§ 441.8. Driveway design requirements.

 (a)  General. General requirements shall be as follows:

   (1)  The ability of a driveway to safely and efficiently function as an integral component of a highway system requires that its design and construction be based on the amount and type of traffic that it is expected to serve and the type and character of roadway which it accesses. This chapter separates driveways into four classifications, based on the amount of traffic they are expected to serve. A description of each classification and typical examples of land uses normally associated with each follows:

     (i)   Minimum use driveway, see Figure 7. A driveway normally used by not more than 25 vehicles per day, such as:

       (A)   single family dwellings, duplex houses; or

       (B)   apartments with five units or less.

     (ii)   Low volume driveway, see Figure 8. A driveway normally used by more than 25 vehicles per day but less than 750 vehicles per day, such as:

       (A)   office buildings;

       (B)   elementary and junior high schools; or

       (C)   car washes.

     (iii)   Medium volume driveway, see Figures 9, 11, and 12. A driveway normally used by more than 750 vehicles but less than 1500 vehicles per day, which does not normally require traffic signalization, such as:

       (A)   motels;

       (B)   fast food restaurants; or

       (C)   service stations and small shopping centers or plazas.

     (iv)   High volume driveway, see Figure 10. A driveway normally used by more than 1500 vehicles per day, which often requires traffic signalization, such as:

       (A)   large shopping centers; or

       (B)   multi-building apartment or office complexes.

   (2)  The design features described in this section and illustrated in the attendant figures are to be used by the applicant in designing the driveway plans which accompany the application. Dimensions shall be selected from the range of values shown on the appropriate figure, unless site conditions warrant a deviation. The Department may require design details which are more stringent than those specified in this chapter to insure the safe and efficient operation of any proposed driveway.

   (3)  Figures 7, 8, and 9 show two sets of design values. The applicant shall design his driveway using the values appropriate for the posted speed of the roadway being accessed.

 (b)  Angle of access driveway approach. Angle of access driveway approach shall include the following:

   (1)  Access driveway approaches used for two-way operation shall be positioned at right angles, that is, 90 degrees, to the highway or as near thereto as site conditions permit, except as authorized in Figure 11.

   (2)  When two access driveways are constructed on the same property frontage and used for one-way operation, each of these driveways may be placed at an angle less than a right angle, but not less than 45 degrees to the highway, except that along divided highways where no openings are allowed in the median the minimum angle of an exit driveway may be 30 degrees, as shown in Figure 12.

 (c)  Driveways adjacent to intersections. Driveways serving properties located adjacent to a highway intersection shall be subject to the following:

   (1)  There shall be a minimum ten foot tangent distance between the intersecting highway radius and the radius of the first permitted driveway.

   (2)  The distance from the edge of pavement of the intersecting highway to the radius of the first permitted driveway shall be a minimum of 20 feet on curbed highways and 30 feet on uncurbed highways.

   (3)  Paragraphs (1) and (2) of this subsection may be waived only if the intersecting highway radius extends along the property frontage to the extent that compliance is physically impossible.

 (d)  Property line clearance. Except for joint-use driveways, no portion of any access shall be located outside of the property frontage boundary line.

 (e)  Multiple driveways. Multiple driveways serving the same property must be separated by a minimum distance of 15 feet measured along the right-of-way line and 20 feet measured along the shoulder, ditch line, or curb. When the distance between multiple driveways is 50 feet or less measured along the shoulder or ditch line, the area between shall be clearly defined by permanent curbing. This curb shall be placed in line with existing curb or two feet back of the shoulder or ditch line on uncurbed highways. It shall be extended around the driveway radii to the right-of-way line.

 (f)  Site requirements. Site requirements shall be as follows:

   (1)  All nonresidential buildings shall be located a sufficient distance from the right-of-way line to provide ample driving area and parking off the right-of-way to prevent storage of vehicles on the access driveways and to prevent the back-up and turning of vehicles on the highway pavement.

   (2)  The radii of internal curves shall be as large as possible to allow a direct movement from the highway into a proper position to obtain service or parking without any interference to other vehicles attempting the same maneuver.

   (3)  Applications for driveways providing access to drive-in-service developments shall, when requested, include information relative to the amount of storage provided between the service facility and the right-of-way, the number of service operations anticipated during peak periods, and the hours and days of operation.

