Monthly Planner
Updates from your City of Houston

February 2018
Happy Birthday to the P&D Department!   

February 14 is the 78th birthday of the Planning and Development Department! This year is already brimming with activity, notably around Mayor Sylvester Turner's signature program, Complete Communities and the Walkable Places Committee.  We are also coming up on the one year anniversary of the passage of the Houston Bike Plan. Please see our upcoming annual report for an in-depth description of these projects and many more in next month's issue.
Your Planning and Development Department turns 78 years old this month
Division Spotlight: Site Plan Review
The Planning and Development Department's responsibilities extend beyond the main offices at the Bob Lanier Building at 611 Walker Street. P&D's Site Plan Review team is located at the Houston Permitting Center, 1002 Washington Avenue, in a more accessible location to make it easier for applicants to complete the building permit process. The team reviews plans to ensure compliance with lot size requirements, building setbacks, parking, and landscaping. This includes new structures, additions, and remodel projects.
Planner Manager Hector Rodriguez and Planner Leader Kim Bowie lead a team of Planners made up of: Divya Bhakta, Jacqueline Brown, Kathryn Grigsby, Erica Hylemon, Ramon Leon-Jaime, Jose Mendoza, Nick Parker, and Eric Pietsch. The team reviews thousands of plans a year, and offers an expedited process for projects to better serve customers.
You can find more information about site review requirements, a schedule of fees, and rules for the expedited review process on P&D's development regulations site
Site Plan Review Process
Want to Build a Carport?
Carports are structures that require building permits. A new brochure, prepared by our Site Planning Team, is available to help constituents understand permitting requirements for carport structures.
Why get a permit? It's the law. State Building Code and the City of Houston's Code of Ordinances require building permits. Not obtaining a permit subjects the property owner to code violations, including costs of receiving "red tags" known as code violation notices.
Carport building line setback examples
Permit fees are doubled in these circumstances. A permit, in advance of construction, helps ensure that the structure is safe, and that it complies with applicable private deed restrictions and building line requirements.
Obtaining a permit can also save time and money by constructing the improvements correctly the first time. Proper construction also helps residents avoid embarrassment when the violation is caught. Visit the Houston Permitting Center for assistance before building any structure .
Program Updates

Complete Communities:  The Complete Communities project is beginning to complete draft Action Plans for the selected areas. These will be discussed at upcoming community meetings. The first draft plan was released January 30 in Acres Home. See the project website for more details and meeting dates or sign up for Complete Communities newsletter updates!

Walkable Places Committee: The February 7th Walkable Places Committee meeting was cancelled. This will allow Planning staff more time to prepare a thorough proposal for ordinance amendments for presentation at the March 7th committee meeting. See the committee webpage for more details.

Houston BCycle Expansion Update: The 24Eleven Washington bike station is the 22nd installment to date under the BCycle expansion project. The new station is perfectly located for a scenic trip through Buffalo Bayou Park. Ride a BCycle today!
24Eleven Washington bike station
The bikeshare program expansion is funded by a federal grant award to the City of Houston's Planning & Development Department. Houston Bike Share, operator of Houston BCycle, is responsible for the 20% local match and implementation of the stations

Planning & Development

611 Walker Street, 6th Floor
Houston, TX 77002
Phone: 832.393.6600