New Terrace Ordinance

Galesburg, IL The City of Galesburg recently passed an ordinance that allows residents to plant flowers and other approved plantings in the terrace. The terrace is the portion of a yard between the sidewalk and street, which is maintained by the resident, but is public property and subject to access by the city and public utility companies to perform necessary work. The ordinance increases the options for residents to maintain plantings other than grass in the terrace, while simultaneously ensuring the plantings do not interfere with city or utility maintenance, or the safe access and vision of pedestrians and motorists.


Residents who would like to plant on the terrace are required to apply for a no cost landscape permit and provide a plan or sketch of what they would like to incorporate into their terrace. There is no cost for this permit, which is available at City Hall at the Public Works Counter. If the resident will be digging in the terrace, they are required to call JULIE locate services at 1-800-892-0123 at least three business days before digging, as most terraces contain underground utilities that will need to be marked.


“We are pleased to be able to allow citizens to plant in the terraces to beautify their properties which allows for individual choices for terrace plantings, while still maintaining the needed access to the public right of way, and safety for pedestrians and motorists,” said Wayne Carl, Interim City Manager and Director of Public Works. “Comprehensive information is available at City Hall and on the city’s website to guide citizens, and city staff are happy to help citizens with any questions.”


Approved plantings include any non-woody plantings such as flower gardens, natural grasses or other plants provided they comply with the height restrictions based on their placement. A list of potential options is included in the Guide to Planting on the Terrace; however, this is not a comprehensive list, and property owners may select other plants that meet the height requirements. Terrace tree planting permits are not included in this ordinance, but can be requested through the Forestry Department.


For more information on terrace landscape options, please visit the City’s website or contact the Public Works Department at 309-345-3623.


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