Paso Robles to adopt a ban on front lawns

November 20, 2015

PASO ROBLES BRICK SIGNBuilders will soon find it more difficult to construct homes with front lawns in Paso Robles. [Tribune]

On Tuesday, the Paso Robles City Council voted 4-1 to ban front lawns at new residential developments. Builders can work around the ban, though, if they hire landscape architects and submit soil and water-use studies that meet the demands of city planners.

City staff crafted the ordinance in response to a new California mandate that states new homes may have grass on no more than 25 percent of their total landscape. City officials say it is simpler for developers to do away with front lawns altogether than go through the process of conducting studies and submitting paperwork to justify anticipated water usage.

Paso Robles water manager Christopher Alakel said the city wants residents to get rid of decorative turf. But, city officials also understand grass serves multiple purposes, such as for sports, kids and pets, Alakel said.

Three of the five members of the Paso Robles council supported banning new front lawns. Councilman John Hamon requested that some front-yard turf options be allowed for property owners who are willing to submit the required studies. The council majority agreed to Hamon’s request.

Councilman Jim Reed cast the lone dissenting vote. Reed said the regulations are too invasive.

A second majority vote in favor of the ordinance is required for the regulation to take effect. The ordinance will return to the council for final approval at an upcoming meeting.



  1. Jon Tatro says:

    They approve Allegretto luxury hotel who just planted 5 acres of grapes and hundreds of trees and plants. They absolutely flood the lawns at Barney Schwartz Park to the point it’s a swamp,but yet they want us to go without lawns. Yep that’s Paso government.

    (10) 12 Total Votes - 11 up - 1 down
  2. Citizen says:

    Thanks to Jim Reed for voting no. The City Council and the APCD are asleep at the wheel. Less vegetation and no grass means more dust and particulates in the air, and the type of non grass front yard should be carefully considered. Some of the shredded rubber filler is now being found to be toxic.

    Each new housing development should be considered as to the average wind velocity in the area and whether they are close to a school where kids will be on the playground.

    No, we don’t want to be like Arizona where they have huge dust storms periodically. Check it out: Just google “Arizona dust storms”.

    (13) 15 Total Votes - 14 up - 1 down
  3. 65buick says:

    Gubment! They CANT! Dang evil-doers!!

    (7) 7 Total Votes - 7 up - 0 down

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