Welcome to McAllen, one of the fastest growing areas of the Nation

Welcome to McAllen, one of the fastest growing areas of the Nation

#4 Most Popular City People Move To

"#4 Most Popular City People Move To" - The Fiscal Times, 2012

Residential permits issued 51/2 times faster than the national average!

Residential permits issued 5½ times faster than the national average! - ICMA, 2011

Leading Location for doing Business

"Leading Location for doing Business" - Area Development Magazine, 2011

#1 Mid Size Market City for Restaurant Expansion

"#1 Mid Size Market City for Restaurant Expansion" - QSR magazine, 2011

Example Frame

Welcome to Build McAllen, a one-stop shop for all things related to building in the City of McAllen.  Whether you are a seasoned developer or a first-time home builder, this site was developed to assist you in identifying the information needed to complete your project.  

We anticipate this guide and interactive Development Process Diagram will assist you in making the process more understandable for all. 

Let’s get started.

Interactive Development Process Diagram

What Is Development Review?

As our City has grown and changed, the City Commission has adopted policies, decisions and regulations to guide and manage development.  In cities throughout the country, local governments implement these policies in order to maintain a desirable quality of life that promotes the health, safety, and welfare of the community.

Subdivision regulations are a major tool by which local governments manage and shape the development of a city. In addition to land platting or site planning, these regulations establish infrastructure or site requirements to support new development. They often include specifications for streets, sidewalks, water and sanitary sewer, drainage, curb and gutter, traffic signs, street lighting, and dedication of land or fees for public parks.

The City's Comprehensive Plan, Foresight McAllen, encourages economic opportunities and promotes vitality of major employment centers and commercial/industrial districts.  It encourages redevelopment and the efficient use of land.  It promotes a balanced, diverse supply of affordable, quality housing while still preserving the character of stable neighborhoods.  It emphasizes the need for sustainable and accessible recreation facilities.

The Development Review process will ensure that each development conforms to regulations.  Additionally, it ensures that the infrastructure constructed by the private sector meets adopted standards before the City inherits maintenance of these systems. Ultimately, the process results in consistent and quality public improvements.

What if you can’t meet a requirement?

The variance process is intended to provide limited relief from the requirements of the Code in those cases where strict application of a particular requirement will create an unnecessary hardship by preventing the use and development of land in a reasonable manner that is otherwise allowed under the Code.  The request shall be on a form addressed to the Director of Planning.  For additional information, please contact the Planning Department at (956) 681-1250.

Are you required to subdivide?

In order to obtain a building permit, repair, plumbing or electrical permit on any tract of land in the City of McAllen, the tract of land must have been approved by the City as a subdivision and filed for record in the County of Hidalgo.

EXEMPTIONS:  A tract of land may be exempt from the subdivision process under certain conditions as follows:

  • The warranty deed by present owner was recorded prior to October 15, 1973
  • A building exists on site that was constructed prior to October 15, 1973
  • Actual occupancy and use of land was in existence prior to October 15, 1973
  • The tract is for agricultural purposes and is five acres or greater within the City limits and ten acres in the extraterritorial jurisdiction (gross acres)

Should your project meet the exemption requirements, and if the subdivision is not required, then please proceed to Step 7 of this Guide to initiate the building permit process.

Next step: Meet With Us