10 Common Reasons for Site Plan Review Rejections

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The Houston Planning and Development Department (P&D) wants to help you get your site plans approved quickly and with the fewest amount of rejections possible. To this end, the team has identified the 10 most common reasons for plan rejections and delays. By understanding the most common rejections, you can prepare your next permit submittal with the correct information.

Top Ten Reasons for Site Plan Rejections

  1. Missing Construction and Maintenance Agreement: You must provide a recorded construction and maintenance agreement when your building is closer than 3 feet to an adjacent residential property. Click here to download the form.
  2. Utility Easement Encroachments: Your proposal should not encroach into any utility easement. This includes roof overhangs.
  3. Off-street Parking Requirements: For a shopping center buildout, your plans should indicate a tenant list with proposed land-use classification and proposed gross-floor area. Land use classifications are found in the City’s Code of Ordinances, Sec. 26-472 here and Sec. 26-492 here.
  4. Required Trees are Missing: You must receive written permission from the Department of Parks and Recreation Department, Urban Forester for removing or claiming credits for existing trees. Further information can be found in City’s Code of Ordinances , Sec. 33-105 (g) here.
  5. Building Line Encroachment: The most common example is a proposed building that encroaches into the 25-foot building line along a designated major thoroughfare. You can refer to P&D’s website for the Major Thoroughfare Plan and Hierarchy Table to determine if your proposal is on a major thoroughfare.
  6. Garage Building Line: You must have a minimum 17-foot building line for garages and carports facing the street. Identify it on your plan. See Sec. 42-157 (b) (2) here for more details.
  7. Property Survey is Missing: You must submit a sealed and certified survey when your property includes acreage or existing structures.
  8. Interior Lot Lines: Your proposed commercial structure cannot be built across an interior property lot line. To remove the interior lot line a replat will be required.
  9. Property Configuration: You must provide documentation indicating that the property has been in the same configuration prior to March 15, 1963. Post March 15, 1963 lot configurations will require a subdivision plat. For more information, see Sec. 42-4 here.
  10. Incorrect Landscape Requirements: In calculating the requirements for street trees you must provide the linear frontage for each street individually. Refer to the City’s Code of Ordinances Chapter 33, Article V here.

Every document you need is posted at this link: https://www.houstontx.gov/planning/DevelopRegs/.

If you are interested in the City of Houston Planning & Development’s expedited review process, please send an email request between 9 am and 12 noon to PD.expeditedreview@houstontx.gov. If you have additional questions, you can call 832-393-6600 and ask for the Planner of the Day.