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Planning and Zoning


The mission of the Planning and Development Services Department is to work with the community to achieve its desired future by providing advice and technical expertise to elected officials, appointed boards and commissions, county management, county departments and citizens of Gaston County, and by encouraging planning principles that promote rational, economical and environmentally efficient use of land, to allow growth in a manner consistent with goals of the County Comprehensive Plan.

This department is responsible for:
Providing physical planning services, land use enforcement services, historic preservation services, and geographical information services for the orderly development of the County's physical environment to the general public. Activities include providing planning functions for the unincorporated portions of the County and areas outside municipal extraterritorial jurisdiction, and coordinate land use planning activities with municipal, state, and federal governments, county departments, and shareholders in the community.

Planning and Development Services areas provide technical support both internally and externally to the organization including statistical, graphic, and written information to the client and citizen base. It also serves as technical staff to the County Planning Board, Board of Adjustment, and Historic Preservation. In additions, it provides customized mapping upon customer request, and manages comprehensive land use planning, recommend ordinance regulations and amendments to enhance the County's vision and direction. It diligently seeks opportunity to coordinate local and regional planning efforts with municipal governments units and others; and maintains and coordinates data layers with other GIS internal and external based agencies to assist in unifying the system.

In accomplishing our mission, the department is divided into four service areas:

Land Use Services
Land Use Services works with the public to enforce land use ordinances, review new development projects by coordinating the Technical Review Committee. This team reviews and processes site plans, subdivision plans, special use permits, zoning variances, flood development permits, sign and other zoning permits. This team is also responsible for zoning enforcement and site inspections for new development projects. Land Development provides staff support to the Board of Adjustment.

Current and Long Range Planning / Watershed Management
Long Range Planning and Environmental Services provides support to the Planning Board, Historic Preservation Commission, Transportation Planning through the MPO and the municipal planner group GCAMP. Administer the Minimum Housing Ordinance, Subdivision Review, Re-zoning Request and Text Amendments, Flood Reviews for Floodplain development Permits and Elevation Certificates. Maintain review of the Watershed Protection Regulations in the preservation of the counties drinking water and works with the Park and Recreation Department on creating local trails and greenways to connect to the Carolina Thread Trail and link neighborhoods to existing greenways.

Planning GIS (Geographical Information System) Services
Planning GIS provides Geographic Information Services to planning projects for Gaston County Departments and municipal jurisdictions within Gaston County. This analysis and data management may contain but is not limited to annexations, fire and emergency jurisdictions, demographics, growth analysis, boundary projections, sanitary lines and boundaries, zoning analysis and multijurisdictional street roadway centerlines and address assignment and coordination.

Vision Statement:
Enhancing the Past while creating our Future through wise planning, responsible funding, thoughtful building and growing together.