If you are planning on building a new fence or a new building on your David City property, your first stop should be the City Office.
At its Jan. 10 meeting, the City Council approved amendments to the regulations governing these property items. The Council approved bypassing the three readings for the amendments and gave them final approval.
Councilman Kevin Hotovy expressed concerns about the limits approved for buildings on larger lots and odd shaped lots in the city. He voted no on the building code amendments.
Building Inspector Ray Sueper said that the amendments had been thoroughly studied and debated by the Planning and Zoning Commission. The regulations incorporate some regulations borrowed from other cities.
“The Planning commissioners worked very hard,” Sueper said. “We closed some glaring public safety issues. There are some things I recommend leaving alone for a good long time.”
He said the city would be able to put together detailed pamphlets to inform property owners of the regulations.
“We can create a beautiful little handout that summarizes the ‘dos and don’t’s,” he said.
Most of the discussion for accessory buildings centered on their size relative to the lot size and whether a building is a good fit for the neighborhood.
Buildings have size limits, for example 10-foot high sidewalls and overall height of 17 feet, and the widest side can have a maximum width of 40 feet.
Regulations also spell out construction requirements for different sizes of buildings.
A few of the fence requirements:
*Fences in front of a home can be open weave, chain-link or picket-style and only 48 inches tall. Side fences can be 72 inches tall.
*Those fences at any rear or non-street side of a property may be solid, or privacy style, and not exceed 6 feet in height.
*Berms and terraces that elevate fences are considered part of the fence and factor into its height.
*Fences and hedges can’t obstruct traffic or create pedestrian or traffic safety hazards.
*New fences shall be installed with the “good side” facing outward from the property.
*All fences, new or replacements, require a permit.
*Barbed wire or electric fences are prohibited, but buried pet fences are allowed.
Rules also are in place for perimeter fencing and retaining walls. Finally, some fences are “grandfathered” in on the old regulations, but replacements or changes in fencing must meet the new regulations.
City Councilman Skip Trowbridge was absent for the meeting.