) conducting patrol under a Town Watch program coordinated with the Police Department; (b) participating in an International Inline Skating Association sanctioned event; or (c) skating in a controlled manner on the public sidewalk so as to fit in with the flow of pedestrians.

(4) Aggressive Conduct on the Sidewalk Prohibited. No person shall:

(a) Solicit money for any purpose on the public sidewalk in an aggressive manner, or accompanied by conduct, including but not limited to repeated begging, insistent panhandling, retaliatory comments, blockage of free passage of a pedestrian, touching or yelling at a pedestrian, confrontation or intimidation, which is likely to cause a reasonable person to fear bodily harm to oneself or another, or damage to or loss of property.

(b) Solicit money for any purpose on the public sidewalk in any manner, within an eight foot (8') radius of any building entrance, or within an eight foot (8') radius of any vending cart.

(c) Solicit money for any purpose on the public sidewalk in any manner, within a twenty foot (20') radius of any bank entrance or any automatic teller machine.

(5) Cluttering the Sidewalk Prohibited. No person shall:

(a) Place or maintain any newspaper or other mechanical vending box on the public sidewalk without a permit from the Department of Licenses and Inspections.

(.1) The Department of Licenses and Inspections shall issue regulations setting forth the standards for such permit issuance, which standards shall insure that such boxes do not obstruct the free passage of the sidewalks, and shall insure that such boxes are maintained and situated in such manner as to promote a safe and attractive sidewalk environment. The permit requirement set forth in this subsection shall not become effective until such regulations are in effect and in no event before January 1, 1999. If City Council should enact another ordinance regulating the placement and maintenance of such boxes on the public sidewalk, such ordinance shall supersede the requirements of this subsection (a).

(b) Place any litter on the public sidewalk, as set forth in Chapter 10-700.

(c) Produce or allow the discharge of excessive noise, from whatever source, on the public sidewalk, as set forth in Chapter 10-400.

(6) Maintenance of the Sidewalk by Private Property Owners.

(a) The owner and the occupier of any private property shall keep the abutting sidewalk free of any litter, snow, or other obstructions, pursuant to Sections 10-704, 10-714 and 10-720.

(b) The owner of any private property shall keep the abutting public sidewalk in good repair, at the owner's expense.

(c) The owner of any business, a substantial portion of which business's revenues derive from take-out food or beverages, shall place, maintain and keep clean private trash receptacles on the public sidewalk at all public entrances to such business.

(7) Enforcement.

(a) Except as set forth in § 10-611(7)(e), no law enforcement officer shall issue a notice of violation or take any coercive action against any person in violation of this Section, unless, prior to issuing such notice or taking such action, the officer or his or her designated representative:

(.1) With respect to violations of subsections (2)(g), (h), (l) or (m), relating to lying, sitting, obstructing, or leaving objects unattended, or (4)(b) or (c), relating to soliciting near a building entrance or bank, first issues an oral warning to the person or persons in violation, and then, if the person or persons refuse to comply after receiving an oral warning, issues a written warning to the person or persons in violation. The written warning shall be printed in English and Spanish.

(.2) With respect to violations of subsections (2)(g), (h), (l) or (m), or (4), attempts to ascertain whether the person is in need of medical assistance or social service assistance, including but not limited to mental health treatment, drug or alcohol rehabilitation, or homeless assistance services; and, if the officer determines that the person may be in need of social service assistance, the officer contacts an Outreach Team, who shall come to the officer's location, evaluate the person's needs, and together with the officer take all reasonable steps toward directing the person to the appropriate service provider, including but not limited to offering transportation to such provider. If the officer's reasonable efforts to direct the person to needed social services are unsuccessful, the officer may issue a notice of violation or take appropriate coercive action, after the required notice is given, subject to compliance with subsections (.a), (.b) and (.c), below.

(.a) In attempting to ascertain whether social service assistance is needed, the officer or his or her designated representative shall:

(i) Whenever the officer has reason to believe the person may be in need of social service assistance, call upon an Outreach Team to evaluate the person's needs.

(ii) Shall not take any coercive action, including but not limited to compelling a person to reveal any confidential information concerning treatment or mental health status.

(.b) No law enforcement officer shall attempt to forcibly remove any person from the public sidewalk for violation of subsections (2)(g), (h), (l) or (m), or (4) without the presence of an Outreach Team, whenever the officer determines that the person may be in need of mental health or other social service assistance, and without first making all reasonable efforts to place the person voluntarily in an appropriate social service facility or treatment facility and the availability of an appropriate residential facility with appropriate treatment strategies for the client's needs.

