The Bureau of Permits and Inspections reviews applications and construction documents for the construction, alterations and
improvements to all new and existing structures in the city of Richmond. After permits are issued, the bureau inspects the work at
specific stages through the completion of the job. This process is to ensure the life safety and code compliance of buildings. The
process provides safe buildings for citizens, whether they live in, work or are visiting the city of Richmond.
Our staff and department is dedicated to helping you build a better, code-compliant city of Richmond.
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Silent Heroes - Building Safety Month
Building Permit Process
A building permit must be obtained prior to commencing any new construction or alterations to a building. In the city of Richmond,
a building permit only covers the building and structural portion of a project. The permit is only reviewed for compliance with the
building code. Any electrical, mechanical, and plumbing work for a project will be done under a separate trade permit.
Reviews for code-compliance will be done as those permits are submitted.
Building permits are typically reviewed by multiple agencies. In addition to the Building Code review, permits may be forwarded to
some or all of the following departments.
These agencies would review a specific aspect of the proposed construction to verify compliance with their regulations.
Building Codes for Richmond, Virginia
(Adoption Date: July 14, 2014)
One and Two Family Building Codes
Commercial Building Codes
|Accessible and Useable Buildings and Facilities||ANSI A117.1||2009|
|Fire Sprinkler Code||2010|
|Flood Resistant Design and Construction||ASCE 24-05||2005|
|International Building Code||Virginia Edition||2012|
|International Energy Conservation Code||Virginia Edition||2012|
|International Fire Prevention Code||Virginia Edition||2012|
|International Fuel Gas Code||Virginia Edition||2012|
|International Mechanical Code||Virginia Edition||2012|
|International Plumbing Code||Virginia Edition||2012|
|International Property Maintenance Code||Virginia Edition||2012|
|International Rehabilitation Code||Virginia Edition||2012|
|National Electrical Code||2011|
|National Fire Alarm Code||2010|
|Standard for Single & Multiple Station Carbon Monoxide Alarms||UL2034||2008 with revisions through February 2009|
Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code||2012|
Structural Design Requirements
The following are Structural Design Requirements specific to Richmond, Virginia
- Frost Depth - 18 inches
- Design Wind Speed - 90 mph, 3-second gust
- Ultimate Design Wind Speed For Risk
- Category I Buildings - 105 mph
- Category II Buildings - 115 mph
- Category III & IV Buildings - 120 mph
- Snow Load - 20 psf
- Seismic Design Category - B
Construction Document Submission Requirements
Submitting a Building Permit
There are a number of ways to submit for a building permit, such as in person or by mail. If submitting your application by mail,
please include a completed application, construction documents, and payment. You may not submit your request by fax if the permit
requires plans. Be sure to include a Credit Card Payment Form along with your completed Permit Application.
You can bring in your completed application, construction documents, and payment.
Contractors should have copies of their contractor's license and business license.
Bureau of Permits and Inspections
City Hall, Room 110
900 E. Broad St.
Richmond, VA 23219
You will need a city of Richmond Business License if the value of the work is more than $25,000 or if the total value from permits
exceeds $25,000 during the calendar year.
Checking Permit Status
The easiest way to check the status of a permit is through the city's
Permit Web Inquiry System.
When you arrive at the main screen choose "Search Existing Permits". You can look up permits by the permit number, address,
contractor's license number or city tax parcel id number. When you have selected a permit choose "Permit Approvals". This will
allow you to see what agencies are reviewing your permit, who the reviewers are and the status of their review. In most instances
there will be a phone number for the reviewer so that you can contact them directly with any questions that you might have.
You can also check the status of a permit by calling the city's 311 Call Center. Your inquiry will be routed to the appropriate
reviewer and they will contact you.
Policies and Procedures Handouts
NEW Policy for Inspections Involving Exposed, Energized Electrical Parts
As of March 1, 2015 City of Richmond Department of Building Inspection will require the installing electrician or qualified representative
to be on site for the inspections listed below in order to de-energize, open and close the equipment for the inspection:
- Release service change
- Any inspections related to service equipment after the utility connection is complete
We encourage you to contact your inspector prior to 7:00 a.m. on the morning of your inspection to arrange a time to meet on site for the
inspection. Or, when scheduling your inspection, you may request that the inspector give you a thirty (30) minute call ahead. Please
contact George (Rick) Paul Electrical Inspections Supervisor, at (804) 646-6959 with any questions regarding this matter.
Arts and Cultural District
The Arts and Cultural District is a targeted area within and around the downtown Broad Street corridor. It seeks to leverage the key assets and momentum generated by arts, culture and entertainment to continue economic development and revitalization in the area. The ordinance establishes the boundaries of the district, a special incentive area within the district for targeting certain financial and regulatory incentives permitted by state law, including (1) a rebate of the encroachment application fee for entities pursuing outdoor dining, (2) building permit review within 10 days of complete submittal, (3) rebate of rezoning fee, and (4) full or partial rebate of certain building permit fees upon completion of construction. To learn more about the district boundaries or the available incentives, please visit the Arts and Cultural District webpage.