Why Don't Previous Plans and Approvals Apply to Similar Development Parcels?

13 December 2021
 Categories: Construction & Contractors, Blog


As developers rush to create more subdivisions to ease the housing crisis, the approvals process may seem like it's becoming more unnecessary, at least for units that are similar in location and construction to others nearby. However, the approvals process, as extensive as it is, plays a vital role in allowing contractors to continue to build quality homes. Putting each development plan through its own approvals process ensures that the land under and around the units will remain in good shape – and that helps the construction remain in good shape as well.

Soil Strength May Not Be the Same

Soil types and strength, which is the ability of the soil to hold a certain amount of weight without becoming unstable, vary greatly. While the soil type you see in the new development zone may appear to be the same, you never really know until you test it. And local councils and planning departments are going to want to see that the composition and strength of the soil are good enough for what you're planning. Any problems that stem from unstable soil will affect development occupants and the utilities in the area at the very least. The council/planning department wants to be sure what they have in their jurisdiction will not create problems later on.

Environmental Factors Could Change

The environmental factors surrounding the development could be different from those that the adjacent development had to account for and work with. Not only may soil strength change, but the new development could be right at the border of a zone where there are protected species. The construction could stir up too much dust in the area and call for extra mitigation. That's really the issue: too much could change. Approvals show that the development plans have taken all of these issues into account.

New Projects May Change Life Quality for Established Developments

A new housing development would certainly help with the housing shortage, and no doubt potential buyers and renters are hopeful that developments are finished quickly. But a new development could also adversely affect the developments around it (extra traffic, cutting off an exit route from the existing developments, excessive noise from construction and so on). Councils and planning departments want to see that the developer has taken steps to ensure other nearby residents would not be affected.

It's understandable that people would be impatient with the approvals process now; the faster new housing can be constructed, the faster the housing supply crunch will ease up. And approvals for developments in areas that are already partially developed seem ripe for fast-tracking. However, construction companies and contractors know that ensuring the development plans meet all local requirements is essential – and they want you to love the new subdivisions. That can be accomplished by ensuring all plans are approved.

If you have more questions about unit development and approvals, contact a local contractor.