Permits and forms
Approvals and permits are required prior to undertaking most types of development and construction activity. To learn whether minor activities are exempt from permitting requirements, search the Knowledge Base.
Use the tabs below to browse applications offered by the DSC and Partner Work Units. Please review documents carefully and follow all submittal and payment instructions. Click here to learn more about the workflow for approvals and permits.
- Project Feasibility
- Minor Development
- Public Works
- Enhanced Plan Review
- Other work groups
Project feasibility services allow customers to verify property and zoning conditions and receive a high-level summary of applicable development regulations prior to initiating a formal application.
General property and zoning inquiries can be submitted using the above form. Alternatively, customers may send an email to dscticket [at] dsc [dot] durhamnc [dot] gov or call the DSC at 919-560-4137. Customers may also receive receive in-person service at the Development Services Center. Walk-in, phone, and electronic inquiries are addressed on a first-come, first-served basis.
This is an optional, paid information product intended to verify current zoning and property conditions. Staff will provide a letter confirming the following information:
- Verification of zoning district and current land use;
- Confirmation that Certificates of Occupancy were received for construction; and/or
- Identify any pending or prior zoning code enforcement cases.
A “concept meeting” is a meeting limited to Planning staff only. These meetings are offered on Thursday afternoons in 30-minute intervals on a first-come, first-served basis upon request received a minimum of 48 hours in advance. The meeting is meant to explain, in general terms, the development review process, to determine what is allowable, and answer what may be required to accomplish the development in question. There is no fee for a concept meeting. A concept meeting can be scheduled by submitting the form using the link above.
This is a multi-departmental meeting intended to provide a comprehensive summary of applicable UDO and transportation requirements, stormwater and development engineering regulations, and infrastructure capacity. Pre-submittal meetings scheduled on the second and fourth Wednesdays of each month. A Department of Public Works pre-submittal meeting checklist is available here.
- Current Fee Schedule (Effective July 1, 2019)
2.1. Process Overview
- Voluntary Annexation Petition
- Utility Extension Agreement Application
- Summary Utility Development Statement Application
- Consent Form – Site Plan/ Annexation/ and Zoning Review (Corporate)
- Consent Form – Site Plan/ Annexation/ and Zoning Review (LLC)
2.3. Additional information
3. Comprehensive Plan Amendment
3.2. Additional Information
- Comprehensive Plan Amendment Application Information
- Future Land Use and Zoning Compatibility
- Plans for Consideration
- Approval of a Neighborhood Meeting Letter and Location
4. Historic District Development
- Registration for Certificate of Appropriateness Pre-submittal Conference
- Minor Certificate of Appropriateness Application
- Major, and Master Certificate of Appropriateness Application
4.2. Additional Information
- Certificate of Appropriateness Application Instructions
- Work Requiring a Certificate of Appropriateness
- Historic Preservation Commission Web Page
5. Historic Landmark Designation
- Historic Landmark Application
- Historic Landmark Pre-Application
- Historic Landmark Pre-Submittal Request
6. Neighborhood Protection Overlay
6.1. Process Overview
- Neighborhood Protection Overlay Application
- Neighborhood Protection Overlay Petition Form
- Neighborhood Protection Overlay Pre-Submittal Meeting Request Form
6.3. Additional Information
7. Riparian Buffer Determinations
- Cape Fear and Neuse Riparian Buffer Mitigation Application
- Cape Fear Riparian Buffer - No Practical Alternative Application
- Cape Fear Riparian Buffer Variance Application
8. Site Plans and Plats
Click on the Project Feasibility tab on the left-hand side of the screen for information regarding general questions, concept meetings and pre-submittal meetings.
Site plan submittals are accepted at the Development Services Center between 8:00 am - 4:00 pm, Monday - Friday, and will be reviewed for completeness within one business day. See submittal checklists below. Submittal packages not consistent with checklists will not be accepted for review.
