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§ 14-401. Residential Districts.

(a) Districts.

(.1) List.

The City's residential zoning districts are listed in Table 14-401-1, below. When this Zoning Code refers to "Residential" zoning districts, it is referring to all of these districts as of the effective date of this Zoning Code.

Table 14-401-1: Residential Districts

{For a printable PDF version, click HERE}

Map Symbol

District Name

Previously Known As

RSD-1

Residential Single-Family Detached-1

R1

RSD-2

Residential Single-Family Detached-2

R1A

RSD-3

Residential Single-Family Detached-3

R2

RSA-1

Residential Single-Family Attached-1

R3

RSA-2

Residential Single-Family Attached-2

R4

RSA-3

Residential Single-Family Attached-3

R5

RSA-4

Residential Single-Family Attached-4

R6

R7

RSA-5

Residential Single-Family Attached-5

R9A

R10A

R20

RTA-1

Residential Two-Family Attached-1

R5A

RM-1

Residential Multi-Family-1

R8

R9

R10

R10B

R18

R19

RM-2

Residential Multi-Family-2

R11

R11A

R12

R13

RM-3

Residential Multi-Family-3

R14

RM-4

Residential Multi-Family-4

R15

R16

RMX-1

Residential Mixed-Use-1

RC-6

RMX-2

Residential Mixed-Use-2

WRD

ITD

RMX-3

Residential Mixed-Use-3

RC-4

(.2) Map Symbols.

(.a) The alphanumeric map symbols are intended to provide a general indication of each district's primary intended character and the building types allowed. "RSD," for example, is a shorthand reference to a residential district that is primarily intended to accommodate a single detached house on a lot. "RSA" is used to refer to a residential district geared primarily toward attached and semi-detached houses on individual lots. "RTA" identifies a residential district that permits two-family houses. The RM residential districts are oriented toward multi-family buildings. The RMX districts are residential mixed-use districts that allow a range of residential uses and some commercial uses.

(.b) The numeral following the dash in the RSD, RSA, RTA, RM, and RMX district map symbols is a relative indicator of the density and intensity of development allowed, with a "1" indicating the lowest density/intensity option within the range.

(b) Purposes.

Philadelphia's Residential zoning districts are primarily intended to create, maintain, and promote a variety of housing opportunities for individual households and to maintain and promote the desired physical character of neighborhoods. While the district regulations primarily accommodate residential use types, some nonresidential uses are also allowed. The Residential district standards provide development flexibility, while at the same time helping to ensure that new development is compatible with the City's diverse neighborhoods. In addition, the regulations offer certainty for property owners, developers, and neighbors about the limits of what is allowed. In the event of a conflict between any provision of this § 14-401 (Residential Districts) and any other provision of this Zoning Code, the latter shall govern.

(c) Descriptions.

(.1) RSD, Residential Single-Family Detached Districts.

The RSD, Residential Single-Family Detached districts are primarily intended to accommodate detached houses on individual lots. It is intended that RSD zoning be applied in areas where the land use pattern is characterized predominately by detached houses on individual lots or where such a land use pattern is desired in the future. The Zoning Code includes three RSD districts that are differentiated primarily on the basis of minimum lot area requirements.

(.2) RSA, Residential Single-Family Attached Districts.

The RSA, Residential Single-Family Attached districts are primarily intended to accommodate attached and semi-detached houses on individual lots, but may be applied in areas characterized by a mix of housing types, including detached houses. The districts are also intended to provide a density transition between RSD districts and RM districts. The Zoning Code includes five RSA districts that are differentiated primarily on the basis of minimum lot area requirements.

(.3) RTA, Residential Two-Family Attached Districts.

The RTA, Residential Two-Family Attached districts are primarily intended to accommodate two-family, semi-detached houses on individual lots, but may be applied in areas with a mix of housing types, including detached and attached houses.

(.4) RM, Residential Multi-Family Districts.

The RM, Residential Multi-Family districts are primarily intended to accommodate moderate- to high-density, multi-unit residential buildings in areas where such development already exists or where it is desired in the future. The Zoning Code includes four RM districts. These districts are differentiated primarily on the basis of allowed minimum lot area per unit and allowed building heights.

(.5) RMX, Residential Mixed-Use Districts.

The RMX, Residential Mixed-Use districts are intended to accommodate residential and mixed-use development. The RMX-1 district is further intended to promote conservation of existing topography, trees, natural waterways, and other natural resources, as well as preservation of historically significant buildings, structures, and property.

Principal uses that are allowed in Residential districts are set forth in Table 14-602-1. Uses classified as accessory uses are not regulated by the use table. Accessory uses are permitted in conjunction with allowed principal uses, provided they comply with all applicable regulations of § 14-603 (Use-Specific Standards) and § 14-604 (Accessory Uses and Structures).

Dimensional standards that apply in Residential districts are set forth in § 14-701 (Dimensional Standards).

(a) No more than one principal use is allowed per lot in RSD, RSA, and RTA zoning districts, except as otherwise expressly stated in this Zoning Code. Multiple principal uses are allowed on a single lot in RM and RMX districts.

(b) No more than one principal building is allowed per lot in RSD, RSA, and RTA zoning districts. Multiple principal buildings may be placed on a single lot in RM and RMX districts. Dormitories and recreation-related buildings accessory to education facilities and residential dwelling units accessory to religious assembly uses are exempt from limitations on the number of buildings per lot.

Subsequent to the effective date of this Zoning Code, no rezoning to an RMX-1 or RMX-2 district shall be effective until a master plan for such district has been approved in accordance with § 14-304(3)(e)(.1) (Master Plan Districts).

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