DOB Updates Essential Construction Guidance

Posted on April, 15 2020

The New York City Department of Buildings (DOB) made several important updates regarding Essential Construction requests to align with the Empire State Development Corporation.

DOB Commissioner Melanie LaRocca has updated the guidance document regarding Essential vs. Nonessential Construction to align with ESDC. See the full memo here. We encourage you to review the new guidelines as applicable to each specific project.

The DOB has also updated the FAQs regarding essential construction here.

Certificates of Authorization

Approvals for emergency and essential work will now be issued a Certificate of Authorization. This Certificate of Authorization must be posted at the construction site to avoid any potential disruptions in work.

The certificate of authorization will be valid until April 29,2020. If the state of emergency is extended, the certificate date will be automatically updated online, a new certificate should then be printed and posted on site.

Certificates of Authorization are only required to be posted for sites categorized as Approved Work on the Essential Active Construction Sites Map. All other categories of work (affordable housing, homeless shelter, hospital/health care, schools, and utilities) do not require a certificate provided the building is identified as such on the map.

Professional Certification of Essential Construction Requests

The DOB is now allowing Essential Construction requests to be professionally certified by the applicant of record (P.E., R.A.). The professionally certified requests are limited to work to protect safety and health of occupants, work limited to a single work, or construction for other essential businesses. These professionally certified requests are subject to audit. All other essential construction requests are subject to DOB plan examiner review.

Appeals of Essential Construction Requests

Essential Construction requests submitted on or after April 15, 2020 may be appealed a maximum of two times.

Essential Construction requests submitted before April 15, 2020 cannot be appealed. A new request must be submitted under the updated guidelines.

Please see the updated DOB service notice for further direction on the above here.

Concluding Essential Construction

The DOB will be setting up a notification system soon so that the Department can be notified once Essential Construction activities have concluded. Stay tuned to our newsletters for more information as soon as it is available.