- Site Plan and Plat Resubmittal Cover Sheet
A cover sheet is required for all site plan and plat resubmittals
8.4. Level 1 Site Plan
A site plan requiring only Planning Department review
8.5. Level 2 and Level 3 Site Plans
A site plan with:
• A maximum of 500 square feet (sq. ft.) of new impervious surfaces added;
• No changes in stormwater management;
• No more than 200 sq. ft. of new building area; and
• Less than 12,000 sq. ft. of land disturbance
8.6. Level 4, Major Site Plan, and Preliminary Plats
A site plan that does not meet the definitions of a Level 1, Level 2, Level 3, or Major Site Plan)
- Level 4 Site Plan - Major Site Plan - Preliminary Plat Application
- Level 4 Site Plan - Major Site Plan - Preliminary Plat Submittal Checklist
8.7. Site Plan and Plat Amendments
8.8. Final Plats and Exempt Plats
8.9. Additional Information
- Site Plan and Plat Standard Notes
- City Stormwater Submittal Requirements
- County Stormwater Submittal Requirements
- Interactive Buffer Model (MS Excel download)
9. Site Compliance
10. Special Use Permits and Variances
- BOA Pre-Submittal Registration Form
- Minor and Major Special Use Application
- Transportation Special Use Permit Application
- Variance Application
- Appeal of Administrative Decision or Zoning Boundary Application
10.2. Additional Information
- Board of Adjustment Deadline Calendar (PDF)
- Board of Adjustment Process Overview
- Additional Review Factors for Fences and Walls
- Board of Adjustment Web Page
- Consent Form - Site Plan and Board of Adjustment
10.3. Reasonable Accommodation Request
11. Street Closing
12. Street Renaming
13. Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) Text Amendment
14. Watershed Determination
15. Zoning Map Change
- Zoning Map Change Application
- Zoning Map Change Application - Text Only
- Pre-Submittal Registration Form
- Development Plan as a Site Plan Pre-Submittal Registration Form
15.3. Owner / Neighbor Forms
- Owner Acknowledgement (With Development Plan)
- Owner Acknowledgement (Without Development Plan)
- Zoning Protest Petition
Minor Development Review includes minor planning approvals (e.g. signs; home occupations; temporary uses) and minor building permits (e.g. home improvements; pools; accessory structures). These quick turn-around items are processed by directly by DSC staff.
1. Architectural Review
2. Due Diligence Verification Letters (formerly Zoning / Business Verification)
3. Electrical Reconnection Request
4. Home Occupation Permit
- Signage Permit Application and Checklist (PDF)
- Common Signage Plan Application, Checklist, and Worksheet (PDF)
6. Street Vendor Registration
7. Temporary Use Permits
8. Wireless Communication Facility (WCF) Plans
- Wireless Communication Facility Application and Checklist (PDF)
- Small Cell Wireless Permit Application (PDF)
9. Outdoor Seating Permits
- Outdoor Seating Permit Application (PDF)
- Outdoor Seating Permit Sworn Statement - No Charges (PDF)
- Outdoor Seating Permit Sworn Statement - With Charges (PDF)
2. Additional Information
- Small Floodplain Submittal Checklist
- Medium Floodplain Submittal Checklist
- Large Floodplain Submittal Checklist
- Floodplain Building Permit Submittal Checklist
- Floodplain As-built Submittal Checklist
- Floodplain Impact Plan Checklist
- Floodplain Impact Narrative Checklist
- Engineer Certification Letter Checklist
- No-Impact Checklist
- CLOMR Checklist
- Flood-Related Hazard Calculations
- Floodplain Cover Sheet Notes
- Floodplain Cost Estimate Spreadsheet
- Floodplain Cost Estimate Checklist
- Flood Risk Information System (FRIS)
- Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
1. Public Works Project Planning Forms
- Utility Impact Analysis Questionnaire for projects within City Limits (PDF)
- Utility Extension Agreement Application (PDF)
- Utility Extension Agreement Application - Single Family Residence (PDF)
- Engineering Site Plan and Preliminary Plat Checklist (PDF)
- Engineering Final Plat Checklist (PDF)
- Stormwater Services Rezoning Submittal Checklist (PDF)
- Stormwater Services Site Plan Submittal Checklist (PDF)
- Stormwater Services Final Plat Submittal Checklist (PDF)
- Transportation Site Plan and Preliminary Plat Submittal Checklist (PDF)
- Transportation Final Plat Submittal Checklist (PDF)
2. Construction Drawings & Utility Extension Permits
- Public Works Construction Drawing Submittal Checklist (PDF)
- Project Information Sheet (PDF)
- Water Extension Permit Application (PDF)
- Gravity Sewer Extension Permit Application (PDF)
3. Construction Phase Permits & Forms
- Engineering Building Permit Checklist
- Preconstruction Meeting FAQ (PDF)
- As-built Drawings Submittal Checklist (PDF)
- SCM As-built Drawings Submittal Checklist
- Engineering Certification for Sewer Extension
- Engineering Certification for Water Extension
- Construction Security Development Infrastructure Completion Bond
- Construction Security Letter of Credit Template
- Construction Security Escrow Agreement Template (PDF)
- Construction Security Certificate of Deposit Template
- Warranty and Repair Security Development Infrastructure Bond (PDF)
