Land Development Code Rewrite and Update

What are the Land Development Regulations?

The Santa Rosa County Land Development Code (LDC) contains regulations that govern how land is developed in the unincorporated areas of Santa Rosa County. The code affects the everyday lives of people in our community in many ways. It addresses everything from zoning, site development, the natural environment and stormwater management to parking, sidewalks, landscaping and architectural design criteria.

The Land Development Regulations are located in Appendix C of the Santa Rosa County Code of Ordinances which is available on the Land Development Code page.

Why are we updating the Land Development Regulations?

In 2017, the Santa Rosa County Board of County Commissioners adopted the 2040 Comprehensive Plan. The Comprehensive Plan presents a vision for the future, with long-range goals and objectives, for all activities that affect Santa Rosa County. The Land Development Regulations implement the Goals, Objectives, and Policies of the Comprehensive Plan on a day-to-day basis. The current LDR needs to be updated to reflect the new Comprehensive Plan policies.

Goals of the LDR Update include:

  1. Implement the goals, objectives and policies within the 2030 Comprehensive Plan.
  2. Modernize the code to better address new uses and initiatives.
  3. Eliminate unnecessary regulations.
  4. Encourage the development of quality neighborhoods, communities and businesses.
  5. Streamline the code and processes to make it easier for realtors, developers and residents to use and understand.

What happens next?

The LDC rewrite moving forward is as follows:

  • February 27, 2020 - Draft LDC presented to the board of county commissioners and public
  • March 12, 2020 - Draft LDC presented to the zoning board
  • TBD - Week of March 16 or 23 - Public workshop to solicit comments on draft
  • April 9, 2020 - Zoning board recommendation - public hearing
  • April 23, 2020 - Board of county commissioners special rezoning meeting - adoption
The draft LDC will include a matrix to address received comments and recommendations with staff's concur with comments or objections.

Staff's proposed review and submittal process to the boards will give over two months of review time by all stakeholders with multiple public opportunities to provide comments on the draft document prior to adoption in April by the board of county commissioners.

Updating the LDC is a complex task and it will take at least one year to complete. New code language is being drafted based on review, research and comments from you, county leaders, interested agencies, and stakeholders. Because the Land Development Regulation update is an ongoing project, updates will be shared on this website on an ongoing basis.

There are a number of ways to get involved.

We are eager to hear from you – especially if you live, work or own property in the unincorporated part of Santa Rosa County. You can be a part of shaping the future of your neighborhood, your community and your county!

You may provide feedback by contacting Shawn Ward, AICP at or 850-981-7082.