Planning & Development


The Planning & Development department provides the following services:
Coordination of planning, zoning, and land development activities;
Code enforcement;
Business Licenses;
Building Permitting and Inspections;
Alcohol sales and packaging permitting.

The department includes the City Clerk who serves as the City's official record keeper. The City Clerk is the Elections Superintendent and maintains agreements, contracts, ordinances, resolutions, etc.

Department personnel also provide assistance to the following:
  • Alcohol Control Board
  • Board of Zoning Appeals
  • Historic Preservation Commission
  • Planning Commission
Planning and Development Office Hours: 8am - 5pm
Staff is available via appointments, email, and phone.  Call 770-387-5600

Customer Service & Utility Payments or Questions:  770-387-5607
First Floor City Hall
Normal office hours as of April 12, 2021:  8am - 5pm
Click here to pay utility bills online or call: 1-855-985-1127


April 2021
T21-01.  Text Amendment revising Sec. 4.16, Walls and Fences, of the zoning ordinance

July 2020
T20-02.  Text Amendment creating West End and Cherokee-Cassville INfill Overlay Districts

March 2020  CITY FAQ COVID-19

August 2019
Building Permit Fee calculations and tables

February 2018
City Council Resolution adopting the 2018 Joint Comprehensive Plan
Joint Comprehensive Plan Update
Capital Improvement Element
The Cartersville Future Land Use Map.
Cartersville Future Development Map.
Character Area Descriptions for the Future Development Map.

January 1, 2018.  The Georgia State Minimum Standard Building Codes

Cartersville, the county seat for Bartow County, is 45 miles northwest of Atlanta on Interstate 75 (exits 288, 290, 293). The City, named for early 1800s Georgia entrepreneur Colonel Farish Carter, is 30 square miles in size. The 2013 Census population estimates were 20,001 for Cartersville and 101,273 for all of Bartow County.

No plat of a land subdivision in the City shall be entitled to be recorded in the office of the Clerk of the Superior Court of Bartow County unless it has the approval of the zoning administrator or his/her designated representative (Cartersville Development Regulations section 7.5-6).

Building Permits

  • Contact Charlie Waits, Building Official, for instructions or see the Non-residential Building Permit Application for instructions. The Building Official and Fire Marshall review building plans.
  • A contractor must be State-licensed and show a current City or County business license (anywhere in Georgia). If the homeowner applies for the permit, a business license may not be required.
  • Mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and fire sprinkler contractors must show a copy of your business and State license to obtain a permit.
  • Asbestos reports and a business license are required for a demolition permit. If a homeowner requests this permit, just submit an asbestos report. If asbestos is found, the removal process must be noted.
  • For a historic district property, a Certificate of Preservation must be obtained from the HPC before a building permit will be issued.
  • City department representatives must approve and sign-off on the building permit application before a permit is issued.

Civil (construction) Plans

  • Before submitting civil plans, a concept meeting is recommended. Held on Tuesday mornings, these meetings help project reps with the process. Call 770-387-5600 with questions.
  • After the concept meeting, submit 6 copies of plans, a digital copy of the plans, check for applicable fees (PDF fee schedule on this page), copy of the hydrology study if applicable, and completed land disturbance permit application.
  • Plans will be reviewed and comments given to engineers 2 weeks after the plans are received.
  • Erosion and Sediment Control Plans must be designed by a certified professional with Level II certification.  The certification number must be placed on the cover sheet of the civil plans.
  • A sidewalk having a minimum width of 5 feet is required for all new nonresidential developments and residential subdivisions (not required for one new single-family house).
  • Plans for projects involving one (1) or more disturbed acres must be designed according to State EPD standards for either GAR 100001 (nonresidential) or GAR 100003 (residential).


A permit is NOT required for tree removal or pruning;   however, trees removed that were included on a landscape plan as part of approved development plans must be replaced.


Review new signs with City staff before ordering a sign to ensure compliance with Sign Ordinance standards.
  • Electronic signs (where allowed) shall be static, changed instantaneously, through dissolve or fade transitions, or other transitions not having the appearance of moving text or images.
  • Electronic freestanding signs are not allowed in the Downtown Business District (DBD) and not allowed on residential properties.
  • Electronic freestanding signs are allowed on a limited basis on nonresidential use properties on certain roads (see Sign Ordinance) and, where allowed, may not exceed 50% of total sign face.
  • Electronic wall signs are not allowed in the City limits.
  • Electronic window signs may be no greater than four (4) square feet in size, shall be static, and do not require a permit.