Pocopson Township, population 3,350, is located in Chester County, roughly 25 miles west of downtown Philadelphia. In 2003, Pocopson adopted a TDR ordinance designed to preserve prime farmland, sensitive natural areas, historic resources and rural character.
Pocopson uses TDR to preserve prime farmland, sensitive natural areas, historic resources and rural character.
To qualify as sending sites, properties must be either in the RA Residential or Agricultural zone. The Township’s preservation priorities are prime soils, lands currently being farmed, lands surrounding recognized historic structures/sites, woodlands, natural area and lands to be dedicated as publicly-accessible greenways. The sending site owner can elect to deed restrict only a portion of a sending site but must provide a survey indicating which portion will be restricted and which portion will retain its development rights. The transferable rights are expressed as gross floor area (GFA) and 3,500 square feet of bonus GFA equates to one bonus dwelling unit in development options where GFA is not applicable.
Receiving area developers can gain bonus GFA for preserving land either on-site or at qualified sending sites under the following formulas. Developers receive a bonus of 1,750 square feet of GFA for the preservation of one acre of woodlands or geological areas and for each additional acre surrounding a designated historic site or building. In addition, three square feet of bonus GFA can be gained for the restoration/rehabilitation of each square foot of a designated historic building. Developments also obtain 3,500 square feet of bonus GFA for each 17,500 square feet of new construction using traditional building materials. Developments can gain 3,500 square feet of bonus GFA for each five acres of land deeded to the Township for a public greenway and for each 100 native trees planted in an area approved by the Township. Finally, the Township grants 350 square feet of bonus GFA for each every 3,500 square feet of GFA constructed to the standards of the U.S. Green Building Council or other nationally recognized green building standards setting organization.