Building a Pole Barn

The term 'pole barn' has varying significance. Some people will focus on the word 'barn' and assume a farm building is being constructed for agricultural use. Other people focus on the word 'pole' indicating a Post & Beam construction method. However, it is the intended use of the structure that determines the approval process.

Any accessory structure will require approval by the Zoning Division before submission for review by the Building Development Division for a building permit. A new grading plan may be required in some cases. Contact the Zoning Division at 703-792-6830 for requirements.
 
Regardless of the proposed method of construction if the property in question is zoned Agricultural and the proposed structure is intended for agricultural use, the proposed structure may be exempt from Building Code Compliance as provided by the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code. However, if the property is not zoned Agricultural, or if the proposed use of the building is not strictly and solely for Agricultural purpose as defined by the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code, it must comply fully with the Building Code.
 
Approval Process for Code Compliance:
  1. Certificate of Zoning Approval: The Zoning Department will approve the size and location of the proposed structure. A boundary plat or house location survey prepared to scale and sealed by a licensed professional surveyor or engineer will be required.
  2. Building Permit Application and the application fee as per the approved Building Development Fee Schedule. (Please note that we currently only accept cash or checks.)
  3. Two sets of Building Plans as follows:

    • Minimum Size 11” X 17”
    • Foundation Plan (Plan View & Sectional Detail)
    • Elevations for all sides (“side view”)
    • Plan Views (overhead for each floor and roof)
    • Sectional Detail (from footing to roof)
    • The plan does not have to be prepared by a professional designer, but it does have to be legible drawn with a straight edge on 11” X 17” paper (or larger), and not in pencil.
       
      Submit application packages to the Building Development Division, 5 County Complex Court, Prince William, VA 22192, or call 703-792-6930 for more information.