Tips for Minimizing Your
Development Review Costs:
A Guide for Applicants
The City of Whitewater assigns its consultant costs associated with reviewing development proposals to
the applicant requesting development approval. These costs can vary based on a number of factors. Many
of these factors can at least be partially controlled by the applicant for development review. The City
recognizes that we are in a time when the need to control costs is at the forefront of everyone’s minds.
The following guide is intended to assist applicants for City development approvals understand what they
can do to manage and minimize the costs associated with review of their applications. The tips included in
this guide will almost always result in a less costly and quicker review of an application.
Meet with Neighborhoods Services Department before submitting an
If you are planning on submitting an application for development review, one of the first things you
should do is have a discussion with the City’s Neighborhood Services Department. This can be
accomplished either by dropping by the Neighborhood Services Department counter at City Hall, or by
making an appointment with the Neighborhood Services Director. Before you make significant
investments in your project, the Department can help you understand the feasibility of your proposal,
what City plans and ordinances will apply, what type of review process will be required, and how to
prepare a complete application.
Submit a complete and thorough application
One of the most important things you can do to make your review process less costly to you is to submit a
complete, thorough, and well-organized application in accordance with City ordinance requirements. The
City has checklists to help you make sure your application is complete. To help you prepare an
application that has the right level of detail and information, assume that the people reviewing the
application have never seen your property before, have no prior understanding of what you are proposing,
and don’t necessarily understand the reasons for your request.
For more complex or technical types of projects, strongly consider working
with an experienced professional to help prepare your plans
Experienced professional engineers, land planners, architects, surveyors and landscape architects should
be quite familiar with standard development review processes and expectations. They are also generally
capable of preparing high-quality plans that will ultimately require less time (i.e., less cost for you) for the
City’s planning and engineering consultants to review, saving you money in the long run. Any project
that includes significant site grading, stormwater management, or utility work; significant landscaping; or
significant building remodeling or expansion generally requires professionals in the associated fields to
For simpler projects, submit thorough, legible, and accurate plans
For less complicated proposals, it is certainly acceptable to prepare plans yourself rather than paying to
have them prepared by a professional. However, keep in mind that even though the project may be less
complex, the City’s staff and planning consultant still need to ensure that your proposal meets all City
requirements. Therefore, such plans must be prepared with care. Regardless of the complexity, all site,
building, and floor plans should:
1. Be drawn to a recognized scale and indicate what the scale is (e.g., 1 inch = 40 feet).
2. Include titles and dates on all submitted documents in case pieces of your application get