What is the first step in the platting process?
Prior to submission of an application, the city does require a pre-development meeting to discuss a platting project with staff before making a formal application to discuss procedures, policies, and standards required by the City for a development project. Such a pre-development meeting may save time and expenses during the approval process. To schedule a pre- development meeting, please contact the Community Development Department at (409) 316-7234.
When is a master plan required?
The City Code does not require master plan submittal. However, Staff strongly recommends that a master plan be submitted when large pieces of property are developed in phases or sections, or in areas under common ownership where comprehensive planning issues are identified. A master plan that accompanies or precedes a preliminary plat allows the developer and City Staff to dialogue about the project as a whole. That way, any changes that may be needed can be discussed at the beginning of the process which may save valuable time and money throughout each phase of the project.
Do all plats require approval by the Planning and Zoning Board and City Commission?
No, Planning and Zoning Board and City Commission approval is not required for amending plats and minor plats (subdivisions involving less than four lots and where no public infrastructure is required to be installed). These plats are approved administratively by City staff.
How do I get a plat document prepared?
You will need to enlist the services of a licensed professional land surveyor. A licensed professional engineer will be needed if the installation of public infrastructure is required. You can locate a professional engineer or land surveyor by contacting the Texas Society of Professional Engineers, the Texas Surveyor’s Association or consulting a phone directory. Blue or black line prints and a digital copy of the graphics file should be prepared. Please refer to Chapter 155 of the City Code and this Development Guide for plat form and content regulations and plat application submission requirements.
What kind of development plans will I need to submit if public infrastructure improvements are involved?
A final plat submittal must be accompanied by infrastructure design and construction documents. These documents must bear the seal and signature of a professional engineer licensed in the State of Texas. All plans must be prepared in accordance with Chapter 155 of the City Code as well as any requirements of the Public Works Department of the City of Hitchcock. Contact Community Development at (409) 316-7234 to discuss required public infrastructure improvements as they relate to your development project.
What if the City staff identifies unresolved issues?
Applicants will receive a copy of staff’s review comments. Drawings should be modified, or supplemental information submitted to satisfy any deficiencies. Plat applications will not be considered complete for the purposes of state law timeline requirements until all deficiencies are resolved.
Whatis the next step after the staff or the City Commission approve a final plat and no public infrastructure (roads and water, sewer, drainage facilities) is required?
Following approval by City staff or the City Commission, any outstanding fees, such as filing fees or consultant review fees, will need to be paid. In addition, the following documents must be submitted to the Community Development Department:
- Mylar copy of the approved plat;
- Certified tax certificate from the Galveston County Tax Office showing no outstanding taxes being owed on subject acreage no more than 30 days prior to the filing of the plat.
Staff will then file the plat with the Galveston County Clerk. Only when the plat is filed with the County Clerk will the platting process be considered complete.
What is the next step after the staff or the City Commission approve a final plat and installation of public infrastructure is required?
In addition to payment of fees and submission of a Mylar copy and the tax certificate, final engineering construction plans for public infrastructure (roads and water, sewer, drainage facilities) must be submitted for review and approval by City staff. The engineering plans are required to be reviewed in conjunction with the final plat process. However, final “for construction” plans must be submitted and officially reviewed and approved prior to start of construction. Final plats or replats requiring installation of public infrastructure are not filed with the County Clerk until the infrastructure is actually constructed and accepted, even when financially guaranteed.
Where can I find more information?
For more information regarding the platting process, please refer to the Subdivision Ordinance (Chapter 155 of the City Code) or contact the Community Development Department at (409) 316-7234 if you have any questions regarding the platting process.
Platting Process – Checklist
1. Meet with staff in the Community Development Department to discuss development
2. Submit the following items to the Community Development Department:
- Application form bearing the property owner’s signature;
- 15 hard copies of plat document (only one copy necessary for Minor Plats);
- An electronic version of the plat in pdf format;
- Infrastructure Plans (if applicable); and
- Plat application fee (see Comprehensive Fee Schedule).
3. Staff will review the application and supplemental information. Staff will either accept the application as complete (in writing) or return the application with a list of deficiencies. The application is not deemed complete for the purposes of state law timeframe requirements until all required information and fees are submitted AND the City confirms that the application is complete in writing. If the application is not complete, it will be returned to the applicant with information regarding why the submittal is deficient, and the state law timeframe requirements will not begin;
4. Submit revised drawings to the Community Development Department for Staff review, if necessary;
5. Attend Planning and Zoning Board meeting, if applicable (the Board generally meets on the 4th Tuesday of the month at 5:30 p.m. in the Commission Chambers in City Hall at 7423 Highway 6);
6. Attend City Commission meeting, if applicable (the City Commission generally meets on the 3rd Monday of the month at 6:00 p.m. in the Commission Chambers in City Hall at 7423 Highway 6);
7. Repeat steps 2 through 6. Final plat submittal must be accompanied by water rights dedication or payment of a fee in lieu of, and must include submittal of the required financial guarantee documentation;
8. Following Final Plat Approval, submit Mylar, tax certificate, filing fee and other required fees (the Mylar copy must contain the notarized signature of the property owner(s) as well as the signature and seal of an engineer/land surveyor licensed in the State of Texas). Also, for plats involving infrastructure improvements, an executed copy of the utility and street construction contracts or a notarized statement certifying the final contracts must be submitted so that the city may substantiate the estimated cost of improvements in relation to the required financial guarantees.
The final plat is then filed for record with the Galveston County Clerk unless installation of public infrastructure required. If so, the plat will be held until the infrastructure is constructed and accepted.