Site Development Plan Review

A Site Development Plan (SDP) is required for new commercial construction and major additions; new construction of three or more residential units; and some tenant-finish/remodel projects undergoing change of occupancy. The SDP process includes three parts: (1) the initial submittal of a development concept, (2) submittal and review of a formal SDP once the concept is approved, and (3) approving and recording the final SDP.

Certain large projects may also be required to go through Large Development Review and/or submit an infrastructure master plan. Learn about Large Development Review here and contact your site's project coordinator early on if you think this may apply to your project.

CPD’s project coordinators facilitate the development review process for both Large Development Review and SDPs. A project coordinator will help identify any significant land and building issues that may affect project design and feasibility, request and collect technical information and supporting materials, and facilitate reviews by other agencies. The project coordinator will also determine when the project can apply for building permits. This usually occurs during the formal SDP phase (step 2 below).

Find your commercial project coordinator


Review Steps for Site Development Plans 

Step 1: Propose a concept plan

The concept stage is designed to provide the applicant with the opportunity to present the proposed development and project schedule to the city team. Working in a collaborative environment, significant issues that could affect the design and feasibility of the proposed development will be identified. Concepts are jointly reviewed by staff from various city departments and agencies. The project coordinator will identify specific agencies that need to be involved in the proposal’s review, coordinate reviews, and facilitate communication and scheduling between you and the city. 

What to submit:

Items to consider during concept design:

Once the proposed project meets the minimum requirements provided by the review team, including but not limited to the ability to demonstrate general compliance with the Denver Zoning Code and other regulations, the project coordinator will clear the project to submit a formal SDP.

Step 2: Submit formal site development plans

The formal SDP stage is the first technical submittal of development plans, supporting technical documents, and review fees. This phase provides the city with the plans and submittals required for final approval (e.g., technical data, drainage studies, transportation studies, design review compliance, and other requirements). 

What to submit:

During the review of the formal SDP, city agencies will send comments and feedback on the plans, which may require the project to submit revised or additional documents during the SDP review process. Plans will be checked by the project coordinator upon receipt and any plans not containing a full response to all issues will be returned, un-reviewed.

Once the applicant has responded to and addressed all the agency requirements, the applicant may submit their final project plans to the project coordinator for Final Recordation. 

Step 3: Record the approved final plan

Once all review comments have been addressed during the formal SDP stage, the final SDP must be submitted directly to the project coordinator, who will distribute it with signature sheets to the appropriate reviewing agencies for final reviews and approvals.

Projects may have additional fees due at this point related to site engineering, which must be paid before this review group will sign-off on the SDP.

In addition, the following documents, if required, must be signed by the property owner and returned to and approved by the appropriate agencies:

  • Transportation Engineering Plan (TEP)
  • Storm and Sanitary Sewer Construction Plans (if required)
  • Right-of-Way Dedications (if required)
  • Street or Alley Vacations (if required)
  • Declaration or relinquishment of easements (if required)
  • Other project-specific documents as determined by city reviewers

At the end of the SDP review, the city will record the applicant’s Mylar drawings. Cost is $10 per page, plus $3.

Plan Amendments

Approved and recorded plans may be amended subject to the current (at the time of amendment) requirements and procedures. However, it is always prudent to arrange for the city to review the proposed changes as early as possible. Waiting until the change has been constructed could result in costly revisions. Usually, amendments take considerably less time than the approval of the initial plan. If an amendment is needed, please contact your site’s commercial project coordinator for information on current requirements and procedures. 


Getting Started...

Denver has migrated to a simpler online system for submitting project files. 

Submit concept plans, formal site development plans, erosion control documents, transportation engineering plans and studies, storm/sanitary plans, subdivision plans, and other site planning documents through e-permits. 

Enter E-permits 

How to submit plans

  1. Register for an account on e-permits. 
  2. To submit files, go to Development Services > Apply for a permit.
  3. Select the appropriate Site Planning option, depending on what you are submitting. (To apply for building or SUDP permits, use these instructions.)
  4. Follow the prompts to submit contact information, project details, and upload site planning documents.

 Screenshot of Denver's Permitting Center - how to submit site planning application

How to resubmit plans for any current project

  • Sign in to view previously logged projects in My Records.
  • Click on the appropriate record, then Record Info and Attachments to add additional documents. 
  • Make sure to “save” after uploading new/revised documents.

To resubmit plans for projects initially submitted via email or the old e-plan/EFT site, email with the email address associated with your e-permits account and the projects where you would like to resubmit. You will receive a confirmation email verifying that your e-permits account has been associated with the projects. Then, follow the above instructions to resubmit.


Screenshot of Denver's Permitting Center - how to resubmit site planning documents