Department of Planning
April 9, 2020
CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, VA — This week, the Chesterfield County Department of Planning unveiled a new online system for the submission and review of development plans to accommodate social distancing guidelines in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A comprehensive guide explaining the online submission process, E-filing of Development Plans to Chesterfield County, is available on the Department of Planning webpage.
The new system is vital to ensuring development can continue throughout Chesterfield while development consultants, developers and county employees remain safe while teleworking.
“When the threat of the COVID-19 outbreak became clear, Chesterfield’s Community Development Division worked rapidly alongside the Virginia Department of Transportation to implement this online system, providing safe means for consultants, developers and county and state staff to get plans approved and keep the construction industry active,” said Greg Allen, Chesterfield County’s planning manager. “Ultimately, it is about saving lots of jobs across a very dynamic industry. During this public health crisis, our ability to review plans online will help save those jobs.”
In addition to helping the county abide by health-safety guidelines, online processing offers several key benefits including improved communication between those who submit development plans and reviewers. For instance, the electronic submission system allows consultants and developers to receive a series of emails detailing what step of the review process their plans are in as well as view comments made on their plans as they are entered by state and county departments.
Furthermore, many meetings between consultants, developers and reviewers that had previously been required to take place in-person may now be held virtually, eliminating the need for travel and allowing for a more efficient use of time.
Other benefits of the system include:
According to Allen, the Department of Planning hopes the online submission system will remain an option for consultants and developers even after the threat of COVID-19 fades.
“Based upon the benefits we have outlined above, the county will likely maintain the electronic submittal and review system and make continuous improvements to it as we grow in experience.”
Beyond managing the county’s comprehensive planning and development review process, the Department of Planning is also responsible for general planning assistance for the public, analysis of growth and development trends and inspections for zoning code compliance. For more information, visit the department’s webpage.
For more information about Chesterfield County’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak, visit www.chesterfield.gov/coronavirus.