   (4)  The area between the right-of-way line adjacent to and on both sides of a driveway shall be used as a clear zone to provide a physical barrier between the traveled way and activity on private property. This area shall remain free of any obstructions which may interfere with a clear line of vision for entering or exiting vehicles.

 (g)  Curbing. Requirements for curbing shall conform with the following:

   (1)  The permit may require the installation of curbing wherever it is required to control access or drainage, or both. All curbing must be permanent curbing, as defined in §  441.1 of this title (relating to definitions).

   (2)  Where property abutting the right-of-way line could be used as parking area, the permit may require curbing, permanent guardrail, or fencing to be constructed along the right-of-way line in order to prohibit vehicle encroachment upon the sidewalk or shoulder area.

   (3)  If, in the opinion of the Department, there is a high probability that vehicles would otherwise utilize a portion of the property frontage other than the approved driveway to gain access to the property, the permit may require curbing or other physical barriers to be constructed.

   (4)  When curb exists adjacent to the proposed driveway, the line and grade of the existing curb shall be matched, unless otherwise authorized by the permit.

 (h)  Sight distance. Conditions for sight distance shall be as follows:

   (1)  Access driveways shall be located at a point within the property frontage limits which provides at least the minimum sight distance listed in the appropriate following table:

   Table 1—Safe Sight Distance for passenger cars and single unit trucks exiting from driveways onto two-lane roads.

Posted
Speed
(mph)
Safe Sight
Distance—Left1
(feet)
Safe Sight
Distance—Right1
(feet)
25250195
35440350
45635570
55845875

    1 Measured from a vehicle ten feet back of the pavement edge.

   Table 2—Safe Sight Distance for buses and combinations exiting from driveways onto two-lane roads.

Posted
Speed
(mph)
Safe Sight
Distance—Left1
(feet)
Safe Sight
Distance—Right1
(feet)
25400300
35675625
4512251225
5520502050

    1 Measured from a vehicle ten feet back of the pavement edge.

   Table 3—Safe Sight Distance for passenger cars and single unit trucks exiting from driveways onto four and six-lane roads.

Posted
Speed
(mph)
Safe Sight
Distance—Left1
(feet)
Safe Sight
Distance—Right2
(feet)
25175195
35300350
45500570
55785875

    1 Measured from a vehicle ten feet back of the pavement edge to a vehicle approaching in the outside lane.

    2 Measured from a vehicle ten feet back of the pavement edge to a vehicle approaching in the median lane.

   Table 4—Safe Sight Distance for buses and combinations exiting from driveways onto four and six-lane roads.

Posted
Speed
(mph)
Safe Sight
Distance—Left1
(feet)
Safe Sight
Distance—Right2
(feet)
25300300
35625625
4512251225
5520502050

    1 Measured from a vehicle ten feet back of the pavement edge to a vehicle approaching in the outside lane.

    2 Measured from a vehicle ten feet back of the pavement edge to a vehicle approaching in the median lane.

   Table 5—Safe Sight Distance for passenger cars and single unit trucks entering driveways by left turns.

Posted Speed
Safe Sight Distance in Feet 1
(mph) 2-Lane4-Lane6-Lane
25190205220
35300320345
45445470500
55610645680

   1 Measured from the point where a left-turning vehicle stops to a vehicle in the outside lane.

   Table 6—Safe Sight Distance for buses and combinations entering driveways by left turns.

Posted Speed
Safe Sight Distance in Feet 1
(mph) 2-Lane4-Lane6-Lane
25330360390
35485530575
45690750810
559059901075

   1 Measured from the point where a left-turning vehicle stops for a vehicle in the outside lane.

   (2)  In using Tables 1 through 6 the following additional requirements shall apply:

     (i)   Tables 2, 4, and 6 shall be used in lieu of Tables 1, 3, and 5 only when combination traffic exceeds 5.0% of the total traffic using the proposed driveway.

     (ii)   Posted speeds shall be used unless operating speeds vary from the posted speed by more than ten miles per hour, in which case the Department may require that operating speeds be used.

     (iii)   The sight distances in Tables 1 through 4 apply only when highway grades are zero to 3.0%, either up or down.

