HOW TO DETERMINE THE FUTURE LAND USE OF PROPERTY
A property’s future land use designation can be obtained from either the Planning & Development Division at (407) 665-7371 or the Seminole County Property Appraiser website
. If needed, a zoning and future land use letter confirming the zoning classification of a property may be obtained from the Planning & Development Division. The property’s tax parcel identification number (PIN) or address must be provided to determine the future land use designation.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN FUTURE LAND USE AND ZONING?
Future land use designations indicate the general category and allowable density or intensity for a particular area, while zoning districts specifically define permitted uses and contain the design and development guidelines for those intended uses. The Seminole County Comprehensive Plan
may allow (but not guarantee) various zoning districts within a given future land use designation. If an owner desires to use or develop property in a manner that does not conform to the current future land use designation, the owner must apply for a future land use amendment, which may accommodate an application for rezoning.
The applicant should demonstrate that the proposed future land use amendment is consistent with the Seminole County Comprehensive Plan. Future land use applications are decided by the Board of County Commissioners (BCC)
. Some applications may require a rezoning, which can be processed in conjunction with a future land use amendment request.
Table of Future Land Use Designations and Zoning District Regulations (PDF) [154KB]
WHAT ARE THE TYPES OF FUTURE LAND USE AMENDMENTS?
A. SMALL SCALE
A Small Scale Land Use Amendment is any change in the future land use map that involves land areas 10 acres or less. A small scale amendment may also include a text amendment directly related to the property for which the amendment is requested. (A text amendment is an amendment to the written part of the Comprehensive Plan, such as a change to a goal, objective, policy or other written part of the plan.)
B. LARGE SCALE
A Large Scale Land Use Amendment is any change in the text of the Seminole County Comprehensive Plan
that is not related to a specific property OR any change in the future land use map that involves land areas greater than 10 acres.
WHO CAN REQUEST A FUTURE LAND USE AMENDMENT?
Plan amendments for parcels of real property within unincorporated Seminole County may be initiated by property owners or by agents of property owners by written consent of the property owner.
Plan amendments not associated with specific parcels, where text changes to a comprehensive plan element or elements are requested, or where a change stands to affect large areas of the unincorporated county, may be initiated by any interested party, including the Planning and Zoning Commission and the Board of County Commissioners. Any type of future land use text amendment may also be initiated by the Planning and Zoning Commission
or the Board of County Commissioners
THE COMPREHENSIVE PLAN MAP AMENDMENT PROCESS
All proposed future land use amendments (except for small scale amendments) must be reviewed by state and regional review agencies, following public hearings by the Planning and Zoning Commission and Board of County Commissioners. A minimum of 30 days is required for the state review agencies to provide their comments. Upon receipt of a comment letter from the State Land Planning Agency, the Board of County Commissioners has 180 days to adopt, adopt with changes, or decline to adopt the amendment. The adopted amendment is then submitted to the state and regional review agencies for final comments, and cannot take effect until 31 days after adoption by the Board of County Commissioners. (The State Land Planning Agency or an affected party does have the right to request a hearing at the state level to challenge the adoption.)
Future land use amendments are first reviewed through the pre-application process http://www.seminolecountyfl.gov/gm/devrev/preapp.aspx
, and are submitted through ePlan http://www.seminolecountyfl.gov/gm/ElectronicPlanReview/ePlanReviewMain.aspx
The applicant should first review the County’s Comprehensive Plan
and Land Development Code
to determine whether the proposal meets of the County’s requirements and is consistent with trends of existing development. The applicant may also choose to concurrently submit an application for a rezoning when the request is not for Planned Development (PD) Future Land Use. Where a rezoning may generate an impact on the surrounding neighborhood or community, the applicant is further urged to hold an information meeting or open house to inform the affected public of the proposal.
APPLICATION FOR A FUTURE LAND USE AMENDMENT
Application and Attachment Forms
Note: An application for an amendment to the Planned Development (PD) Future Land Use designation must be accompanied by a rezoning application.
HOW LONG DOES A FUTURE LAND USE AMENDMENT TAKE?
Property owners interested in submitting a large scale or small scale future land use map amendment should contact the Seminole County Development Services Department, Planning & Development Division, at 407-665-7371 for processing and scheduling amendments to the Seminole County Comprehensive Plan.
An applicant who is unfamiliar with the County’s Comprehensive Plan may wish to request a conference with Planning & Development Division staff. The Division is located as follows:
Seminole County Services Building
1101 East First Street
Sanford, FL 32771
Frequently Asked Long Range/Comprehensive Planning Questions
1. Question: What is a ‘Comprehensive Plan’?
A ‘Comprehensive Plan’ provides written guidance for community decisions about preservation, development, redevelopment, and funding of public facilities to support development (such as roads and water lines). This guidance is provided through Goals, Objectives, Policies, definitions, and graphic “exhibits”, such as the Future Land Use Map. The State of Florida requires all local governments to adopt a comprehensive plan.
