About Planning and Zoning
The Planning Department is the liaison with various City Departments to assist in solving problems that builders, contractors, and developers may encounter. For all new construction projects, it is suggested that you contact the Planning Department. For information about Planning found in the Kentucky Revised Statutes, visit KRS 100s.
Note: The various fees quoted in this website are subject to change. Please verify that they are the current rates, fees or charges.
Links within Planning and Zoning
Planning Boards, Applications, and Fees Schedule
- Site Planning
All commercial developments and additions in the City require a site plan be submitted to the Department of Planning (270-444-8690) for review before any building permits can be issued. The process starts with a preliminary meeting with staff to discuss the proposed improvements and elements required to be on the plan. Site plans should be drawn according to the Site Plan Checklist unless otherwise directed by staff. Once an adequate site plan is submitted, Planning staff review it for compliance with applicable planning & zoning regulations. If acceptable, Planning staff will sign off on the plan and forward it to the Engineering Department (270-444-8511) for review. Once approved by Engineering, the plan is then forwarded to the Fire Prevention Division (270-444-8527) in order that building permits can be issued. For more information about site planning including a checklist of requirements and standard notes for erosion prevention and sediment control and floodplains, visit Site Plans.
Ordinance and Purpose
The Paducah Board of Commissioners has enacted Land Subdivision Regulations, Chapter 102 of the Paducah Code of Ordinances which work to provide for the harmonious development of the City of Paducah in the following manners:
- To provide adequate public open spaces, utility services, public facilities and proper arrangement of roads in relation to the City of Paducah Comprehensive Plan;
- To provide economy in governmental expenditure and to ensure allocation of costs of improvements most equitably between residents by the needed areas and the taxpayer of the City as a whole;
- To ensure that proper land surveys and records of land titles are prepared and recorded;
- To encourage coordination of land development with orderly physical patterns in accordance with policies as may have been or may be adopted by the City Commission.
The City of Paducah defines a subdivision as a division of real property, improved or unimproved, or portion thereof shown on the last preceding tax roll as a unit or as contiguous units, into two or more parcels, lots, sites or other division of land, with or without streets, for the purpose of immediate or future sale, transfer of ownership, or building development.
Submission Requirements and Approval Process for Subdivisions The subdivision procedure begins with a pre-application conference between the developer and Planning and Engineering department staff. The developer should bring a preliminary plat as described below. Smaller subdivisions of land on previously dedicated streets may qualify for a Waiver of Subdivision which classifies the development as a minor subdivision. Sections of the subdivision process may be waived for minor subdivisions as determined by the Planning Commission. Please contact the Planning Department to schedule an pre-application conference and to find out if the proposed development constitutes a major or minor subdivision.
Minor Subdivision If the proposed development consists of less than four parcels of land being created AND is served by existing streets, then it may qualify for a Waiver of Subdivision. Under this type of development, the Public Hearing Requirements are waived as well as the Preliminary Plat requirements. The requirements for final plat submittal will need to be followed as listed below.
Preliminary Submission of Plans and Data As pertaining to Section 102-35 of the City of Paducah Subdivision Code, applicants must submit preliminary plans and data to the Commission that illustrate existing conditions within the site and contiguous areas that conveys the subdivider's intentions as to the proposed development's land use.
Major Subdivision Application through Planning Commission
Design Standards for Preliminary Plats should be designed to conform to
- Paducah Subdivision Regulation Section 102-32 - regulations on subdivision design standards for issues pertaining to access, conformance to major street plan and comprehensive plan, street and alley location and arrangement, minimum street and alley widths, maximum and minimum grades, vertical curves, minimum radii of curvature on center lines, tangents, intersections, blocks, and lots.
- Section 102-33 - requirements for improvements to monuments and markers, streets and alleys, curbs and gutters, sidewalks, sewers, water, storm drainage, and conformance with design standards.
- Section 102-34 - regulations for variances and modification of standards. These regulations should be followed with all subdivision development.
