City of Rockwood, MI
Wayne County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Rockwood 11-4-2009 by Ord. No. 457.[1] Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
General penalty — See Ch. 1, Art. I.
Fencing of quarry excavations — See Ch. 75, § 75-6A.
Fencing of junkyards — See Ch. 194.
Zoning — See Ch. 270.
Fees — See Ch. A276.
[1]:
Editor's Note: This ordinance also repealed former Ch. 80, Fences, adopted 11-21-2001 by Ord. No. 390.

§ 80-1 Authority for construction.

The owners of all lots within the City may construct and maintain fences between their own and the next adjoining lots in the manner provided in this chapter.

§ 80-2 Responsibility for maintenance.

The owner of a fence shall maintain the fence in good condition. Maintenance shall include the paint or finish of the fence and maintaining the space between any fence in a neat and weed-free condition. Any privacy fence not properly maintained may be ordered removed at the owner's expense by the Building Inspector.

§ 80-3 Prohibition in public rights-of-way.

No person shall construct a fence to enclose any alley, easement for public utilities, street or other public place, or any part thereof. No portion of any fence, ornamental fence or hedge shall be located in any public right-of-way.

§ 80-4 Construction, repair and relocation; permit required.

A. 
Application.
(1) 
When an owner of property desires to build, repair or relocate a fence along a property line, he or she shall make application to the Building Inspector, setting forth in such application his or her name as owner, the location of the fence by the street address or legal description of the property along which he or she desires to construct such fence, and a description of the size and kind of fence proposed.
(2) 
The application shall be accompanied by a certificate of survey signed and sealed by a registered surveyor, delineating the lot line and the line along which the fence is to be erected.
B. 
Issuance. Upon determination that this chapter and all other applicable provisions governing fences of these Codified Ordinances and other ordinances in the City have been complied with, the Building Inspector shall issue such permit.
C. 
The City Council shall from time to time set the fee for the issuance of a fence permit.

§ 80-5 Construction specifications.

A. 
The fence shall be erected one inch off the lot line, unless the fence abuts a City sidewalk, at which location the fence shall be at least 12 inches from the edge of the sidewalk. A privacy fence erected alongside of an existing fence shall be placed six inches from the existing fence and shall not be attached to the existing fence.
B. 
Wood fence standards. Wooden fences having one finished side shall have the exposed fence parts and posts facing inward with the finished side of the fence facing outward unless otherwise approved by the City Administrator. There shall not be more than two inches separating the bottom of the fence board and the surface of the ground. The height of the fence shall be determined by the zoning district in which the fence is constructed.
C. 
Chain link standards. No chain link fence shall be constructed at a height greater than allowed in the Zoning Code.[1] Welded wire fences are strictly prohibited unless utilized in conjunction with the approved fencing operator. Chain link fences shall not incorporate slates or other obscuring materials, except for green or blank solid fabric privacy screens or windscreens surrounding industrial-type uses.
[1]:
Editor's Note: See Ch. 270, Zoning.
D. 
Spikes and pointed objects. No person shall erect or maintain on or about the stairway to the entrance of any building, on or about its exterior building line, or upon fences, or upon any portion of the sidewalk adjacent to such building, any railing, fence, guard or other projection on which there shall be affixed or placed, or in any manner attached, any spike, nail, broken glass or other sharp pointed instrument of any kind or description.
E. 
Barbed wire.
(1) 
No person shall construct or maintain a barbed wire fence, partially or wholly around any area in any street, avenue, alley, lane or public space, or nail barbed wire or cause it to be nailed or fastened in any form, shape or manner upon fences.
(2) 
No person shall construct a barbed wire fence or use barbed wire in a residential district.
(3) 
Commercial or industrial districts may have fences six feet high with barbed wire attached to arms or brackets inward over the private property of the person erecting and paying for such fence, but no such barbed wire shall be placed at a point nearer to the ground than six feet. The arms for barbed wire on six-foot fences may be placed only on lot lines of industrial or business property.
(4) 
When industrial or business property adjoins residential property or municipal property, the arms shall project over the industrial side of the line unless the fence is moved back from the line so that the top ends of barbed wire arms or brackets do not project over the property line.
F. 
Ornamental fences; hedges. Ornamental fences may be built to a height a permitted in the Zoning Ordinance[2] and shall be built wholly upon the builder's property, unless otherwise agreed by the adjoining landowners. Hedges or other means of designating lot lines shall be regulated in the same manner as fences.
[2]:
Editor's Note: See Ch. 270, Zoning.

