Permit process flowchart.

develop the construction documents they have to make sure that every code requirement has been addressed. The design team may only require the submittal of what is called a "building department set." These documents may not be 100% complete but contain sufficient information for the Building Department to analyze. In some cases, outside consultants, called expeditors are called in to review the construction documents for code compliance. The expeditors may also be used to obtain the permits from the municipality. The municipality usually wants to review, as a minimum, the following drawings:

1. Architectural

2. Structural

3. Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC)

4. Ventilation index

5. Egress calculations

6. Equipment schedules

7. Sprinkler and hydraulic calculations

8. Plumbing

9. Electrical

10. Life safety

11. Furniture plan

Each of these documents has to be signed and sealed by a registered architect and an engineer (both registered in the state in which they are working). Each state has registration laws for construction design professionals. These state laws require the design team professionals to be practicing in their related field for a certain number of years and they must pass an exam. Reciprocity for registered professionals in one state to sign documents in another state is possible. The registration laws of the state will have to be reviewed to determine if reciprocity is allowed.

Depending upon the municipality in which you will be working will determine how the documents are submitted for review. In certain circumstances, the design team acts in the owner's behalf and submits the documents, but in other cases, the CM/GCs and subcontractors submit the documents. This procedure is dependent upon the jurisdiction in which the PM is working.

The cost for filing documents is in the range of 1 to 2% of the proposed cost of construction. Estimates for the costs of the project as they relate to specific drawings to be reviewed will have to be developed, usually by the CM/GC. The municipal review process can take as little as two weeks and as long as six months. In all cases the local municipality has full control of the drawing review process. In other instances, the state may have to get involved with certain aspects of the construction process. This may include:

1. Cranes

2. Elevators (and other vertical transportation devices)

3. Change in grade

4. Energy conservation

The number of permits required will be determined by the local municipality, state, or federal agency with which you are working. Some of the permits that may be required are indicated in Exhibit 4-3.

1. Demolition

2. Base construction documents

3. Fire protection

4. Plumbing

5. Electrical

6. Life safety

7. Cranes and derricks

8. Hoists

9. Elevators (and other vertical transportation devices)

10. Street closings

11. Logistics plans

12. Life safety site plans

13. Overtime work

14. Sheds, bridges, and scaffolding

15. Local transportation authority

16. EPA

17. Asbestos or other hazardous materials

18. Brown fields

19. Federal Aviation Authority (FAA)

20. Army Corps of Engineers (for navigable waters)

Exhibit 4-3

Required permits.

Exhibit 4-4

PERMT/TCO/CO tracking log.




Contractor/ Subcontractor

Architect/ Engineer

Sign Offs

Permit Status

Missing Information





















The Building Department will review all the documents for compliance with the local codes. Any rejections will have to be reviewed between the building department examiner and the design team professionals (or expeditor) whose drawings are being reviewed. Sometimes a letter is submitted enumerating the reasons for the rejection along with copies of marked-up drawings. In these particular cases the design team professional must revise the drawings and then submit them back to the Building Department. Once approval has been received and the remaining fee is paid, the permits are issued for the project and sent to the expeditor or CM/GC (depending upon the requirements of the jurisdiction). The CM/GC is to have on file with the Building Department adequate insurance, workers' compensation, and possibly bonding certificates. The local municipality should be consulted for the minimum amounts required for insurance, workers' compensation, and bonding.

In an urban environment, numerous permits are required, especially where public safety is of utmost importance. In order to make sure the PM has obtained all the required permits, a tracking log (as noted in Exhibit 4-4) should be kept.

After the permits are obtained, the Building Department usually wants copies of the permits to be displayed in a public area (see Exhibit 4-5).

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Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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