Phoenix/ Real Estate & Development
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Published on February 22, 2024
Phoenix Fast-Tracks Housing Development with New Streamlined Approval ProcessSource: City of Phoenix

The City of Phoenix is slashing red tape to get more roofs over heads quicker, with new streamlined regulations that will fast-track the plat approval process for property developers. As of April 1, this move will chop about a month off the wait time for project approval from City Council, a welcome change for a city grappling with a housing squeeze.

Declared by the Phoenix City Council, the updated city code allows administrative staff to approve plats – a critical step in the development cycle, before the City Council inevitably rubber-stamps them which has often led to a month of thumb-twiddling for developers pushing to crank out affordable homes. "This is another process improvement the City is implementing to assist in building more affordable housing projects," Vice Mayor Debra Stark highlighted, according to a recent city press release. The administrative shift comes courtesy of SB1103, a state law that's been letting city staff approve various plans since last October without waiting for the Council's nod. So far, it's led to quicker ticks on site plans, development plans, and a handful of other essential documents.

The rule change is part of Phoenix's push to pile more housing options onto the market, a response to ballooning demand and the towering challenge of keeping living spaces affordable. Councilwoman O'Brien underlined the multi-angled strategy, “The solution to our housing crisis isn’t going to be solved by one state bill or one local council decision alone," adding that the unanimous vote for the code change is another notch in their effort to ease the housing crisis by clearing bureaucratic hurdles.

The Planning and Development Department is dedicated to processing improvement and whittling down review times, previously launching a self-certification program and offering expedited reviews in a bid to buff up service quality and grease the city's economic wheels, “By modernizing and simplifying procedures, we can better serve the needs of residents, developers, and businesses, making it easier for them to navigate through the approval process,” said Planning and Development Department Director, Joshua Bednarek, in a statement pointing out the expected benefits for the city's well-being and prosperity.

Developers, stakeholders, and locals are urged to get familiar with these new code amendments before they kick in this spring. Further info on the department's services and initiatives can be scoped out on their website.

Phoenix-Real Estate & Development