Development & Site Plan Review

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Site Plan Review

Any development that includes a new building or building expansion that exceeds 500 square feet in gross floor area or any parking facility with ≥ 5 parking spaces or 2,500 square feet in size  that is constructed, reconstructed, revised, or enlarged requires review and approval by the city’s Technical Review Committee. 

Professional Seals: Professional seals (engineers, land surveyors, architects, etc) on digital plans will need to be redacted from digital copies submitted to the city for review. Please be sure to mark, strike through, or conceal any professional seal located on your digital (re)submittals (e.g. PDF). This applies to digital copies only. Hard copies may continue to include professional seals. If you have any questions please contact the plan review staff (contact information below). 

The deadline for all TRC submittals is Wednesday at 1:00 pm

Planning & Zoning Assessment

Prior to submitting plans for technical review the applicant must meet with a planner (Planner of the Day or scheduled meeting) for a Planning & Zoning AssessmentAs part of this assessment the planner will confirm that the use is permitted, identify any supplemental standards that may apply (e.g. tree removal, parking, landscaping), and provide general guidance on the applicant’s proposed concept. The planner may request other TRC members or zoning staff to provide additional feedback. This meeting is intended for projects that are in their conceptual phase and will assist applicants in deciding whether to move forward to a Pre-TRC Consultation. To speak with the Planner of the Day or to schedule an assessment please contact the Planning Office at 910.254.0900. 

Pre-TRC Consultation

The applicant must submit plans for a Pre-TRC Consultation prior to submitting for Formal TRC Review. The Pre-TRC Consultation will include representatives from city planning, engineering, transportation planning, traffic engineering, the fire department, the city arborist, and the Cape Fear Public Utility Authority. The Pre-TRC Consultation is intended to provide the applicant with the necessary information and guidance to successfully submit for Formal TRC Review. Additional consultations may be needed or desired. The Pre-TRC Consultation may be waived by TRC at the applicant’s request.

Formal TRC Review

The goal of the Formal TRC Review is to approve or conditionally approve a site plan application at the TRC meeting. To accomplish this goal, applicants must submit a complete site plan application package to be considered for formal review. An application completeness check (1 week) will be performed by each TRC discipline. If complete, the application will be placed on the next available TRC agenda (4 weeks). If incomplete (e.g. missing information or materials), staff will inform the applicant of the missing information or materials. The application will not be placed on the TRC agenda until all required information is provided. Each discipline will review the complete application and comments will be compiled by the assigned planner and provided to the applicant three days prior to the TRC meeting.

Documents:

For further assistance, please contact the Planning office at 910.254.0900.

Subdivisions

When the property lines of a parcel within the city limits are changed, the legal recording of all property divisions is completed by map. The map - officially called a "final plat" - of the division is recorded at the local Register of Deeds.

Major Subdivisions receive initial review before the Technical Review Committee, then a Preliminary Subdivision Plan is submitted to planning staff. A project planner processes the plan so that the Subdivision Review Board (SRB) can consider it for approval. All major subdivisions are heard at a formal meeting of the SRB.

Minor Subdivisions also require preparation of a Preliminary Subdivision Plan. A plan which meets City requirements must be submitted with a completed application and the required fee. These plans are reviewed formally by city staff. Typically, these plans are not reviewed by the SRB.

The City subdivision regulations apply to residential and commercial development.

The Technical Review Committee issues formal comments and guidance to developers so that city code requirements and engineering technical standards are satisfied.

The Subdivision Review Board considers major subdivision plans at its regularly scheduled monthly meeting.

Subdivision Plat Review:

Map Review Officer: Plats to be recorded at the New Hanover County (NHC) Register of Deeds must be signed by an NHC Map Review Officer. Contact a Map Review Officer at 910.254.0900.

Exempt Subdivision Plats:

Certain plats do not require a Preliminary Subdivision Plan. Minor parcel adjustments may qualify as an exempt division. Sign-off by planning or zoning staff is required. Contact 910.254.0900.

Contacts

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