Special Yard, Height & Railroad Access Requirements

Additional Front Yard Requirements

  • Where the frontage on one side of a street between two intersecting streets is divided by two or more zoning districts, the front yard must comply with the requirements of the most restrictive district for the entire frontage.
  • Where a building line has been established by a plat approved by the City Council or by ordinance, and such line required a greater or lesser front yard setback than is prescribed by this Code for the district in which the building line is located, the required front yard must comply with the building line so established by such ordinance or plat provided no such building line can be less than 20 feet.
  • The front yard is measured from the property line to the front face of the building, covered porch, covered terrace or attached accessory building.
  • Eaves and roof extensions or a porch without posts or columns may project into the required front yard for a distance not to exceed 4 feet, and subsurface structures, platforms or slabs may not project into the front yard to a height greater than 30 inches above the average grade of the yard. Fireplaces, bay windows and other similar construction not exceeding 7 feet in width may extend 2 feet into a required yard; provided the total length of all such projections into a yard can not exceed one third (1/3) the length of the exterior wall, excluding garages adjacent to that yard. However, no projections may extend beyond the property line.
  • Where lots have double frontage, extending from one street to another, a required front yard must be provided on both streets unless a building line for accessory buildings has been established along one frontage on the plat or by ordinance, in which event only one required front yard need be observed.
  • In all residential districts, the minimum front yards may be reduced by a maximum of 5 feet if 25% of the dedicated street lengths in the subdivision are curvilinear in design. In no case can the required front yard be less than 20 feet.
  • The minimum front yard setback requirements may be reduced by 5 feet in all Single-Family Districts provided that at least 50% of the structures on a given block are setback an additional 5 feet from the original setback. The average setback would equal the original setback requirement. The purpose of this requirement is to encourage a variety of front yard setbacks along a street creating a more pleasing appearance of houses in the subdivision. In no case can the front yard setback be less than 20 feet. The desired setbacks for each lot must be designated on the final plat.
  • Minimum front yard setbacks for lots with predominate frontage on the curved radius of a dedicated cul-de-sac street may be reduced 5 feet but can not be less than 20 feet.
  • Gasoline service station pump islands may not be located nearer than 18 feet to the front property line. An unenclosed canopy for a gasoline filling station may extend beyond the front building line but must never be closer than 10 feet to the property line.
  • Satellite dishes are prohibited in the front yard area of any district. Only one satellite dish is permitted on each residential lot by Specific Use Permit.
  • Attached accessory buildings must have a front yard not less than the main building or as specified in the particular district in which the building is situated. Detached accessory buildings must be located in the area defined as the rear yard, with a minimum setback of 60 feet from the front property line.
  • In all residential districts, the front yard must be open and unobstructed except for fences.

Outside Storage

It is prohibited to store or maintain outside an item which is not:
  • Customarily used or stored outside
  • Made of a material that is resistant to damage or deterioration from exposure to the outside environment.
    • An item located on a porch of a building is considered to be outside if the porch is not enclosed.
    • Except as otherwise provided, outside storage is not permitted in the front yard or on a front porch of a residential building.
    • No more than 5% of the total lot area of a premise may be used for outside storage. The area occupied by an operable motor vehicle with valid state registration is not counted when calculating the area occupied by accessory outside storage. Except as otherwise provided in the Use and Lot Standards Regulations Section of the Red Oak Zoning Ordinance, outside storage is considered to be a separate main use if it occupies more than 5% of the lot.
It is prohibited to park or store outside an automobile repair business or garage, a vehicle outside which is inoperative or are being repaired for a period greater than 7 days.


  • An operable motor vehicle with a valid state registration parked on a surface that meets the standards for parking surfaces contained in the off-street parking regulations of this chapter, except that this exemption is not available if the vehicle is a truck tractor, truck, bus, or recreational vehicle and it has a load capacity in excess of two (2) tons, or if the vehicle is over 32 feet in length
  • A boat, trailer, or recreational vehicle parked on a surface that meets the standards in the Fire Lane, Off-Street Parking and Loading Requirements for parking surfaces, and which cannot reasonably be placed in an area behind the front yard
  • Landscaping, or an ornamental structure, including, but not limited to a birdbath, plant container, or statuette, placed in the front yard or on the front porch for landscaping purposes
  • Lawn furniture made of a material that is resistant to damage or deterioration from exposure to the outside environment
  • Seasonal decorations associated with the holidays
  • A vehicle displaying a registration insignia or identification card issued by the state to a permanently or temporarily disabled person for purposes of Section 681.006 of the Texas Transportation Code
  • An item located on a front porch and not visible from the street

