Fence - Any structure constructed or erected to provide a barrier, either physical or visual, for the purpose of protecting property, providing for security and privacy, and properly containing activities on the property.
Fence Height - The vertical dimension from the natural ground level to the top of the fence, measured at any point along the length of the fence.
Natural Ground Level - The level of the ground prior to any recent man-made changes in the elevation of the ground. For purposes of administering this article, "natural ground level" also shall include the level of the ground established on any site plan or landscape plan approved in accordance with the review process set forth in the Land Development Ordinance (Appendix B).
Yard, Front - That area bounded by a line along the front of the principal structure extended to intersect the side property lines. This area is usually identified by the placement of the primary driveway access and the placement of the street address assigned to the property in question.
The standards in this section shall apply to all fences within the City.
- No fence in excess of four feet in height shall be installed within 40 feet of the right-of-way of an arterial street or a major collector street.
- For any zoning lot adjacent to a greenbelt that is required along a collector street, no fence in excess of four feet in height shall be installed within 35 feet of the right-of-way of that collector street.
- No privately owned fence shall be installed so that, in the opinion of the City Engineer, it obstructs vision at any street intersection, or in any way creates a hazard to traffic.
- No fence shall be installed so that, in the opinion of the Fire Chief, it prevents or unduly restricts access to the property for emergency purposes.
- Fences may be located on the property line, but if a fence is designed so that its structural supports are primarily on one side, that side must always be toward the interior of the property.
- No fence shall be installed within five feet of the edge of a paved cart path. No fence may encroach into an undisturbed buffer area.
- Wire fencing may be attached to the interior of, or made a part of any wooden, stone, brick, wrought-iron, or another such non-wire type fencing, where the other type fencing would not provide an adequate barrier to contain pets or animals. When so applied, the wire shall be vinyl coated or painted in a standard dark brown, dark green or black color. When used under these conditions, it shall not be considered a wire fence.
- If a fence is required by any governmental authority to provide for the safety and security of the residents of the City, that fence shall not be removed or otherwise left in an unsafe condition for any reason without the approval of the Building Official, and without proper precautions being taken to provide for continuous protection.
- It shall be the responsibility of the owner of the property on which a fence is located to maintain the fence in good and proper repair so that at all times it presents a neat and orderly appearance to surrounding property owners and to the general public.
- Any fence damaged by accident or an act of God shall be properly repaired within 90 days of the occurrence. Fencing required for public safety purposes shall be repaired immediately.
- Swimming pool fences: See the Residential Swimming Pool Requirements brochure.
- In those instances where fence height is limited to four feet, other than in a front yard or within the required setback area that adjoins a street right-of-way, fences with decorative features such as newels, finials, and scallops may exceed four feet in height but in no case more than five feet in height.
The standards in this section shall apply to all fences in the following zoning districts: R-1, R-10, R-12, R-15, R-22, R-43, ER, GR, VR, LUR, AR, and OS.
- No fence or portion of a fence shall exceed eight feet in height; provided, however, that if a property owner wishes to install a tennis court or some other similar purpose facility, a fence not to exceed ten feet in height may be erected on the condition the site plan for the special purpose facility is first approved in accordance with the site plan review process in the Land Development Ordinance.
- Unless further restricted by this article, no fence within a required side or rear setback shall exceed six feet in height; provided that, due to variations in topography or if the fence contains decorative features such as newels, finials or scallops, it may exceed six feet in height but in no case shall it exceed seven feet in height.
- No fence comprised of metal parts shall be installed in a residential area unless all exposed metal parts are vinyl-coated or painted a standard dark brown, dark green, or black color to blend into the natural surroundings.
- No fence in excess of four feet in height (except for swimming pool fence, which must comply with pool fence requirements) shall be installed within the required setback area that adjoins an addition. No fence in excess of four feet in height shall be installed within a residential front yard.
- No fence installed in a residential front yard shall be constructed of any material that restricts the view through such fence by more than fifty (50)% of the total barrier as viewed from the street.
- Except as provided in subsection (g), no fence that is constructed of wire, including chain link fencing, shall be installed between the principal structure on a residential zoning lot and any adjoining street right-of-way.
- Except in ER (Estate Residential) and AR (Agricultural Reserve) zoning districts, no fence permitted in subsection (g) shall be installed in a residential front yard.
A building permit shall be required for the construction or alteration of any fence that is 4 feet in height or in excess of 4 feet in height. As part of the permitting process, the Building Official shall review plans, issue permits, inspect installations and, in general, secure compliance with the requirements of this article.
NOTE: Fences constructed within a utility or drainage easement are subject to damage or removal due to repairs and maintenance within the easement. Repairs or replacement of the fence will be the responsibility of the owner.
The information contained herein is not all inclusive. For further information, contact: the Building Department, 770-487-8901