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Planning Applications

Below is a brief description of when to use each of the City’s application for different requests to Planning Commission or Board of Zoning Appeals. If you have any questions, contact the City Planner.

Pre Application Meeting

A pre application meeting is REQUIRED for all Planning submittals without exception. City Staff has set aside Thursdays for pre application meetings. All pre application meets will need to be scheduled with the City Planner.

Major Site Plans, Major Plats, and other Planning Commission submittals must have a pre application meeting at least three (3) weeks in advance of the submittal.

Minor Site Plans and Minor Plats submittals must have a pre application meeting at least one (1) week in advance of the submittal.

Submittals without a pre application conference will not be accepted.

Concept Plan

The Concept Plan is the first step in the subdivision process. The purpose is to provide a rough sketch of the proposed subdivision and show the general layout of the subdivision as is it is related to environmental features.

Concept Plan Application

Preliminary Plat

The Preliminary Plat is the second step in the subdivision process. The purpose is to provide detailed graphic information and associated text indicating property boundaries, easements, land use, streets, utilities, drainage, and other information required to evaluate the proposed development.

Preliminary Plat Application

Final Plat

The final plat is the legal document that is recorded with the County Recorder’s office. The sale of subdivided lots can only proceed after this recording. The primary purpose of the final plat is to delineate property boundaries and to describe and dedicate rights-of-way and easements.

Final Plat Application

Minor Site Plan

City Staff may approve and determine specific site improvement requirements for minor site plan submittals. The following items are considered as minor sites:

  1. Existing sites with each Change of Occupancy/Use.
  2. Building additions up to 5,000 square feet that meet the minimum zone lot requirements/lot coverage.
  3. New accessory buildings or uses which do not change use of property and do not exceed 5,000 square feet that meet the minimum zone lot requirements/lot coverage.
  4. Any other associated items determined by Staff to be minor.

Minor Site Plan Application

Site Plan

Any Site Plan that does not meet the requirements for a Minor Site Plan will require an approval by Planning Commission.

Site Plan Application


Annexation is a process by which a municipality expands its boundaries into adjacent areas not already incorporated into the municipality. A request to bring property currently in the County and within Urban Growth Boundary into the Municipal Limits of the City of Portland. Land to be annexed must be adjacent to the current City Limits and must not create doughnut holes. Any annexation request will include the Zoning for a property upon annexation.

Annexation Application

Gate Plan

A Gate Application is made when a gate or security barrier is being installed on a site that will restrict access to a site by an Emergency Responder or Utility. This submittal is required by Tennessee Code Annotated § 13-8-101 through § 13-8-107

Gate Plan Application

General Information

A General Application is made when you are requesting amendments to regulations and ordinances governing the City of Portland or upon direction from Planning Staff. Contact the City Planner prior to submitting a General Information Application.

General Information Application


Rezoning is the process to change the Zoning Classification for a property within the City. The zoning change will change the land uses allowed, setbacks, lot size, and other bulk regulations and may affect site design criteria.

Rezoning Application

Right of Way

An abandonment relinquishes the City’s interest in all or portion of the previously dedicated right-of-way, thereby giving a property owner more usable area. A property owner may apply to abandon a right-of-way adjacent to his/her property. Abandonment does not designate ownership of the abandoned property, but rather relieve the City of any responsibility, interest, or liability concerning the area.

Right of Way Application

Board of Zoning Appeals

A Board of Zoning Appeals application is made when the applicant is:

  1. Seeking relief from provisions of the Zoning Ordinance; or
  2. Appealing a decision of the City Planner; or
  3. Appealing a Zoning District line; or
  4. Requesting a Conditional Use as outlined in the Zoning Ordinance.

Board of Zoning Appeals Application

Sign Permit

A Sign Permit Application is required when submitting a sign plan for review. This is required for subdivision signs and commercial/industrial signs. Permits are required for some temporary signs. Contact the City Planner if you have questions regarding signs.

Sign Permit Application