Winter Holiday Closure / 2022 Building Code Standards
The City of Palo Alto’s Development Center will be closed from December 24, 2022 through January 2, 2023 in observance of the winter holidays. The Development Center will reopen on Tuesday, January 3, 2023 at 8:30 AM.
Online Applications: Due to the City-wide winter holiday closure and application processing time required, all online development services applications (Building, Planning, Fire, and Public Works) will be accepted until 5:00 PM on Friday, December 16, 2022.
The State of California and City of Palo Alto adopted the 2022 California Code of Regulations, Title 24 (2022 California Building Code Standards), which will become effective on January 1, 2023. To qualify under the 2019 California Building Code Standards, all new instant building permit applications and building permit pre-applications must be submitted by the date above. Once a pre-application is received, a staff member will contact the applicant to determine application completeness and provide a notification for plan review fee payment. These fees must be paid online before 5:00 PM on December 23, 2022. Please be advised that due to an anticipated high volume of applications, plan review timelines may be extended through February 2023. Staff will make every effort to review permits as expeditiously as possible and provide ongoing communications with applicants.
Building Inspection Services: During the winter holiday closure, the City will be providing limited building inspection services. Inspection requests must be received and confirmed before the office closure occurs on December 24th. To request an inspection, please download our mobile application (Palo Alto iRequest) to your smart device or visit the Development Services website at: https://aca-prod.accela.com/PALOALTO/Default.aspx (Accela Citizen Access).
We wish you a happy holiday season and look forward to working with you in the new year.
Development Services is a resource for homeowners, businesses, designers and contractors. We are located at 285 Hamilton Avenue. The goal of our staff is to help our customers build safe, healthy and sustainable buildings that comply with applicable codes and regulations. We see ourselves as an integral part of each project team and are committed to establishing positive working relationships with our partners, while focusing on problem solving and delivering exceptional customer service.
While we are open for in-person services, the City has moved to an all-digital application and plan review platform. This means that we no longer accept paper plan submittals. All submittals must be done in digital format.
Online Permit Pre-Applications Available
Pre-applications for building permits can be filed online through Palo Alto’s Accela Citizen Access portal. The online pre-application process allows prospective building permits applicants to submit their pre-applications and upload digital building plans and documents. Staff then review the application materials to ensure all necessary documents have been provided. The applicant will be notified once the online submittal package is considered complete and ready for the building permit application intake phase.
All applications begin at 'First Phase' to avoid unnecessary delays by allowing staff to review your application submittal for completeness and accuracy to help ensure your project is ready for review before advancing to the 'formal review' phase of your application.
Please visit our Online Permit Services web page to learn more.
Scheduling inspections with Accela Citizen Access (ACA) or the PA Inspection Request Mobile App (PA iRequest) Now Available!
Schedule an inspection with Accela Citizen Access (ACA) or PA iRequest App - effective July 1, 2021
Scheduling inspections with the City’s Accela Citizen Access (ACA) web portal or from your mobile phone with the Palo Alto Inspection Request app are available. The Palo Alto Inspection Request app for iOS (Apple) or Android can be downloaded from the Apple App store or Google Play store to your mobile device (search for Palo Alto iRequest).
Effective July 1, 2021, applicants who wish to schedule inspections online with Accela Citizen Access (ACA) or the Palo Alto iRequest app are no longer required to complete the “Inspection Screening Form”.
Schedule an inspection through OPS
Logging on or registering for an account not required to schedule an inspection via OPS
Schedule an inspection via phone
To schedule an inspection you may call (650) 329-2496 and press 2.
The Palo Alto Building Division conducts plan review, issues building permits, provides inspection services, and oversees the Green Building program.
Fire Prevention Bureau
The mission of the Palo Alto Fire Prevention Bureau, within the city's Development Center, is to provide quality and timely development services. Our fire prevention staff performs fire plan checks, reviews, permitting, and field inspections. Our goal is to accommodate all requests for service in a time frame that meets our customer's needs.
Public Works provides services integral to our community on a daily basis. Our department's mission is to provide quality services with commitment, courtesy and pride. In partnership with the Palo Alto community, we strive to offer efficient, cost effective and environmentally responsible services that make Palo Alto a beautiful, vibrant and appealing City in which to live and work. The Public Works Department is comprised of a variety of divisions however there are three divisions that typically relate to development services. These divisions include Public Works Engineering, Water Quality, and Urban Forestry.
We in Utilities are eager to help make your project successful and be sure you are safely hooked up to all the electric, gas, water and sewer services you may need. Utilities also handles commercial "dark fiber optic network" connections. Be advised that all utility-related projects within the City's public right of way (including gas services up to and encompassing the gas meter) need to conform to the Water, Gas & Wastewater Standards and Electrical Requirements as described on the linked pages and any relevant Public Works Standards---unless otherwise approved in writing by the responsible Engineering Manager. Private utilities on private property are under the jurisdiction of the City's Planning Department, Building Inspection Division.
2021 California Access Training
A brief history of accessibility regulations pertaining to federal, state and local government, and commercial building facilities. A review of the Americans with Disabilities (ADA) as it pertains to state and local government, and commercial buildings and facilities. A detailed study of the 2019 Calif. Bldg. Code (CBC) provisions for accessibility to public buildings, public accommodations, and commercial buildings and facilities. This seminar has been updated to include the 2019 CBC mid-cycle code changes.
This training will take place on August 4, 11, 18, and 25, from 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. on Zoom Webinar. For event details and registration information, please view this flyer(PDF, 241KB).