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New Multi-Family Residential Projects

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12.4.08 001




This Guide is designed to help you through the permitting and construction process associated with multi-family residential projects, which includes hotels, motels, apartments, condominiums and other buildings containing more than two dwelling units. A building permit is required for all multi-family residential projects.


We recommend that the first thing you do is schedule a Pre-Application meeting. The purpose of the meeting is to give you the opportunity to meet with representatives from various City departments/divisions to identify and discuss any major issues at an early stage of the project. To schedule, call 619-585-5621, or visit the Planning Division counter located at 276 Fourth Avenue, Building B (northwest corner of 4th Avenue and F Street in Chula Vista.)

The Chula Vista Zoning Ordinance applies to the use and location of all structures, including those not requiring a building permit. All new structures must therefore be reviewed by the Planning Division to ensure the structure meets the requirements of the zone. Please check with Planning staff to ensure your proposed structure(s) meets all standards, such as setbacks from property lines and adjacent structures, allowable height, and lot coverage.

Projects requiring discretionary approvals (Design Review Permit, Conditional Use Permit, etc.) must be approved before applying for a building permit.

How to Apply

For us to accept your permit application, you must provide us with a complete submittal package, consisting of the following:

  1. A completed "New Single & Multi-Family Worksheet" (Form 4611) and a completed New Residential Intake Worksheet
  2. Five (5) copies of a Plot/Site Plan showing the general layout of the building site, location of new and existing buildings, accessible route, retaining walls and other structures. Please review the handout, "How To Prepare A Residential Plot Plan" (Form 4595)
  3. Five (5) copies of construction plans and details, including but not limited to:
    • Title sheet
    • Foundation plan
    • Floor plan
    • Elevations
    • Roof plan
    • Cross sections
    • Framing plans and details
    • Plans demonstrating compliance with disabled access requirements
    • Electrical/plumbing/mechanical plans
    • Other applicable plans as listed in the "New Single & Multifamily Worksheet" (Form 4611)
  4. Two (2) copies of each of the following documents are required:
  5. One electronic copy of entire submittal (optional)
  6. New Construction projects over 1,000 square feet require a Waste Management Report; projects over 10,000 square feet also require a deposit (calculated on square footage)
  7. For Phased development, please complete the Multi-Family Worksheet and submit with each phase
  8. Follow this link to see if your project is eligible for  Expedited Service or other incentives


During the permitting process you will be asked to pay basic permit fees: Intake Fees, Plan Check Fees and Inspection Fees. You are required to pay the Intake and Plan Check Fees at project submittal. Inspection Fees are paid at time of permit issuance.

For additional information on fees, please see Fee Information - New Multi-Family Construction fees are found in "New Construction Permit Fees" and are based on Occupancy Type, Construction Type and Square Footage.  Please note that in addition to Building Fees, new construction projects are also required to pay Development Impact Fees.  For more information about these fees, see the Land Development Division's Development Checklist.

Review Process

After the Development Services Technician (DST) verifies that the application package is complete, and the Intake and Plan Check Fees are paid, a set of plans/documents will be routed to each of the five departments/divisions:  Building, Planning, Engineering, Wastewater and Fire. Approval from all five departments/divisions is required prior to permit issuance. To contact any of the departments/divisions, please see the contact list shown at the end of this document.

The plan check process is then tracked in Accela, the City of Chula Vista's Automated Tracking System. The standard turn-around-time for an initial review is 28 calendar days. The standard turn-around-time for follow-up reviews (rechecks) is 14 calendar days. The primary contact/applicant for the project will be notified via email at the end of each review cycle when corrections are ready for pick up or the permit is ready to issue.

Once all the required approvals are obtained and the Inspection Fees are paid, a DST will issue a building permit and construction may begin.


At certain stages of the construction, you must schedule inspections.  To schedule an inspection with the Building Division, go to Citizen Access and enter your permit number (or address).

After all required inspections are approved and required approvals from other divisions and/or departments are obtained, our Building Inspector will notify SDG&E to release the electric meter. For multi-family and commercial buildings, a Certificate of Occupancy will be issued. The issuance of a Certificate of Occupancy authorizes you to occupy and use the facility based on the permitted use shown on the Certificate of Occupancy.  The City of Chula Vista does not issue Certificates of Occupancy on single family dwellings.



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