Selecting a location for your business is among the most important decisions business owners must make. From home based businesses to identifying a suitable commercial space, the significance of location should never be under-estimated. Before you identify your business’ location, be sure to get all the facts and make an informed decision.
Zoning and site selection
You are strongly advised to contact the City prior to leasing, purchasing, or otherwise committing to a property in order to confirm that your proposed business use is permitted in the property’s zoning district and that the building structure meets applicable building and life safety code requirements. For more information, visit the Business Location Approvals page, view the Business Location Approval Process Brochure, or contact the City's Business Approval Coordinator at (912)644-7709 or email.
All businesses located within City limits are required to submit a Business Location Approval Application and go through the Business Location Approval process. If there will be a change of use from the previous business use (such as office to restaurant), the existing building must comply with current building, fire, life safety, and zoning codes for the new business use. This may require changes to the building and/or site, which would require a building and/or site development permit. The Business Approval Coordinator will also assist you in determining whether your situation is a change of use that requires building and life safety code compliance, and whether a permit is needed.
Other factors influencing site selection
Other key factors in selecting a business location are: proximity to customers, ease of access for shipments and supplies, and the cost of renovation or new construction. While not available in all locations, local, state or federal incentives may be available to reduce your costs and encourage you to locate your business in special districts. The City’s Economic Development Department can advise you about the various incentives and resources available through the City of Savannah.
Development Services Department
Ph. (912) 651-6510
Economic Development Department
Ph. (912) 651-3653
Fire Marshal Office
Ph. (912) 644-5960
Ph. (912) 651-6425
Ph. (912) 651-6450
Savannah Entrepreneurial Center Ph. (912) 652-3582
Water & Sewer Planning & Engineering