Get to know your neighbors! But first, obtain a block party permit from the City Manager’s office at least a week prior to the scheduled event (please allow a minimum of 10 business days for block parties scheduled for the Fourth of July). Block parties are not permitted on any of the City’s main thoroughfares. A block party permit fee will be required to cover administrative costs and the delivery of barricades to ensure your event’s safety.
In keeping with state and national policies and building codes, the City requires building permits and inspections for any new construction and specific remodeling and home improvement projects to ensure that buildings are safe for their intended use.
The Community Development Department has created a series of informational brochures outlining processes and requirements for typical home improvement and construction projects. They include:
- A Guide to Residential Building Permits
- A Guide to Commercial Building Permits
- Fences & Walls, Decks, Accessory Structures
- Swimming Pools, Hot Tubs, Gazebos, Trellises
CERTIFICATE OF ZONING COMPLIANCE
Certificates of Zoning Compliance are required to demonstrate that an approved development complies with the requirements of the City’s Unified Development Ordinance. Some improvements may not require a building permit but they do require a Certificate of Zoning Compliance. Examples are driveway expansions, patios, storage sheds, and play equipment. Before any project begins, the following must occur:
- A Certificate of Zoning Compliance application must be completed and submitted to the Community Development Department.
- The Certificate of Zoning Compliance application must include a detailed site plan.
- The application is reviewed and approved/denied by either the Community Development Director or the Board of Zoning & Planning (determined by complexity and extent of proposed project).
If approved, the Certificate of Zoning Compliance is issued to the applicant and is valid for a period of one year unless construction has begun. If construction has not begun or the proposed use has changed within one year, a new Certificate of Zoning Compliance application process is required.
The City’s curfew restricts persons under 12 years of age from being out unsupervised by an adult between the hours of 9 pm and 5:30 am, and persons between 13 and 18 years of age from being out unsupervised between the hours of midnight and 5:30 am.
Residents or business owners who wish to demolish any structure greater than 450 square feet in area must obtain a demolition permit from the Community Development Department. If a replacement structure is intended, all planning and building approvals for the new structure must be secured prior to issuance of the demolition permit. When a building permit is obtained for renovation and/or alteration with partial demolition of the existing structure necessary, a separate demolition permit is not required. Please call before taking any action.
ENVIRONMENTAL MEDIATION PROGRAM
Property Maintenance Division: 614-583-5073
The City has a series of ordinances and good neighbor guidelines in place to ensure residents and commercial property owners take responsibility for keeping their homes, neighborhoods and businesses safe and attractive. The City’s Code Compliance Division works to quickly resolve any issues brought to its attention, but some cases are not easily resolved and may proceed to court, causing further expense for all concerned and delaying resolution of the issue.
City Attorney’s Office: 614-583-5020
The City’s Environmental Mediation Program addresses such cases, and an attempt is made to set timeframes and methods to bring a property into compliance that are acceptable to both the property owner and the City. All of the details of this valuable channel of conflict resolution can be found online.
Groups that plan to hold a special event in the City of Upper Arlington are required to complete an event permit form. Depending on the size, location and extent of the event, further City involvement may be required to determine the need for any assistance or guidance in additional permit requirements, traffic control assistance, etc. It is recommended that groups contact the City Manager’s Office at least three months in advance of the scheduled event. Call the above number for current event permit fee costs and more information.
FENCES & WALLS
Before you install a fence, please obtain a fence permit. All of the size and dimension restrictions and definitions – including guidelines for stacked stone decorative walls and entry features can be found online. We also recommend that residents have their property surveyed to verify the locations of all property lines and easements and that they check for buried utility lines by notifying Ohio Utilities Protection Services at (800) 362-2764.
GARAGE & YARD SALES
UA residents can conduct one garage/yard sale per residence during any six-month period. The length of your sale cannot exceed three consecutive days OR two consecutive days on two consecutive weekends. Sales can be conducted between the hours of 8 am and 8 pm, and sale items can be placed for display in the front, side or back yard. Items may not be located within the right-of-way or otherwise obstruct clear vision. Garage sale signs must be located on the homeowner’s property and not off-site. For guidelines and brochure on garage/yard sales please click here.
