Thursday, February 19, 2009

Metro building codes, deadlines guide put on Web site

By Michael Cass • THE TENNESSEAN • February 19, 2009 Top-dollar developers and homeowners planning for more square footage have a new place to go for all the relevant Metro rules, codes and deadlines. A new Metro government Web site provides a guide to the city's development and planning processes, making it easier to navigate what can be a confusing and intimidating world. "It's meant for everybody from the big builder to somebody putting a porch on the back of their house," said Craig Owensby, spokesman for the Metro Planning Department. The site at offers a flow chart for builders to follow, from optional pre-application planning meeting through Metro Council approval, and on to the issuance of building permits. Current and proposed building codes are listed, too. The requirements of eight city departments, from Water Services to Public Works to the Nashville Fire Department, are posted as well. Skip Lawrence, a builder and developer with Lawrence Bros. LLC, said the site is "a welcome service, and a needed one." "For as long as we've been doing it, it's still confusing," Lawrence said. "Scheduling is always a trick. You can miss a submittal by a couple of days and be postponed by a couple of months." Mayor backs project Owensby said the site will evolve as city officials in the various departments get feedback from their customers. He said officials have recognized the need for such a site for a while, but Mayor Karl Dean's office pressed the issue. "As a government, we need to do all that we can to make it easier for companies and individuals to navigate the process for building and developing in our city and be involved as that process is changed," Dean said in a news release.

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