Purpose and Intent
The requirements contained in this section are intended for the purpose of assuring open space and community park facilities are available and adequate to meet the needs created by such development while maintaining current and proposed park and recreation standards pursuant to the Weatherford 2017 Park and Recreation Open Space Master Plan.
It is the policy of the City that a Park Dedication Fee is hereby imposed on residential development, and all fees collected shall be used solely and exclusively for the purpose of acquisition and development of new community parks and existing park facilities intended for access and use by the entire city.
It is also the policy of the City to allow any acceptable park land that meets the criteria to be dedicated as credit in lieu of the imposed park fee.
- Residential Developments: A park fee, in the amount of $525 per dwelling unit, shall be imposed on all residential development in the city.
Developer Contributions by Land Dedication
- In lieu of the imposed park fee, the developer of any area zoned and to be used for single-family, duplex, or multi-family residential purposes within the City may elect to apply a contribution of dedication of community park land acceptable to the City at the rate of not less than one (1) acre of land per fifty (50) ultimate units of such residential subdivision, and public parks shall not be smaller than five (5) acres in size.
- The developer shall propose dedication of park land in conjunction with approval of the subdivision plat.
- The dedicated land required hereby shall be well drained, relatively level in areas that are proposed for active park uses and shall be suitable for appropriate recreational and leisure activities as defined in a community park.
- All park land offered for dedication under this section shall meet the requirements for location and for physical land characteristics outlined in the Weatherford 2002 Park and Recreation Open Space Master Plan.
- Areas having environmentally sensitive ecosystems, attractive views, topographical interests, or unique natural features shall be preferred and encouraged for park land dedication.
- Areas which are relatively featureless, barren of natural trees, and vegetative cover, and which are not physically attractive in some other way, may not be typically acceptable.
- The location and size of public parks within the City shall be determined in all instances by the Parks and Recreation Director of the City of Weatherford . That determination shall be based upon existing circumstances at the time and shall be in accordance with the Weatherford 2002 Park and Recreation Open Space Master Plan adopted by the City.
- Park land shall be easily accessible to the public, enhance the visual character of the City, and minimize conflict with adjacent land uses.
Processing and Collection Of Fees
- The developer has the duty to submit with the subdivision plat the information concerning the number of dwelling units.
- Upon receipt of an application for a building permit, the City shall calculate the amount of the applicable fee due.
- The applicable park fee shall be collected prior to the issuance of the building permit. no permit shall be issued nor shall any construction be allowed to begin until payment of all fees required has been made.
Credit Against Park Fee for Developer Contributions of Land
- Park land that has been dedicated in lieu of the park fee shall be reviewed and approved by the Park Board and the City Council of the City of Weatherford .
- Where review of development applications has resulted in the acceptance of land dedication, such land dedication shall be shown on a final plat and shall contain clear fee simple dedication of that land to the City.
Use of Park Fees
- A special fund known as the Park Development Fund will be established for the deposit of all fees under this ordinance.
- Fees collected shall be used for the purpose of acquisition and development of new community parks and existing park facilities intended for use and access by the entire City.
- Fees collected may be used for site preparation, the extension of utilities to or within sites, the installation of landscaping, play equipment, or recreation improvements and attendant engineering and planning costs associated with such park development.
- All expenditures of fees collected shall be made in accordance with the Weatherford 2002 Parks and Recreation Open Space Master Plan and approved by the City Council to best benefit the citizens of Weatherford.
- Any money paid into this Park Development Fund must be expended by the City of Weatherford within ten (10) years from the date received by the City.
- If such funds are not expended within ten (10) years following final plat approval, the property owner shall be entitled to a refund of such funds upon written request, less any amounts expended for such purposes.