Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Sea Birds

The City of Falls Church has a public review process for the approval of grading plans - the Chesapeake Bay Interdisciplinary Review Team (CBIRT). Each grading plan gets discussed at the CBIRT meeting; neighbors within 150 feet of the property are invited, and a public notice appears in the Falls Church News-Press.
Today was our turn.
Normally, people show up to complain about one aspect or another of the proposed construction (even though, strictly speaking, the meeting is only about grading, zoning, and tree preservation compliance). I had a bet with the City's Zoning Administrator that someone would turn up to complain that the house was too small.
Well, nobody showed up to complain - and within a half hour the meeting was over. Our grading plan now has a big "APPROVED" stamp on it; and with the grading plan approved, we can now go and collect the remaining signatures on our building permit. The hope is that within the next day or two, we'll have our building permit issued as well.
And then, we waits.
Our contract for the land is structured so that we close 30 days (to allow for appeals) after issuance of the building permit - we wanted to avoid owning an unbuildable lot. So our next challenge is to find financing. As Mike wrote in an earlier post, Debbie Perper is working hard for us on that aspect. Tentatively, we've scheduled closing for the middle of November, more than a year since we first started this process.
I should say that everyone at the City has been wonderful, especially in working around the fact that we don't technically own the lot yet - all plan and permit approvals are typically issued to the property owner, and only after tree protection and sediment control has been put in place. But with a few quickly drawn-up letters of agreement (we agree to put tree preservation and sediment control measures in place within 7 days after closing on the lot) we were able to work around this. I'm sure not every municipality is this helpful.
It feels like we're on the home stretch.
At least until we start with the building portion!

No comments:

Post a Comment