What is Zoning?
Zoning is a commonly used land use management tool in planning. Traditionally, zoning is the process by which a community is divided into districts or "zones." It separates incompatible land uses and limits industrial, commercial, and residential development to specific "zones". Each "zone" has a different set of uses, densities, dimensional requirements, and other development standards.
Zoning also allows a variety of uses to exist harmoniously together within a community. Zoning helps protect public and private interests, preserve critical areas, promote orderly growth, and encourages development at a rate and manner that reflects the community desires and vision through the policies set forth in the adopted Land Use Plan. Please reference the Unified Development Ordinance for full explainations.
What is a Rezoning?
A REZONING is required when a property owner proposes to use his/her land for purposes other than permitted by the current zoning classification. Rezoning requests are reviewed for recommendation by the Planning Department Staff and Planning Board and then forwarded to the Board of Commissioners for the final determination.
All rezonings must be CONSISTENT with the Brunswick County CAMA Land Use Plan Map. If an applicant can demonstrate a change in the character of an area that warrants a departure from the adopted Land Use Plan or demonstrate that the request is consistent with one or more of the adopted Land Use Plan Policies located within the Brunswick County CAMA Land Use Plan Update document, then the applicant can request a Land Use Amendment. A Land Use Amendment can be requested in conjunction with the rezoning request.
• Rezoning Brochure
• Rezoning Application
• Rezoning Deadline Schedule
THE REZONING PROCESS
Schedule a Meeting
Schedule a meeting with a Planning and Community Development Department Staff Member to advise you regarding the rezoning process, provide materials needed for submission, detail the fees involved, and answerany questions.
- Address of Property
- Owner’s Name
- Tax Parcel ID Number of property (available from the Tax Office on Tax Statement or Deed)
- Proposed Land Use Desired
After a specific request is determined then a formal rezoning application must be submitted to the Planning Department.
Submit a Rezoning Application
A formal rezoning application must be submitted to the Planning and Community Development Department that includes the following information:
- A complete rezoning application
(Can be obtained by contacting Planning and Community Development)
- Rezoning request must be consistent with CAMA Land Use Plan.
If the request is not consistent then the applicant must request a Land Use Plan Amendment and demonstrate a change in the character of the area and consistency with adopted Land Use Plan Policies by filling out the Land Use Plan Consistency section on the rezoning application. Additionally there is a Land Use Plan Amendment Fee of $200.00.
- Submit 15 folded copies of a recent plat, survey or other map that shows the location and dimensions of the area proposed to be rezoned.
- Rezoning Filing Fees:
< 5.00 acres - $300.00
5.00 to 49.99 acres - $500.00
50.00 to 99.00 acres - $750.00
>100 acres - $1,000.00
After submittal a staff member will review the application to ensure the application is complete.
The request will then be scheduled on the next AVAILABLE agenda to go before the Planning Board for the public hearing.
Before the case is heard by the Planning Board, a staff review of the application is completed in conjunction with various other County and State agencies. Planning Staff prepares an analysis and recommendation.
Anyone interested in a particular rezoning request may call the Planning Department to address their questions and concerns. Public Notices detailing the request, including the time, date and place of the Planning Board Meeting, are sent to all adjacent property owners and placed in local papers. Additionally, a sign detailing the case number will be posted on the property.
Planning Board Hearing
At the Planning Board meeting, the Planning Department Staff will present the case. The applicant or property owner, must be present at the meeting to explain plans for the property. Area property owners and other interested parties are allowed to speak before the Planning Board during the public hearing.
Staff will provide an an an analysis and recommendation. Following discussion and review of the case, the Planning Board will decide upon a recommendation to the Board of Commissioners. The Planning Board may recommend the request be approved as submitted, approved with conditions, denied, or deferred to a later meeting.
Board of Commissioners
Following the Planning Board action, rezoning requests are considered by the Board of Commissioners.
The procedure for the Board of Commissioners Meeting begins by having a first reading. This allows the Board of Commissioners to schedule a date for a second reading that includes a public hearing. Notification of the public hearing will be advertised in local papers and public notices will be sent again to all adjacent property owners.
