Multifamily Environmental Review Process
The multifamily environmental review process generally assumes that the project will involve acquisition, long-term leasing, new construction or rehabilitation of a multifamily development, public housing development or the development of a single family subdivision.
Limitations on Activities Prior to Environmental Clearance
Awardees cannot engage in any choice-limiting activities prior to environmental clearance per 24 CFR §58.22. Choice-limiting activities include but are not limited to these examples:
- Acquisition of land;
- Closing on loans including loans for interim financing;
- Signing a contract; and
- Commencing construction
HUD requires a signed Certification as part of all contracts and environmental documents. This certification affirms an awareness of and intention not to take any "choice limiting" actions until environmental clearance is obtained. The consequences of moving forward on a project without environmental clearance will result in both in a loss of time and loss of funding.
This certification extends to the use of other funds utilized for the same project regardless of funding source, including private sources.
Environmental Review Process Timelines
Type of Multifamily Project
Level of Review
Timeline for Review
Timeline for Publication and Public Participation Process
Total Review Timeline
Rehabilitation (less than 75% of replacement cost)
Categorically Excluded Subject to 58.5
45 – 75 days
Approximately 25 days
70 – 100 days
New Construction, Substantial Rehabilitation, Change in Use
60 – 110 days
Approximately 33 days
93 – 143 days
New Construction, Substantial Rehabilitation with issues that elevate the review such as noise over 75 DNL combined with other factors such as floodplain, etc.
Environmental Impact Statement
1.5 – 2 years
Approximately 48 days
Longer than is feasible for a viable multifamily project
Environmental Review Requirements for Multifamily Reviews
- 24 CFR Part 58 HUD Environmental Review (see mandatory format below)
- Phase I ESA per ASTM E1527-13
- Vapor Encroachment Screening per ASTM 2600-10
Mandatory Submission Format
Environmental Review Documents Required for Multifamily Projects (effective May 2016)
All HUD Part 58 Environmental Review Submissions must follow the format suggested by HUD found on the HUD Exchange website under the right side toolbar titled “Suggested Formats and Sample Notices,” see https://www.hudexchange.info/programs/environmental-review/. You choose the correct forms based on the level of review. HUD’s current format incorporates the project description and determination of level forms; a separate document is no longer needed for these items. The Environmental Submission should now follow the document order as listed below:
- Site Location Map, close up with overview of area to be reviewed and a broader map view to show location in the State
- Site Map with set-backs (readable), floodplain (if applicable), and building lay-out;
- HUD Form (which now incorporates the project description, level of review and all required checklists into one document);
- All Supporting Documentation arranged in the order of the HUD checklist with attachment letters or numbers for identifiers for each support section; and
- Support should include all data utilized for the review including maps submitted with correspondence to State or Federal Agencies.
- Phase I ESA with vapor encroachment screening per ASTM 1527-13 and ASTM 2600-10
- Any other relevant reports or studies conducted for property including but not limited to Phase II ESA, soil analysis, noise analysis or mitigation plan(s).
Other Requirements for the Multifamily Review
- A complete conclusion for the analysis of each element on the checklist and provided on the checklist (no separate reports).
- Ensure that conclusion explains how it was reached and refer to the source documentation that supports this determination.
- Include all supporting documents in the submission; web-links are not acceptable.
- Submit Phase I ESA and 24 CFR Part 58 Environmental Review as separate documents.
- If utilizing portion of the Phase I ESA for the Part 58 Review, do not insert sections, refer to the supporting sections by page number of document.
- Do not edit or change checklist templates.
- ALL SUBMISSIONS MUST BE IN ELECTRONIC FORM
HUD Environmental Forms and guidance can be found at:
For other Updates from HUD and TDHCA see the multifamily updates slides in the training section under “Past Training Event Materials”: