Planning & Zoning

The overarching goal of the Planning and Zoning Department is to fulfill the City’s vision, as determined by the citizens and elected leaders. We strive for orderly growth and development that neither encroaches on private property rights nor the quality of life for those that live and work in the City. The Department is tasked with managing the current and long-range planning, land development, GIS and more.

The Planning and Zoning Department stands for TRANSPARENCY, PREDICTABILITY, COORDINATION and FAIRNESS.

Annexation Process:
Annexation applications are to be submitted to the City for review before they are provided to Cherokee County for a comment period. County staff has thirty days to review an application and provide comments ahead of a Board of Commissioners meeting, held the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of each month. The Board will provide official comments to the City on the application.

The City holds two hearings on an annexation application with the second hearing taking place after the County has provided comments. The Mayor and Council will render the final decision on an annexation application at this second meeting.

Rezoning Process:
A complete Rezoning Application is submitted to and reviewed by City staff, and then furnished to Cherokee County for scheduling of a public hearing before the Cherokee County Municipal Planning Commission. Public hearings are held on the 1st Tuesday of each month. The Planning Commission also holds a Work Session on the 3rd Monday of each month, ahead of the public hearing, to discuss the agenda items. The purpose of the public hearing is for the Commission to hear the zoning case and make a recommendation to the City of Ball Ground for approval or denial.

The Mayor and Council will render the final decision on a rezoning application following a public hearing. If a rezoning is in conjunction with an annexation, the annexation process must be completed before a rezoning is considered.

Variance Process:
Any project that requires a variance must have a pre-application meeting with City staff prior to submission of an application. The Board of Zoning Appeals is authorized to hear and decide on variance cases for the City. This body meets on an “as-needed” basis.

FOR MORE INFORMATION ON ANNEXATIONS, REZONINGS AND VARIANCES,PLEASE SEE HEREAll Planning and Zoning applications can be found by visiting the Document Center or clicking the Applications and Documents link at the top of this page.

Sign Approval Process:
New signs and changes to existing signs are reviewed and approved by City staff on a rolling basis. No sign permit is required for maintenance, cleaning, safety modifications, or changes to the COPY AREA only. For more information, see the City’s sign regulations here.

Address Process:
Cherokee County GIS is responsible for addressing. Please visit their website for more information.

About the Director…

Chris Luly has served as the Director of Planning and Zoning for the City of Ball Ground since July 2021. Chris grew up in Cherokee County and holds a bachelor degree from Auburn University and a master degree in Urban Planning-Design from the University of Georgia.

Prior to his role as Director, Chris was a shared employee between the City and Cherokee County Planning and Zoning for three years. He also spent a number of years as a Senior Planner in the Charleston, SC area and held planning internships with Cherokee County and Athens-Clarke County.

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