Prepare Commercial Construction Documents
Construction Document Requirements
When a Registered Design Professional (RDP) is Required
When a permit is necessary, building plans may be required to be submitted in accordance with the applicable project checklist. The drawings must be prepared by a Commonwealth of Virginia licensed design professional, also known as Registered Design Professional (RDP), if required by the Chesterfield County policy. In addition, the project must comply with the current building code and the local design criteria. The site plan approval process may be required based on the land disturbance activity.
Please refer to the architect or engineer sealed drawings requirement (PDF) for a quick reference to the Code of Virginia to determine if an A/E or RDP seal on drawings is required for the proposed construction.
Construction documents for mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems that are not required to be prepared by a registered design professional must be prepared by a licensed master electrician, plumber or mechanical worker, or a licensed Class A contractor with an associated electrical, plumbing or mechanical specialty designation.
The pre-submission checklists below will be used to evaluate your construction documents prior to us accepting a permit application and plans for permit review. The building permit and/or trade permit may not be accepted for review if applicable items on these checklists are not included in your construction documents.
- 2015 Alterations & Renovations Checklist (PDF)
- 2015 Changing House to Business Checklist (PDF)
- 2015 Electrical Checklist (PDF)
- 2015 Footing & Foundation Checklist (PDF)
- 2015 Mechanical Checklist (PDF)
- 2015 New Construction Checklist (PDF)
- 2015 Plumbing & Gas Checklist (PDF)
- 2015 Structural Checklist (PDF)
- 2015 Tent Checklist (PDF)
- 2015 Wind Turbine Checklist (PDF)
- Passenger Elevator Checklist (PDF)
- Utilities Checklist (PDF)
How to Submit
Who Can Apply?
Property owners, licensed contractors, the tenant of a building or a unit and the owner’s agent (with written permission from the owner) may apply for permits. You can mail your application package or bring it to:
Department of Building Inspection
9800 Government Center Parkway
Chesterfield VA 23832
Commercial Walk-Thru Permit Process
Chesterfield County offers a walk-thru plan review and permitting process for certain types of residential and commercial building permit applications. The intent is for applicants to obtain a permit during a single visit. Walk-thru applicants must apply in person and applications are processed in the order received. Appointments are not accepted. Commercial Walk-Thru Process is available - Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9-11 a.m., excluding holidays.
If deficiencies are found during the review process and the permit cannot be issued, the applicant receives a letter outlining the corrections needed. The walk-thru process is available to anyone whose project meets eligibility criteria.
All walk-thru projects must be connected to Chesterfield County water and sewer. Projects eligible for Commercial Walk-Thru Process include:
- Classroom, construction or sales trailers (industrialized buildings) - Site layout plan showing the position of the trailer on the site with the distances to the property lines and other buildings noted on the site plan. No other plan pages or details are required.
- Sales or classroom trailers: Plans from the trailer supplier that specify the trailer,-building code information and design parameters, the footing layout and mounting details, plans for site construction of decks, ramps and stairs serving the trailer and a site-layout plan showing the position of the trailer with the distances to the property lines and other buildings noted on the site plan.
- Demolition of the entire structure (does not include partial demolition)
- Re-roofing – no plans required. Note in the permit application job description on, the roofing material, colors and fire classification (A, B, C or non-classified).
- Signs- building or tenant frontage (Frontage is the length in feet of the building or tenant space wall on which the sign will be installed), overall area and overall height of the proposed sign(s), sign elevation plans showing location, colors, materials, type and illumination information. Only one set of plans is required for signs if the sign plans are 8.5 inches x 11 inches.
- Ground-Mounted Signs - site layout with location of proposed sign and setbacks labeled on the plans; complete footing, foundation and structural plans, and landlord approval, if required.
- Tents greater than 900 square feet (without food preparation within the tent). Tents less than 900 square feet do not require permits. Go to chesterfield.gov for the tent plan and design requirements or pick up a copy in the Building Inspection Department.
Commercial Permit Application Package Should Include:
- Application - A customer-service representative reviews the permit application, processes the permit data, calculates and collects permit fees, and provides the applicant with a receipt. The applicant may wait until permit reviews are completed, which may take 30 minutes or longer. If a county department has questions concerning the application, that department contacts the applicant. If the applicant leaves the area and/or cannot answer the questions, the application is processed through the normal process.
- Plans - Five sets of construction plans, unless otherwise noted
- Plot Plans - Plot plans must contain: Entire property, showing all property line dimensions, existing dwelling, any other existing structures and location of proposed structure. Clearly indicate all dimensions of proposed structure. Setbacks from the closest point of the proposed structure to property lines in each direction. Label the measurements from each property line to the closest point on the structure as exactly as possible. Clearly label the name of the road. All buffers, easements or floodplains located on the property (no structure may be located in these areas
- Permit Fees - All fees are paid in Building Inspection and are payable at the time of application. Checks, Cash, American Express, Discover, MasterCard or Visa are accepted. Checks are payable to “Treasurer, Chesterfield County.” Fees are subject to change. Please consult the commercial fee schedule for the most current information.
Commercial Plan Review
Plan reviewers from all applicable departments review the submitted plans and documents for code and ordinance compliance.
- Building Inspection – reviews the plans for building code compliance
- Planning – reviews the plot plan for setbacks, easements and zoning compliance
- Environmental Engineering – reviews the plot plan for setbacks from all easements and environmental features.
- Utilities – reviews the plot plan and permit application to verify there are no encroachments into water and sewer easement
If plan corrections are necessary, the plan reviewer talks with the applicant to see if the plans and documents can be corrected. Incomplete plans, or plans that cannot be corrected, are not be eligible for walk-thru permits during that visit.
Upon approval of all reviews, the Building Inspection Department issues the permit to the applicant, along with the plans.
- If corrections are required, the applicant receives a letter explaining the corrections to be made. (Incomplete plans, or plans that cannot be corrected, are not eligible for walk-thru permits during that visit.)
- Once the corrections are made, the applicant may return for a walk-thru permit or go through the regular permit process.
- Approved building permit must be visible on the job site, and construction plans must be available to the county inspectors on the job site.
- Any change from the plan or to the permit requires an amendment, revision of plan or a new permit.