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Non-Residential Work Requiring a Permit

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For Single-Family or Two-Family work, see Residential Work Requiring a Permit.

 

 Permit Type   Work Requiring a Permit 
     
Building Permit  

Per NC General Statute 160A-417, all non-residential work requires a Building Permit, except the work noted below in the sub permit section.

     
Sign Permit   

All signs visible from the public right-of-way require an approved sign permit, except those exempted in LUMO 5.14.3

Examples of signs exempt from regulation include the following. Property identification including street address, names of occupants, or signs guiding traffic and parking

  • Temporary real estate, construction, political, yard sale, public event, or grand opening signs
  • Changeable or moveable signs (i.e. sandwich boards). Only allowed in certain zoning districts
  • Generally, these exempt signs may not display any advertising and may not be illuminated. See LUMO 5.14.3 for additional information and regulations regarding sign size, placement, and number.

Note: These requirements are per section 5.14 of the Town of Chapel Hill Land Use Management Ordinance

     
Sub Permit  
  • Installation, extension, or general repair of any plumbing system;                  
  • Installation, extension, alteration, or general repair of any heating or cooling system;
  • Installation, extension, alteration, or general repair of any electrical wiring, devices, appliances, or equipment

Note: These requirements are per N.C. General Statute 160A-417(a)(2-4)

     
Zoning Permit  

All Non-residential work, that includes new land disturbance (i.e. exterior site work, clearing, grading, land disturbance, removal of vegetation, addition, new building), requires a Zoning Compliance Permit. Depending on the current permit approval statues the following types of work may be approved administratively by Town Staff:

  • Addition of 15 percent, or less, of previously existing floor area, or 2,500 square feet of floor area, whichever is greater
  • Addition of 15 percent, or less, of previously existing parking spaces, or 10 parking spaces, whichever is greater
  • An increase of 15 percent, or less, of land clearing, or 10,000 square feet of new land clearing, whichever is greater
  • Changes in use1 provided that either 
    • The new use is in the same group (same use intensity)
    • The new use is in less intense group (i.e. C to B or A; B to A)

All work that exceeds these thresholds requires an approved Development Project Application before a Zoning Compliance Permit can be issued. Examples include:

  • Addition or new development of more than 2,500 square feet of floor area/10,000 square feet of land disturbance - Site Plan Review
  • Change in use1 to a more intense use group (i.e. A to B or C; B to C) - Site Plan Review
  • Addition or new development of more than 20,000 square feet of floor area/40,000 square feet of land disturbance - Special Use Permit
  • Planned Developments - Special Use Permit
  • Subdivisions
  • Rezonings

Note: These requirements are per section 4.7 and 4.9 of the Town of Chapel Hill Land Use Management Ordinance (LUMO)

  1. Per LUMO 3.7.3

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