2. Question: What is the Plan based on?
The plan must be based on citizen input, must consider private property rights, must consider environmental and/or historic/archaeological features, and population projections. The plan must be reviewed at least every 7 years, with citizen input, for possible amendment. Florida law also requires zoning (or a similar form of land development regulation) based on the comprehensive plan and ‘consistent’ with that plan. If there is a difference between what is allowed by zoning and what is allowed by the comprehensive plan, Florida Law mandates that the comprehensive plan provisions overrule the zoning provisions.
3. Question: What is a ‘Future Land Use designation’?
A ‘Future Land Use designation’ is a classification of a property that explains what types of development can be built on that property in the future, in accordance with policies of the Comprehensive Plan, definitions of that land use classification in the Plan, and requirements of the Land Development Regulations.
4. Question: What is the difference between a Future Land Use designation and a zoning district?
A Future Land Use designation explains, in general, what types of uses can be built at a location, and how many houses or how much of a nonresidential use can be built (the number of square feet allowed, for example, or other measure, in order to explain how ‘intense’ of a nonresidential use is allowed). The zoning district explains how those uses can be built. For example, a zoning district identifies the size of required front, side and rear yards (also called ‘setbacks’ from the property line), as well as the allowable height of a building and the number of parking spaces for each type of use.
5. Can a property owner change the Future Land Use designation of a property?
A property owner, or someone officially authorized by that property owner to act on his or her behalf, can apply to change the Future Land Use designation of a property. Application forms are available on the website of the Seminole County Planning & Development Division. There are two types of Future Land Use amendments, but the same application form is used for both types of amendments.
6. Question: What are the two types of Future Land Use amendments?
The two types of amendments are ‘Large Scale’ amendments, and ‘Small Scale’ Amendments. Large Scale amendments must be reviewed by State and Regional Reviews agencies. Small scale amendments are not reviewed by the State and Regional Review Agencies.
7. Question: What is the difference between a Large Scale and a Small Scale Future Land Use amendment?
According to Florida Statutes, Large Scale amendments are amendments for properties that are greater than 10 acres. In addition, a Large Scale amendment is any change to the Comprehensive Plan that will involve a change to the text (written part) of the comprehensive plan, unless it affects a particular property whose owner is applying for an amendment. A proposal is eligible to be treated as a Small Scale amendment, under State Law, if the property contains 10 or fewer acres. An amendment to the text that applies to that particular property can also be approved as part of the Small Scale amendment. However, local governments are allowed to treat a proposal as a Large Scale amendment even if it contains 10 or fewer acres for reasons such as protecting neighborhoods and environmentally sensitive areas. Seminole County reserves this right.
8. Question: What is the difference in the way Large Scale and Small Scale Future Land Use amendments are handled?
Both types of amendments are reviewed at a public hearing before the Seminole County Planning and Zoning Commission, after notification is published according to State Law in the newspaper. For a Large Scale Amendment, the next step is a ‘transmittal’ public hearing before the Seminole County Board of County Commissioners following a required advertisement. If the County Commission votes to approve transmittal, the Large Scale amendment is then sent for review to the State and Regional review agencies.
The review agencies must respond within 30 days. After receiving the responses, the County has 180 days to act, and must then send an adopted amendment back to the review agencies again. If a State or Regional review agency had raised a concern, and does not feel that the County addressed that concern adequately, the State Land Planning Agency has the authority to call for an Administrative Hearing.
With a Small Scale Amendment, following the hearing at the Planning and Zoning Commission, an adoption hearing is held before the Board of County Commissioners. The Small Scale amendment is not transmitted to the State and Regional review agencies. However, reports must be sent to the State Land Planning Agency summarizing the adoption of Small Scale amendments.
9. How can a citizen comment on or object to a Future Land Use amendment?
An interested citizen should feel free to contact the Planning and Development Division at 407-665-7445 for more information. Citizens are always encouraged to attend the public hearings at the Planning and Zoning Commission and the Board of County Commissioners to testify, or, if unable to attend those hearings, citizens may mail comments to the Planning and Development Division in advance of the meeting in order to have those comments read into the record (Seminole County Planning Division, 1101 E. 1st Street, Sanford, Florida 32771). Comments may also be faxed to the Planning and Development Division (407-665-7385.) Please advise the staff at 407-665-7445 that faxed comments are on their way.
If the amendment is a Large Scale Amendment, and the Board of County Commissioners votes to transmit the amendment to the State and Regional review agencies, the testimony of the concerned citizen will be transmitted in the material sent to the State Agency.
A second public hearing will be advertised and scheduled before the Seminole County Board of County Commissioners when the Large Scale amendment returns from review by the State and Regional Review Agencies. Citizens are again encouraged to attend or to submit comments if unable to attend. If the amendment is adopted and sent to the State and Regional Review Agencies, a citizen who wants to challenge the amendment then has 30 days from the date that the Board of County Commissioners adopts the amendment to file a petition with the State Division of Administrative Hearings in Tallahassee.
In the case of a Small Scale amendment, a citizen who objects to the adoption by the Seminole County Board of County Commissioners must also file an objection with the Division of Administrative Hearings.