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Adopted Subdivision Ordinance

The following documents are the adopted Subdivision Regulations as of January 2, 2018.

This Subdivision Ordinance and subdivision regulations are adopted pursuant to the authority granted by the U.S. Constitution, the Texas Constitution, and the laws of the State of Texas, specifically including Chapter 212 of the Texas Local Government Code. Subdivision regulations are intended to: define the process to convert raw land into build-able lots, establish requirements for public improvements, provide standards for land development, establish procedures for submittal, review and approval of plats, shape future development as well as determine physical shape and function of our community.

Adopted Subdivision Ordinance             Adopted Engineering Standards Manual


The process to update the City of Stephenville Subdivision Ordinance started March, 2016.  The project was started by meeting with developers of the community and receiving feedback.  Since that initial meeting, Freese and Nichols and city staff have worked together and sought feedback from council on two separate occasions to update the subdivision ordinance in order to adopt a policy that is “right” for our community.  During the process to update the Subdivision Ordinance the items below are highlighted changes/updates:

  • Update the formatting and style to create a “user-friendly” document
  • Update definitions, as needed (Article II)
  • Simplify and clarify standards and procedures
  • Remove the site development plan (Sections 3)
  • Update preliminary and final plat approval authority (Sections 3)
  • Add a section for the 30-day approval process
  • Add section on proportionality and proportionality appeal
  • Add an applicability section and exemption subsection
  • Make the preliminary conference optional (Section 3.12)
  • Change the “short form” to “minor plat” and update requirements to match State regulations

(Section 3.22)

  • Update minor plat approval authority (Section 3)
  • Update re-platting requirements (Section 3)
  • Update amending plat approval authority (Section 3)
  • Update the “As-Built, As Recorded Plans” section (Section 4)
  • Update block length requirements (Section 5)
  • Update street requirements (Section 5)
  • Update curb requirements (Section 5)
  • Update driveway requirements (Section 5)
  • Update sidewalk requirements (Section 5)
  • Update variance section (Section 6)
  • Update the Enforcement section (Article VI)
  • Add ingress and egress requirements (Section 1.08)
  • Add information on vesting (Section 3)
  • Add section for alternative subdivision design
  • Add section for subdivision amenities
  • Clarify the requirements for the ETJ vs. inside the city limits
  • Add requirements for the applicant to submit Texas State Plane coordinate data
  • Update requirements for parkland dedication (Section 6)


Update technical design and engineering standards


  • Develop/adopt standard construction details to clarify technical standards and improve

consistency of design and construction.

  • Develop standard utility assignments for typical ROW including pavement radiuses and hydrant

and light pole offsets.

  • Generally, reorganize criteria to succinctly describe requirements and eliminate inconsistencies.
  • Standards include several out of date references which should be revised. The standards reference

several other sources. It is recommended to incorporate as much of the references as possible to

reduce confusion.

  • Consider removing some technical requirements from the subdivision ordinance and locating in

technical standards.



  • Clarify pavement design requirements – simplified paving sections or design requirements should

be provided for clarity to developers and contractors.

  • Paving design requirements described in the manual appear to be excessive in comparison to

typical practice and may not be applied uniformly for development. The City’s preference for the

pavement design requirements should be evaluated against the expected service life of the


  • Standard paving sections should be provided where applicable.
  • Develop policies for requiring traffic studies based on trip generation.
  • Develop policies for driveway widths, spacing, and other access management.
  • Clarify requirement to install curb and gutter along street frontage.
  • Review pavement assessment policies and procedures.



  • Consider adopting regional criteria in lieu of developing technical drainage standards such as


  • Rainfall intensities are referenced from USGS TP-40 which is generally considered out of date.

Recommend use of iSWM intensities although they are generally less conservative.

  • Review detention requirements. Current requirements indicate all development larger than half an

acre should be detained to the discharge of single family residential development. These criteria

allow development to worsen flooding where there is a lack of downstream drainage capacity and

also requires development to detain needlessly when there is available capacity.


  • Develop policies for requiring downstream assessments and determining adequate outfall

conditions. Consider using a 1-acre minimum for applying these requirements.

  • Clarify storm frequencies that are required for design and the requirement for positive overflow.
  • Clarify spread of flow requirements for streets.
  • Evaluate requirements for the installation of pipe and the design criteria for channels for public

improvements. Verify these requirements are appropriate for the City’s preferences for

maintenance, aesthetics, and cost to developers.

  • Develop public versus private maintenance policies (private swales, channels, detention ponds etc)

and develop standard legal documents for implementation.



  • Consider developing master plan system model to identify inadequacies and to assist developers.
  • Develop criteria for the requirements of proposed water system extensions including demand

calculations, fire flow, velocities, and friction loss.

  • Develop procedures for developer’s responsibility to evaluate offsite improvements
  • Develop policy for dead end lines.
  • Typical hydrant location in standards may conflict with sidewalks. Recommend revising to 3’ to 9’

from curb.

  • Clarify pro-rata agreement policies.



  • Consider developing master plan of wastewater facilities to identify capacity inadequacies and to

facilitate development.

  • Develop criteria for the requirements of proposed wastewater system extensions. This should

include flow calculations and peaking factors.

  • Consider that standards require a full flow velocity of 2.5 feet per second versus TCEQ requirement

of 2.0.

  • Develop procedures for developer’s responsibility to evaluate offsite improvements.
  • Develop lift station design requirements for public lift stations.