Building Permits

A building permit is required if any owner or authorized agent plans to...
  • construct, enlarge, remodel or change the occupancy of a building
  • erect, install, enlarge, alter, repair, remove, convert
  • replace any electrical, gas, mechanical or plumbing system the installation of which is regulated by code
  • cause the replacing of any electrical, gas, mechanical or plumbing systems
Building permit applications can be filled out online or printed (single family building permit or commercial/multi-unit building permit)
Owners or authorized agents should make an applications to the building official and obtain the required permit. (Kentucky Building Code Section 105.1)
Inspections Required 
Construction or work for which a permit is required shall be subject to inspection by the building official and such construction or work shall remain accessible and exposed for inspection purposes until approved. (Kentucky Building Code Section 109.1). The most common inspections for building permits are Foundation, Framing/Rough-in, and Final. All appropriate inspections are required to be completed prior to issuance of Certificate of Occupancy or Letter of Acceptance.
Planning & Zoning Review
New construction often involves some level of zoning review for compliance with the Louisville/Jefferson County Land Development Code which regulates zoning, use, building setbacks, signage, landscaping, and other items. Several small cities administer zoning authority by legislative bodies within those cities. Proposals in those cities requiring discretionary review will initially be reviewed by Louisville Metro Planning Commission and recommendation is made to the legislative body of the small city. The small city's legislative body then takes final action on the proposal. In most cases the small cities have adopted a different version of the Land Development Code and may even have their own revisions.
For more information regarding Planning & Design Services and the Land Development Code, visit the PDS website.
Coordination with small cities within Louisville 
In an effort to increase communication with small cities within Louisville Metro that do not have expanded jurisdiction for construction, the Office of Construction Review coordinates its reviews with small cities when needed. By agreement with Metro, some small cities issue sign permits locally. In such cases separate approval from Louisville Metro is not required.
Once a Certificate of Occupancy is issued for a project, the fire department has jurisdiction over the building and is therefore included in the Construction Review process. To help ensure successful oversight in the future, the Office of Construction Review Division coordinates its reviews with the fire district personnel. Applicants for construction or planning approval are referred to the local fire district in which the project is located for review prior to issuance of approval by Louisville Metro.
During planning and permitting stages, the fire department may review for fire apparatus access on the site, hose connections, and hydrant location. An identified contact person from the fire department will then will communicate its approval via stamped plan, letter, e-mail, or standardized form. This approval may be sent directly to Louisville Metro or given to the applicant.
During inspection phase, the fire department official will often review and confirm occupancy loads, exiting, fire detection and suppression systems with the Construction Review inspection staff.

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