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Facilitated Meetings for Proposed Development

The City can require a facilitated meeting before an application can be decided.

Facilitated meetings are an opportunity for an applicant or potential applicant for a development project to meet with neighbors, others who may potentially be impacted, or other stakeholders to discuss a proposed project in a meeting facilitated by the City Legal Department's Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) mediators. These discussions are opportunities to address issues, answer questions, and explore opportunities. 

Neighbors are encouraged to share any concerns they have about a project with the facilitator prior to the facilitated meeting so tha they can be passed on to the applicant in advance. This allows the applicant the opportunity to prepare their presentation to address them and makes the conversation at the meeting more productive for everyone.

Solutions resulting from the meeting may vary, but note that the decision-making body can only implement those that are within its purview according to the specifics of the application and the site (if applicable) as established by the IDO. 

The City can require a facilitated meeting after an application for a proposed development project has been submitted as complete and the review/approval process has begun. Until that required facilitated meeting happens, the City will not make a final decision on the application. See below for the criteria the Planning Department uses to decide whether a facilitated meeting will be required.

If the City doesn't require a facilitated meeting, any two parties can still agree to use ADR's services to have a facilitated discussion to help resolve issues, leverage opportunities, understand constraints and challenges, and find areas of mutual benefit. Requests can be made directly through the City's Alternative Dispute Resolution webpage.

Facilitated Meetings vs. Neighborhood Meetings

It is important to note that a required Facilitated Meeting is different from the Neighborhood Meeting that is required for many decisions in the Integrated Development Ordinance (IDO). (See IDO Subsection 14-16-6-4(C) for Neighborhood Meeting requirements and Table 6-1-1 for decisions that require a Neighborhood Meeting.)

The Neighborhood Meeting must take place before an application is submitted to the City for review. This is an early opportunity for discussion and negotiation between Neighborhood Associations and potential applicants. The applicant shares information about the proposed project, and the Neighborhood Association has the opportunity to understand the requirements but also explore ideas and make recommendations to make the project best enhance the neighborhood, even if the City doesn't have those requirements. Because this discussion is required before submittal, there should be more opportunity to incorporate these ideas into the design that gets submitted to the City for review.

See also:

Facilitated Meetings Criteria

The Planning Department has established criteria when the City may require an applicant to attend a City-sponsored facilitated meeting with an affected Neighborhood Association per IDO Section 14-16-6-4(D):