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Dean, Mead, Minton & Zwemer is a law firm assisting individuals and businesses with zoning changes, site plan approvals and various permitting issues in Port St. Lucie and surrounding cities. Our attorneys frequently work with local municipalities including City Council members and City staff, as well as local land development consultants.
Our attorneys regularly assist clients in taking various land developments projects (residential, commercial and mixed-use) from the purchase of raw land to the final development approvals.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):
1. How Long Does it Take to Get a Zoning Change or Variance Approved?
The time required to get a zoning change or variance approved can vary widely depending upon the existing zoning, the proposed new zoning or variance, and the location. For example, a simple non-controversial zoning change that fits with the character of the surrounding area could be approved within 90 days. However, a change to a planned-development type zoning (a zoning that includes a site plan for a specific project) can take several months of review, negotiations and redesign to address concerns from City staff.
Our zoning and land use attorneys can discuss your project with you, identify potential issues and solutions, and estimate the time needed to obtain your approvals. We can then help you assemble a team of professionals in Port St. Lucie such as land planners, engineers, and environmental consultants. Next, our team will meet with City staff, review the issues with them and prepare a strategy and a more detailed timeline for getting through the approval process.
2. How Much Will it Cost to Change Zoning?
Just as the time to obtain a zoning change can vary widely, the cost can vary widely too. Upon request, we can provide an estimate of the legal fees required to obtain a zoning change or other approvals. We can also work with the other planning consultants on your team to help you prepare a budget for your project.
3. What Zoning Category Do We Need?
We can help you identify which zoning category is appropriate for your intended use of the property. Some uses may require a “special exception use” (SEU) in addition to a zoning change (for example, a drive-through requires an SEU approval). In addition, a future land use amendment may be required if the future land use designation of the property does not allow for the zoning category you are seeking.
4. What Other Approvals Are Required?
Any improvements to the property will require a site plan approval. If you intend to subdivide the property into more than one lot, you will probably need to obtain a plat, which must then be approved by the City. Depending on your project, you may also need approvals for a special exception use, FDOT permits, South Florida Water Management District or Army Corps Permits, a utility agreement, a concurrency agreement or a development agreement. We can help you assemble a team of local professionals (land planners, engineers, environmental consultants, etc.) to help you identify and obtain the approvals that you will need, in order to build your project.