Development Review Division

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Development Review Process                                                                                                                     Lauren Brandao
Development Review Steps                                                                                                             Development Review Coordinator
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Accela Video Tutorials
Meeting Schedule & Submittal Deadlines  
Committee Members
Fees & Steps
Checklists & Forms
Plan Format Requirements

PLEASE NOTE: Beginning February 1, 2023 drop off plans will no longer be accepted and all submittals will need to be made electronically through Accela.

About the Division

The Development Review Division assists with the review and permitting of large-scale development projects proposed in Hall County.  A Land Disturbance Permit (LDP) is required for all commercial and industrial activities which involve the construction of new buildings, grading, construction of infrastructure (new roads or utilities), and commercial additions.  A permit is also needed for all industrial and residential subdivision developments including the preliminary construction phase of roads, ponds, utilities, grading, clearing, etc.

It is recommend that prior to submitting plans, applicants attend a Development Review meeting. This meeting will give the applicant vital information on the review process, including the number of plans required for review, the timeline, and any associated fees. This meeting also provides applicants an opportunity to discuss their project with all departments who will be reviewing their plans. The Development Review meeting is held each Wednesday at 9:00am and appointments can be scheduled up to 4:00 pm Tuesday of the same week.

Development Review Process

Depending upon the extent of the project, the plans may include existing conditions, soil and erosion measures, grading plans, septic designs, hydrological plans, roadway profiles, storm drain profiles, landscape plans, fire access, traffic studies, water line profiles, etc. Before developing a property in Hall County, plans must be submitted online through our new epermitting platform, Accela (See the link below). Beginning February 1, 2023 drop off plans will no longer be accepted and all submittals will need to be made electronically through Accela. Plans submitted no later than 4:00 p.m. each Monday will be distributed the following Wednesday at the Development Review meeting. Once you submit your epermit application, the associated civil plans are reviewed by technical experts to ensure compliance with development codes and regulations. The preliminary review takes approximately two weeks. Once the review period is complete, the Development Review Coordinator (DRC) will return comments to the customer for revisions. The number of departmental comments and the time it takes for the engineer, land surveyor or other professionals to address the comments determines the time frame in which a LDP is issued. When the necessary approvals are obtained, a LDP will be issued to begin the land disturbance activities. When the project is approximately 80% constructed, then an as-built can be submitted online for review. No Certificate of Occupancy will be issued until the as-built is approved.


Development Review Steps

  1. To apply for a Land Disturbance Permit online, you must first select CREATE AN ACCOUNT to register online with the Accela website link provided. Accounts can be for individuals or companies and can have multiple users associated with them.
  2. Select the Hall County tab.
  3. Select Hall County - Public Works
  4. Select appropriate Option for your project: (H-Development Review or H-Subdivision - Final Plat)
  5. Select Continue Application
  6. Provide the necessary information. Note: Applicant Name is the County Project Name.
  7. Contact section will require one (1) of each of the following:
    • 24 Hour Emergency Contact(s)
    • An Applicant
    • A Current Property Owner
    • An Engineer
  8. Uploads must be in the form of a PDF and/or DWG. Please follow the guidelines provided below on upload formatting               (Accela Submittal Standards)
  9. After completing the application, select Submit.
  10. Follow along. Use the project overview page to follow along with the review status, view plan review comments, and be alerted of file requests. We will also send email notifications along the way.
  11. After the applicant has addressed all the comments, plans may be resubmitted through epermitting for a second review. The resubmitted plans plans will be distributed at the next development review meeting. Each department then has two (2) weeks to review the plans to ensure all comments have been addressed.
  12. In certain situations, a 3rd review may be required to address any outstanding comments. the 3rd review is a two (2) week review.
  13. Use the project overview page to follow along with the review status, view plan review comments, and be alerted of file requests.
  14. Comments may be found on Record Info-Attachments:Instructions


About EPermitting with Accela

The electronic plan review process provides:

  • Instant feedback by email throughout the review process allowing the customer to know when plans and supporting documentation are accepted for review until plans are approved.  Issues are communicated to the customer in real time.
  • Interactive access to color-coded markups by discipline, issues and conditions from within Accela for reviewing disapproved comments.
  • For corrections, customers are only required to submit revised sheets rather than complete plan sets.

Accela Submittal Standards

The following document standards are recommended for best uploading performance and to ensure correct processing in the Digital Plan Room.

  • All plans and supporting documentation must be in PDF and/or file format.
  • Maximum file size is 500 MB (per file)
  • Plans should always include a table of contents when exporting/publishing to the PDF (ex. Include "Create bookmarks" setting in AutoCAD or Revit).
  • Reference sheet numbers and titles in the format: {SHEET NUMBER} {SHEET TITLE}
  • Plans should be set to landscape view, oriented with North at the top of the monitor.
  • The title block containing the sheet number should be located in the lower right hand corner of each page. (Ensure that all pages are in order and rotated properly for viewing on-screen.)
  • Plans must be "to scale" with professional seals and signatures.
  • Do not use encrypted or password-protected files.
  • Do not combine any supporting documentation in the same PDF file with any plans; the system will instruct you to submit supporting documentation as separate PDF files.
  • When uploading files in Accela Citizen Access, every file must have the correct document type selected.

