Division of Facilities Management
Building Code Services
Frequently Asked Questions

QUESTIONS:   
  1. How long does it take to review a set of construction documents?
  2. What happens when approval of plans is withheld?
  3. How do we increase the priority of a project so a review can be completed ahead of other projects? 
  4. What are Schematic Design Documents (Phase I)?
  5. What are Design Development Documents (Phase II)?
  6. How do I schedule an inspection and can I specify a time for my inspection?
  7. How do I access Inspection / Plan Review comments?
   
QUESTION 1:  How long does it take to review a set of construction documents?
ANSWER: That depends on the scope of the project and its relative priority in the district. Normally the department strives to complete the reviews within a 30 day period.
       
QUESTION 2:  What happens when approval of plans is withheld?
       
ANSWER: The project architect is contacted and specific discrepancies are required to be corrected and resubmitted. 
       
QUESTION 3:  How do we increase the priority of a project so a review can be completed ahead of other projects? 
       
ANSWER: In order to increase the priority the department director must forward a request to the building official documenting the reasons for the "urgent" request.
       
QUESTION 4:  What are Schematic Design Documents (Phase I)?
       
ANSWER: The following information shall be submitted to the Building Department for Schematic Design (Phase I Review). 
       
    • Site Plan. A site plan showing acreage; points of the compass; scale; contours and general topographical conditions; flood plain elevation and velocity zone; overall dimensions; adjacent highways, roads, emergency access; fire hydrants; power transmission lines; ownership and use of adjacent land; walks and paths; vehicle and bike parking areas; accessibility for the disabled; service areas; play areas; bus and car loading zones; existing buildings and use; location of proposed building(s) and future additions; community use buildings; phased construction; and preliminary soil borings. 
    • Flood Plain.  A statement should be included on the site plan identifying the FEMA flood zone and flood plain elevation in which the project is located. The statement shall be signed and dated by the A/E of record. 
    • Environmental Studies.  Evidence showing that required environmental studies have been completed and sensitive site areas have been identified as required by Section 235.193, F.S. 
    • Floor Plan.  Floor plans showing points of the compass, overall dimensions, identity of each space, proposed door locations, accessibility for the disabled, Florida Inventory of School Houses (FISH) numbers, occupant load of each space, proposed passive design and low energy usage features, possible community service areas and instructional spaces that can be converted to community use areas, any existing buildings and use, future additions, and phased construction. 
    • Public Shelter.  Indicate emergency public shelter design features, if applicable. 
    • Life Safety Plan.  A life-safety plan showing exits, accessibility for the disabled, fire walls, fire resistance rated walls, protected corridors, smoke barriers, fire alarm systems, room names and numbers, or any other life-safety features relevant to the facility. The life-safety plan shall also show if a fire sprinkler system is proposed. 
       
QUESTION 5:  What are Design Development Documents (Phase II)?
       
ANSWER: The following information shall be submitted to the Building Department for Design Development (Phase II Review).
       
  • Documents.  Design development documents should continue the development of the schematic phase documents and should include the following: 
    o 1. Site plans showing, in addition to Phase I requirements, landscaping, drainage, water retention ponds, sewage disposal and water supply systems, and such physical features that may adversely affect or enhance the safety, health, welfare, visual environment, or comfort of the occupants. 
    o 2. A statement on the site plan identifying the number of existing, required and new trees to be planted. The statement shall be signed and dated by the design professional. 
    o 3. Soil testing results. Identify the proposed method of treatment for special foundation problems. 
    o 4. Floor plans including, but not limited to, the following: 
      • a. A floor plan showing the entire facility on one sheet, without line breaks. 
      • b. Floor plans drawn at a larger scale showing typical student-occupied spaces or special rooms with dimensions, equipment and furnishing layouts, sanitary facilities, stairs, elevators, and identification of accessible areas for the disabled. 
      • c. Floor plans for additions to an existing facility shall indicate the connections and tie-ins to the building, including all existing spaces, exits, plumbing fixtures and locations, and any proposed changes thereto. Distinguish between new and existing areas for renovations, remodeling, or an addition. 
    o 5. Existing facilities to be remodeled or renovated may use accessibility lifts provided: 
      • a. Sketches of proposed vertical platform lifts shall include layout drawings showing the effect of the lift on existing corridor width and existing from the affected facility. 
      • b. Sketches of proposed inclined wheel chair lift shall include layout drawings showing the effect of the lift on the stairway width in the folded and unfolded position, as well as the upper and lower platform storage locations, and the sketches shall also show the effect on existing from the affected areas of the facility. 
    o 6. Life-safety plan to show exit strategy, rated doors, emergency wall openings, working stage protection, range and fume hoods, eyewash and emergency showers. 
      • a. By symbol, indicate fire sprinklers, fire alarm equipment, smoke vents, master valves and emergency disconnects, emergency lighting, emergency power equipment, fire extinguishers, exit signs, smoke and fire dampers, and other life- safety equipment relevant to the facility. 
      • b. By symbol, indicate connections and tie-ins to existing equipment 
    o 7. When planning open-space schools, a floor plan should be developed showing the methods used to permanently define the means of egress, such as surface finish or color. 
    o 8. Plumbing fixtures locations and fixture unit calculations. 
    o 9. A minimum of two (2) exterior building elevators to show the general character of the facility. 
    o 10. Typical building sections to show dimensions, proposed construction materials, and relationship of finished floor to finished grades
    o 11. Outline specifications giving general description of finishes, materials, and systems, including HVAC, electrical, plumbing, and specialty items, including fire sprinklers, if proposed. 
  • Life-Cycle Cost Analysis (LCCA). LCCA shall be prepared for review along with design development documents. 
  • Florida Energy Efficiency Code for Building Construction (FEEC). FEEC forms, including calculations for mechanical systems, documenting energy efficiency ratio rating of HVAC equipment, electrical systems, insulation, and building envelope, should be prepared for review along with the design development documents. 
   
QUESTION 6:  How do I schedule an inspection and can I specify a time for my inspection?
   
ANSWER:  To initiate a request for inspection, contact the Building Code Services @ (561) 383-2093. Requesters may contact the inspector to arrange a specific time. For more information on inspections, go to the Building Code Services web-site and click on “Procedures”. Then click on “Construction Inspections” (BD-009).
 
QUESTION 7: How do I access Inspection / Plan Review comments?
 
ANSWER:  The Database can be accessed from any computer with an internet connection.  Click on this link (PowerPoint) for a "how to" demo.