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Land Use Application and Review

If you would like more information on any of the following permits, please call, write, or visit the Planning Department.

Telecommunication Facility Regulations

On January 21, 2014, La Plata County approved Chapter 82 Division 5 of the Land Use Code in order to adopt regulations specific to the placement of telecommunications towers and antennae. In general, the regulations discourage new tower construction relative to antennae co-location or placement on structures, except that stealth (i.e. camouflaged) towers are encouraged. Review processes for telecommunication facilities vary based on the type of facility intended.

Administrative Review for Additional Dwelling Units   

On August 20th, 2013, La Plata County approved Land Use Code Section 82-37, Application for Additional Dwelling Units, in order to allow for administrative review of second dwelling units on residential assessed properties and second or third dwelling units on agricultural assessed properties.

To determine if you qualify for an administrative review for a second or third dwelling unit, please review section 82-37(b) or contact the Planning Department.

If you would like to apply for an administrative review for a second or third dwelling unit, please fill out an application. Once you have completed an application, please call the Planning Department at 970-382-6263 to request an application submittal meeting with a Planner.

Site plans and access plans can be made by using the La Plata County Geographic Information System, at http://lpcgis.laplata.co.us/laplatasl/.            

Example of Second Dwelling Site Plan

Example of Second Dwelling Access Plan

Class I Permit

This type of permit is required for temporary uses, certain types of additional dwelling units, home-based businesses, and other changes in land use that are minor in character. Class I permits are reviewed by staff and relevant agencies, and approved or denied by the Board of County Commissioner

Class II Permit

This is a broad category which includes commercial and industrial development or expansion, some home businesses, multi-family residential development, mobile home parks, mixed-use development, public facilities, churches, some childcare or group care facilities, commercial campgrounds, gravel mining or mineral extraction operations, and other changes in land use that have more potential for impacts on the surrounding neighborhood.  Class II permits are reviewed by staff, relevant agencies, and the Planning Commission, and approved or denied by the Board of County Commissioners. 

Major Subdivision Plat

Includes creating lots less than 35 acres on non-agricultural land or agricultural land which does not meet the criteria for the Minor Exemption Subdivision Permit; some mobile home parks, and residential condominium developments.

Minor Exemption Subdivision Plat

Approval of a preliminary and a final subdivision plat is usually required to subdivide a parcel into lots smaller than 35 acres.  Preliminary plats are reviewed by staff, relevant agencies, and the Planning Commission, and approved or denied by the Board of County Commissioners.   Final plats are reviewed by staff and approved or denied by the Board of County Commissioners.

Boundary Adjustment Plat

This is a type of plat that adjusts lot lines between two or more parcels without creating or eliminating parcels.  Depending on the type of lots involved, these plats may either be approved administratively or require Board of County Commissioners review.

Lot Consolidation Plat

Lot consolidation plats adjust lot lines between two or more parcels, reducing the number of parcels.  Depending on the type of lots involved, these plats may either be approved administratively or require Board of County Commissioners review.

Conceptual Development Plan

This is a required preliminary step for subdivisions and commercial developments which will be developed in phases; and an optional preliminary step for non-phased subdivisions and commercial developments when trying to determine if the concept of a proposal is appropriate for a specific location prior to proving adequate water, sewer, and access and meeting other Land Use Code requirements.  Conceptual Development Plans are reviewed by staff, relevant agencies, and the Planning Commission, and approved or denied by the Board of County Commissioners.

Sign Permit

The County currently does not issue sign permits, however, all signs installed in the county must meet code requirements regarding size, design, and location. Please contact Planning Department staff for more information on sign codes.

Legal vs. Illegal Lots

All parcels of land smaller than 35 acres created after May 5, 1972 were required to be approved by the County. Please check with staff on how to research lot legality in La Plata County.Informative brochures detailing each of the above permits, the process to obtain them and related costs are available at the La Plata County Planning Department. Please contact the Planning Department for additional information.

Special Events

A special event permit is required for activities at a specific location that may attract 50 or more people, that may attract more than 25 vehicles a day, and that last less than 72 hours.  Examples of special events are block parties, festivals, and concerts.  Private gatherings at private residences that last less than 24 hours and do not charge for admission do NOT require special event permits.  Please contact the Planning Department for special event permit applications. 

Special Events- County Road Use

For any event using or crossing a County Road, you must first obtain a Special Events - County Road Use Permit by submitting the application (with required attachments) at least 45 days prior to the proposed event. Applications shall be submitted in person to the County Planning Department at 1060 East Second Avenue. Special events using county roads are approved or denied by county staff.

Most of the project types listed above require an appointment with a planner to obtain your application materials.  Please call the Planning Department at 970-382-6263, or submit a Planning Contact Form.  Please have the following information available when you write or make the call:  name of applicant, contact telephone number(s), parcel number(s) of the property involved, and a description of the proposed activity.

Photo La Plata County scenery