Planning Department
Planning › Development Services

Development Services

The Planning Department is responsible for all land use and zoning issues within the Columbus Consolidated Government. This is accomplished under the city's Unified Development Ordinance (UDO). The UDO is the main instrument used by the department to regulate development in the county. The department receives, processes, reviews and makes recommendations on applications to rezone property in the county.


The Planning Department receives, processes, reviews and makes recommendations on applications to rezone property in Muscogee County (Columbus, Georgia).

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Subdivision Regulation

Subdivision regulations are needed to protect communities and ensure building lots provide a wholesome living environment for future residents. These regulations ensure adequate lot size, public access, and the availability of public services to each lot created.

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Special Exceptions

A special exception permit allows for certain land uses in a given zoning district that generally require a more in-depth study than permitted uses.

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Unified Development Ordinance

The Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) is the compilation of regulations that govern land use, which includes the Zoning Ordinance, the Environmental Ordinance and the Subdivision Ordinance/Regulations.

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Planning Advisory Commission

The Planning Advisory Commission serves in an advisory capacity to the Planning Department with regard to:

  • A comprehensive plan or parts thereof for the development and redevelopment of Columbus;
  • Regulations for the subdivision of land and amendments thereto; and
  • Other such matters as may be required by ordinance.

It has seven regular and two alternate members, all of which are appointed by the Columbus City Council.

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Board of Zoning Appeal

The Board of Zoning Appeals is responsible for deciding appeals and granting variances relative to the enforcement of the zoning regulations. It has five members, which are appointed by the Columbus City Council.

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Interactive Maps

The Department of Engineering, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Division has a site that features interactive maps. The website has high-resolution color aerial photography and contains all new streets and subdivisions. People can search by address, owner name or parcel identification number. To use the GIS Interactive Map app, visit From the site, click Launch the Free Standard Viewer button.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Still have questions about development services in Columbus, Georgia? Find answers to the Department's frequently asked questions.

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Columbus, Georgia Consolidated Government Annex Building

Government Annex Building
2nd Floor
420 10th Street
Columbus, Georgia 31902

Phone: (706) 653-4421
Fax: (706) 653-4534

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