1. Permit Required. It is unlawful for any person to construct, alter, or relocate any fence or landscape wall within the City without first obtaining the appropriate permit as required by the Zoning Code.
2. Definition. For the purpose of this chapter it is understood that the terms fence and wall are synonymous and herein defined as a barrier consisting of wood, stone or metal intended to prevent ingress or egress, and/or enhance the appearance of the structure of the landscape.
A. Fences are to be constructed of customarily used materials such as chain link, wood, wrought iron, aluminum or polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Walls are to be constructed of brick, stone, textured concrete, precast concrete, tile block, and similar materials as approved by the building inspector.
B. Prohibited Materials: A fence or wall may not be designed to cause pain or injury to humans or animals. Therefore, the use of spikes, broken glass, barbed wire, razor wire, nails, electrical charge or other similar materials shall be prohibited, unless specified otherwise herein.
C. No woven, twisted, welded or interlaced wire fence shall be erected and/or located in a residential or commercial district.
D. Barbed Wire and Electrical Fencing: In agriculture and conservation districts, barbed wire, woven wire, and electrical fencing are permitted, subject to a minimum setback of 10 feet, and only when used to contain livestock or to protect crops and plantings in areas containing 10 acres or more.
4. General Requirements.
A. Fences may be erected along the side and rear property lines in all districts. In accord with paragraph B of this subsection, the property owner installing the fence must ensure there is a means for maintaining both sides of the fence subject to State and local laws and ordinances.
B. It is the property owner’s responsibility to maintain the fence on both sides.
C. The decorative, finished side of all wood fences must be facing out (away from the home).
D. No chain link or wired fence of any kind shall be constructed or maintained with the cut or selvage end of the fencing material exposed at the top.
E. All fences shall be maintained and kept safe and in a state of good repair.
F. The property owner erecting the fence is solely responsible for ensuring the fence is located on his/her property in accordance with the provisions of this section.
G. Fences may not be constructed within one-foot inside a public sidewalk.
H. No fence shall be constructed in a front yard that is more than 75% solid or opaque.
I. Fences may not be constructed on lots unless a primary building is in place, with the exception of a temporary fence for safety as approved by the City or Zoning Administrator.
J. The City does not enforce restrictive covenants in place and on file with the County Recorder. Property owners shall be aware of all restrictive covenants for their platted subdivision.
K. No fence shall be constructed within the clear zone.
L. Fences or walls may be erected in easements in accordance with the provisions of this section except that no fence or wall may be erected without the approval of the City Building Inspector and as a condition of that approval the Building Inspector may require that the applicant acknowledge the rights of the City as an easement holder and waive any and all damages that might be otherwise accrued if the City shall need to remove the fence or wall in the exercise of its rights under the terms of the easement.
M. Decorative features such as individual posts, trellises, brick or stone columns, and similar features constructed as part of a fence shall be allowed to exceed the maximum fence height by no more than 12 inches. Decorative features shall not be counted toward the open space percentage of the fence. Pedestrian entry features which only include arbors, arched entries, arcades or finials may exceed the maximum allowable fence height in any yard subject to design review and approval by the Building Inspector.
5. Nonconforming Fences. Any fence existing within the City on the effective date of this section must be maintained, but alterations, modifications or improvements of more than 50 percent of said fence shall require the owner to bring the fence into compliance with this section if it is not already in compliance.
6. Height and Vision Clearance.
A. The following are the height restrictions in all residential and commercial districts for fences and walls:
(1) No fence or wall in any required front yard may exceed four feet in height. Corner lots with two front yards shall be allowed to have a six-foot tall fence located in the front yard with the smallest frontage. Such fence shall be set back a minimum of 10 feet from the property line or adjacent sidewalk; or in line with the home on the side. All other requirements of this section apply to a fence on a corner lot.
(2) Fences or walls along the side yard limits shall not exceed six feet in height. The fence or wall on a side yard may be erected to a height of eight feet if the fence or wall, or that portion of the fence or wall in excess of six feet is constructed of materials which provide openings of not less than 75 percent in area of the vertical surface of the fence or wall to permit transmission of light, air and vision at a right angle.
(3) No fence or wall in a rear yard shall exceed eight feet in height.
(4) Any portion of a residential or commercial lot directly abutting an industrial district may exceed the height limits contained herein by two feet.
B. The following are the height restrictions in all industrial districts for fences and walls:
(1) No fence or wall in any side or rear yard shall exceed 10 feet in height.
(2) No fence or wall in any front yard or yard abutting a street may exceed four feet in height unless approved by the Zoning Administrator for purposes of limiting the view of unsightly materials consistent with the business conducted on site.
(3) Fences or walls in any required yard adjoining a commercial or residential district shall conform to the requirements applicable to the commercial or residential district.
C. Public Fences. Fences surrounding school yards or public parks shall be exempt from the height provisions as herein stated provided that visibility at intersection is not hindered.
D. Vision Clearance.
(1) Corner Lot/Intersection. No fence or wall shall be located which may obstruct vision between a height of 30 inches and 10 feet on any corner lot within a vision triangle of 25 feet formed by intersecting street right-of-way lines.
(2) Driveways and Alleys. No fence or wall shall be located which may obstruct vision between a height of 30 inches and 10 feet on any corner lot within a vision triangle of 15 feet formed by intersecting driveway edge (including driveways on adjacent properties) and street right-of-way line.
The following ordinances have been adopted amending the Official Zoning Map described in Section 165.05 of this chapter and have not been included as a part of this Code of Ordinances but have been specifically saved from repeal and are in full force and effect.
March 13, 2012
(Official Zoning Map)
May 14, 2013
December 10, 2013
September 9, 2014
September 9, 2014
December 8, 2015
May 10, 2016
July 12, 2016
October 11, 2016
January 10, 2017
April 11, 2017
March 13, 2018
August 27, 2018
April 22, 2019
November 10, 2020
November 10, 2020
April 26, 2021
September 14, 2021