       (A)   When the highway grade in the section to be used for acceleration, after leaving the driveway, ascends at 3.0—5.0%, the sight distance in the direction of approaching ascending traffic may be increased by a factor of 1.4.

       (B)   When the highway grade ascends at greater than 5.0%, sight distance may be increased by a factor of 1.7.

       (C)   When the highway grade in the section to be used for acceleration after leaving the driveway descends at 3.0—5.0%, sight distance in the direction of approaching descending highway traffic may be reduced by a factor of 0.6.

       (D)   When the road descends at greater than 5.0%, sight distance may be reduced by a factor of 0.5.

     (iv)   The sight distance values in Tables 1 through 6 are desirable for safe operation of the driveway. Sight distance values less than desirable will be accepted only if it is impossible to achieve the desirable value by locating the driveway at any point within the property frontage boundaries. The minimum acceptable sight distance values shall be computed from the following formula:

       SSSD = 1.47 Vt + V2   
30 (f+g)

       SSSD = Minimum safe stopping sight distance (feet).

       V = Velocity of vehicle (miles per hour).

       t = Perception time of motorist (average = 2.5 seconds).

       f = Wet friction of pavement (average = 0.30).

       g = Percent grade of roadway divided by 100.

   (3)  If sight distance requirements as specified in this chapter cannot be met, the Department may:

     (i)   prohibit left turns by exiting vehicles;

     (ii)   restrict turning movements to right turns in and out of a driveway;

     (iii)   require installation of a right turn acceleration lane or deceleration lane;

     (iv)   require installation of a separate left turn standby lane;

     (v)   alter the horizontal or vertical geometry of the roadway; or

     (vi)   deny access to the highway.

 (i)  Grade of access driveway. Grade of access driveway shall be constructed in the following manner:

   (1)  All driveways shall be constructed so as not to impair drainage within the right-of-way, alter the stability of the improved area, or change the drainage of adjacent areas.

   (2)  Where a drainage ditch or swale exists, the permittee shall install adequate pipe under the driveway in accordance with Form 408. Drainage pipe installed under driveways shall be at least 15 inches in diameter.

   (3)  The side slopes for driveway embankments within the right-of-way shall not be steeper than ten to one. See Figure 6.

   (4)  Grade requirements in uncurbed shoulders within the right-of-way shall conform to Figure 1.

Grade Requirements

   (5)  Grade requirements where curbs and sidewalks are present.

     (i)   The driveway approaches shall be installed 1 1/2 inches above the adjacent roadway or the gutter grade to maintain proper drainage. See Figure 5.

     (ii)   The difference between the cross slope of the roadway and the upward grade of the driveway approach shall not exceed 8.0%.

     (iii)   When a planted area exists in front of the sidewalk, one of the following three cases shall apply:

       (A)   When the grass strip between the curb and the sidewalk is wide enough to maintain an 8.0% maximum driveway approach grade, construct the driveway as shown in Figure 2.

Grass strip driveway

       (B)   If the driveway grade would exceed 8.0%, depress the outer edge of the sidewalk and maintain a maximum sidewalk cross slope of 6.0%. This will enable the driveway slope to stay within the 8.0% slope limit. See Figure 3.

8.0% Driveway Grade

       (C)   If the sidewalk cross slope would exceed 6.0%, as indicated in clause (B) of this subparagraph, depress the entire sidewalk. The amount of depression shall not exceed 1 1/2 inches at the inner edge of the sidewalk. The longitudinal slope of the sidewalk shall not exceed two inches per foot. See Figure 3.

     (iv)   When the sidewalk is directly against the back of the curb and the sidewalk is at least five feet wide, the curb shall be sloped as shown in Figure 5 of this subsection. This will eliminate the need for depressing the back edge of the sidewalk. For sidewalks narrower than five feet, the curb will be sloped and the back edge of the sidewalk will be depressed (maximum 1 1/2 inches) to maintain an 8.0% maximum grade on the driveway. The longitudinal grade of the sidewalk shall not exceed two inches per foot.

Figure 4 and Figure 5

Driveway Fill Slopes

 (j)  Auxiliary lanes. Auxiliary lanes shall consist of the following:

   (1)  Acceleration and deceleration lanes. The combination of highway speed, volumes, location, and arrangement of driveways and intersections may require the installation of an acceleration or deceleration lane, or both, to serve a proposed low, medium, or high volume driveway. When required by the permit, a speed change lane of sufficient length and width shall be constructed to allow vehicles to safely decelerate or accelerate when entering or leaving the property.

