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City News

Posted on: December 18, 2019

Zoning updates to go into effect in 2020

Close up of map draft

The City of Sioux Center has updated its zoning code and map with the future in mind.

“Our community is growing, and these updates help ensure that our zoning reflects current and future growth,” said Assistant City Manager Dennis Dokter. “The zoning code has remained the same for more than a decade. In that same time, our community has grown significantly and continues to do so.”

The updates to the zoning code and zoning map go into effect Jan. 1, 2020. The updated text and map are available in full at the Sioux Center City Office and online at for property owners to review. Here’s a brief overview of some of the updates:

  • Accessory building permits  required (garden sheds)

All accessory buildings constructed or placed after January 1st will be required to apply for a building permit. This new requirement will help ensure proper placement of the structure and that utilities are not covered

  • Single-family conversion requirements have been updated

The City of Sioux Center has seen incredible growth, which has put pressure on our housing, both entry-level homes and rental spaces. In order to keep up with the desire of creating more living spaces, the zoning update clarifies the requirements to convert a single dwelling into multiple dwellings, including that property owners must obtain a special exception through the Board of Adjustment before converting the property.

  • Architectural standards for commercial buildings

The new architectural standards will help ensure all commercial buildings are visually pleasing.

Updated use definitions

  • Many definitions were updated to keep up with new and changing property uses.

New Mixed-Use District to encourage new growth in downtown Sioux Center

  • A new district was created to allow downtown properties to have commercial and residential spaces in the same property, such as a main floor shop with upstairs apartment.

Existing uses that conformed to the pre-2020 zoning code are allowed to continue when the updates go into effect.

“We hope people take a few moments and familiarize themselves with the new zoning map and text, especially as they plan projects for their home and business,” said City Building Official Josh Dorhout. “We are here to help if anyone has questions or would like more information.”

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