Development Services provides customer service for development and construction practices within Hillsborough County

What we do

We are the customer service center for development and construction, which combines all services associated with permitting and property development, such as planning, zoning, development review, and building inspection services for all of unincorporated Hillsborough County. All of our services are accessed online, including permit and application submittals, zoning inquiries, and natural resources inquiries. Individuals needing assistance navigating our processes or with the submittal of online documents may visit the Development Services Tech Center on the 16th Floor of County Center (601 E Kennedy Blvd) in downtown Tampa.

The Development Process and your community

The development process in Hillsborough County typically follows a 3-step process.

Community Development process explained - land development code & zoning, site & subdivision development, building permitting & inspections
Community Development process explained

Depending on the proposed project and property, the process may begin at different stages of the process. Each project is unique and so the accompanying process may vary.


This is the first step in the development process. The project is reviewed to ensure that the proposed use(s) and development standards (height, setbacks, bulk, etc.) meets the Land Development Code (LDC) requirements. Submitting a request for zoning information can help to determine what is allowed on a property.

If the proposed use and existing standards are not compatible, applicants may request modifications or propose specific uses for the property. An application for rezoning, variance or special use is submitted for review by staff, a Land Use Hearing Master and/or the Board of County Commissioners. An advertised Public Hearing is often required to approve these changes. This is the part of the process with the most opportunities for public input and participation exist.

Typically, when a zoning application is submitted that requires a public hearing, a large yellow sign will be posted at the property indicating the type of change being sought, the hearing date and other useful information. Additionally, property owners and civic organizations within a specified area of the property to be rezoned will also receive a notice in the mail regarding the application and its scheduled hearing. This is a great opportunity for residents and the public in general to participate in the process and provide input prior to the rendering of a decision.

View Zoning Hearing Activity

Additional Resources:

  • An interactive map is also available showing submitted applications which will require a hearing.
  • Residents may sign up to receive an email notification whenever a new hearing application is submitted within their specified vicinity
  • A public database of all zoning records is available online.

Site/Subdivision review

This is the second step in the development process. After zoning rights are in place, an engineering review of the proposed project site/subdivision must take place.

The process will differ depending on whether the project is commercial or residential in nature. The project will undergo a ‘horizontal’ development review where the location of the project and its surrounding area will be reviewed by engineers to determine suitability. County staff and engineers will look at the proposal and determine if it meets code requirements and county standards for infrastructure or if additional infrastructure must be put in put place to meet the new demands the project will place on roads and transportation, utilities, natural resources, drainage, etc. Additional reviews, such as whether a parcel is suitable to be split, are conducted during this stage.

Due to the complex nature of this development stage, a courtesy pre-submittal conference may be requested. During this meeting with County staff, information about the process will be provided. The pre-submittal conference also provides an opportunity to ask questions prior to submitting your proposal.

View Site Development Activity

Additional Resources:

  • An interactive map is available showing submitted applications. This is a great tool for residents to see what is being proposed and built throughout the County.
  • A public database of all land development review records is available online. Search for projects by entering the Project ID into the Tracking field.
  • Have a large project? Our Navigation Program may be able to help! Check your eligibility easily online.

Building permitting

This is the final step in the development process. Once a site review has been completed and approved, the permitting process can begin. Structures to be built and other construction will need to have an appropriate building permit issued. All building plans are reviewed for compliance with the Florida Building Code. The permit process is managed through the HillsGovHub portal where the applicant will apply for the permit and upload all required documentation to meet permitting requirements.

Once a permit has been issued, construction may begin. Required safety inspections are completed during the construction process. Inspections are also scheduled and managed through the HillsGovHub portal.

Once all required inspections are approved and all fees have been paid, including any assessed impact and mobility fees, a Certificate of Occupancy (CO) can be issued. A CO certifies that structure is suitable for occupancy.

View Building Permitting and Certificate of Occupancy Activity

Additional Resources:

Frequently requested services

Last Modified: 2/20/2024, 4:08:19 PM
Department Contact
Adam Gormly
Department Director
(813) 272-5600