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Kansas City agrees on urban farm rules, upsetting some

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Gardeners can sell whole, uncut, fresh food and horticultural products grown at their homes from May to October

By Lynn Horsley
The Kansas City Star
June 2, 2010

Excerpt:

A Kansas City Council committee today approved new rules designed to promote urban farming — but it has some gardeners worried that it’s a step backward rather than forward.

The Planning and Zoning Committee endorsed a measure that would allow urban farmers to sell their produce at their homes, something that’s not currently allowed. But the proposal also says row crops would not be permitted in front yards of occupied homes — a restriction that goes beyond the current code.

Among the proposal’s key provisions:

Gardeners can sell whole, uncut, fresh food and horticultural products grown at their homes from May to October.

Row crops are not permitted in the front yards of residentially-zoned and occupied properties.

If a conflict exists between the urban agriculture rules and private homeowner covenants or restrictions, the covenants take precedence.

Community gardens are allowed in residential areas, and the gardeners may or may not reside on the property. Sales are allowed on-site on otherwise vacant property, but not on land with an occupied house. The garden must comply with the lot and building standards for its zoning district.

Community-supported agriculture enterprises are allowed in residential areas, but require a special use permit. That means the enterprise must be reviewed by the City Plan Commission and the Board of Zoning Adjustment, and nearby neighbors can raise objections.

The city manager is directed to report back to the council in six months and again in 18 months on successes and/or problems generated by the new ordinance.

Read the complete article here.