Assessment of Permit Expediting Routes in Washington DCby Tejjy Inc CEO
Assessment of Permit Expediting Routes in Washington DC
Are you puzzled with the thought of assessing permit expediting routes in DC? Check out the blog to get the answer.
Usually, there are 3 ways to expedite your permitting process, but no route can assure your permit approval. Therefore, it’s important to be careful while selecting the right permit expedition service matching your situation.
Let’s explore the three permit expediting routes that you may opt for for your construction projects in DC?
Seeking Permit Expeditors in DC
You can seek permit expeditors in DC who are acquainted with the permit review and submission process, as per DCRA requirements. Choose the permit expediting firms who have established reputations and connections with relevant agencies. Competent expeditors can provide seamless permit approval for commercial and residential construction starting from the stage of planning to the acquisition of occupancy permits. Expert facilitators have extensive knowledge of building and zoning codes of the regulatory permitting process in Washington DC and thus can help to avoid delays in construction project approval.
· Choosing a Third-Party Permit Review Program in DC
You may also select the third party permit review program in Washington DC. This review program was established to meet the large volume of developmental applications of the District. The program expedites the review process by increasing DCRA staff with DCRA certified third-party companies. The fees of the programs vary according to the size and scope of the construction projects. Instead of waiting in the queue at DCRA, you can appoint third parties for executing your plan review. Generally, an approved permit is issued soon after the plan review and approval by certified reviewers of DCRA.
However, using a third-party reviewer may not necessarily lead to a faster-permitting process all the time. In certain cases, it can cause delays to your permit approval.
The reasons for the delay in permitting mainly occur due to zoning and re-review.
ü Zoning – It is one of the most time-consuming disciplines, which can be reviewed only by DCRA.
ü Re-review – In this case, DCRA re-reviews a percentage of the plan already assessed by the third-party companies as a part of the quality control process. In case of a necessary modification, the third party is required to review it again before submitting it back to DCRA.
According to the report of 2016 Permit Issues by the Washington Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, 60% of respondents reported having not used the Third-Party Review Program. Moreover, amongst the 40% that have used Third-Party Review Program, 68% reported having no improvement in permit processing times.
Third-party reviewers are ideal for intricate projects, as they sit down and take time to comprehend your project across various disciplines. The additional expertise of third-party reviewing companies makes the difference between the first round of approval and undergoing several rounds of re-reviews.
· Fast-Track Building Plan Review Program in DC
You can opt for a fast-track building plan review program in DC. This emergency building review program was introduced in September 2017 and intended to expire in January 2018. The program is planned to accelerate the process of permit review by providing two approaches for fast track approvals including Velocity & Expedited Services:
ü Velocity – The service is meant to permit applicants with 100% completed design concepts and plans.
ü Expedited – The service is meant for the applicants having plans in the design stage.
To take part in these two programs, it is essential for the permit applicants in DC to attend a consultation session personally over the phone or through a web conference. Next, the applicants have to upload documents of permit applications online into the DCRA database. As soon as the project is approved by DCRA for fast-tracking, the applicant has to make a payment of $5,000 as a non-refundable deposit. After that, the applicants and design teams can proceed to a mandatory pre-submittal meeting and several rounds of plan reviewing sessions. At the end of the review sessions, the plan gets approved by DCRA and the permit issued.
Take a look at the fee schedule of the Fast-Track Program published by DCRA:
ü Velocity Service Fees
Ø Plan Review Session
v Under 50,000 sq. ft. -> $50,000
v 50,001 –
v Over 100,000 sq. ft. -> $75,000
ü Expedition Service Fees
Ø 1st Plan Review Session
v Under 10,000 sq. ft. -> $5000
v 10,001 sq. ft. or more -> $10,000
Ø Subsequent Plan Review Sessions
v Under 10,000 sq. ft. –> $2500 each
v 10,001 sq. ft. or more -> $5000 each
Nevertheless, AIA DC has raised concerns before the City Council that with a fast-track program, it may take several months to obtain a permit as DCRA can’t assure that other agencies will respond on time
The crux of the matter
Even if DCRA and other reviewing agencies are exploring new programs for streamlining permitting processes in Washington DC, the ideal route to a completely permitted project in the District remains complicated. Although there are various aspects in the permitting process, no perfect formula is available for expediting the process. The objective will be to reduce unnecessary barriers and re-reviews by selecting the right permitting agency, which can eliminate potential bottlenecks of your projects.
To know more about permit expedition, consult a permit service company in DC. Expert construction project managers of the company assist in navigating the permit process through a realistic schedule, reinforcing the right team of consultants and leveraging associations with relevant agencies.
Created on Mar 25th 2020 02:21. Viewed 940 times.