Services

The staff of the Louisburg Planning Department provides a variety of services to the public. The major services are:

  • Zoning Permits issuance, which are required for ALL land disturbing and all building construction activities in Louisburg, including the issuance of conditional use permits, special exception permits, and temporary zoning permits
  • Building Permits/Codes are issued and enforced on behalf of the Town of Louisburg by the Franklin County Inspections Department AFTER a Louisburg Zoning Permit has been issued.
  • Conditional Use Permits are issued by the Louisburg Board of Adjustment. The Board of Adjustment is authorized to issue variances and condition use permits after a quasi-judicial hearing and fact finding process that indicates that the request for the specific action meets qualifying standards set forth to protect all property owners in Louisburg.
  • Special Exception Permits are reviewed by the Louisburg Planning Board for technical issues related to the proposed activity and then recommended to the Louisburg Town Council who makes the final determination of approval or denial of the activity.
  • Rezoning submittals, review and consideration of rezoning requests and text amendments to the Louisburg Zoning Ordinance.
  • Subdivision of Property/Plat approval for all plats in the Town of Louisburg and ETJ.
  • Floodplain Management information, rules, and code compliance.
  • Temporary Uses regulations and permits for a variety of uses, including Special Events permits, temporary permits, and fundraising activity permits for non-profit organizations.
  • Sign permits for all signs.

Zoning Permits

The Town of Louisburg requires that a zoning permit be issued prior to any land disturbing activities, construction activities, and use activities on any parcel of land within the Town of Louisburg and the Extraterritorial Jurisdiction (ETJ). Once the zoning permit is issued, either as a permit by right, conditional use permit, or special exception permit, the next step is often the issuance of a North Carolina Building Permit.

The Louisburg Planning Department has an agreement with the Franklin County Planning and Inspections Department through which the county department provides all required inspections for all phases of residential, commercial, industrial, and farm construction - after all required permits are obtained and fees paid. Inspections include building footing, rough-in, saw pole, final, electrical, gas, plumbing, HVAC, mobile home, swimming pool, and all other activities which will require a NC Building Permit

Inspections are scheduled on a first come first serviced basis. Inspections are requested by calling the Inspections office at (919) 496-2281 and giving the permit number, location, type inspection, date and time desired, and contact phone number.

Building Permits/Codes

The Franklin County Planning and Inspections Department oversees the application of the NC Commercial Building and Residential Codes for all construction in the Town of Louisburg and other the incorporated and unincorporated sections of Franklin County.

The Inspections Department, receives all permit applications and fees, processes the applications, reviews plans, issues or denies permits, conducts inspections, and issues the Certificate of Occupancy, after the Louis burg Zoning Compliance Certificate is issued. Information regarding inspections, fee schedules, and other related resources can be found at www.co.franklin.nc.us/Planning/Inspect/InspectDocs.htm.

Conditional Use Permits

Land uses are identified in the Louisburg Zoning Ordinance as well as the specific Zoning Category and district in which they are allowed. Generally, residences are allowed in residential districts, commercial uses in business districts, etc. Many uses are allowed as permitted by right. Permitted by right uses are those that are approved on their face as being allowed in a specific zoning district and must comply with the standards for development already outlined in the zoning ordinance. An example of this is: A restaurant is a use by right in the B-2 (Highway Business) district, but it must comply with established landscaping, parking, signage, and lot dimension requirements already set forth in the zoning ordinance. Town staff can issue this permit once a site plan is submitted depicting compliance with the zoning ordinance.

Conditional Uses are land uses that are appropriate within a specific zoning district, however, as a result of specific adverse impacts that may be associated with the use, may require additional development conditions attached to the activity to assure a lesser impact on adjoining properties. An example of this is: A church is allowed in the Residential zoning district in Louisburg as a conditional use, not a permitted use by right. This conditional use permit is required due to the nature of churches having a large traffic volume on Sundays, activities through-out the week, ancillary operations, and other impacts that residential areas would not normally incur.

The Louisburg Board of Adjustment considers all Conditional Use Permit applications for such uses as identified in the Louisburg Zoning Ordinance. The Board of Adjustment must conduct a public hearing and quasi-judicial review process when considering the application. The Board must examine exhibits on which facts may be drawn. These facts are then expressed in findings that the Board determines to support approval or denial of the permit application. Findings made by the Board of Adjustment must take into consideration the laws of the US, NC, and Louisburg, as well as specific standards established by the Louisburg Town Council. The Board of Adjustment may impose any condition they find is necessary to comply with the standards of the Louisburg Landuse Plan and Zoning Ordinance.

Decisions of the Board of Adjustment related to Conditional Uses, Variances, and Appeals to the decision of the Zoning Administrator may be appealed in the form of certiorari to the local District Courts.

Special Exception Use Permits

Special Exception Uses are uses that are not uses by right due to the extreme adverse impacts associated with each use. Special Exception Uses are uses that generally are so impactive that they are allowed only with comprehensive regulation, restrictions, and conditions. A special exception permit application is submitted to Town staff and forwarded to the Louisburg Planning Board for technical review of the application. This technical review considers all planning, infrastructure, noise, light, sight, aesthetic, traffic, and environmental impacts that may be created by the use. The same fact finding as required in a quasi-judicial review process is also required in the special exception process. After review, the Planning Board forwards a recommendation to the Louisburg Town Council who may consider all elements of the application and proposed use in making their determination of approval or denial. The Town Council may impose any restriction or condition that they feel is necessary in order to comply with the established standards of the Louisburg Land Use Plan and Zoning Ordinance.

