Despite current height measurement procedures, building inspectors often find structures that exceeded their allowable height, requiring extensive and costly rework. To help prevent such problems in the future, we are modifying our current procedure to require that building heights be certified by a California-licensed civil engineer or surveyor. In order to serve you in a timely and efficient way, we are notifying you of this change now so that you will be prepared to follow the policy on future projects.
This policy will be implemented county-wide for all projects on which the actual height will be within three feet of the allowable height. The certification procedure, which may be imposed during either the land use or building permit application process, will consist of the following:
Prior to any site disturbance, a licensed surveyor or civil engineer shall stake the building corners, establish average natural grade and set a reference point (benchmark); or, for those few cases in which the height reference is other than natural grade, the licensed surveyor or civil engineer shall determine the specified reference point.
Prior to approval of roof nailing inspection, the applicant shall provide the building inspector with documentation that gives the height reference, the allowable height and the actual height of the structure. This certification shall be prepared by a licensed surveyor or civil engineer.
In addition, to avoid errors that may require costly modifications during construction, we highly recommend that the topographic map of the property be prepared by a licensed professional.
If you have questions regarding this policy, please contact Doug Morris at 781-5625.