January 30th, 2011 — Architecture
These questions and answers are just the beginning. If you have a new question to pose, do it here via e-mail.
1. Do I need a permit to pour a concrete pad on my property?
Yes. All “hardscape” improvements require an application. Hardscape includes walkways, patios, pads, rock walls etc. The ACC encourages property improvements but wants to help you comply with our CC&Rs as you proceed. Therefore, we ask you to submit your plans. You may prepare simple drawings and you may appear in person at an ACC meeting to present your plan. In most cases, we’ll approve. In some cases we’ll ask a professional consultant to evaluate the plan and report compliance with the CC&R’s.
2. Do I need a permit to renovate the plants and flowers in my front and rear yards?
Generally, no. Replacement of dead or inappropriate plants does not require a permit. However, major renovations that include removal of trees that pre-existed original construction do require a plan and application.
3. I’m surprised to learn that re-painting my home necessitates an application. Why is this?
The ACC wishes merely to assure that house colors remain consistent with our CC&R’s.
4. Is a permit needed to build a crushed gravel walkway in my garden?
Yes. Crushed gravel is hardscape. The ACC wants to see your plan to make certain that it complies with the CC&R’s. Again, refer to the Design Review Manual
5. We wish to add a satellite dish or two to the exterior of our home. Do we need to apply for permission?
Generally, no. Exceptions would include a location for the antennae that interferes with a neighbor. After you’ve had the satellite dish company survey for appropriate locations, we suggest you talk with neighbors if there is any chance for objection.
6. I want to add a prefabricated Gazebo to my yard, amidst the oaks and bay laurels on my hillside. Do I need a permit?
Yes. Such additions usually require hardscape for the foundation and access path. Further, there are CC&R requirements regarding external structures and the protection of native trees on hillsides, be they private or public land. It’s pretty complex. By looking at your plans, the ACC and our consultants can help assure conformance to all requirements.
7. When I think I need a permit, do I start at the City (of Santa Rosa) planning department or at the ACC?
Yes. Always start at the ACC.