FAQ’s

Frequently asked questions:

What is a plat?
A plat is a survey of land prepared by a licensed land surveyor which identifies the boundaries of the property, street or alley right-of-way, and any easements. Plats are reviewed by the Planning and Zoning Department to ensure subdivisions of property conform to City standards. Approved plats are filed for permanent record with the County Clerk and with the Planning Department.

Do I have to plat my property?
If the property has not previously been platted, is less than five (5) acres in size, or requires utility extensions, then the property must be platted prior to the issuance of permits. If you have additional questions, please call 806.378.6290 for further details.

What is zoning?
Zoning is a land-use planning tool used to designate permitted uses within specific areas of a City. Zoning can also regulate density of development, building height, building setbacks, and the amount of allowed lot coverage.
What is my property zoned?
Please view the zoning map to verify the location and zoning of your property. If you have additional questions, please call 806.378.6290 for further details.

I purchased a tract of land which is located outside the City Limits but within five (5) miles of Amarillo. I plan to construct a building on the tract. How do I obtain an address, utility, and a septic system permit for the property?
If the property is over five (5) acres in size, please contact the Building Safety Department at 806.378.6259 to obtain an address, then contact the utility companies for service, and the Environmental Health Department at 806.378.9474 for a septic system permit.
If the property is smaller than five (5) acres in size, the property must be platted. Please contact a Licensed Texas Land Surveyor or a registered professional land Surveyor in order for the platting process to begin. When the plat is approved an address is assigned. If you have additional questions, please call 806.378.6290 for further details.

I want to place a fence surrounding my property. Where can I place the fence?
A fence can be placed on your property line, providing there are no easements in the area. The fence can be up to four (4) feet tall in the front yard and up to eight (8) feet along the side and rear yards. If you have additional questions, please call 806.378.6290 for further details.

I own a lot in the middle of a block. What are my building setbacks when constructing a new home with a rear entry garage?

Residential District 1 (R-1) Residential District 2 (R-2) Residential District 3 (R-3)
Front yard: 25 feet Front yard: 25 feet Front yard: 15 feet
Interior side yards: 5 feet each Interior side yards: 5 feet each Interior side yards: 5 feet each
Rear Yard: 20 feet for a garage
And 10 feet for a main building
Rear Yard: 20 feet for a garage
And 10 feet for a main building
Rear Yard: 20 feet for a garage
And 10 feet for a main building

If you have additional questions or if your property is located within a different zoning district, please call 806.378.6290 for current setback requirements.

Can I place a manufactured home on my lot?
In most instances a new doublewide manufactured home is allowed. However, older manufactured homes may be allowed in several zoning districts within the City of Amarillo by obtaining a “Specific Use Permit” through the Planning Department. Please call 806.378.6290 for specific details.

Can I place a carport on my lot?
Yes, as long as the carport is located within the main building setbacks. A building permit must be obtained to place a carport on a lot. A carport may be allowed outside the main building setbacks by obtaining a Specific Use Permit. Please contact the Planning Department at 806.378.6290 to verify placement of the structure, and contact the Building Safety Department at 806.378.6259 for building permits.

Is my property located within a flood zone?
Please contact the City’s Engineering Department at 806.378.9334 for flood information.

Who is responsible for maintaining the property between the curb and my property line?
The owner, occupant, or tenant of the lot is responsible for maintaining the area of land between the property line of the lot and the adjoining curb. If no curb exists, then the area to be maintained is ten (10) feet toward the street from the property line.

Can I operate a business in my home?
Yes, if the following criteria can be met:
“The occupation is carried on in the home by a member of the occupant’s family, without:

  1. the employment of additional persons,
  2. 2) offering any commodity for sale to the general public on the premises,

The home business can use a nameplate to identify the occupation. The occupation cannot create unreasonable noise or other conditions to abutting residential property, such as emission of odors, increased traffic, parking, or generation of light or smoke.” If you have additional questions, please call 806.378.6290 for further details.

How many pets can I have at my home?
In most instances, a residence can house up to four (4) dogs, cats, or combination thereof over the age of four (4) months. If this number of animals increases to five (5) or more, then the City of Amarillo classifies the residence as a business, specifically a kennel, which is typically not allowed where homes are located. If you have additional questions, please call 806.378.6290 for clarification.

Do I need an appointment to speak with a Planner?
No, the City’s Planning Department is open from 8:00am to 5:00pm CDT, excluding holidays, and at least one Planner is available at all times. However, if you would like to make an appointment, please call 806.378.6290.

How large is Amarillo?
Amarillo has an estimated population of 194,375 for the 2012 year. As of October 1, 2012 the City of Amarillo was 101.26 square miles in size.

Is my address inside or outside City Limits?
Please view the City Limits map to verify the location. If you have additional questions, please call 806.378.6290 for further details.

Do I have to plant grass in front of my business?
No, landscaping should consist of a combination of grass, trees, shrubs, hedges, vines, domesticated blooming plants, and living ground cover. Native, drought-tolerant, or adapted plant materials are encouraged.

I want to replace my pole sign and wall sign for my business. What are the requirements?
If you are aware of the property’s current zoning district, please refer to the Sign Ordinance located on the Current Planning webpage. Otherwise, please call 806.378.6290 for further details.

Does your department provide City Maps with street names listed?
Yes, our department can print 2 ft. by 3 ft. maps for $5.41 each or 3 ft. by 4 ft. maps for $8.66 each. Please contact 806.378.6287 to request a map.