Building Permit Program

Building PermitCode compliance for construction projects at CSUS is the responsibility of Facilities Services. Consistent with the Health and Safety Code Section 18901-18949.6 and California Building Code Section 101.17, Facilities Services has established a process for issuing university Building Permits. A building permit is required for all construction, alterations or additions to any structure or grounds area.

The Building Permit program formalizes planning reviews and code compliance reviews performed by various committees and departments. In addition, the Building Permit re-enforces our primary objective to ensure that all construction projects on campus are quality improvements that are safe, accessible, energy efficient, and easy to maintain.


Construction projects on campus are accomplished in one of three ways:

1. A non-maintenance construction project charged back to the requesting department

2. Campus departments and auxiliaries that propose to undertake building projects with their own resources including donations.

3. A Public Works contract administered by Facilities Services.

Most building projects on campus are built by or contracted by Facilities Services. For these projects the Building Permit process is internal and the 'customer' department need not be involved. Campus departments and auxiliaries that propose to undertake building and improvement projects with their own resources must apply for a Building Permit.

After a Building Permit application is received by Facilities Services, the required reviews are determined and the project plans are forwarded to the reviewing staff. An identifying number will be assigned to the application for reference. Facilities Services role is to check plans for code compliance, evaluation of campus planning issues, and inspection during construction. The applicant has sole responsibility for complete professional plan preparation. Facilities Services can prepare plans and work specifications on a reimbursable basis or the applicant can go to an outside agent.

Departments that have been issued a Building Permit and are undertaking building or improvement projects with their own resources are responsible for completing the work according to the approved plans and specifications. It is incumbent on the department to ensure the work complies with applicable codes under the direction of Facilities Services.

The simplest of projects may require a week after receipt to process a Building Permit; a typical remodeling project may require a month. Complex projects or projects requiring review by numerous departments, committees, or outside agencies could require several months.

Failure to secure a Building Permit prior to commencing work, work that does not meet Building Code or work that violates Health and Safety Code, may result in work stoppage, demolition, and/or removal.


Building permits are required when projects include the construction, alteration or modification to the building elements or the mechanical and electrical systems. Examples may include but are not limited to:

The construction and installation of walls, ceilings, counters, cabinets, doors or windows; installation of modular furniture, carpeting and various types of flooring and the erection of interior and exterior signage;

The installation or relocation of electrical outlets, switches, light fixtures, fans, light sensors, power poles, wiring or conduit; moving or relocation of thermostats, modifying or expanding heating and air conditioning systems that would alter energy consumption;

The installation of plumbing fixtures as sinks, faucets, drinking fountains and water or natural gas piping;

The application or removal of any paint coating or when hazardous materials such as asbestos or lead are exposed, disturbed, or removed in any structure or vessel;

Any work that constitutes digging, drilling, excavating, removal or installation affecting the University grounds.

In cases not covered by the above, Facilities Services will determine if a Building Permit is required.

Planning Review: When a proposed project has a certain level of complexity, visual impact, or constitutes a change in space utilization, a planning review must occur prior to submission of a request for Building Permit. This review assures that the project responds to University standards, policies, and programs. Typical reviewing bodies may include the Campus Environment Committee, the Campus Architect, Associate Vice President Facilities Services and/or the campus Director of Facilities Planning.

Permit Components

Drawings and Specifications: The applicant is required to prepare complete construction documents up to professional standards. For some projects, an engineer or other licensed professional's signature/stamp is required. For uncomplicated projects, a brief written description may suffice.

Outside Agency Review: For certain projects, an outside agency may have jurisdiction over aspects of the work. Typical reviewing bodies are the State Fire Marshal, Division of the State Architect, Air Quality District, or the Regional Water Quality Control Board. All fees assessed by the agency will be billed to the customer.

Code Compliance Review: Checking for compliance with the American with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Uniform Building Code (Title 24) including seismic safety, structural review and hazardous material regulations.

Construction Inspection: Facilities Services will assign an individual(s) to inspect the project. Generally, all construction activities and inspections will be coordinated through this individual.

As-Built Drawings: The applicant will be required to prepare and submit "as-builts" to Facilities Services depicting the configuration of the actual construction or installation.

Public Works Contracts

A project becomes a Public Works Contract when all three of the following conditions exist:

1. The work is construction, alteration, demolition, facility repair, or facility maintenance

2. The work is performed under contract, and

3. The project has a value over $5,000.

Public Works projects have requirements for advertising, bidding and contract award including disabled veteran business enterprise (DVBE) participation, bonding, licensing, insurance, and prevailing wage rates. Facilities Services, through the Office of Procurement Services, administers all Public Works contracts.