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Building and Development Services
Steve Smallwood, Chief Building Official
715 Princess Anne Street, Room L6
P.O. Box 7447
Fredericksburg, VA 22404
Phone: (540) 372-1080
Fax: (540) 310-0636
Hours: M-F, 8:15 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Our mission is to safeguard the health, safety and general welfare of the public and to protect life and property from all hazards incident to building design, construction, maintenance, use, repair, removal or demolition in a courteous, responsive, and professional manner. The general function of the Building and Development Services Department (B&DS) is to administer the provisions of the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code, Property Maintenance Code, Erosion and Sediment Control and Site Development regulations and associated laws of the Commonwealth and the City of Fredericksburg. B&DS performs building and site plan review, construction inspections, property maintenance inspections, and site inspections in the City. Each year B&DS issues approximately 1,800 construction permits and conducts over 10,000 building and site inspections.
The Building Permit Process In accordance with State law, B&DS is responsible for enforcement of the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code (USBC) within the City. The USBC and the Fredericksburg City Code require permits for all new construction, additions, installations, alterations/remodeling, demolition, changes of use, changes of occupancy, movement of a lot or property line, removal or disturbing any asbestos, and any work not specifically exempted by the Code. Permits must be obtained prior to the commencement of any work. The building permit review process typically requires 6-8 weeks for complex projects. Smaller, simpler projects may be reviewed in a shorter period of time. The permit holder is responsible for assuring that all required inspections have been conducted and approved by the B&DS. A certificate of occupancy, indicating completion of the work for which a permit was issued, must be obtained from B&DS prior to occupying the building or structure.
The Site Plan Review Process A site plan is a detailed engineering drawing depicting the overall development scheme and proposed improvements to a particular tract of land. Information provided on a typical site plan includes, but is not limited to, existing and proposed elevations, erosion and sediment control measures, stormwater management facilities, vehicular and pedestrian access and circulation plans, parking lot layout, water and sewer facilities, and landscaping. The purpose of the site plan is to facilitate utilization of the most advantageous techniques in the development of land and to promote high standards and innovations in the layout, design, landscaping and implementation of development. Site plans are generally required for all new buildings, large additions to existing buildings, and changes in use of existing buildings. Site plans are submitted to B&DS for review and then forwarded to the Planning Commission for approval. The site plan review process typically requires approximately 60-90 days to complete.
The City of Fredericksburg has adopted Part III Virginia Maintenance Code of the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code. The provisions of this part of the USBC prescribe building maintenance regulations to be complied with in the maintenance and repair of existing structures and equipment.
Weeds, Grass and Litter
The City Code requires property owners and tenants to keep all exterior private property free from litter and to keep weeds and grass cut to a height of no more than 12-inches.
Inoperative Motor Vehicles
In the City, it is unlawful to keep an inoperative motor vehicle on any residential, commercial, or mixed-use property unless the vehicle is kept within a fully enclosed building or structure or is otherwise shielded or screened from view. An inoperative motor vehicle is any vehicle which is either not in operating condition, has been partially or totally disassembled for a period of 60 days or longer, or which fails to display a valid state license plate, City license decal or a current state inspection sticker.
General InformationOffice Location/Hours
Building InspectionsBuilding Codes
Third Party Inspections
General & Administrative
A & E Charts
Site DevelopmentSite Development
Preliminary Plan Meeting
Site Plan Submission
Site Plan Review/Approval
Chesapeake Bay Act
Design Standards Manual
ApplicationsCertificate of Occupancy
2009 Code ChangesIRC
IBC, VA Construction
IBC Chapters 7, 10, 11
USBC Chapter 1