When applying for building permits, architectural, structural and other plans may be required. Highly trained and certified plans examiners and licensed plan check engineers will review your plans and construction documents to ensure compliance with code and minimum building standards.
Construction plans prepared by your design professional, architect, and/or engineer are submitted (when required) at the time of permit application at the One Stop Shop. The plans are processed through all required departments that have an interest in the project from a city regulatory perspective.
Comments and corrections are typically received, and plans are then resubmitted. The plan review process continues until all departments approve the construction plans and your project is ready for permit issuance.
FAQs and Tips
- Plans for projects such as room additions usually can be drawn by qualified individuals such as a draftsperson or architect.
- Larger projects may require plans to be prepared and stamped by an architect or engineer licensed by the State of California.
- For patio covers and garages, the City has standard plans that you may follow. This standard plan is then attached to your site plan.
Building plan submittal requirements will vary depending on your scope of work and the level of complexity of the project. In general, a professionally drawn plan to appropriate scale includes: a site plan, floor plan, elevations, building sections, foundation, framing, structural details, electrical, mechanical, plumbing and gas (schematic) plan, Title 24 energy compliance forms and Green Building Standards conformance. Supporting construction documents may include structural calculations, a soil report and energy compliance reports. Commercial, multi-family and public housing projects must also include required accessibility design and specific detailing in the architectural and grading plans to ensure compliance with state and federal access laws.
See the Plan Review Submittal Guidelines and Matrix for separate checklists detailing what is required for residential and commercial plan review submittal.
Based on staff availability, uniform expedited plan review services may be available for an additional fee, which can reduce plan check turnaround times in half. Please check staff availability with our permit counter before plan check submittal and complete our “Expedited Plan Review” request form which may be obtained online under “forms” or at the permit counter.
Please refer to our “Plan Check Turnaround Times” Handout under the Plan Check handouts link. In general, most new projects require a 20 business day review and resubmittals are checked within 10 business days. Smaller projects may be reviewed initially within 10 business days. Small residential rooftop solar PV projects 10 kW or less are reviewed within 3 business days in accordance with state law.
Building plan check expires one year from the date fees are paid and plans are formally submitted and accepted at the One Stop Shop or online. The applicant may request a 180-day extension in writing from the Building Official explaining the circumstances and with just cause.
The Building Official will review your request in writing and if approved, will issue a letter extending your plan check application. A plan check extension fee (typically equal to half the initial plan check fee) is due prior to the extension approval. If a plan check application expires and cannot be renewed, a new application is required, along with additional fees and conformance with the codes and ordinances in effect at that time. Be sure to reach out to staff before plan check expiration to initiate an extension request.