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Zoning Department

NOTE:  You can download a PDF version of the zoning map by clicking here. The PDF version is a 3.9 MB file.  You can also look up all City Zoning Ordinances by clicking here.

You can download a PDF version of the Canton Design Guidelines by clicking here.

About Zoning

Zoning involves land use. Before any building, addition to a building, accessory structure or sign is erected, a zoning permit is required. This includes swimming pools, fences, decks, sheds, telecommunication towers and antennas. Zoning also determines where the aforementioned items can be placed on a property. Building permits may also be required. If a building permit is required, it must be obtained before the commencement of work.

Zoning also regulates what uses can go where. Such as, before a business starts up or a property is purchased or leased for a use, zoning should be contacted to determine if the proposed use is legal there.

Zoning also administers the Zoning Board of Appeals for variances, and conditional uses, other zoning related cases and has the City of Canton's flood plain information. To apply for a variance before the Zoning Board of Appeals, you must supply addresses of property owners in the area, fill out an application form, and pay a fee of $75. You will then be scheduled for the next regular meeting of the Zoning Board of Appeals, which meets every third Tuesday of the month. Paperwork should be filed one month in advance.

Zone changes (reclassification of a property such as residential to business, single to multi-family, business to industrial) are filed through the Planning Department in City Hall. To speak with a representative, please call 330-438-4132 and ask for Matt Bailey.

When applying for a zoning permit, make sure that you have a to-scale plot plan showing where the structure will be placed on your property and how far away from the property lines the structure will be.

The basics to get a zoning permit, you must have with you:

  1. The correct address where the work is being done.
  2. The contractor's name, address, telephone.
  3. The owner's name, address, telephone.
  4. Know the work you will be performing.
  5. How far from the property lines the structure will be.
  6. The fee for the permit.
  7. For commercial, 8 sets of site plans if required.

Zoning Fees are as follows:

  • New Single Family - $50
  • Fence - $25
  • Residential additions - $50
  • Garage (over 200 sq ft) - $50
  • Swimming Pool - $25
  • Shed (up to 200 sq ft) - $50
  • Deck - $50
  • Billboard - $100
  • Sign - $50

For commercial zoning request, please contact the Zoning Inspector by calling (330) 438-4726


Site plans are required whenever a business building is being constructed or constructing an addition and when an apartment building is being erected or constructing an addition.

Eight copies of the site plan drawn to scale, legible, showing the construction, its size, the setbacks, all driveways, parking spaces and storm water drainage and the proposed use of the building must be submitted. Departments that will be reviewing these plans are the Zoning, Planning, Traffic, Civil Engineering, Fire, Water and Stark Soil & Water Conservation District. The time frame is roughly ten working days to have plans reviewed.


Fences are allowed to be placed up to the property line. There is no rule as to which side of the fence must face the neighbor. No barbed wire is allowed in a residential area. In a residential area, the maximum height in the front yard is four feet, along the side of the house is six feet, and in the rear yard it is eight feet. Permission to properly install a fence is not needed from the neighbor.


Sheds are 200 sq. ft. or smaller. Anything larger is a garage. There is a fifteen foot maximum height. Only one detached garage per residence.

Set backs from the property lines are the same for both. If the property is surrounded by land, then four feet from the rear line and five feet from the sides. These are minimums--the distance can always be larger.

If an alley is involved and the garage doors are to face the alley, the structure must be twenty feet from the center line of the alley. This means stand in the middle of the alley and move in towards your property twenty feet.

If it is a corner property, to be safe, contact the Zoning Inspector (330) 438-4726.

A detached garage is never allowed in the front yard area or to encroach into the front yard area.

Maximum sizes of garages allowed can vary. Always, a property would be allowed 720 square feet of garage area. If the property is larger, then ten percent of total property area is the allowed size not to go over 1,000 square feet of garage area. This total garage area would include an existing attached garage. Example: the lot is 80 x 100 so there is 8,000 square feet of lot, thus a garage area up to 800 square feet is allowed.


All requests for new cellular towers/antennas must be taken before the Zoning Board of Appeals with special requirements. Contact the Zoning Inspector (330) 438-4726.


"No person shall engage in the business of erecting, placing, installing, posting, painting or pasting any permanent or portable sign for advertising purposes within the limits of the City without having first obtained from the Director of Public Safety a license to do so." Section 707.01 of the Codified Ordinances of the City of Canton, Ohio.

The fee for a sign business is $250 with a properly completed application form.

For any information concerning zoning within the corporation limits of Canton, contact the Zoning Department at (330) 438-4726.

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