At a regular scheduled meeting the Board of Commissioners will move for final action on the request. The request may be approved as submitted, approved with conditions, denied, or deferred to a later meeting.
What Happens Next?
If the request is approved, the property owner may proceed with development plans, taking into consideration any supplementary conditions which may have been imposed by the Board and ensuring that all proposed development meet normal site plan and building plan review prior to the start of construction.
If the rezoning is not approved, the Board of Commissioners must wait one year to act on a request on the same parcel of land unless there has been a substantial change as outlined in Section 3.12.12 of the Brunswick County Unified Development Ordinance.
For information on these processes, contact the Planning and Community Development Department at 910/253-2025 or 800/621-0609 and the Building Inspection Department at 910/253-2050.
Commonly Asked Questions
What is my Zoning Classification?
If you wish to determine how your property is zoned, you may go to GIS Online or call the Planning Department at 910/253-2025 or 800/621-0609. For the most efficient service, please have your parcel ID number and/or address ready.
What is my Land Use Plan Classification?
If you wish to determine how your property is classified, you may go to GIS Online or call the Planning Department at 910/253-2025 or 800/621-0609. For the most efficient service, please have your parcel ID number and/or address ready.
What is a Land Use Plan?
A Land Use Plan is a document that has a collection of policies and maps that serves as a community’s blueprint for growth and reflects the community’s goals and visions for the future. It provides direction and guidance, in making decisions about land development (i.e. zoning), public services, and resource protection. Please see the Brunswick County CAMA Land Use Plan.
What is a Land Use Plan Map?
A Land Use Plan Map is one of many maps located within the Land Use Plan and serves as a guide for the growth and developmen. It helps to ensure that Brunswick County’s growing population will have adequate housing, employment and recreation opportunities in the future. Public officials, property owners, and citizens use the Land Use Plan Map as a tool when making decisions about future development. Please see the Brunswick County CAMA Land Use Plan.
Will my neighbors be notified of my request?
All property owners adjacent to the proposed request will be sent notices via US Mail. Additionally, notices will be placed in local newspapers and a sign will be posted on the property.
Will the public have a chance to comment on the proposed request?
The rezoning process consists of two public hearings that invite the community to give input. If they feel adversely or favorably affected by the proposed request, they can voice their opinions at the public hearings.
Are my application fees refundable?
Application fees are not refundable.
Can I be guaranteed approval?
Zoning and Land Use Plan Amendments are public processes that invite input from any interested party therefore, the outcome cannot be guaranteed. Adjacent property owners or tenants may object to the proposed rezoning.
How long does the Process take?
The rezoning process takes 90 to 120 days depending on scheduling. Land Use Amendments can run concurrently with a Rezoning. This assumes that the request is scheduled immediately on the next Planning Board Agenda and the Planning Board/Board of Commissioners do not table the case. Due to growth-related activity, final scheduling will be made after the request is submitted
How long will the Rezoning and/or Land Use Amendment remain in effect?
The Rezoning and/or Land Use Amendment takes effect once it is approved by the Board of Commissioners, and will remain in effect until the Board of Commissioners change it.
What criteria do the Planning Staff, Planning Board, and Board of Commissioners use when reviewing a rezoning application?
The Planning Staff, Planning Board, and Board of Commissioners use the following review criteria when considering a rezoning:
- Whether the range of uses permitted by the proposed change would be appropriate to the area concerned;
- Whether adequate public school facilities and other public facilities/services (i.e. Water, wastewater, roads) exist, are planned, or can be reasonably provided to serve the needs of any permitted uses likely to be constructed as a result of such change;
- Whether the proposed change is consistent with the CAMA Land Use Plan or any other adopted land use document; and
- Whether the proposed amendment is reasonable as it relates to the public interest.
The review criteria can be found in Section 3.12.10 of the Unified Development Ordinance. A copy of the Brunswick Unified Development Ordinance can be obtained online at www.brunwsickcountync.gov
What are the Brunswick County Planning and Community Development Department Hours?
Monday through Friday from 8:30 A.M. to 5:00 P.M.