Twelve copies of the preliminary plat should be submitted no later than 10 days prior to the next Planning Commission meeting. Approximately two days after submission, adjacent property owners will be notified of the hearing in writing. In addition, a notice of the public hearing will be published in the Paducah Sun. The preliminary plat is reviewed by the staff of the Planning and Engineering Departments as well as the Planning Commission. Staff will make recommendations to the Commission. If the plat is not satisfactory, then the subdivider will be notified in writing the problems that need to be remedied. If the Commission is satisfied that all conditions have been met, then it will give approval of Preliminary Subdivision. Once approved, the subdivider needs to submit 12 copies of the final plat and plans to the Department of Planning by noon 10 days prior to a Planning Commission Meeting.
Final subdivision plat should include information according to Sec. 102-39 of the Paducah Subdivision Regulations.
Final Plat Approval Process - outlined in Sec. 102-40 of the Subdivision Regulations
Planning Department Reviews subdivision plats for the following items:
- That the development will be compatible with the surrounding area and uses;
- That ingress and egress, internal traffic circulation, off-street parking and pedestrian ways shall be designed to promote public safety and convenience;
- That the development meets all zoning and subdivision development standards; and
- That the intent of the Comprehensive Plan has been addressed.
Engineering Department Reviews subdivision plans for the following items:
- A check for proposed City projects and street systems that could affect or be affected by the development;
- A determination of the need for a grading and drainage plan, and stormwater management plan;
- A determination as to whether or not the site is within the 100-year floodplain and the potential impacts that the development will have on the floodplain; and
- Appropriate notations of required improvements and plans. This would include utilities, grading, paving and drainage.
- Reviews location and width of driveways, clear-sight triangles, clear sight corridors, street light locations, and other traffic safety issues.
The Planning Commission will approve the final plat after submission if all requirements are met. Following the Subdivision Code Section 102-40, the Planning Commission will sign the plat and submit a final report to the Board of Commissioners recommending acceptance of all streets and public ground. The plat will then be released upon certification of the City Clerk that the Board of Commissioners has received either a plat certificate or other approved sureties.
Plat Certificate - Section 102-41 of the Subdivision Code. A certificate submitted by the subdivider, acceptable to and approved by the City Engineer, stating that all requirements, improvements and installations to the subdivision required for its approval under the terms of this chapter have been made or installed in accordance with the said specifications.
Bond - If required, the bond will run to the city and be in an amount determined by the Board of Commissioners to cover the costs of the development. The Subdivider must be with surety by a company entered and licensed to do business in the State of Kentucky. The time for completion of improvements, monuments, and the like must be stated. The engineer and/or contractor concerned on payment of his charges for installation of the improvements, monuments, and the like must be protected. This and other requirements stated in Section 102-40 (2) or by the Board of Commissioners must be addressed.
Zoning regulates the use and development of land. It is designed to protect property values by preventing the location of incompatible uses in close proximity to each other. City Planning involves the development of programs, plans, and policies for the creation of a better community. Zoning and City Planning are closely related. The City Planning Department develops and administrates the Zoning Code, and it is one of the ways the planning is implemented. Zoning is enforced by the Fire Prevention Division.
The Zoning Code, Section 126 of the Paducah Code of Ordinances(link is external), regulates the use and development of all private property in the City. The Zoning Code does not regulate the use of the public right-of-way including streets, sidewalks, trees, and lawn. Use of the public right-of-way is controlled by other chapters of the Code of Ordinances.
Read more about Zoning including Conditional Use Permits, Demolition Control Zone, Development Plan Amendments, Home Occupations or Home-Based Businesses, Nonconforming Use, Variance, and Zone Change.
Scope My Project Online Portals
Paducah has launched Scope My Project, online tools centered around business development and project scoping. The portals will help guide citizens, entrepreneurs, developers, contractors, and business owners who are embarking on complex projects, such a starting a new business or a renovation project, through the City’s permitting requirements. These tools are designed to increase communication, enhance availability, and eliminate confusion.
Zoning Portal The Zoning Portal allows users to explore where different business types are permitted throughout Paducah.
Business Permitting Portal The Business Permitting Portal, a project scoping tool, guides the user to specific license, permits, and requirements for constructing, renovating, and developing a business in Paducah. After answering the questions, a summary specific to the project can be downloaded. This summary will include zoning information, permits needed, and a preliminary estimate of permit fees.
The portals also include links to contact City staff, set up a kick-start meeting, and an opportunity to create a free account to save project information and start the application process.