155 Deer Hill Avenue
Danbury, CT 06810
The Building Department is a key division for planning the future of the City of Danbury. We work with our applicants throughout the life of a building, from the planning stages, the approvals, through all required inspections, to its completion, and any problems that may arise thereafter.
Our staff consists of the Building Official, five Assistant Building Inspectors, a Plumbing/HVAC Inspector, an Electrical Inspector, and a Clerk.
All applications are submitted through the Permit Center, and the Zoning Department must first approve the use and location before it can be reviewed by the Building Department. All inspectors review applications and construction plans, perform inspections, and answer technical questions daily. We respond to questions and complaints from the public, whether at our counter at City Hall, by e-mail, or phone calls, or in the field, as well as following up on complaints referred to us by other departments –Mayor’s office, Fire, Police, Zoning, Health and Housing, and the UNIT.
Plans are reviewed for conformance to the Connecticut State Building Code. Applications for a deck or shed can be reviewed in possibly twenty minutes or so, while larger project plans for commercial buildings can require weeks. Upon approval, permits are issued, and inspections performed as requested. Once a final inspection at 100% completion is performed, a Certificate of Occupancy is issued.
As a matter of interest it should be pointed out that our inspectors are required by state statute to attend classes on a regular basis for continuing education to maintain their licenses. This is to make them aware of the latest construction technology and products in the construction and public safety fields. The minimum number of classroom hours is ninety every three years. It should also be noted that by state statute the state is mandated to change our building codes every four years, so we are constantly involved in a learning process.
We also continually work with applicants to resolve open permits lacking inspections and certificates of occupancy, sometimes brought to us at the last minute the day before a closing, with some dating back as many as thirty years. Many times we are also called upon to act as expert witnesses in depositions and defend abatements in court in order to get compliance.
Construction in Danbury has steadily continued to pick up this past year. There has been quite a bit of new construction taking place as well as an abundance of remodeling. Our department continues to respond to many requests for information, and resolves many complaints of unsafe conditions.
Danbury Hospital has steadily progressed with work on the North Tower addition that should be water tight by August of this year. They have also renovated the Cancer Center, upgraded the patient and operating rooms, added a NICU pavilion, and expanded the Blue Parking Garage. They should be commended for their effort.
The Shops at Marcus Dairy are completed with Whole Foods, Panera Bread, EMS, and Petco in place. The Matrix Corporate Center has added 5000 sq. ft. of daycare; the new tenant is the Goddard School. United Technology and Boehringer Ingelheim have completed their respective additions and are prospering. The Hilton Hotel chain will be constructing a new hotel on Prindle Lane. We have issued permits for a new 200,000 sq. ft. manufacturing facility for Belimo on Turner Road. They will be employing some 300 to 400 people. Downtown Danbury now has a new tenant (Price Rite) in the old A&P on South Main Street. They have completely renovated the building. They are said to have very competitive pricing which is good for Danbury. We also have a new Pilgrim Furniture store in the same building as Bob’s on Federal Road across from Stew Leonard’s. With regards to our educational system, the new Head Start on Foster Street is completed. This should prove to be very beneficial for many residents. We have also approved plans for additions and renovations for Stadley Rough school, Shelter Rock school, Mill Ridge Intermediate school and Park Avenue school. Regarding residential projects, Abbey Woods has 60 units of the 90 units occupied in their first constructed building and are half-way through their second building, and we have already started a third building. Kudos to Building and Land Technology. Toll Bros. has sixty units going at the Ridge at Rivington which are sold and we have just issued another forty permits, Timber Oaks on lower South Street have also been selling a lot of units as well, and we have just issued permits for their last two buildings. Lakeside Condominiums have completed their 25 units and appear to be selling quickly. Victorian Meadows on Osborne Street are completely occupied and more buildings are slated to be built. These are not all the residential projects being built here in Danbury; yet you can imagine the activity we are experiencing.
On another note, our shoppers at Danbury Fair Mall will encounter the new Chipotle Grill, the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Crumb’s Bakery and Ann Taylor’s just to mention a few of the new tenants.
The storms we experienced this past year caused a lot of damage. Quite a few homes had trees fall and penetrate their roofs. One building on Beaverbrook Road had its roof completely torn off the building which fell into and blocked Beaverbrook Road. Forty-four people were displaced. The repairs were performed and everything is back to normal. It was unfortunate that a number of buildings had to be demolished. Yet each family is rebuilding. Needless to say, a substantial increase in permits for repairing tree damage, re-roofing, residing etc. were issued as well as permits for generators being installed.
This past year we also successfully pursued litigation against several properties with code violations, unsafe conditions, and illegal construction. Quite a few buildings were removed or renovated and many illegal apartments were removed
Due to a busy local real estate market, our office has also been busy fulfilling requests for information on properties and providing copies of old inspection records, permits and certificates of occupancies. Our clerk has provided information for numerous requests and continues to be in demand with attorneys, realtors, appraisers, tradesmen and the general public.
We are also working on a long-term project to revamp our storage archives and create a digital index of older permits.
The Building Department’s inspectors are on emergency call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Our inspectors respond to fires, floods, explosions, freeze-ups, pipe breaks, electrical issues, gas leaks, vehicles striking buildings, and unsafe conditions. One never knows what to expect when responding to an after-hours call.
We are always pleased to work with citizens and developers to protect the public safety and enhance the quality of life in Danbury through the creation of a visible difference in the appearance of the city, and support for the growth and vitality of our economic and community base. The Building Department looks for construction within the City of Danbury to remain strong well into the future, and stands ready to embrace the challenges that it will bring.