Zoning and other building codes are usually drafted and enforced by the appropriate local government body.
For example, the City of Phoenix has its own set of building regulations. Different committees and boards may have a role in deciding questions about zoning, historic preservation and other legal issues that might impact a commercial real estate project.
Other communities around Phoenix may have their own way of handling zoning and land use questions. For example, some real estate may fall under the jurisdiction of the Maricopa County Planning & Zoning Commission.
Knowing who will make important decisions about zoning can be a critical part of a real estate project.
For example, when a real estate investor has run into a zoning issue with a project, it will be incumbent on the investor to convince the right decision-maker to grant a variance in zoning or make a change to the zoning code.
On a related point, understanding the process of how decisions of this sort get made can help ensure that a project will go smoothly.
For example, in Maricopa County, The Planning & Zoning Commission actually makes recommendations to the Board of Supervisors, which in turn has the final stay. People are allowed to appeal the Commission’s recommendations.
While appeals can be a good thing, it is important to remember that community members also have the option to appeal a decision, including a decision to let a real estate project go forward.
Persuading the government about a code issue can be critical
The government bodies which make zoning and related decisions are obligated to do so objectively and according to the law. Within the confines of the law, however, a real estate developer will want to make sure he or she puts forth the best arguments possible.
After all, without the government’s support on these issues, a promising project could get derailed.