Land Development Services

Fairfax County, Virginia

CONTACT INFORMATION: Office hours: 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Counter hours: 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. (M-Th), 9:15 a.m.-4 p.m. (F)

TTY 711

12055 Government Center Pkwy
Fairfax, VA 22035

Bill Hicks,

Land Development Process Overview

The development process in Fairfax County involves comprehensive reviews by numerous county and non-county agencies and may involve many steps before a project can be approved.

Every project is unique and subject to its own set of requirements depending on the location and complexities of the project.

County staff is available to assist you

  • Zoning: Planner of the Day, 703-324-5387, TTY 711 or 703-324-5372, TTY 711
  • Site and Subdivision Plans: Engineer of the Day, 703-324-2268, TTY 711
  • Building Permits: Permit Application Center, 703-222-0801, TTY 711

County Land Development Process

The following question will help you determine at which phase to start: Is the use (e.g., residential, nonresidential, day-care center, church, vehicles sales, etc.) I propose allowed by the Zoning Ordinance regulations for the zoning district of my property?

  • If YES, as a:
    • Permitted use. You don't need to make further application in the planning and zoning phase of the development process. However, if you cannot meet all the regulations because of the conditions relating to the land itself, you can apply for a variance to request that certain zoning requirements be modified for your project because of conditions beyond your control (i.e., fence height, location of structures in relation to property lines, increase in building height, lot width).
    • Special exception use. You must obtain approval of a special exception from the Board of Supervisors.
    • Special permit use. You must obtain approval of a special permit from the Board of Zoning Appeals.
  • If NO:
    • If the use is not allowed in the zoning district of your land, you can request that the land be zoned to a different zoning district that will allow your proposed use (enter Phase 1Planning and Zoning – of the development process).
  • If your project will meet all the zoning regulations:
    • Proceed to Phase 2 of the development process – Site and Subdivision Plans Review – if a site plan or subdivision plan is necessary for your project; or
    • Phase 3Permits and Inspections – to obtain the necessary building permits.

Phase 4 - Bond Release & Public Street Acceptance