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Doing Business in Madison

The logistics of starting a new business or relocating a branch office can be a daunting task once the decision has been made. The Madison Chamber of Commerce is here to help with our FAQ below.

I am considering opening a business in Madison. What should I do?

Your first step is to call the City Planning Department at 256-772-5630 for assistance. The City and the Chamber will work together to see that you get all the information and resources you need to make an informed decision on your business location, and in many cases, can direct you to sources of business assistance, financing, and incentive packages.

What is the procedure for obtaining a business license?

The City of Madison Revenue Department issues business licenses, but only after you have an approved Zoning Compliance Certificate or Home Occupation Permit from the Planning Department.

Where and how in the City can I develop a particular use (e.g. business, restaurant, residential)?

Determine the zoning designation of the property by checking the Zoning Map. If approved for that particular use by the Zoning Ordinance, confirm that the parcel you are considering has been platted for that use (density,unit type, etc.) or has sufficient parking by calling the Planning Department at 256-772-5630.

How do I apply for a building permit for a new home?

Print out and complete the Building Permit Application. You will need to provide a dimensioned site plan showing the location of the building on the lot, as well as two complete set of building plans. Submit this information to the City Building Department for review and for permit issuance before construction begins. You may also visit the City’s Forms & Applications page for additional helpful information on permit submittal.

What is the zoning on a specific property and what may be built on it?

Find the property in question on a City Zoning Map to determine the zoning designation. Then refer to Article V (District Regulations) of the Zoning Ordinance for permitted uses or call 256-772-5630.

I would like to rezone some of my property. What should I do?

Call the Planning Department at 256-772-5630. Planning and Zoning Forms and Applications may be found on the Planning Department’s website. Rezoning is a 60 to 90 day process so please plan your schedule accordingly. Due to State-mandated legal advertising requirements, it is not possible to make this process any shorter.

Where can I obtain a copy of an existing survey for a specific parcel of land?

The City does not file copies of surveys. However, they do have many subdivision plats on file, which contain lot dimensions and subdivision development restrictions. Call the Planning Department at 256-772-5630. Tax maps can be accessed online at the Madison County Tax Assessor’s Office.

Are current demographics and traffic counts available?

Yes, the City of Madison maintains those for your use in evaluating a location in the City. Please contact the Planning Department at 256-772-5630. A current traffic count map is available on the City’s site.

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