   (2)  Left turn stand-by lanes. The permit may require the installation of a left turn stand-by lane to separate and protect left turning vehicles from through traffic if failure to do so would result in an undue hazard to the traveling public.

   (3)  Additional right-of-way for lanes. Where the width of the highway right-of-way is insufficient to permit the construction of a needed auxiliary lane, the permittee shall provide any necessary additional right-of-way.

   (4)  Cost. When required, auxiliary lanes shall be constructed, at no cost to the Department, in accordance with the Roadway Construction Standards and Form 408.

   (5)  Lane in front of another property. If an auxiliary lane must be located in front of property of another person, the applicant shall be required to secure the approval of the other person or indemnify the Commonwealth against any action which the other person may bring against the Commonwealth.

 (k)  Access driveway pavement. Access driveways shall be appropriately surfaced with a stabilized material between the traveled way and the right-of-way line unless a higher type material is specified by the permit. Low, medium, and high volume driveways which provide access to paved highways shall be paved within the right-of-way. Materials used in the construction of driveways shall meet the requirements of Form 408. The driveway pavement shall be at least four inches thick within the right-of-way.

 (l)  Driveways relative to ramps. Ramps are intended to provide access from one roadway or roadway system to another with a minimum amount of conflict or interference from other traffic. To insure the integrity of this intended function, no access driveway will be permitted on a ramp or within 50 feet of the intersection of the edge of pavement of the ramp or its speed change lane with the edge of pavement of the intersecting roadway. Exceptions will be considered only if the enforcement of this subsection would result in the prohibition of reasonable access from the adjacent property to the highway system.

 (m)  Median openings. Median openings shall consist of the following:

   (1)  The removal of a portion of median divisor along a divided highway to provide access to and from traffic in both directions will not be permitted unless it is determined that the operating characteristics of the highway system will be improved by such action.

   (2)  A left turn standby lane shall be installed to separate and protect left turning vehicles whenever a median opening is permitted.

   (3)  Requests for removal of a median divisor will not be granted without the approval of the director.

 (n)  Shoulder upgrading. Where the existing shoulder on either side of a proposed low, medium, or high volume driveway is not adequate to allow its use by turning vehicles, the permittee shall upgrade the shoulder area for a minimum of 100 feet on either side of the driveway. The type of shoulder to be installed will be specified by the permit, in accordance with the volume and type of traffic expected to use the driveway.

 (o)  Traffic control devices. Requirements for traffic control devices shall be as follows:

   (1)  Nonelectrically powered devices. The permittee shall, at his own expense, install and maintain all nonelectrically powered traffic control devices, as specified in the permit, which are required to provide for the safe and orderly movement of vehicular or pedestrian traffic, or both. These devices shall include, but not be limited to, any required regulatory, warning or guide signs, delineators, and pavement markings.

   (2)  Electrically powered devices. Electrically powered devices shall consist of the following:

     (i)   When power operated devices, including traffic signals, are required for proper traffic control, a traffic signal permit (Form TE 964) shall be obtained in addition to the occupancy permit. The permit to own and operate a traffic control device shall be requested by and issued to only the appropriate municipality.

     (ii)   Applications for driveways which include traffic signal control shall be accompanied by the following additional information:

       (A)   An engineering study in sufficient detail to allow determination of the need for signal control and the adequacy of its design and operation.

       (B)   Location of traffic signal heads, poles, controller, and detectors.

       (C)   Phasing and timing diagrams.

Source

   The provisions of this §  441.8 amended November 27, 1981, effective October 17, 1981, 11 Pa. B. 4159. Immediately preceding text appears at serial pages (62045) and (62046).

Cross References

   This section cited in 67 Pa. Code §  441.6 (relating to general conditions).

Notes of Decisions

   Although driveway opening on to State highway was established prior to promulgation of the regulations, the regulation could be applied retroactively to reasonably limit ingress and egress since property is held subject to valid police power regulations ‘‘made, and to be made, for the health and comfort of the people.’’ Department of Transportation v. Longo, 510 A.2d 832 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1986); affirmed 518 A.2d 265 (Pa. 1986).



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