Retaining Walls

To apply for a retaining wall in a residential district applicant shall submit the following in person:

  • Three (3) copies of a house location survey plat to scale;
  • A processing fee payable in cash or check is required; 
  • Retaining walls over two (2) feet in height shall be permitted under the requirements of the Design and Construction Standards Manual, and if greater than four (4) feet in height, shall meet the following setbacks.

    Minimum Required Setbacks
     Lot Size
    Front
    Side
    Rear
    (a) Less than 10,000 square feet
    15 feet
    5 feet
    8 feet
    (b) 10,000 square feet to one acre
    25 feet
    6 feet
    10 feet
    (c) Greater than one acre
    35 feet
    10 feet
    15 feet

  • Written authorization from the Department of Public Works, Watershed Branch is required if the retaining wall is constructed in a Resource Protection Area (visit the GIS County Mapper to view RPA and other overlay districts) and must be obtained prior to application for zoning approval. The Department of Public Works, Watershed Branch is located at 5 County Complex Court, Suite 170 in Prince William. The Branch may be contacted at 703-792-7070.
  • Applicant is to show height and location, and provide an elevation of the retaining wall to scale on the house location survey plat;
  • If the retaining wall exceeds 24 inches (2’) above grade, approval is required to be obtained from the Development Services Department, Building Division, after obtaining zoning approval.
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    To apply for a retaining wall in a commercial district:retaining wall CROPPED.jpg

    • Plan approval is required to be obtained from Development Services; The plan shall include the height, location, and elevation; For more details as to the minimum plan submittal requirements contact the Development Services Department at 703-792-6830;
    • Applicant to provide a building permit release letter and three copies of the approved plan to the Zoning Administration Division of the Planning Office;
    • processing fee;
    • No application form required;
    • Applicant to provide a building permit release letter and three copies of the approved plan to the Zoning Administration Division of the Planning Office;
    • If the wall exceeds 24 inches (2’) above grade, approval is required to be obtained from the Development Services Department, Building Division after obtaining zoning approval.

     

    For more information on retaining walls, call 703-792-6830.