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Guide to Variances Application and Process


  1. 1. Step One
  2. 2. Step Two
  3. 3. Step Three
  4. 4. Step Four
  5. 5. Step Five
  • Step One

    1. Variance: Procedure Overview
      A variance is a limited exception to the usual requirements of the Land Development Regulations (LDR). A variance is requested when a property owner has a unique and unusual hardship, usually created by the physical characteristics of the land which make it difficult to develop under standard regulations. A variance application must go to a public hearing before the Board of Adjustment and may only be granted if it meets all the requirements specified in the LDR. From filing to final decision, a variance petition typically takes two (2) months. The planner assigned to your petition will be your main contact person throughout the process.
    2. Step One
    3. Property Owner/Applicant conducts a Pre-Application Conference with the Community Development Department staff to discuss the proposed project.
    4. Step Two
    5. Once the application is deemed complete, the petition is scheduled for a public hearing before the Board of Adjustment. The Community Development Department will place a sign on the site, advertising the hearing date and time. The planner assigned to your petition will prepare a staff report for the Board of Adjustment and schedule a public hearing with the Board. In evaluating whether or not sufficient justification exists to make a determination of hardship in the granting of a variance, the Board of Adjustment will make a finding that the application meets all of the following criteria:
    6. (1) Extraordinary and exceptional conditions pertaining to the particular piece of property in question because of its size, shape or topography; and
    7. (2) Application of the provisions of the zoning/sign code to the particular piece of property would create an unnecessary hardship; and
    8. (3) Conditions are peculiar to the particular piece of property involved; and
    9. (4) Relief, if granted, would not cause substantial detriment to the public good or impair the purposes and intent of the Land Development Code.
    10. The department will generate a staff report including background information on the property, as well as findings to meet the criteria listed above. The report will give staff’s recommendation to approve or deny the variance request.
    11. Step Three
    12. Public notice of the request will be done with a newspaper ad, posting of a sign, and a letter to property owners within 100 feet of the property 10 days prior to the public hearing.
    13. Step Four
    14. Board of Adjustment makes the final decision, taking into consideration the staff report and the testimony of the staff, the applicant and the public. The public hearing begins with a presentation of background information by the planner assigned to your petition and may be followed by a presentation of the applicant. Applicants are encouraged to attend the hearing. Upon hearing all of the evidence and testimony relative to the variance petition, the Board shall render a decision based on consistency with the City of Temple Terrace Code.