Additional Rear Yard Requirements

Nonresidential Districts

  • In a nonresidential zoning district, a minimum rear yard of 10 feet is required for any main or accessory building.
  • When a nonresidential use backs up to a residential zoning district boundary line, a minimum rear yard of 20 feet is required for building heights of 15 feet or less. For building heights greater than 15 feet, an additional setback of 1 foot is required for each foot in height of building above15 feet.

Residential Rear Yard Accessory Building Setback

  • In a residential zoning district, there must be a rear yard not less than 5 feet from any lot line, alley line, or easement line, except that if no alley exists, the rear yard can not be less than 10 feet as measured from the rear lot line. Where apartments are permitted, the main building and all accessory buildings can not cover more than 50% of that portion of the lot lying to the rear of a line erected joining the midpoint of one side lot line with the midpoint of the opposite side lot line.
  • Garages, or other accessory buildings located within the rear portion of a lot and constructed closer than 15 feet to the main building must have a rear yard equivalent to the rear yard requirement for the main building.
  • Accessory buildings constructed 15 feet or more from the main building must have a rear yard of 5 feet. If such an accessory building is located within 3 feet of a rear lot line, the height of the building can be no greater than 8 feet and a solid fence or wall of the same height must be built on the rear lot line to screen the building from property located to the rear. Garages arranged so as to be entered by a motor vehicle from an alley or rear alley easement must be setback from the rear yard or alley easement line a minimum distance of 20 feet.

Additional Side Yard Requirements

Nonresidential Districts

In nonresidential districts, no side yard is required, except that a nonresidential twenty-five foot setback is required for a lot which abuts a street, has separate uses on the same lot or abuts a lot which has a different zoning classification.

Residential Districts

  • On a corner lot used for residential purposes, both street exposures are treated as front yards on any lot platted after May 18, 1989, except that where one street exposure is designated as a side yard and separated from the adjacent lot by an alley. In such case, a building line is designated on the approved plat containing a side yard of 15 feet or more. On lots which were official lots of record prior to May 18, 1987, the minimum side yard adjacent to a side street must comply with the minimum required side yard for the respective district but in no case can the side yard be less than 10 feet.
  • Every part of a required side yard must be open and unobstructed except for accessory buildings as permitted herein and the ordinary projections of window sills, belt courses, cornices, and other architectural features projecting a maximum of 12 inches into the required side yard, and roof eaves projecting a maximum of 36 inches into the required side yard.
  • There must be a side yard not less than 5 feet from any side lot line, alley line, or easement line for any accessory building provided that such building is separated from the main building by a minimum distance of 15 feet. In the case of an accessory building being closer than 15 feet to the main building, the minimum side yard requirements for the main dwelling unit must be observed.
  • Accessory buildings adjacent to a side street must have a side yard of not less than 15 feet.
  • Garages located and arranged so as to be entered from the side yard must have a minimum distance of 20 feet from the side lot line, alley line, or easement line.
  • A carport is not a permitted use.

Special Height Regulations

  • In the districts where the height of the buildings is restricted to 30 feet or less, cooling towers, roof gables, chimneys and vent stacks may extend for an additional 5 feet in height but not exceed 40 feet above the average grade line of the building.
  • Water stand pipes and tanks, church steeples, domes, and spires, school buildings, and institutional buildings may be erected to exceed 3 stories in height, provided that 1 additional foot must be added to the width and depth of front, side, and rear yards for each foot that such structures exceed 40 feet.
  • Amateur radio antennas and other transmitting and receiving devices of microwave or electromagnetic waves for broadcasting use, can not interfere with radio or television reception of adjoining property owners, and must comply with all regulations of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). In no case can the height of such antennas exceed 40 feet and the use of proper guy wire must be followed.
  • Roof-mounted satellite dishes in excess of 50 pounds must be approved by a registered architect or engineer by written letter to the building official, prior to installation, stating the antenna's stability and support.

Railroad Access

For structures requiring railroad access, setback requirements from the centerline of the railroad right-of-way must be in accordance with applicable state law.