Forms and Permits

  Before you begin, it is recommended you download the "Top Ways to AVOID the Most Common Public Works Engineering Plan Check comments" list. 

Notice of Changes to Storm Water Regulations

Effective December 1, 2011, new provisions of Palo Alto Municipal Code Chapter 16.11 (Stormwater Pollution Prevention) will take effect. The new regulations will 1) modify the definition of “Regulated Project” by lowering the threshold for compliance with stormwater treatment requirements for projects associated with specified land uses, and 2) require building permit applicants for Regulated Projects to treat stormwater runoff using specified Low Impact Development (LID) techniques. Click here to view the Fact Sheet for the new stormwater regulations

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Permit Applications and Information
Other Guidelines and Information
Public Works Plan Review Documents
Construction Dewatering Plan Design Guidelines
Flood Zone Issues
Tree Protection Specifications and Documents
Newsrack Permitting Documents
Public Works 2007 Standard Drawings and Specifications

Forms and Permits

If what you are looking for is not currently here, or you would like a hard copy, or you have other questions, please call us at (650) 329-2496, option 8 or email

Permit Applications and Information

Street Work Permit
This permit is needed if work is to be performed in the city right-of-way and El Camino Real sidewalk, such as underground work, sidewalk replacement, driveway installation or other work that will cut the street or sidewalk. Note that the street is defined as the public right-of-way which includes the sidewalk area.

Street Work Permit Information
Street Work Permit Application
Insurance Certificate Submission Guidelines

Encroachment Permit/Temporary Lease
An Encroachment Permit is required whenever private structures will be placed under, on, or over property in which the City has control over, such as rights of way or utility easements. Or, City owned property, such as parks or parking lots. This permit is required regardless of any permits or other approvals, such as building permits or Planning Department entitlements.

Encroachment Permit Information
Encroachment Permit Application
Wireless Public Right of Way Conditions of Approval (New)
Insurance Certificate Submission Guidelines
Commercial Sidewalk Encroachments (Outdoor Eating Areas)

Excavation and Grading Permit
An Excavation and Grading permit is required for grading activities on private property when the cut, full and/or storage of soil total 100 cubic yards or more.

Excavation and Grading Permit Application
Excavation and Grading Permit Instructions

Minor Subdivisions - Certificate of Compliance
A Certificate of Compliance is a simplified method to remove, adjust or confirm parcel lot lines.

Application for Certificate of Compliance
Certificate of Compliance Submission Checklist
Lot Line Removal Information
Lot Line Adjustment Information
Lot Line Confirmation Information
Soils Report Waiver Form

Other Guidelines and Information

Basement Drainage Policy
CPA Drainage Design Standards
CPA Truck Routes
Debris/Roll-Off Box and Storage Container Placement Guidelines in Residential Areas
Driveway Approach Design & Construction Requirements
Fence Policy
Guidelines and Standards for Land Uses Near Streams
Noise Ordinance, PAMC Section 9.10
Paving of Parking Areas Adjacent to Edge of Pavement in Unimproved Street Areas
Performance Bond Form for Permit Condition Fulfillment
Special Paving Treatments of Public Sidewalks
Street Cut Fee Determination Worksheet
Street Tree Work Permit Application
Traffic Control Plan Submission Guidelines
Traffic Control Plan Typicals

Public Works Plan Review Documents

"Pollution Prevention - It's Part of the Plan"
Grading and Drainage for New Single Family Residences
Impervious Area Calculation Worksheet
Logistics Plan Preparation Guidelines
Palo Alto Ordinance Prohibiting Copper Roofing Materials
Public Works Department Information for Residential Construction

Construction Dewatering Plan Design Guidelines

New Aquifer Filling Station Handout (revised May 2017)
Dewatering System Plan Preparation Guidelines Handout
Dewatering Inspection Checklist
Dewatering Permit Form
Dewatering: Construction Sites and In-Ground Utilities Maintenance Projects
Geotechnical Study Worksheet and Dewatering Plan dewatering requirements for submittals after 1-14-16
Geotechnical Study Worksheet - dewatering requirements for projects which have had building permits issued after 5-4-17
Public Works Dewatering Policy (new 2017)
Plan Preparations Attachment #1
Plan Preparations Attachment #2
Sample Plan Drawings

Flood Zone Issues

"Is Your House in a Flood Zone"?
FEMA Elevation Certificate
FEMA Letter of Map Amendment and Revision (LOMA/LOMR)

Flood Zone Screening Checklist
Plan Insert for Elevation Certification Requirements
Plan Insert for Elevation Certification Requirements (Detached Garage)
Residential Structure Value Determination Worksheet
Special Building Requirements for Structures in a SFHA
Substantial Improvement and Market Value Definitions

Tree Protection Specifications and Documents

Tree Protection Specifications
Tree Protection Zone Sign
Tree Technical Manuel

Newsrack Permitting Documents

Downtown Newsrack Fixture Location Map
Newsrack Encroachment Permit Application
Newsrack Indentifier Form
Newsrack Location Listing Form for Citywide Newsrack Areas
Newsrack Location Listing Form for the Downtown Special Newsrack Area
Regulations for the Allocation of Newsrack in the DSNA
Regulation Regarding Placement of Newsrack

Last Updated: Dec 6, 2017