Decks, Gazebos & Pergolas

Decks - Construction Requirements
The installation of a deck requires:
  • A completed Building Permit Application (PDF)
  • A drawing of the proposed project that shows:
    • Beam sizes
    • Footing sizes
    • Joist sizes and spans
    • Post spacing
  • A site plan showing your lot, location of all buildings on the lot, and the proposed deck
  • In some cases, subdivision approval is also required (Contact your subdivision representative for more information, our office does not have subdivision representative contact information)
What You Need to Know About Decks
  • Decks must be constructed of treated wood or wood that is naturally durable or decay resistant, like cedar or redwood. Plastic and vinyl products are also acceptable, provided they carry the State of Wisconsin’s Material Approval.
  • No matter what the building material, decks must be able to withstand a load of 40 pounds per square foot.
  • Footings are required and must extend below the frost line, which is at 48 inches below grade.
  • Guardrails are required for decks above 2 feet high and must be at least 36 inches above the surface of the deck floor. Intermediate rails must be spaced so you cannot pass a 4 inch object between them. Handrails are also required if you have 3 or more steps from the deck.
  • Decks up to 3 feet high may extend to within 8 feet of the rear property line.
  • Decks over 3 feet high may not be closer than 24 feet to the rear property line. Side yard setbacks can vary, so please call with questions.
  • If your plans include the installation of a roof over the deck, the distances to the property line are greater.
Gazebos
A gazebo is a structure with a permanent roof, intended to shed water, its sides could be open or enclosed. This type of structure is typically intended to spend a duration of time in. Our ordinance setback requirements apply to this type of structure and a Building Permit (PDF) is required.

Pergola
A pergola is an open sided structure that supports some type of overhead, nominal lumber or other material meant to provide shade. It is not intended as a permanent watershed. This type of structure is typically intended to spend a duration of time in. Our ordinance setback requirements apply to this type of structure. A Building Permit (PDF) is required.
Gazebo Sketch
Pergola