CENTERVILLE -- Changes to city code mean that people can build accessory structures before homes in the agricultural zone.
This change was unanimously approved recently by the city council following earlier approval by the planning commission. The city council held a public hearing prior to approval, but no one came forward to speak.
The issue was brought to light because a property owner applied for an exemption to the zoning code. He wanted to build an accessory structure, which in his case was a barn, before he built a home on the property.
This was not allowed by city code, which previously stated that an accessory structure could not be established until after the primary or permitted structure was already established.
Now, under the approved changes, an accessory structure, for agricultural uses only, can be built before the main building on any parcel of a half-acre or more, within the agricultural zones.
Development standards still apply, meaning any building needs to be 30 feet from the front yard. The accessory structure being built prior to the main building needs to be set back at least 80 feet from the front yard.
Following these standards will mean the structure won't hinder the ability for future development, according to a staff report.
The report further states that this change appears to have no significant impact on the surrounding community, and the changes still allow the preservation of agricultural lots.