Rezoning/Land Use

All zoning and land use for the Town of Louisburg is governed by the Louisburg Zoning Ordinance as adopted by the Louisburg Town Council. The Louisburg Planning Board, through the Planning Department, recommends amendments to the Zoning Ordinance and the approved zoning map. These recommendations are then considered by the Louisburg Town Council where final approval or denial is determined. While each of these documents may be reviewed on-line, final decisions should be made after confirming the on-line material is current / up-to-date from any recent Council actions or possible transcript errors.

Any requests for zoning or ordinance text changes will go through the Planning Department by consultation and the submission of the proper request and appropriate fee.

Comprehensive Land Use Plan, Rezonings, and Zoning Text Amendments

The Louisburg Zoning Ordinance is a planning tool used to regulate land use, lot dimension requirements, development standards, and the procedural requirements associated with construction and land use development activities in Louisburg and the ETJ. From time to time the provisions of the ordinance are amended to reflect policy changes of the Town Council or growth and development impacts in the community. Changes to the ordinance are in the form of actual text modifications or changes to the Zoning Map which identify specific zoning district classifications. These classifications determine what type of use is allowed on properties in the respective district.

Rezonings must be based on a sound guidance methodology versus a subjective political decision making basis. This guidance is most often outlined and provided within a Comprehensive Land Use Plan. Courts have upheld comprehensive plans as a legal guidance tool to direct zoning considerations by governing bodies. The Comprehensive Land Use Plan is the driving document within local government entities that comprehensively study and direct all aspects of community planning and growth; from infrastructure construction, proposed incorporation, to allowable growth and land use types in the future. The purpose of the document is to plan the growth of the local government in a systematic and concise manner, thus eliminating “off the cuff” and “knee-jerk” decision making that leads to incompatible land use and growth patterns, and in some cases, unethical/illegal zoning decisions.

Subdivision of Property/Plats

The Louisburg Planning Department reviews all subdivision of property actions (plats) for the Town of Louisburg and ETJ. Plats are reviewed for compliance with zoning and subdivisions standards as published in the Louisburg Zoning, Subdivision, and other applicable development related Ordinances.

Major subdivisions and major site plans require Planning Board review and recommendation to the Louisburg Town Council who makes final approval decisions. Staff does all administrative subdivisions, site plans, and plats for such subdivisions.

All lots created in Louisburg and ETJ must abut a paved, public road/street. If located within a defined distance to existing municipal water and sewer the subdivider must also extend these utilities throughout the subdivision. An administrative subdivision can only be approved for 5 lots or more split from a tract of land and all lots must currently abut a paved street and meet the water and sewer utility extension test.

In accordance with state and local laws, an approved and recorded plat is required before property may be sold or transferred. They are also required for Building Permits. The Franklin County Environmental Health division may require them for septic tank approval.

Links

    Zoning District Classifications

    • Light Green: A/R - Agricultural/Residential
    • Medium Green: R-1 Single Family Residential
    • Yellow: O&I – Office Institutional
    • Dark Red: B-1 Downtown Central Business
    • Medium Red: B-2 Highway Business
    • Light Pink: B-3 Neighborhood Business
    • Light Grey: I-1 Light Industrial
    • Dark Blue: I-2 Heavy Industrial
    • Brown: Hwy 401 Special Highway Overlay District "SHOD"

Floodplain Management

The Louisburg Planning Department is the Floodplain Manager for all affected lots in Louisburg and the ETJ and for all actions associated with the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and Community Rating Service (CRS).

The Planning Department Staff maintains the required FEMA documents and material including Elevation Certificates, FIRM maps, and approximate digital maps to help all citizens determine floodplain boundaries and required actions.

The Louisburg Special Flood Hazards Ordinance contains information for construction in flood zones. The Franklin County Inspections Office also is available for proper Building Code compliance and Hazard mitigation actions.

Every step should be taken to determine floodplain status and regulations as both Louisburg and Franklin County jurisdictions have thousands of acres in designated Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHA) that require special actions. Such determinations must be made prior to the issuance of any Zoning or NC Building Permit.

Links

Temporary Zoning Permits

Temporary Zoning Permits are issued for short term events that are authorized by ordinance. Such events may include a Town sponsored event or festival, fund raising activities undertaken by specific non-profit associations, or special events that may be conducted on municipal property or right of ways.

Links

Sign Permits

The Louisburg Zoning Ordinance regulates the construction, installation, and approval of all signage in Louisburg. Signs are identified and regulated per the specific zoning classification in which they will be located. Temporary signs are addressed in the Temporary Zoning provisions.

There are three basic sign types: accessory unattached, attached, and independent.

  • An accessory, unattached sign is most often a low, monument sign that advertises the use on which the sign is located, an example in Louisburg would be the Rite Aid or CVS monument sign. Pylon signs are freestanding, accessory, unattached signs such as those at Burger King or Remington Grill.
  • Attached signs are attached to the primary business structure. The sizes of these signs are not limited within certain districts, with the exception that no signage is allowed above the roof line of any structure
  • Independent signs are signs that display information relative to a use or activity located on some other property than that on which the sign is located. Independent signs are strictly regulated and include billboard type signs, temporary signs, and special event signage.

Please be aware that signage provisions are dependant upon location, zoning district, and activity being advertised.

Electronic display and other modifying or interchangeable letter/display type of sign is allowed in specific districts as an accessory sign but are limited to size. Please contact the Planning Department for specific sign related information or review the provisions in the Louisburg Zoning Ordinance.