As a property owner in Westerville, you have to deal with the city if you wish to develop a home or a commercial building. The city’s zoning laws will be of special concern. Zoning organizes the community into specific districts based upon the intensity and use of property, ensuring that residential and commercial projects will reside within appropriate areas.
Whether you want to construct a new building or improve an existing one, your project will have to meet the zoning requirements of the city. You cannot start on your construction or renovation without first making sure Westerville’s zoning authorities will permit your project to go forward.
Securing first approval
In Westerville, the Planning and Zoning Division is responsible for reviewing and approving developmental projects. This is the first authority you will contact to acquire a zoning permit. Hopefully, the division will find that your project meets the zoning requirements of your area. However, there is the chance the board will deny your request.
Acquiring a variance
The city of Westerville allows property owners to secure a zoning variance for a project. Even if a proposed development does not follow the zoning requirements for an area, the city may still give approval if it determines that the zoning requirements would pose a hardship to the property owner and/or the current zoning requirements would result in an undesirable development of the land.
To secure a variance, you would take your case to the Board of Zoning Appeals. This is a board composed of seven members that hears cases involving primary zoning variances and temporary use permits. The board will hold a public hearing to consider the evidence presented by yourself and other relevant parties. Following the hearing, the board may approve or deny your variance.
In the event things do not go your way at the hearing, you might consider appealing your case to the Council. Keep in mind that another party to your case may also appeal if you are successful in acquiring a variance. Be prepared for a number of outcomes as you seek approval of your project.