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Development Services

Contact information
Zoning Division
Development Services Dept
City Services Center 
500 15th Ave SW 
Cedar Rapids, IA 52404

Phone: 319-286-5836
Fax: 319-286-5830
zoning@cedar-rapids.org

Hours
Mon - Fri: 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. 

Payments not accepted after 4:00 p.m.

Urban Agriculture
The City encourages the use of urban agriculture (or community gardens) after obtaining the appropriate permits. The City provides more than 300 public lots that offer safe public use of land for gardening. The Urban Agriculture ordinance was also recently expanded to allow for community gardens on private property with the property owner's permission.

Agricultural activities allowed in urban setting include the utilization of vacant, undeveloped, or underdeveloped tracts of land within the city for the purposes of agriculture.

Benefits of community gardens:

  • Builds a sense of community and place
  • Utilizes vacant land and encourages mixed-use development
  • Encourages local, home-grown food
  • Supports Healthy Cedar Rapids

Starting an Urban Agriculture garden:

  • If the property is not vacant, and the land you wish to cultivate is under ¼ of an acre, no permit is required, simply the property owner’s permission.

A Special Use permit for Urban Agriculture is required from the Development Services Department if:

  • The lot is vacant
  • You will be using more than ¼ an acre of land (roughly 200’x200’) for a lot that has another use

See Special Uses to find an application for an Urban Agriculture Special Use Permit. 

The Parks and Recreation department also has garden plots available at three local parks, which citizens can lease for gardening. For information on leasing a garden plot through the Parks & Recreation Department, please contact 319-286-5731.


Contact Information:
For questions regarding Urban Agriculture and to obtain an Urban Agriculture permit, please contact Zoning Administration at 319-286-5836.

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