Campground Zoning is…Easy? Wait, that can’t be right.

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When we decided to build a campground instead of buying a campground, we knew it would come with dozens of additional challenges.

Working with engineers on designs.

Figuring out how many sites we can fit.

How big each site should be.

Finding a contractor.

All the things.

And then the one thing that everyone dreads the most: rezoning.

Zoning has a terrible reputation of being a complicated bureaucratic process. One of the two parcels of land that will make up our park is already zoned commercial, the other is zoned agriculture. So we needed to go through the lovely process of getting a special use permit that would allow us to build on all our acreage.

And it was…easy.

Like print two pieces of paper and pay a fee.

We dropped off the paperwork and a check and were told that would hear back in three weeks.

Sure enough, three weeks later we got a list of questions and clarifications needed from public works, the fire department, transportation, etc. We answered all their questions (Will there be picnic tables or fire rings at every site? Anticipated length of stay for campers?) and snuck into the next city planning meeting on November 18th—this week!

The process was all together painless.

We watched from our security camera when someone from the city showed up and hung a sign on our fence announcing our upcoming hearing. Everything was coming together so smoothly!


UNTIL.

Shortly after everything was confirmed with our hearing—the final step before we can confirm timelines for breaking ground with our contractor and subcontractors—we get a call.

Here’s where things got confusing.

Apparently for the past six months, the city has been working on creating a new zoning classification specifically for RV parks and campgrounds. The new zone should be created the first week of December.

So we get a call that the permit we applied for isn’t correct. We needed to apply to be zoned as an RV park.

Which doesn’t even exist as a zone.

Yet.

🤔

Quite a few phone calls later, we are finally on the same page as the city. Our hearing is now pushed back to December so the zoning we need will exist so we can actually apply for it…

Assuming that the new type of zone is approved to be created at their next meeting.

Unnecessarily complicated and totally on par with the reputation zoning has. We should’ve known when we applied so easily that there would be a few hidden bumps in the road!

Fingers crossed that we will be properly zoned before the end of the year and keep on track to break ground in January!