Skip to Main Content

Building Community Profiles for Architecture

Resources to create a community profile for site selection and Architectural Practice.

Questions to Ask about Community Planning and Land Use

  • Are there local or regional comprehensive plans or impact studies?
  • What are the plans for utilities, including water and sewers?
  • What zoning and land development codes affect the community?
  • Are there any plans for neighborhoods or neighborhood associations?
  • How are properties evaluated, appraised, and taxed?
  • What urban or community redevelopment plans are in place?
  • Are there any guidelines or standards for architecture or historic preservation?
  • What plans are in place for emergencies?
  • What types of recreational facilities (indoor vs. outdoor, public park, community center, private facility, amenities available, etc.) are available?

Comprehensive Plans

Search town or county + master plan or comprehensive plan or land use

According to Texas Local Government Code: Sec. 211.004

Zoning regulations must be adopted in accordance with a comprehensive plan and must be designed to:

  1. lessen congestion in the streets;
  2. secure safety from fire, panic, and other dangers;
  3. promote health and the general welfare;
  4. provide adequate light and air;
  5. prevent the overcrowding of land;
  6. avoid undue concentration of population; or
  7. facilitate the adequate provision of transportation, water, sewers, schools, parks, and other public requirements.

Zoning and Plat Maps

Search town or county + plat or parcel map or parcel viewer. Also look for GIS maps with the parcel data included. 

Plats are maps identifying: the location and boundaries of individual lots or parcels including:

  • street rights of way
  • lot lines
  • utility easements
  • setback lines
  • flood zones
  • ownership
  • may also include date built, square footage, elevation, etc.