Common Questions

Need some information about preparing a planning application? Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions we receive:

  • I want to develop/subdivide my land. What's my first step?
    The best way to begin your proposed development/subdivision is by contacting the Zoning Office. Doing this before preparing and submitting an actual planning application will save you time and money. The Zoning Office will be able to let you know early on in the process whether your idea is feasible and what type of planning application it will be for legal review and approval (check out the Process Overview tab for more information on this). In many cases, the expertise of one or more design professionals (architects, engineers, landscape architects, and/or land surveyors) certified in the State of Rhode Island will be required.
  • How do I prepare an Abutters' List?
    To begin this task, head over to the Town's GIS website linked here. Once loaded, enter the owner's name(s), street address(es), or Assessor's Map(s) and Lot(s) under the "Property Search" tab. Click "GO"  and select the correct property from the list that appears. Click "ZOOM TO GIS" and anywhere within the red boundary lines of the property to open up an information box. At the bottom of the box, you'll find the option to "GENERATE A MAILING LIST:" preset to 100. Replace 100 with the number of feet you need and click "SUBMIT". The Abutters' List will then appear with options to export the list to Microsoft Excel, create mailing labels, and/or print a radius map. We recommend you use a desktop rather than a mobile device for preparing an Abutters' List.
  • Which lots are included in the application fee for a proposed subdivision?
    Applications for minor and major subdivisions both charge an additional $20.00 per additional lot in addition to their respective base fees. The total number of lots includes only the number of lots being yielded. In example, a proposed subdivision of Lot A into Lots A, B, and C would result in a per lot added fee of $40.00.