For questions related to the Land Development Review, please contact Lauren Brandao, Development Review Coordinator (DRC) at (770) 531-6800 or For technical question regarding the use of the Accela Citizen Access Portal, email


Video Tutorials

Development Review Committee Meeting Schedule & Submittal Deadlines

The Development Review Committee (DRC) consists of members from the Hall County Planning Department, Hall County Traffic Engineering, Hall County Fire Services, Hall County Soil and Water Conservation District, City of Gainesville Water Resources, and Hall County Environmental Health.  

The DRC holds weekly meetings virtually every Wednesday at 9:00 a.m. During these meeting, customers meet with DRC staff and discuss potential development projects.  

Attendance at the DRC meeting is not mandatory; however, the meeting can be very informative and help you understand the review process as it relates to a particular development. Applicants must submit plans for distribution in advance of the meeting. Plans submitted no later than 4:00 p.m. each Monday will be distributed the following Wednesday at the DRC meeting.


Development Review Committee Members

Contact Department Phone Email Address
Lauren Brandao
Development Review Coordinator/Engineering
Frank Miller Public Works and Utilities 
Beth Garmon Planning and Zoning 770-297-2626

Rebecca Evans
Chad Harper
Environmental Health
Emily McGahee
Environmental Health
John Hornick
Fire Services
Scott Puckett
Traffic Engineering
Nick Swafford
City of Gainesville Water Resources
Greg Bell Soil & Water Conservation District, NRCS

Development Review Fees - Paid at time of Submittal (No Exceptions)

Project Type
Commercial Land Disturbance Permit
$400 + $40/disturbed acre
3rd Review Fee $100
Preliminary Subdivision Plat
$400 + $40/disturbed acre + 40¢/linear foot of new streets
Final Subdivision Plat
$400 + $10/lot
Revision to Approved Plans
As-built Review
Access Only Plan Review $200
*NOTE: Virtual payments with a Visa, Mastercard, or Discover may be made calling (770) 531-6800.
     Payments made by check are mailed to: Hall County Engineering, Attn: Lauren Brandao, P.O. Box 1435, Gainesville, GA 30503

Reviewing Departments

  • Hall County Planning & Development
  • Hall County Environmental Health
  • Hall County Fire Services
  • Hall County Tax Assessors
  • Hall County Traffic Engineering 
  • Hall County Public Works & Utilities/Engineering
  • Gainesville Water Resources
  • Soil & Water Conservation District, NRCS
*A hydrology report with water quality spreadsheet will be required if adding over 5,000 sq. ft. of impervious area
**Soil & Water Conservation only needs to review projects within 200 feet of state waters or with over an acre of disturbed area.
*** If your project requires a building permit, please submit four (4) additional full size copies of the cover sheet and site plan sheet(s) for stamping and submittal to Building Inspections. 



The following checklists provide detailed instructions on completing your application. If you have any questions, call the Development Review Coordinator or the committee member responsible for the area in which you have a question.


Plan Formatting: Cover Sheet

A cover sheet shall be included with each application and include the following information:

  • Project name
  • Tax parcel identification
  • Zoning
  • Vicinity map
  • Existing site conditions. Provide a description of existing topography, vegetation and drainage areas. Cut and fill calculations, including the area and volume.
  • Adjacent area information. Provide a description of the features on the surrounding properties.  This should adequately describe the properties and environments potentially affected by the planned activities including State waters, current land use, residential areas, roads, etc.
  • For final plats, leave box for recording stamp. For all other projects, proof of recorded parcel(s). 
  • Construction schedule. A graphical description of how the construction phases will be timed.
  • A copy of the Hall County Board of Commissioners zoning letter. (If Applicable)
  • Pre-Construction note: See Development Review Forms.
  • Project description: Description of the nature and purpose of the land disturbing activity including the zoning classification, total size of the project with disturbed area sizes in acres and volume of earth work (include cut and fill calculations).

Additional Information to include in the plans

The following information shall be included in the submitted plans:

  • Graphic scale, engineers scale. (1 inch = 10 feet, 1 inch = 20 feet, etc.) 
  • Applicant information consisting of name, developer’s phone number including 24-hour contact information of person responsible for the development and erosion control.
  • Civil engineer and surveyor information, name, address, phone number of the engineer and surveyor responsible for the site plans.
  • Certification.  The plans shall carry the signed stamp of a registered or certified professional in engineering, architecture, landscape architecture, land surveying or erosion control.
  • State waters, stream buffer, wetlands, Corps of Engineers Permit, Environmental Protection Division (EPD) or Hall County buffer variance, etc.  Include the statements: “This site (does/does not) contain State Waters requiring an undisturbed 50’ or 100’ buffer.  This site (does/does not) contain wetlands requiring a 25’ or 50’ undisturbed buffer.”  If a permit or variance is required by the Corps of Engineers and/or the EPD a copy of the approved permit must be attached to the drawings.
  • Flood plain information.  Include the statement: “This property is/is not located within a 100 year flood plain as per FIRM Panel No. ____________________________." and "This property is/is not located within the Hall County Future Flood Zone per Hall County GIS."
  • Boundary survey including all easements and names of adjacent property owners.
  • All existing structures and Improvements.
  • Additional items that may be appropriate. Please request individual Review Department Checklist as well for additional plan requirements for all specific projects.