Last Updated: 2018-07-31

Richmond VA > Planning and Development Review > Zoning Division

Last Updated:

Last Updated: 2019-10-30

The City of Richmond is pleased to announce the launch of our NEW
Online Permit Portal (OPP),
providing our customers the ability to apply for certain Permits from
their office or home without coming into City Hall.
More information about the Online Permit Portal can be found on the
OPP web page
Customers who have already registered and are familiar with the portal,
click on the Online Permit Portal to get started.

Customers can now submit applications for the following plan types using
the portal:
Residential trades (Electrical, Gas Piping, Mechanical, Plumbing),
Certificate of Zoning Compliance and Plan of Development.
Customer information sessions are being held to assist customers with registering and using the portal, Email csshelp@richmondgov.com for more information.
Customers will need to register online before applying for a permit through the portal.

The Permit Center of the City of Richmond (Room 110 of City Hall) has new office hours.

We are now open Monday – Friday from 7:30 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.

Visitors conducting business in the Permits and Inspections office (room 110 of City Hall) will receive one or two hour parking validation when they use the Standard Parking Deck located on Marshall Street between 6th and 7th Streets.

News Regarding EnerGov

    We are ONLY accepting PDF plans submittals on thumb drives or CDs.
    We are NO longer accepting paper plan submissions.
    Please bring your plans to us on a thumb drive when you come in to apply for a
    permit and we’ll upload it onto our system.
    Doing so will save you time, money, and provide for enhanced plan review.


The Zoning Administration Division provides a variety of functions related to permitting and planning services. Every parcel within the city has a zoning designation that governs its use. These uses are defined in the official zoning ordinance supported by the official zoning map. Zoning staff review permits to promote the orderly development of every parcel within the city as it relates to the individual use of the property.

Zoning staff is responsible for enforcing the zoning ordinance primarily through the review of building permits, sign permits, and Certificate of Occupancy applications.

When certain conditions of the zoning ordinance are not or cannot be met, such as front or side yards (setbacks), required parking, use of a structure or other features of properties, Zoning staff coordinates the Administrative Variance process or coordinates and prepares necessary documentation for monthly Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA) meeting agendas for Variances, Special Exceptions and appeals of a decision of the Zoning Administrator.

Projects that require review and approval by either the Commission of Architectural Review (CAR), City Planning Commission (CPC), or Urban Design Committee (UDC) may also require concurrent zoning approval.

Complaints and concerns from the public, city Administration and City Council related to potential zoning violations are investigated by zoning staff. Code enforcement issues include:

  • the illegal use or density of property
  • operation of businesses without required permits
  • fences that are too high
  • auto repair operations
  • unscreened dumpsters
  • illegal or excessive signage
  • parking of commercial vehicles in residentially-zoned areas

The staff takes appropriate actions to obtain voluntary compliance with the zoning regulations or, if necessary, initiates court proceedings to force compliance.

Possible violations of the Zoning Ordinance can be reported to the Zoning Administrator. File a zoning violation using the automated request process. Providing a numbered street address of the property and information on the nature of the violation would assist in the review. Personal information does not need to be provided.

Zoning related brochures and documents

Auditor Reports Issued FOIA Request Code Red graphic

This is a print version of the webpage. The navigation of the site has been removed through the print css. If you require a printout of the page as it looks in your browser, please use screen capture.

Code Red graphicKeeping Citizens Informed!