HOME OFFICES & OPERATIONS
These non-residential activities must be compatible with the neighborhoods in which they’re located and not create a negative impact. A permit is not needed, but a Certificate of Zoning Compliance application is required. Please call for specific information or visit the Community & Economic Development Department at the Municipal Services Center.
House numbers (using Arabic numerals) should be placed in a conspicuous place on the front elevation of the primary structure and be a minimum of four inches in height to enable police and fire crews to locate a residence quickly in an emergency. Be sure that numbers are not obscured by heavy snow or leaves and are not covered with decorations during the holiday season.
The painting of house numbers on the curb is allowed, as long as a contrasting color is used. Individuals or organizations wishing to offer residents the service of painting house numbers on curbs for a nominal fee or donation must obtain a solicitation permit from the City Manager’s Office. Click here for additional details.
The dumping of any garbage or litter on any public street, park or other public area, or on any private property without the owner’s consent is not allowed. The placement or disposal of any refuse on private property without taking reasonable precautions to prevent it from spreading off the property is not permitted. To report an issue click here.
The City has developed a list of regulations regarding the placement/parking of vehicles in residential areas. These guidelines help maintain safety standards and preserve the community’s aesthetic appeal.
- Commercial Vehicles – commercial and other vehicles having more than four tires may not be parked/stored on a residential property unless fully contained within an enclosed structure.
- Passenger Vehicles – cannot be parked on grass.
- Inoperable Vehicles – vehicles that have one or more flat or missing tires, are not licensed, are missing mechanical or electrical parts necessary for their operation or are otherwise not capable of being started and driven are defined as inoperable vehicles. Inoperable vehicles must be parked or stored within a completely enclosed structure.
- Recreational Vehicles – recreational vehicles including camper trailers, motor homes, and boats must be parked/stored within the buildable area of a lot and screened from view. Recreational vehicles may not be parked on the grass. The “buildable” portion of a property is the area located within the required front, side and rear setback lines.
PET & ANIMAL GUIDELINES
- Barking Dogs: Animal Control legislation prohibits a dog from disturbing the peace of any person by loud, habitual and persistent barking, howling, yelping, or whining. If contacting the owner of the dog to solve the problem on a neighborly basis is not successful, click here for assistance.
- Cruelty/Neglect: Failure of an animal owner to provide adequate food, water, shelter and opportunity for exercise constitutes a violation of state statute. Intentional acts of cruelty, such as abandonment, harassment, or torture will be vigorously prosecuted.
- Dog Licenses: The Franklin County Animal Control and Licensing Regulation requires annual licensing of all dogs three months of age and older.
- Leash Laws: All dogs must be on a leash or confined on the owner’s premises at all times. In public parks, dogs must be on a leash from 8 am– 8 pm during Daylight Savings Time and 8 am–5 pm during Eastern Standard Time. At all other hours, dogs must be under control by the owner. Cats are included within the city’s leash law and are prohibited from running at large.
- Maximum Number Per Household: Residents can only keep up to four dogs or cats in any combination per single-family dwelling or in any apartment within a dwelling for two or more families. Puppies and/or kittens four months old or under are permitted. No person or organization shall own, keep, or provide sustenance for more than one vicious dog or Pit Bull, regardless of age.
- Pet Waste: pet owners are responsible for picking up and properly disposing of all fecal waste deposited outside their own property or in parks by their pets
- Prohibited Animals: For various health and safety reasons, Upper Arlington does not permit residents to keep the following animals: poisonous insects, amphibians or reptiles, constrictor reptiles, game animals, livestock, endangered/protected species, animals considered feral by nature, except “pocket pets” such as guinea pigs, hamsters, gerbils, mice, rabbits, etc.
The City’s Political Signage Ordinance is consistent with Ohio Revised Code, and is limited to regulation of only the size and location of political signs, not the message. Further, the City can only request that signs be removed from private property if they are in a state of disrepair.
