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Community Gardens are a growing trend in the United States. They are defined as any piece of land that is gardened by a group of people. They can grow flowers, fruits and vegetables. The City of Hutchinson defines a community garden as any collective group of at least three unrelated persons not residing in the same household coming together to create a garden. Groups that can often participate in community gardens are non-profit organizations and school groups, but neighbors and friends can pool together to develop a community garden as well.
The city does not regulate who may create a community garden. However, to receive an incentive from the City, the applicants must be any group of at least three unrelated persons not residing in the same household.
Residential accessory structures include:
Building permits are required for all structures that are more than 120 square feet in area. Structures that require a permit must meet requirements of the adopted building codes of the City. All structures, even those smaller than 120 square feet, must meet setback requirements and must be at least 5 feet from all other structures. Further, any structure, no matter what size, used for parking of vehicles requires a building permit.
The sidewalls of accessory structures cannot be taller than 12 feet in height. The combined lot coverage of all accessory structures cannot exceed more than 35% of the rear yard. Each zoning district has a maximum lot coverage for accessory structures, typically 10% of the lot. Please confer with Planning Staff to obtain the requirements for your specific property.
Sheds, gazebos, pergolas, residential greenhouses, pool houses, etc. may only be placed in the rear yard of a property. All accessory structures must be placed five feet from any other structure and meet a five foot setback from side and rear property lines. If your property has an easement or a platted setback, the accessory structure cannot be placed in the easement or platted setback. *There are special requirements for corner lots. Please confer with Planning Staff.
Accessory structures may be constructed out of materials customarily used in residential construction. The design and construction of the structure need to be similar to and compatible with the design and construction of the principal building. The materials and color must be similar to those in the surrounding area. For questions about the character of your neighborhood and compatibility with your primary structure, please confer with Planning Staff.
Detached storage buildings may have a maximum of 1200 square feet. This may be exceeded to double the size of the principal structure, provided the total rear yard lot coverage is 10% or less. Gazebos and pergolas count towards square footage requirements if larger than 120 square feet. Storage sheds with access doors 8 feet wide or wider shall be considered detached garages. Residential driveways accessing a detached storage sheds from a paved roadway shall be paved from the roadway to the rear of the principal structure. From the rear line of the principal structure to the detached storage building, crushed rock or gravel may be used. *Duplex buildings have different guidelines. Please confer with Planning Staff.
STEP 1 Go to www.hutchgov.com/planning and click the “Online Portal” button.
STEP 2 Click the blue “REGISTER NOW” button.
STEP 3 For Registration Type, select whether you are the property owner or the contractor. Fill in the required fields with your information and then click submit. Please provide a real email address. Your permit will be sent to the email address you provide. You will also need a valid email address in case you need to reset your username or password.
Using the User Name and Password you just created, you can now go back to the website in Step 1 and login to the Online Portal. Need help after you log into the Portal? Visit our website at www.hutchgov.com/planning and then click the “Resources” menu. There are many how-to videos on applying for different permits.
A site analysis is a part of the building permit process. The Planning Department will look at the proposed placement of the garage or carport in proximity to other buildings and your property lines. Your detached garage or carport will need to be located a minimum of five feet from other structures and property lines. Setbacks are measured from the eaves. Greater setbacks may be required depending on your property. A site plan - a drawing showing the proposed project - is required for a building permit. The site plan should include the garage or carport in relation to other buildings and property lines. The proposed driveway should also be shown.
The Hutchinson City Code requires that detached garages and carports match the existing character of the home or surrounding buildings of the neighborhood. For example, if your house has vinyl siding, then a similar material is required for your garage. Metal is not a recommended material and will not be approved if it doesn’t match the general character of the surrounding neighborhood or the house.
Yes. For structures that will or can house parked motor vehicles, a paved driveway and approach are required by the City. The structure must also have a concrete floor. The approved pavement type for residential driveways is concrete, asphalt, or asphalt millings with a slurry seal.
Your driveway cannot exceed 20 feet at the point where it crosses your front property line. Beyond that, there are no requirements as to how wide your driveway can be. However, you cannot have pavement that exceeds 40% of your front yard. If you are building a new driveway, the Engineering Department must approve its location.
If you are building a new garage or carport, the driveway from the street to the rear of the principal structure shall be paved, and from the rear line of the principal structure to the new garage or carport may be crushed rock or gravel, even if there is currently a gravel driveway. The only exception to this requirement is if the driveway is leading to an unimproved alley, either dirt or gravel, then a crushed stone driveway is allowed. The crushed stone must have a diameter of 1.5” to 2” and be at a depth of six inches. Planning Staff approval of a crushed stone driveway is required.
To distinguish between a detached garage and a storage structure, the width of the door is considered. If the door is eight feet or wider, then the structure is considered a detached garage and must meet the requirements thereof. If the door is narrower than eight feet in width, the structure is considered a storage unit and must meet those requirements. Parking of motor vehicles is not permitted in storage sheds.
