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#524584 - 07/16/17 04:59 PM Dock locations - any rules?  
Joined: Jul 2017
Posts: 2
sharonl Offline
sharonl  Offline

We know we will have to get a permit to build a dock...but are there rules anywhere regarding where we locate the dock...?

I ask because our land is off-grid and we won't have neighbors any time soon. Our lot faces west, but the lot north of ours has very little water frontage/widens as you move away from the water. It faces kind of south/southwest. We are concerned that if they built a dock, it would impede on our view. We were thinking if we put our dock on the property line, it would prohibit them from building into our view, but it would also ruin their this kind of a, "you snooze, you lose" situation - where the first owner to build a dock gets the cherry location, and the second owner is SOL...?

Looking for sources on this...have googled around, but we're already aware that Belize isn't known for easy access to governmental information.... wink


Sharon L
#524585 - 07/16/17 05:57 PM Re: Dock locations - any rules? [Re: sharonl]  
Joined: Jan 2014
Posts: 184
katzgar Offline
katzgar  Offline

#524586 - 07/17/17 05:54 AM Re: Dock locations - any rules? [Re: sharonl]  
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 5,939
Diane Campbell Offline
Diane Campbell  Offline
You need two permits.

Permit #1 is from the Ministry of Natural Resources, giving you permission to occupy the seabed, since it is the property of the country of Belize, not your good selves. You will need to submit a building plan for the pier, drawn by an approved architect or draftsman. If you are approved there will be an annual fee for "rent" of the seabed. The amount of the fee is determined by the square footage of seabed you occupy. Residential piers and commercial piers have different fee levels (residential being cheaper). A letter from the local building authority needs to accompany the application to Natural Resources, stating that there are "no objections" to your pier.

Permit #2 is from the local building authority. it is a normal building permit, issued after you have Permit #1 noted above.

Last time I got a pier permit, I was told that piers need to be 1,500 feet apart but perhaps that is just for the eastern shore. Clearly many piers (much closer together!) have been grandfathered in by now as they were built at times when restrictions and procedures were very different. If you are the first one in an otherwise undeveloped area you should face few if any obstacles. Bear in mind that your permit will require you to give public access to the pier from 6 AM - 6 PM for loading and landing.

#524590 - 07/17/17 08:39 AM Re: Dock locations - any rules? [Re: sharonl]  
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 5,939
Diane Campbell Offline
Diane Campbell  Offline
PS .... As to location of pier in relation to your property boundaries, I don't think there is any particular guideline for that other than trying to locate it in a way that honors whatever "distance between" rule applies at the time. You may also find that the site will be inspected to determine if you are doing a project that includes dredging. Dredging requires a permit. You will have an easier time of it both for permits and for finances if you locate the pier in a place where the water is at its deepest.

#524593 - 07/17/17 08:44 PM Re: Dock locations - any rules? [Re: Diane Campbell]  
Joined: Jul 2017
Posts: 2
sharonl Offline
sharonl  Offline
Thank you, Diane and Katzgar!
We had been told 500' apart for docks, but then the dock in front of Pirate's Not-So-Secret Beach Bar and the GBE Dock can't be more than, what, 100' apart....?

Sharon L
#524594 - 07/18/17 05:34 AM Re: Dock locations - any rules? [Re: sharonl]  
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 5,939
Diane Campbell Offline
Diane Campbell  Offline
Suggest you ask authorities rather than looking at what others did or didn't do ....... many people bootleg in piers. Might be ok for a while but can definitely backfire. Especially when your neighbor wants a pier and applies for a permit - inspection of site happens, your illegal pier is noted --- etc. Also a problem at time of resale if not permitted.

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