To be granted a variance, three standards must be established. These standards are established by state law and are as follows: (1) There must be an extraordinary or exceptional situation or condition pertaining strictly to the property considered (generally due to narrowness, shallowness, unusual shape or some exceptional topographic condition); (2) Strict application of the Ordinance would result in practical difficulties to, or undue hardship upon, the owner of the property; and (3) The relief may be granted without substantial detriment to the public good and without substantially impairing the intent and purpose of the Zoning Ordinance. If these standards are established, the Board of Zoning Appeals may grant the variance request.
By Banks: What information needs to be printed in a letter of credit?
First, you should ask your customer for a copy of the approval letter with specific information regarding preparation of the letter of credit for the individual project that they would have received from Paula Kortas in the Planning Department. The approval letter is sent to the applicant following the Franklin Municipal Planning Commission/City of Franklin approval. The following information must be in each letter of credit:
Beneficiary shall be “City of Franklin and/or the Franklin Municipal Planning Commission”
A presentation location physically located in Williamson and/or Davidson County, Tennessee. A specific branch address may be given, or the letter of credit can state that “draw documents may be presented at any (insert name of bank) branch location in Williamson and/or Davidson County, Tennessee.”
An auto-renewal clause shall be printed in the letter of credit. The following statement is not required to be verbatim; however, verbiage must accurately reflect all significant elements of the statement: “This letter of credit shall be renewed without amendment from this or any future expiration date unless at least sixty (60) days prior to the expiration date. We notify the Beneficiary by receipted overnight courier or receipted certified mail that we elect not to renew this letter of credit. Upon receipt of such notification, Beneficiary has the right to draw on the full amount of the letter of credit.”
The letter of credit must also contain a verbatim statement that will be in the above-mentioned approval letter sent to your customer following the Franklin Municipal Planning Commission/City of Franklin approval. This statement is specific to each project. For additional information, please contact the Planning Department at (615) 791-3212.
By Owners/Applicants: What do I do following approval of my site plan or final plat by the FMPC/COF?
An approval letter and Performance and Maintenance Agreement/Sureties Guidelines will be sent to you within a week of approval, unless your project was approved with some “to be determined” amounts. Following your submission of revised plans which will allow the “to be determined” amounts to be calculated, the amounts will be forwarded to the Planning Department by the appropriate City department. At that time, your approval letter will be sent to you. Please click on the link labeled “Performance and Maintenance Agreement/Sureties Guidelines” for more information.
By Owners/Applicants: What are Performance/Maintenance Agreements and Surety (cash, letters of credit)?
A Performance Agreement is legally binding, notarized contract signed by an applicant that requires specific improvements to be constructed or installed according to the site plan or final plat approved by the FMPC/COF. Once the applicant satisfactorily completes the improvements, the Performance Agreement is released and a mandatory one-year Maintenance Agreement is established to ensure the workmanship and materials. The applicant shall choose to post either cash in the form of a cashier’s check payable to City of Franklin or an irrevocable standby letter of credit as the surety that will secure the Performance/Maintenance Agreement. For additional information, click here or call Paula Kortas at (615) 550-6736.
By Owners/Applicants: What are Improvements?
Anything required by the conditional FMPC/COF approval of a site plan or final plat to be constructed or installed for that project. Examples: Streets, sidewalks, water lines, sewer lines, traffic signalizations, landscaping improvements, etc.
By Residents: How can I find out if the developer is still responsible for specific improvements in my subdivision or at a commercial site near my home?
Contact the Planning Department at (615) 591-5631. If possible, provide the name and section number of the subdivision you reside in or the name and location of the commercial site. If sureties are still being held for improvements you are concerned about, you can also find out when the next scheduled date is for inspections and agendas.
By Residents: What can the City do to compel a developer to do something that the residents consider important?
With regard to improvements, the City is only able to enforce what is provided for on an approved plan, and based in a requirement of the zoning ordinance, subdivision regulations or municipal code, or a condition of approval by the Planning Commission/COF. The City is able to enforce completion of these improvements according to the plan approved by the Franklin Municipal Planning Commission/City of Franklin, assuming that there are still sureties being held. If the agreement/sureties have been previously released and the improvement in question has degraded since that time, it is possible that other departments, such as Building and Neighborhood Services or Streets, may be able to help. Contact Building and Neighborhood Services at 615-794-7012, or Streets at 615-791-3254.
How do I build a new building?
The first step in determining how you can build a new building is figuring out the current zoning of your property. Call Zoning Administrator, Molly Pike, at (615) 550-6738 for a Zoning Determination Letter.
If you are zoned correctly for the type of land-use to be conducted within the new building, and, if you are constructing a multifamily, commercial, office, or industrial building, a site plan shall be submitted for review. For a brief overview of the site plan process, see below, or call the Project Planners at (615) 550-6732 or (615) 550-6734.
What is a site plan and what is its review process?
A site plan is the required submission for all structures built for multifamily, commercial, office, and industrial land-uses. The site plan, which is drawn to scale, includes lot lines, streets, building sites, formal and informal open space, landscaping, utilities, and natural features of the development site.
The first step for a site plan is for the applicant to request a pre-application conference, wherein city staff from the Planning, Engineering, Building and Neighborhood Services and Fire Departments provide initial reaction to the development. After the pre-application conference, the site plan may be submitted for review. Call (615) 791-3212 and ask for a Project Planner to discuss site plan review process.
Can I subdivide my property (residential or nonresidential)?
The first question that should be asked with a potential subdivision is “what is the property zoned.” The answer may be found by contacting the Zoning Administrator at (615) 550-6738.
If all other size and acreage requirement are met under your current zoning, call (615) 791-3212 and ask for a Project Planner to discuss the subdivision of your property and the process that will be followed. If the current zoning would not allow the subdivision of your property, and you still wish to proceed, you may explore a possible rezoning of your property. Contact our Long Range Planner at (615) 550-6739 for more information.