The Mayor and City Council of the City of Altoona enacted an amendment to the Altoona Planning Code, specifically Title Three entitled, “Zoning” and Title Ten entitled, “Administration” to Regulate Student Homes. The enactment is reflective of and in accordance with the City’s development objectives which include seeking to maintain the residential character of neighborhoods, to enhance quality of life and to maintain property values.
The Code of Ordinances of the City of Altoona defines a Student Home as follows: “A living arrangement within one (single) family or twin, semi-detached, duplex and/or row house dwelling by persons unrelated by blood, marriage or legal adoption, who are attending undergraduate or graduate programs offered by colleges or universities or are on semester break or summer break from studies at college or universities, or any combination of such persons. The residents of a Student Home share living expenses and may live and cook as a single housekeeping unit. Exception: Student Homes shall not include fraternity house, sorority house, boardinghouse, multifamily dwellings and/or rooms offered for let in on (single) family dwelling when the dwelling is occupied by a family that is the recorded owner of record by Title.” Note that this definition does not include apartment buildings of three or more units.
The attached Student Homes Map shows the locations of approved Student Homes in the City of Altoona.
Student Homes are granted as Special Exceptions by the Zoning Hearing Board. If you have any questions about establishing a Student Home in the City of Altoona, or concerns about an existing Student Home, please contact the Codes and Inspections Department at firstname.lastname@example.org or