(.c) If the law enforcement officer, in consultation with the Mental Health Officer, determines that the person, because of his or her mental health status or otherwise, presents a danger to himself or herself or to others, the law enforcement officer shall take such steps as are authorized under the Mental Health Procedures Act, Act of July 9, 1976, P.L. 817, as amended, including, if necessary, the initiation of involuntary commitment proceedings.

(b) The Police Department shall take all necessary and appropriate steps to insure that law enforcement officers who are likely to come into contact with persons in violation of subsections (2)(b), (g), (h), (l) or (m), or (4) shall receive all appropriate training in approaching, investigating and assisting persons in need of mental health treatment or other social service assistance.

(c) Violations of subsection (2)(a), relating to parking vehicles on the sidewalk, shall be enforced in accordance with the provisions set forth in Chapter 12-2800.

(d) For purposes of this Section, an Outreach Team shall mean a group of mental health or drug and alcohol counselors authorized and designated by the Department of Public Health to provide access to residential treatment for homeless persons with mental health diagnoses and/or drug and alcohol complications.

(e) The provisions of § 10-611(7)(a) shall not apply to disorderly conduct in violation of 18 Pa. C.S. § 5503.

(8) Penalties. A person found in violation of this Section shall be subject to penalty, as follows:

(a) For a violation of subsections (2)(a), relating to parking a motorized vehicle on the sidewalk; (2)(b), relating to gambling on the sidewalk; (2)(g), relating to lying on the sidewalk; (2)(d), relating to riding a scooter, roller skates or skateboard on the sidewalk; (2)(h), relating to sitting on the sidewalk; (2)(l), relating to unreasonable obstructions on the sidewalk; and (2)(m), relating to unattended belongings on the sidewalk, a fine of twenty (20) dollars.

(b) For a violation of subsections (4)(a), (b) and (c), relating to aggressive solicitation, a fine of not more than one hundred (100) dollars.

(c) For a violation of subsections (2)(i), relating to the sale of goods or services, or solicitation of funds, on the highway; (2)(j), relating to displaying for sale objectionable material; (2)(n), relating to unrestrained animals on the sidewalk; (5)(b), relating to littering on the sidewalk; (6)(a), relating to owner/occupier of private property keeping the sidewalk clear of litter and obstructions; and (6)(c), relating to owner of take-out restaurants care of trash receptacles on the sidewalk, a minimum fine of one hundred (100) dollars and no more than three hundred (300) dollars.

(d) For a violation of subsections (2)(e), relating to loading or unloading a commercial vehicle on the sidewalk; (2)(f), relating to unlicensed sale of goods or services on the sidewalk; (2)(k), relating to unlicensed placement of any bench, planter, fixture or street furniture on the sidewalk; (5)(a), relating to honor boxes on the sidewalk without a permit; and (6)(b), relating to owner/occupier of private property keeping the sidewalk in good repair, a fine of not more than three hundred (300) dollars.

(e) For a violation of subsection (5)(c), relating to excessive noise on the sidewalk, fines as follows:

(.1) for the first violation, a fine of not less than twenty-five (25) dollars and not more than three hundred (300) dollars;

(.2) for the second violation, a fine of not less than one hundred (100) dollars and not more than three hundred (300) dollars; and

(.3) for the third and subsequent violations, fines of not less than three hundred (300) dollars.

(f) Each day a violation of this Section continues shall constitute a separate violation.

(g) In all cases, the court, in its discretion, may suspend the fine upon agreement by the offender to perform such community service or to participate in such social service assistance program or rehabilitation program as the City recommends and the court deems appropriate. No person shall be imprisoned for violating this Section or for failing to pay a fine for violating this Section.

(h) For a violation of subsection (2)(b), relating to gambling on the sidewalk, the penalty shall be that contained in Section 10-612.

(i) For a violation of subsection (2)(c), relating to bicycles on the sidewalk, the penalty shall be that contained in Section 12-808.

(9) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary in this Section, nothing in this Section shall apply in the Third Councilmanic District, except for the area bounded by the Schuylkill River on the East running West on Spring Garden street to Fortieth street, then South to Market street, then West to Fifty-second street, then South to Woodland avenue, then East to University avenue, then South to the Schuylkill River, which area shall be subject to all provisions of this Section, including, but not limited to, subsection 10-611(1)(a), relating to provisions applying citywide, and subsection 10-611(1)(b), relating to provisions applying in designated zones.

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Keywords
sidewalk
service
health
mental
social
street
box
permit
treatment
violation