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Fence permit guide

Permits

A permit is not required for the construction of any fence that is 4 feet or less in height. For a fence taller than 4 feet, you will need a Zoning permit

A fine (up to $2,000) may be issued to any person performing work without the necessary permits.

Rules and requirements

Height is the vertical distance from the average normal grade at the base of the structure to the highest point.

Normal Grade is the newly established grade after construction, exclusive of any filling, berming, mounding, excavating, curbing or retaining wall which alters the grade at the base.

All fences and freestanding walls must meet these requirements:

  • Front yard: Must not exceed 4 feet in height. Fences must not be more than 60% solid when viewed from a point perpendicular to the fence.
  • Rear or side yard: Must not exceed 6 feet in height
  • Through lots: A fence located between the street and the rear of the principal building is permitted to be 6 feet high. Within the minimum required front yard setback, the fence must not exceed 4 feet in height.
  • Corner lots: corner lot guidance diagram
  • Retaining walls: The height must not exceed 4 feet in height.
  • Terraced retaining walls: Each section is permitted to be 4 feet high. The face of each section of a terraced retaining wall must be separated by a distance at least twice the height of the higher section.
  • Placement: Fences and retaining walls must not obstruct the sight lines of driveways, street intersections or be placed within the street right-of-way.
  • Finished and unfinished sides: When a fence contains a finished or preferred side and an unfinished or less preferred side, the finished or preferred side must face the street and adjoining properties, if applicable.
  • Hazardous materials: Barbed wire, ribbon wire, broken glass or other sharp edges are not permitted. Fence must not be electrified so as to produce a shock to any person touching the fence.

Permit process

Zoning permit

If your fence is taller than 4 feet, the first step is to apply for a zoning permit. Include a plot plan or property survey, showing the location of the proposed fences and all gates with your application.

Review and approval

If the proposal meets the requirements of the ordinance, a permit will be issued and the work can commence. If denied, the applicant will be notified of the reason for denial and any corrective measures that can be taken.

Inspections

After the fence is installed, the applicant must schedule an inspection. The applicant does not have to be present for the inspection if the inspector can access all sides of the fence.

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