§ 80-6 Fences in residential front yards.

A. 
No portion of any fence or hedge shall extend from the front line of a residential structure to the street unless said fence or hedge is maintained at a height of 36 inches or less.
B. 
In any residential zone, no fence, hedge, or wall greater than 30 inches in height shall be located within 10 feet of any front lot line, public sidewalk, or street edge, except that on lots with a side line adjacent to an alley, a fence or hedge may be located along the alley line to the front of said lot, provided that the fence or hedge shall end 10 feet from the front lot line.
C. 
No fence, hedge, wall or similar structure, including posts, other supporting structures and decorations or ornaments, shall exceed the height specified in the Zoning Ordinance,[1] unless first approved by the Zoning Board of Appeals. Gates of the same heights as the fence, hedge, or wall may be installed along any lot line.
[1]:
Editor's Note: See Ch. 270, Zoning.
D. 
Where a residential lot abuts a commercial alley, expressway, open drainage ditch or railroad, a solid-type fence may be constructed.

§ 80-7 Materials.

A. 
No fence or wall shall be constructed of old or used material unless such material is reasonably sound, in the judgment of the Building Inspector.
B. 
Except as specifically exempted above, no fence or wall in a residential zone shall be constructed of solid brick, masonry, wood, or any other material which results in a solid-type fence (i.e., a privacy fence) unless first approved by the Zoning Board of Appeals.

§ 80-8 Position of dividing-line fences.

Dividing-line fences are presumed to be of mutual benefit to both adjacent owners and shall, therefore, not be built in other than a reasonable position.

§ 80-9 Junk and coal yards.

A. 
All fences built or repaired around junk or coal yards shall be designed as retaining walls where such fences are used to hold or retain materials or things of any kind. Such fences shall not be more than six feet in height.
B. 
Such fences may be erected to a height not to exceed nine feet if the written consent of not less than 50% of the owners of property residing within 500 feet of the junk or coal yard has been obtained, unless otherwise restricted as to height by this chapter.
C. 
A fence of greater height may be erected if ordered by a court having jurisdiction thereof.

§ 80-10 Auto parts yards.

A. 
No used auto parts business shall be maintained on any vacant property unless and until a suitable and appropriate fence, 10 feet in height and properly painted, is erected around the outside of the lands on which such business is conducted in such a manner as to obliterate the premises from view.
B. 
Such fence shall be properly maintained at all times by the owner or occupant of the business and shall comply with this chapter, the Zoning Code[1] and the Michigan Building Code.[2]
[1]:
Editor's Note: See Ch. 270, Zoning.
[2]:
Editor's Note: See Ch. 45, Building Construction.
C. 
No person shall display any tire, fenders or other auto parts or materials on or in front of such fence, and such fence shall not be less than 10 feet from property lines along City streets.
D. 
The stresses used in the design shall comply with those stated in the Michigan Building Code for the kind of material used.
E. 
If built of timber, all main structural members shall be securely bound together with belts of sufficient size and length to meet the design requirements.
F. 
No posts used for such construction shall have a cross-sectional area of less than 90 1/4 square inches, and they shall extend into the ground below grade at least four feet or more as required for structural safety.
G. 
Such posts shall have attached to the outside of the face thereof above grade planks that are at least 1 3/4, inches thick, securely bolted to the posts upon which the fence shall be mounted.
H. 
If built of masonry, the foundations shall extend at least three feet, six inches, below grade and shall meet all the structural requirements for foundations and bearing walls as set forth in the Michigan Building Code.[3]
[3]:
Editor's Note: See Ch. 45, Building Construction.

§ 80-11 Appeals.

Any person or corporation demonstrating a practical difficulty with the regulations of this chapter may present his or her case to the Zoning Board of Appeals, pursuant to the procedural requirements of that body.

§ 80-12 Penalty.

Violation of this section or any part thereof shall be considered a civil infraction and the penalties for the violation thereof shall be set forth in § 1-9 of the Municipal Civil Code.