Yes, a fence permit is required to construct a fence in the City of Hutchinson. The fence permit fee is $28.75. A fence permit application may be found online at www.hutchgov.com or picked up at the Planning & Development Office.
A permit is required if you are replacing more than 50 percent of an existing fence on your property OR if any one of the following is true:
You can install a 3-feet high solid fence anywhere on your property. You can install a 4- feet high 50 percent open fence, such as chain link, picket, or split rail, anywhere on your property. You can install a 6-feet high solid fence in the side and rear yards, but not in a front yard. If you have a corner lot, please see the corner lot section of the brochure and confer with Planning Staff.
Fences can only be placed on private property. Fences are not permitted to be placed within a city right-of-way, and some utility easements and drainage easements may have restrictions. To learn more about city right-of-way locations and easements, confer with Planning Staff. Corner lots and through lots have special requirements.
Permitted Fence Materials:
Prohibited Fence Materials:
For through lots, a lot with a street on both the front and rear of the property, please confer with Planning Staff.
Corner lots have different requirements than regular lots when constructing a fence. A 3-feet high solid fence and a 4-feet high 50 percent open fence are still permitted to be located anywhere on your property EXCEPT for in a sight triangle. To determine where the sight triangle on your corner lot would be placed, please confer with Planning & Development Staff. A six-feet high solid fence is permitted on corner lots in the side and rear yards. Some corner lots have special circumstances which requires a fence to be setback. To ensure your fence is located in the correct place, please confer with Planning & Development Staff about constructing fences on corner lots.
Boundary disputes between neighbors are considered a civil matter, so you may need to enlist the services of a licensed land surveyor and/or an attorney. The City does not provide surveying services or legal counsel to residents. To determine if the fence is located on your property, you will need to contact a licensed land surveyor to survey the property lines, which will then determine the legal location of the fence.
According to Kansas statute (K.S.A. 12-5902), a land bank is an entity created by local government to “efficiently hold, manage, and transform vacant, abandoned, and tax-foreclosed property back into productive use.”
Land Banks are governed by a Board of Trustees (BOT); BOT members are appointed by the City Council. Properties can be acquired by the Land Bank through donation, acquisition of tax foreclosed property, purchase, or transfer from the City; the BOT has the power to accept or refuse any property.
A significant feature of the Land Bank is that any property held by the Land Bank is exempt from all ad valorem taxes while in Land Bank ownership. In addition, all taxes, assessments, charges, penalties and interest that may be due on a property are removed or abated through Land Bank ownership--except special assessments that have been levied to finance public improvements. (Even then, the governing body levying those special assessments has authority to abate all or part of the assessment.) By statute, the Land Bank may then transfer property back into productive use, and the property is not burdened by debt and obligations incurred prior to Land Bank ownership.
It is the Land Bank’s responsibility to maintain the property and to evaluate current and potential uses. They may sell the property without competitive bidding to any person willing to agree to conditions set by the BOT. The Land Bank may consolidate or subdivide individual parcels of land in the inventory as most appropriate for sale or reuse. Proceeds from the sale of property are retained by the Land Bank to fund its operation.
Each property has different strengths and opportunities for productive re-use. If a property has a structure on it, options could be:
Kansas statutes are very specific about Land Bank operations being open and transparent. The City Council can create or dissolve a Land Bank at any time, and the Council 3 appoints the BOT members, who serve without pay. In addition, the following requirements are in statute:
The City Council may add additional requirements and responsibilities
The Land Bank is governed by a five-member Board of Trustees, each of whom is appointed by the City Council. The Hutchinson Housing Commission nominates two of its members for appointment by the City Council. The remaining three members appointed by City Council are required to have expertise in land development, construction, development finance, real estate sales or marketing, real estate law, neighborhood growth and development, or expertise related to the responsibilities of Land Bank operation.
Staff support for the Land Bank is provided by the City of Hutchinson Department of Planning and Development, primarily the existing Housing staff. An internal City staff working group with expertise in legal, property maintenance, planning/community development, historic preservation, and building codes provides technical and program support for land bank operation. The Reno County Appraiser is also a member of the working group and provides technical advice and expertise. Occasionally it will be necessary to hire outside expertise and services such as property appraisal, demolition, survey, real estate sales, and property maintenance.
The Land Bank’s focus will be on residential properties and strengthening residential neighborhoods by returning vacant, abandoned, foreclosed and unwanted properties to productive use. There may be a time where the Land Bank may consider commercial or industrial property, but current priorities are solely on residential properties.
Annual funding will be required for operation of the Land Bank to provide for operational expenses such as insurance, property maintenance, publication of legal notices, audit, legal and title expenses, and acquisition of property. It is not anticipated that the Land Bank will be self-supporting through lease or sale of property; if the real estate market could make a profit from vacant and abandoned property, then a land bank would not be needed.