Winter seems to be wrapping up early this year, which has many of us hoping to get a jump start on our outdoor projects. As we step into spring, our zoning department has a few tips to keep in mind.
One of the most common inquiries is about garden sheds. In "zoning speak," these buildings are referred to as “residential accessory buildings.” Here are a few tips:
Decks are also a “frequently asked question.” No building permit is required for a detached residential deck if it meets the following criteria:
For all other accessory buildings and decks, a building permit is required. Check with the Zoning Administrator regarding placement and setback requirements.
When thinking about an outdoor project, remember to consider your “green space.” Even though you might not need a permit or zoning approval for this project, you might be using up the space available for the next thing you have in mind. Zoning rules limit the amount of your lot that may be covered by buildings, pavement, and other impervious surfaces such as decks, patios, sports courts and even swimming pools. While there are some important aesthetic reasons for these rules, there are also some crucial stormwater considerations – to minimize run-off and to reduce overloading of the city’s storm drainage system.
Remember that you can contact the Zoning Administrator with questions about any of your springtime projects at 616-940-4817 or at the office during business hours. It’s a good idea to call ahead for availability before stopping by.