- Warranty and Repair Security Letter of Credit
- Warranty and Repair Security Escrow Agreement (PDF)
- ROW or Private Property Permit Application Form (PDF)
- License Agreement Application (PDF)
- Utility Walk for the Release of Water Meters Flow Chart
- Request for Certificate of Compliance or Infrastructure Acceptance Inspection (PDF)
- Options Available at 50% - 75% Build-Out
- Request for Infrastructure Acceptance (PDF)
- Field Change Application
4. Temporary Closure Permit
5. Engineering Services Forms
- Low Water Pressure Acknowledgement Form (PDF)
- Pending Assessment Form (PDF)
- Service Lateral Termination Fillable Form (PDF)
6. Stormwater Development Review Forms and Templates
- Certificate of Deposit (Construction Security) (PDF)
- Certificate of Deposit (Perpetual Surety) (PDF)
- Escrow Agreement
- Letter of Credit (Construction Security) (PDF)
- Letter of Credit (Perpetual Surety) (PDF)
- Stormwater Facility Completion Bond (construction security)
- Stormwater Facility Agreement Bond for Commercial Projects (Perpetual Surety)
- Non-Residential (Commercial) Stormwater Facility Agreement (PDF)
- Residential Stormwater Facility Agreement (PDF)
Design Summaries as PDF Fillable Forms
- Bioretention Area
- Dry Detention Basin
- Level Spreader
- Sand Filter
- Underground Detention
- Wet Detention Basin
BCE Program Documents as PDF Fillable Forms
- General As-Built and Construction Certification Form
- General Certification Assessment Checklist for Above Ground Sand Filters
- General Certification Assessment Checklist for Filterra Units
- General Certification Assessment Checklist for Bioretention Areas
- General Certification Assessment Checklist for LS-VFS Systems
- General Certification Assessment Checklist for Ponds and Wetlands
- General Certification Assessment Checklist for Rainwater Harvesting Systems
- General Certification Assessment Checklist for Underground Detention Systems
- General Certification Assessment Checklist for Underground Sand Filters
- General Certification Assessment Checklist for Vegetated Water Quality Swales
- Geotechnical Certification for Dams Form
- Materials Certification for SCMs with Filter Media Form
Area of Concern (AoC) Worksheet with Falls/Jordan Stormwater Accounting Tool
Nutrient Reporting Form
BMP Engineering Cost Estimate Spreadsheet
Annualized Maintenance Costs for BMPs Spreadsheet
Enhanced Plan Review
Enhanced plan review is an optional, fee-based service available through the City-County Inspections department for multi-family and commercial construction projects. During this face to face meeting the owner’s design/construction team meets with Inspections staff from all trades to review construction drawings and work collectively to ensure drawings comply with building code. By bringing all parties together in a single review session, the Enhanced Review service can reduce the number of re-reviews needed and shorten the approval timeline.
Enhanced Review Meetings
- An Enhanced Review meeting can be scheduled seven business days after the Building Permit is deemed complete.
- The fee for an Enhanced Review meeting is $600 and must be paid prior to scheduling.
- Regular meeting days are Tuesdays and Thursdays, in one hour increments.
- Morning meetings are held at 8:30am, 9:30am, and 10:30am, and afternoon meetings are held at 1:00pm, 2:00pm, and 3:00pm.
- Meetings may run over an hour if needed, provided that the next time block is available.
- The fee beyond one hour is $150 per 15-minute increment.
- Meetings can be scheduled on Wednesdays and Fridays by request, depending on availability.
- There are two options for scheduling an enhanced review session as summarized below.
Scheduling Option 1: Request Enhanced Plan Review Upon Initial Submittal
- When uploading the Building Permit Application to Dplans, enter “Enhanced Review Request” in the description section.
- Once the application is deemed complete, staff will contact the applicant to discuss scheduling options.
- The meeting schedule is confirmed once the $600 fee is paid. After the fee is paid, plans review staff will complete the first round of review within two business day (in advance of the enhanced review meeting).
- Keep in mind that the Enhanced Review does not include any departments outside of Inspections.
- The applicant will be able to respond as review notes are posted.
Scheduling Option 2: Apply for an Enhanced Review permit after the first round of reviews.
- Once an application has completed the first round of reviews, the applicant may request to move that application from regular review to enhanced review.
- Contact Scott McCorkle, Enhanced Review Administrative Assistant, to request an Enhanced Review meeting (firstname.lastname@example.org | 919-227-0782). Scott or a member of his team will work with the applicant to identify the earliest available dates and times for an enhanced review meeting.
- Once the applicant has selected the date and time for the meeting and paid $600 scheduling fee, we will change the application status to Enhanced Review.