Planning & Development Services


Effective Monday, December 17, 2018, a residential moratorium is in effect on the development or redevelopment of multifamily uses. During the moratorium, no department of the City will accept applications or plans for development for permits, plats, verifications, rezonings, site plans or new or revised certificates of occupancy for multifamily development or redevelopment.

Land uses affected by the Temporary Moratorium

Multifamily means a residential building containing three or more dwelling units.

Purpose of the Temporary Moratorium

Traffic and Streets: Current City ordinances have no requirement for a Traffic Impact Analysis (TIA) for all multifamily development. Therefore, development of high densities of new residents in a given area will impact traffic flows and street operations with no established requirement for studying those impacts and mitigating them through needed modifications to the street system. These modifications improve traffic flow and safety in the immediate area of a development.

Many citizens have expressed concern about the ever increasing traffic congestion throughout the City. Major roadways, where multifamily developments tend to locate, have become increasingly congested. The Institute of Traffic Engineers (ITE) Trip Generation manual indicates that multi-family development generates 7.32 trips per day for low-rise, 5.44 for mid-rise and 4.45 for high-rise structures. Developments that may include several hundred units could add a few thousand trips to the roadway system. While many streets are designed for and capable of absorbing such increases in vehicular trips, many streets would be adversely affected by such traffic if standards are not in place to require improvements based on a TIA.

Roadway impact fees are charged to new multifamily development at a specified rate per dwelling unit. However, roadway impact fees are to pay for specific road infrastructure identified in the roadway impact fees Capital Improvements Plan. In addition, these funds go toward projects within a service area of approximately 15 square miles. In many cases, the improvements made by these funds, while benefitting the larger street system, will not mitigate the direct impacts to the street system on the periphery of any particular proposed multifamily development.

Open Space, Parks and Recreation: The Zoning Ordinance currently has standards for open space and specific standards for swimming pools and playgrounds in multifamily development. However, these requirements are insufficient for addressing the actual number of dwelling units and ultimately people that will occupy a multifamily development. Additionally, citizens desire other types of outdoor amenities not provided for in the current ordinance. Without sufficient outdoor spaces and amenities and when public parks are not in very close proximity, individuals lack the important places needed for exercise and safe places for children to play outdoors.

Quality of Development: It is important to establish minimum standards for development to help maintain quality and property values. Currently, in Mesquite, the average value of each multifamily dwelling unit is $45,506, compared to single-family, which is $108,579. While in any community it is expected that per dwelling value of single-family dwellings will be higher than multifamily, it is important for a community to protect and enhance property values to pay for public services. Multifamily development substantially impacts public streets, parks and other public facilities, as well as the need for police, fire, and emergency medical services. Maintaining and enhancing the value of multifamily developments will help assure that adequate public services and facilities are maintained at an adequate level.

Exceptions to the Temporary Moratorium

This Moratorium does not affect rights acquired under Texas Local Government Code Chapter 245 or the common law, nor does it affect an application for a project in progress under Chapter 245. The Moratorium shall neither prohibit nor delay the processing of an application for zoning filed on or before December 12, 2018.

Electronic submittals rejected

For the duration of this Moratorium, all applications or plans for development or redevelopment of multifamily uses shall be submitted exclusively in hardcopy paper format and not through EnerGov, the City’s electronic development submittal and review software system. Any submittal or attempted submittal through EnerGov is hereby rejected, and the City is under no obligation to provide acknowledgment or notice of rejection to the electronic applicant. Provided that applications for electrical, plumbing, mechanical and roofing permits for existing multifamily developments may be submitted through the EnerGov system during the Moratorium.


An applicant for development may apply for a waiver to this Moratorium by submitting a written request for waiver, with justifications, to the City Secretary located at 1515 N. Galloway, Mesquite, TX, 75149. The City Secretary shall forward the request to the Director of Planning & Development Services for determining completeness, processing, and recommendation to the City Council. The Council will act on the request within 10 to 21 days following confirmation by the Director that the request is complete. The City Council may authorize or deny the requested waiver, and if authorized, establish conditions necessary to ensure that the proposed development will not cause adverse effects to the surrounding property or the City’s infrastructure and to carry out the spirit and purpose of the Moratorium.  

Duration of the Residential Moratorium

This Moratorium shall remain in force for up to 120 days. On April 15, 2019, the City Council extended the Moratorium for another 60 days. The Moratorium will expire on June 14, 2019.

Opportunities to provide input on new or revised ordinances and regulations

Municipal residents and affected parties are encouraged to provide input on new and revised ordinances and regulations affecting multifamily residential development. Check back to this page for further announcements on the dates, times and locations for workshops and public hearings.

Authority for the Temporary Moratorium

The City of Mesquite has imposed this Moratorium under authority granted by Chapter 212, Subchapter E, of the Texas Local Government Code. Click here to view the full text of Ordinance No. 4638 adopted by the City Council on December 17, 2018.

For questions, comments and concerns about the Temporary Moratorium

Persons with questions, comments and concerns about the Temporary Moratorium may contact the Mesquite Planning & Development Services Department at 972-216-6216 for more information or write to any of the following individuals:

Garrett Langford, Planning Manager, at [email protected]

Jeff Armstrong, Director, at [email protected]

Planning and Development Services Update

The City of Mesquite is excited to announce the launch of City's new online permit and plan management system. Starting May 15, users of the online platform will be able to: submit permit and plan applications for Planning and Zoning, Building Inspection, Fire Inspection and Engineering review; pay fees for a variety of development services; access electronic plan reviews by the City; request inspections online; access online registration for contractors and more. Users can access the website at

For more information on submitting building permits or requesting inspections, please contact Travis Campbell, Building Official, at [email protected] or (972) 329-8724. For more information on submitting Planning and Zoning applications, please contact Garrett Langford, Manager of Planning and Zoning, at [email protected] or (972) 216-6343.

The Planning & Development Services Department works on behalf of the people of Mesquite to plan for the future and to carry out the development policies and objectives set by the Mayor, the City Council and various municipal boards and agencies.  The Planning & Development Services Department is comprised of the following divisions: Planning & Zoning, Building Inspection, Licensing & Compliance, Historic Preservation, and Neighborhood Development. 

The City of Mesquite Planning & Development Services Department is dedicated to providing citizens with courteous, efficient customer service. For specific planning, building, and property maintenance and licensing needs, please refer to the appropriate division subpage.

Please visit for the City’s holiday schedule which may impact programs and services.

Planning & Development Services Divisions: