Permit Tutorial & Help

We understand that the permit process can be overwhelming for some. We have created a tutorial to assist you through the process of gathering the pertinent information. It is important to remember that all projects need a plan on how to get from point A to point B. We are here to assist you with developing and presenting your plan. While this tutorial focused on zoning permits the same principals apply to building permits and other application. More building permit detail are listed below.

The information in this tutorial is all you should need for your standard fence, pool, deck, shed, or minor addition permit application.

Start by downloading the permit application to you computer. click here and choose Zoning Permit Application.

Most of the information on the application is self explanatory but many people need help finding certain information.

The Map, Block, and Lot and unit numbers (M/B/L/U) can be found on the City Assessors records. click here and search for your property address.
App information
Map Block Lot
Once you have the map block and lot numbers you can proceed with completing the application. Please indicate if you have City water and Sewer. Staff will complete the remainder of information in this section.

In the Property Use please select the use (single family, two family, multi-family, etc.) then check the appropriate box for your project. (ie. shed, garage, addition, etc.) If there is not a specific project use the "other"  selection and briefly describe the project.

Under the W x L x H insert the dimensions of your project. For example if you are installing a pool you would put  24 ft. round pool and if it has a deck you would put the dimensions of the deck and associated stairs. If your installing a shed you would put the dimensions of the shed and how it is to be placed on the ground. (stone pad, concrete slab, landscape blocks, sonotubes, etc.)

This should complete the application. Don't forget to have the owner of the property sign the application.

Property use
The next step is to create a site plan. Click here to go the The City Global Information System (GIS) online mapping program. Once yo're in the system, search for your address and select the property. Make sure the parcel is in the center of the screen and select print. When prompted for a scale type in 40 and then click "Create Printable Map".
map scale
Now you have a map of your property you're ready to draw the site plan. It is important to be as accurate as possible. This not only helps the Zoning Officer make an educated decision when approving an application but it shows you the location in which you can install the improvements and is an important part of planning your project. Whether its a shed, a pool, a deck, or a garage it all starts with a good plan so everyone knows what the proposed activity is by just reading the application and reviewing the site plan.

Below are two examples of site plans. One has a pool, a deck, and a fence, drawn to scale and clearly shows the setbacks with the improvements labeled.  The other does not supply the minimal information needed for the Zoning Officer to issue a permit. 
wrong site plan
correct site plan
Now that you have your application and site plan there are a couple of additional items needed. For a zoning permit you will need basic elevation views. (see example below) Please indicate if the shed is going to be installed on a foundation, concrete piers or blocks, or a stone pad.

If you are installing or constructing a shed that is less than 200 sf. there is no requirement for a building permit unless you are installing utilities such as electrical. However, there are requirements in the building code that require the shed to be anchored properly. Your lumber yard or shed manufacturer can assist you in choosing the proper anchors.

If you are constructing a deck it will need a building permit regardless of the size, and require a more detailed design plan including the dimensions of the lumber being used, the depth of the frost protection, and details of it's piers including diameter and height off the ground. If you need assistance in designing your deck we have included a couple of resources below.
Besides the websites listed above there are many other deck design services available on the internet for free that you can utilize. 

If the project is a pool you will need additional information that can be found here in the pool package

If any of the improvements are being installed by a contractor, with the exception of a pre-manufactured shed less than 200 sf., the Building Department will need the following:
  • A copy of the contractors license
  • A copy of the contractors valid works comp insurance
Once you have all your information together and applications completed you are ready to submit your documentation. Click Here to be directed to the application submission procedures. NOTE: All documents submitted electronically must be in pdf. format. image files and pictures will not be accepted. If you are having problems with pdf. files there are some links below which may help.

Basic Elevation

Basic Elevation View

Helpful pdf. Links

Readers and Generators:
Adobe Reader

With Foxit you can generate a pdf. file using your scanner or convert saved images to pdf.

Apple support for using your Iphone to create a pdf.

Android products:
Google Drive
Google Play