Zoning

The Official Word   “You need to get a Certificate of Occupancy if you’re planning to change the designated use or occupancy of a space.” -City of Philadelphia   As you may or may not know the Use of a space is regulated through Zoning. However, a Certificate of Occupancy is a form of Building Permit. Typically, when you change the Use of a space you are also renovating it...

Read More

Time is Money   When you are planning to renovate a home or start a new business, many times, the most important thing to consider is timing. So if your project involves obtaining permits or licenses from the City, it is important that you know what the different timetables are.   But before we discuss specific timetables of different permits, the first thing to know is that you will...

Read More

Expediting Versus Accelerating   Last week we debunked many of the myths and misconceptions surrounding the art of expediting. This week we decided to follow up that conversation with a post specifically dedicated to the differences between expediting and accelerating.   Expeditors, as previously explained, can increase the speed and efficiency of obtaining permits by filing paperwork correctly and mitigating setbacks along the way. However, another way to...

Read More

What is Expediting?   An expeditor is a person who is licensed with the City to file permits and licenses on behalf of another individual. An expeditor can also create tax accounts with the city, file deeds, and register a change of address with the Office of Property Assessment.   Expeditors cannot, however, request special favors. We cannot circumvent the process or evade any rules or procedures.   It is our...

Read More

Tomorrow is Cinco De Mayo a holiday that, like most other holidays, is celebrated by heavy drinking. And as most of us know from experience, there is really a no more efficient way to get to that utterly blissful state of intoxication than by taking shots.   Now, I am sure you must be thinking, where is this going? Taking shots has nothing to do with...

Read More

We constantly receive messages asking us to look into the zoning on a property, confirm the zoning, verify the zoning, etc.   Checking the zoning on a property is not always straightforward, but it can be done with the right tools. We will give you the tools to draw your own conclusions about the zoning on whatever property you may be concerned about. But if you don’t...

Read More

  “The pseudoscience of city planning and its companion, the art of city design, have not yet broken with the spacious comfort of wishes, familiar superstitions, oversimplifications, and symbols. They have not yet embarked upon the adventure of probing the real world.” [pg. 13] -Jane Jacobs The Death and Life of Great American Cities  (1961)   This assertion that city planning is crippled by symbols and superstitions is nowhere...

Read More

Engines of Growth   Cities are the impetus for economic growth. This statement is the thesis of a massive study published in 2010 by the United Nations. Since this revelation has become common knowledge, scholars and researchers have directed their efforts towards answering a more pointed question- what are the circumstances under which city’s become efficient engines of economic growth?   Innovation is one answer. Innovations in technology...

Read More

An additional information request is sent by Licenses and Inspections whenever one of their plans examiners wants to know more about your project.  Getting this letter is not an indication of failure, it is actually considered a standard response as requirements for permits can be as unpredictable as the weather. However, in the off chance you do not receive a request for additional information, you deserve...

Read More

Getting Signed Up   Putting up a sign is one of the most fundamental forms of advertising. If you own a business, you want people to be able to find you, to know who you are, etc. This is what a good sign conveys. However, in order to post a sign over your business in the City of Philadelphia, you must first get permission.   Most signs require...

Read More