If signs have been inappropriately placed in public spaces (including the street right of way) or you are concerned about the physical condition of signs in a neighbor’s yard, call Code Compliance at the above number. If you have concerns about the language contained on signage, contact the Ohio Elections Commission at 614-466-3205 (www.elc.oh.gov).
Political signs placed on private property are private property. Theft charges will be filed against persons found to have taken such signs. Residents should place their name on political signs, so they can be returned if stolen and later recovered.
The City’s Solid Waste Program is provided by Local Waste Services. It provides a simplified approach with a standard fee for service, billed twice a year. Trash, recycling, yard waste and bulk items are all collected as part of this fee. Local Waste provides all households with grey trash and blue recycling containers on wheels with lids. If a container becomes damaged or goes missing, in most instances it will be repaired or replaced at no charge. The trucks used by Local Waste are energy-efficient, CNG vehicles, reducing their environmental impact on our community.
The City’s legislation is consistent with State law. This law pertains to all businesses in Upper Arlington including bars, restaurants, offices and retail establishments, and is designed to ensure Upper Arlington workers, residents and visitors to any Ohio community are protected from the dangers of secondhand smoke. The Franklin County Public Health (FCPH) is contracted by the City of Upper Arlington for the provision of health services, and is the primary entity undertaking enforcement.
Both the business owner and the individual who chooses to smoke are considered responsible parties. Upon receipt of a complaint, businesses will receive one warning letter. Any additional violation is a minor misdemeanor, punishable by a maximum court fine of $150 plus court costs. An individual violator is immediately guilty of a minor misdemeanor and subject to a fine of up to $150 plus court costs.
SNOW & ICE REMOVAL ON SIDEWALKS
Individual homeowners are responsible for the maintenance & clearing of sidewalks immediately adjacent to their property. During winter months, residents are encouraged to keep their sidewalks clear of snow and ice – providing a safe walkway for pedestrians. Snow Angels, a volunteer-based program coordinated by the Upper Arlington Commission on Aging, is available to assist elderly residents with snow removal. Those residents who would like to volunteer or those looking for assistance can register for the Snow Angels program by calling 614-583-5123.
STREET TREE DAMAGE TO SIDEWALKS
In most cases, residents are responsible for maintenance and repair of sidewalks adjacent to their property. However, if a section of sidewalk has been lifted or damaged by street tree roots, the City will perform repairs at no cost to residents. Sidewalk inspections can be requested by calling the above number or visiting Parks & Forestry.
STORM DAMAGE RESPONSIBILITIES
In the event of severe storms resulting in fallen trees and tree limbs, the property owner is responsible for the clean up of debris from trees located on private property. The City is responsible only for the debris from street trees in the public right-of-way and in City parks.
Trees within the public right of way are managed and regulated by the city. Permits are required prior to performing any tree work within the right of way. Trees on private property belong to the property owner, and owners are free to plant, prune or remove trees on their land following verification of property lines. Issues regarding trees on or near property lines may require legal counsel. Dead or dangerous trees on private property may be subject to condemnation as a public nuisance if they threaten the safety of others.
To enhance the peaceful nature of the community during non-business hours, the following operations are not permitted on Sundays or during the evening hours of 7 pm-7:30 am (unless noted):
- Commercial garbage collection
- Operation of construction machinery
- Powered tools or appliances such as lawnmowers, blowers, edge trimmers, electric trimmers or tree trimming equipment (hours 8 pm-7:30 am).
- Commercial parking lot sweeping
The proper care and maintenance of property and landscaping benefits the entire community – it’s part of what makes our City so beautiful. Grass must not exceed 10 inches in height. Properties should also be kept free of noxious weeds such as thistle, burdock, jimson weed, ragweed, poison ivy, poison oak and poison sumac. Failure to comply with these guidelines could result in notice from the City to rectify the situation within five days of receipt of said notice. After five days, the City will make arrangements to cut the grass/weeds at the owner’s expense.