Planning & Zoning Division

Responsibilities

The Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Division are responsible for long and short-range planning for unincorporated areas and communities throughout Cochise County. P&Z processes applications associated with special use requests, rezonings, home occupations, subdivisions, and variances to the Zoning Regulations. It is also tasked with developing and updating the Comprehensive Plan.

Zoning

The purpose of zoning is to guide the development of land in accordance with the County's Comprehensive Plan and to promote the public health, safety, and general welfare of the County's residents. Zoning districts specify permitted land uses, minimum lot sizes, and certain sites development standards such as setbacks and screening. There are 34 individual zoning districts.

Subdivisions

A new subdivision is created when a large parcel is divided into 6 or more, smaller parcels when any one of these parcels is smaller than 36-acres. The Cochise County Subdivision Regulations contain the procedures for creating a new subdivision. The purpose of the Subdivision Regulations is to implement the Comprehensive Plan Goals of promoting orderly growth, providing for adequate roads, utilities, water, and wastewater treatment, ensuring that structures are not built in areas subject to flooding, and ensuring an accurate legal description when dividing a large parcel into smaller lots for sale.

A minor land division is when a parcel of land is divided into five or fewer parcels, and which results in the creation of additional parcels, any of which are ten acres or smaller in size. Minor land divisions are subject to a review by the planning division to ensure the division of land complies with all zoning regulations and does not constitute a division of land subject to the Subdivision Regulations.

Comprehensive/Long-Range Planning

The Cochise County Comprehensive Plan, adopted in 1984 and last revised in 2015, serves to promote orderly and well-planned County growth. The Plan consists of a written document establishing land use, transportation, water conservation, and public facility goals and policies and a series of maps that serve as a blueprint for the intensity and type of land uses expected near the incorporated cities and towns and in the outlying rural areas.

Administrative Review

Certain development services applications, including the ones listed below, do not require review and approval by an elected or appointed board. Instead, they are processed internally by development services staff.