Tips get your home summer-ready and code-compliant

It’s June. The sun is shining, the trees are leafing out and the grass is growing … and growing … and growing. 

Yes, spring has sprung on the Colorado Front Range, and that means it’s time for long, sunny days and the inevitable concerns about overgrown yards, broken fences and public safety issues that come with them. Unlike prior years, however, we’re all still spending much of our time in the sanctuary and safety of home, so what better time to make sure that all yards, driveways and gardens are compliant with city rules and regulations? 

The Colorado Springs City Code — essentially the city’s constitution — is a whopping 14 chapters that lays out guidelines for everything from governmental leadership and elections to business licenses and traffic laws. Curious about whether you may keep backyard poultry (yes, as long as your flock does not include a rooster) or how many rabbits you may have on your property (10 adults, as it turns out)? The city code can tell you that.  

OK, those may not be your top priorities. But when it comes to personal property, there are some common causes of communal consternation that could cause the Neighborhood Services Division to mediate. 

Here is a look at the most common sources of seasonal complaints, according to the division website.

— Regan Foster

Weed it out

Whether bluegrass or a, umm, more-indigenous species, groundcovers need to be kept below 9 inches in height, under city guidelines, so keep those weeds and grasses at least somewhat trimmed. Plus, if your property borders an alley, you are responsible to maintain the area from the property line to the middle of said alley. 

Car collection

Vehicles stored outdoors on private property must be operable and free from damage that renders them un-roadworthy. Recreational vehicles must be parked at least 10 feet from the sidewalk or front property lines, and all vehicles must be parked on an improved surface like concrete, asphalt or gravel. 

Talking trash

Garbage and household waste needs to be discarded and secured in a clean way. That is designed to keep the critters out and the scent in. And don’t pooh pooh the poo patrol; proper sanitation methods, per the code, include picking up and discarding pet waste both at home and in public places. 

Out of sight 

Firewood may be stored outside, but it needs to be neatly stacked in the side or rear yards only. And speaking of storing stuff, appliances, furniture, manufactured goods and personal items may be kicked out of the house, but they need to be kept inside a closed building or out of view in the back yard. 

Winter woes

OK, yes, the odds of a blizzard at this time of year are slim, but this is still Colorado and weirder things have happened. So consider this your off-season reminder that when the white stuff falls, sidewalks adjacent to your property need to be cleared of snow and ice within 24 hours. But, that’s kind of at the outside of responsibility, because sidewalks — especially busy ones — can be heavily used. If someone were to slip, fall and injure themselves, you could be liable for any damages. 

For more information about the city code, or to contact the Neighborhood Services Division, visit coloradosprings.gov/neighborhood-services.

 

Editor

Founding Editor and General Manager Regan Foster holds dual bachelor's degrees in journalism and Spanish and a master's degree in journalism with specialization in political reporting and media management.