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This document stems from a request by Contractors and Developers who would like to have a better understanding about how to deal with commercial projects being phased in a strategic delivery process. This is only used as a guide and is especially important for larger projects. The primary interest is in understanding the conditions of phasing, the conditions of the project, the permitting process, the inspections process, the documentation needed for life safety, and health concerns necessary for a successful Certificated Occupancy (CO) or Temporary Certificate of Occupancy (TCO) for those designated areas.
As a reminder, these steps are only for Mecklenburg County Code Enforcement (Building, Electrical, Plumbing and Mechanical). For all other associated agencies involved with the project, it is necessary for you to contact them directly to determine how to meet their ordinances and policies in order for them to release their holds at the time of CO and TCO for the phasing strategy.
Below are the best practices that have shown positive results for the project time-line and meet the expectations of the customer. Key points to consider and understand when developing a phasing plan for a project: 1. Preliminary Plan Review When designing your project, it is important to involve Mecklenburg County Code Enforcement as early as possible so that everyone will have an understanding of the phasing strategy for Occupancy and Construction. Typically, this is done by the Design Professional (Architect, Engineer, Owners, Developer and Contractors) who requests a preliminary review. This meeting is most productive when plan review staff and Inspections team Project Managers (PMs) are present. An important aspect of the preliminary meeting is to make sure all parties understand the concept of phasing and how the phasing plan will be implemented through the project schedule. If the design team has a particular request for an inspection team memeber to be present during the meeting; the lead design professional must request that trade inspector on the preliminary application. Note the attendance of a specific inspector will be subjet to their inspection work load. and time availability. The initial preliminary review is free of charge. Additionional preliminary reviews or project scope meetings will be subject to a nominal fee. The fee charges are based on the number of the inspections team members who are required or requested to be present in the follow-up meeting(s). At the conclusion of each Preliminary Review meeting, the Design Team will submit meeting minutes, through their EPM Dashboard, to plan review staff for approval. To start the process, please click here to see how the Preliminary Plan Review process works and benefits your project.
Key Points for the Preliminary Review meeting:
The design team (Architects and Engineers) is required to take all meeting minutes and distribute them via email and in the Electronic Plan Management system (EPM).
2. Plan Review Process When the project is submitted to our Electronic Plan Management System (EPM), the construction drawings should include all the Building, Mechanical, Plumbing and Electrical systems, as well as the life safety components. These must be in place for the building and for each Occupancy and Construction phasing area. The design team is responsible (Architects and Engineers) for having their construction documents coordinated to reflect all aspects of the Occupancy and Construction phasing plan areas and any life safety systems necessary for occupancy.
Also, the plans should reflect all the key points discussed and covered in the Preliminary Plan Review meeting, as well as the phased construction plan strategy. The design team should have at least one permit application included in the submittal package. A permitting meeting will be scheduled with the construction team once the plan review has been approved. The permitting meeting will provide the contruction team with the necessary information to complete and submit additional permit applications to support phased construction.
For more information about the EPM system please click here.
5. Changes to initial phasing plans or how to implement a phasing plan if one was not done prior to permitting:
5.1 Changes to an Initial Occupancy and Construction Phasing Plan
If changes are made to the original Occupancy and Construction phasing plan, it will be necessary for the customer to review the changes with the inspection team and possibly submit a Revision to Approved Plans (RTAP) to outline the changes and the new proposal for delivery. This will have to be verified with the inspectors and team representatives first. This plan must be reviewed for code compliance an additional phasing meeting be necessary to verify the overall concept of the phasing plan, permit applications and safe guards of the construction process with the inspection team and project managers to make sure all have an understanding of the revised phasing plan, their new roles and responsibilities as outlined in the revised construction documents. This will be an opportunity for any addition concerns or specific considerations to be discussed before permitting.
It will also be necessary for the inspection division to verify how the change will affect inspections that have already been performed and if adjustments need to be made to existing permits if new permits are required.
5.2 Implementing an Occupancy and Construction phasing plan if one was not done prior to permitting