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Thread: Denial of application = moratorium on resubmittal

  1. #1
    Cyburbian UrbaneSprawler's avatar
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    Denial of application = moratorium on resubmittal

    A couple of code changes we're looking into -- just wondering if these are typical or atypical and whether there are any strong opinions regarding them. (Our staff attorney is apparently okay with them in concept).

    - If your application is denied by the board (and if appealed to council, denied by council as well), no application is allowed to be resubmitted anywhere on the property until a prescribed time period has elapsed.

    - Only one application can be submitted on a property at a time (an owner can't allow two developers to submit applications on a property concurrently).

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Coragus's avatar
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    In our jurisdiction, if your app is denied, you either have to show "substantial" changes or wait a minimum of one year before resubmitting.
    Maintaining enthusiasm in the face of crushing apathy.

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    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Coragus View post
    In our jurisdiction, if your app is denied, you either have to show "substantial" changes or wait a minimum of one year before resubmitting.
    What he said.

    Two proposals at the same time? There ought to be a law... Increase the fee ten-fold or something.

  4. #4
    Cyburbian UrbaneSprawler's avatar
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    Thanks for the input! Do the substantial changes need to be related to the context in which why the application was denied to begin with? If for example a project was denied citing traffic congestion impacts and the applicant resubmits a totally different product type that results in even a higher trip generation, is that acceptable for meeting "substantial changes"?

    How is a determination made that substantial changes have taken place? Is it just the front counter folks taking in the submittal and then deciding that "substantial changes" have taken place?

    We were considering implementing the substantial changes provision but were caught up with it for some of the thoughts above. We rationalized that a developer would want to resubmit with some amount of changes if denied and had to wait for a time period, otherwise it's that definition of insanity doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. I don't think developers are normally insane.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian Plus
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    Our policy is that you have to wait 1 year.

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    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by UrbaneSprawler View post
    How is a determination made that substantial changes have taken place? Is it just the front counter folks taking in the submittal and then deciding that "substantial changes" have taken place?
    "Because I said so!" I'll never forget when I had to say that.

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    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    The "substantial change or one year" approach is very common. This allows the property to continue to be marketed if a development proposal is rejected, and somebody wants to take another shot at it. We usually interpret "substantial change" to mean changes in land use or density. While there is no precise figure, we would want to see at least 1/4 to 1/3 of the area changed. Other changes that might be accepted deal with transportation or infrastructure issues - it really depends on the reason the plan was rejected. Merely changing a few lot lines or substituting a building design will not pass muster.
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    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    Further dittos - 1 year wait after denial or with substantial changes as determined by staff.

    I really don't think it is necessary to further define what "substantial" means. That's why you have professional staff that should be trusted to make that determination.
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    Let's not be didactic in this profession, because that is a path to disillusion and irrelevancy.

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  9. #9
    Cyburbian UrbaneSprawler's avatar
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    Thanks all. It seems substantial change or 1 year is the norm. I think we have a conservative staff attorney that would be uncomfortable with relying simply on staff to make a determination on what substantial" means without creating criteria to render such a decision, in order to not be called into question of being arbitrary.

  10. #10
    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    But the vagueness helps reduce the potential for loopholes. If you have definitive criteria, there is always an unintended consequence that can be legally binding in an unwanted way.

    Plus, it's only arbitrary if staff doesn't provide a good reason. That is important - staff must provide a specific reason something is substantially different or not.
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    Let's not be didactic in this profession, because that is a path to disillusion and irrelevancy.

    Six seasons and a movie!

  11. #11
    Cyburbian UrbaneSprawler's avatar
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    I certainly see this point of view. Our code tends to be written prescriptively and perhaps as a result we go through several code changes a year due in large part to fix the "loopholes" for reasons you describe.

    I think on the flip side as a result, we're perhaps less likely to have inconsistency on how a provision is interpreted over the course of time (minus the code changes admittedly) and having to rely on institutional knowledge.

  12. #12
    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
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    I often put "substantial changes in conditions or circumstances bearing on the petition." A comp plan amendment, highway improvements, locating a major traffic generator nearby, a new mayor () may make a previous proposal be seen in a dirrerent light.

  13. #13
    Cyburbian Tobinn's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Coragus View post
    In our jurisdiction, if your app is denied, you either have to show "substantial" changes or wait a minimum of one year before resubmitting.
    Ditto for my Fair City.

    As far as the multiple apps on one site. I'm not so sure that I'm against that idea. If you're going to charge a separate app fee for each one what's the difference. In fact, a certain amount of work will be redundant - zoning, FLUP, property specifics, etc. An argument could be made in charging a reduced fee for additional apps.

    I can also see a benefit to the City in getting to work with two different developers on a single site - the chances of getting a product that works for the City and the owner/developer is increased, I think.

    Yes, yes, also the number of cooks in the kitchen can screw things up, too - nothing perfect. I'm just not sure that it would be a bad thing.
    At times like this, you have to ask yourself, "WWJDD?"
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  14. #14
    Cyburbian UrbaneSprawler's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Tobinn View post
    As far as the multiple apps on one site. I'm not so sure that I'm against that idea...
    I concur with your analysis. The particular reason we're looking into this is to prevent outcry from surrounding neighborhood opposition that they have to "gear up and do battle" twice on the same property.

  15. #15
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    1 year locally if denied, although if 2/3 vote by Council the property can be brought back to council within 1 year.

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