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Entitlement applications should avoid variance requests. Applications without variance requests are better received by reviewers and approvals are more likely received without delay. However, developing land in strict compliance with ordinances and guidelines is not always possible or economical. Jurisdictional authorities understand this and often express a willingness to allow exceptions provided the exceptions serve the public’s best interest. A developer should be prepared to meet this willingness with quick consideration of design and economic impacts so a request may be modified or amended to immediately receive support from the jurisdictional authority.

Community support for a development is often necessary to receive discretionary zoning. High profile zoning requests may only receive support if the developer makes an effort to satisfy public concerns. Planning departments often receive support and opposition feedback from the public prior to a public hearing. Contacting the planning department prior to a public hearing allows the developer to consider options that may win public support.Concerns successfully addressed include traffic, flooding, water pressure, property value and view corridors.


  • Annexing: Prepare petition with exhibits and present application to city staff and City Council.
  • Zoning: Prepare application with exhibits and present to city staff. If necessary, discuss concerns with citizens.
  • Platting: Prepare engineering plans, studies, and reports necessary for plat applications.
  • ConstructionDocuments: Prepare construction documents for roadway, sanitary, water, and drainage.
  • Oversizing agreements: Prepare letter requesting participation in principal and provide supporting documents.