Even though it seems that everything in our fast-paced world is speeding up, some important things are slowing down. For many years, it typically took two to three weeks to get a construction design release (CDR) for a construction project back from the Building Safety Division of Indiana Homeland Security. Plan review stretched out to six weeks last summer, but by December it had returned back to four weeks. However, since the first of this year, it has steadily increased until this week the state’s web site states that you need to allow (57) calendar days to receive your CDR.
What this means to you more than ever:
- You can no longer wait until the last minute to file for permits and expect to meet occupancy schedules.
- Include a design professional as early as possible so as to make the the project planning, designing, & documenting process as efficient as possible and compress the time to state submittal.
- Engage a design professional familiar with state codes & procedures so that the state review process is properly managed and not prolonged.
- Use fast-track design & build methodologies.
- As a last-ditch option, you can pay a $5,000.00 fee to get an expedited review from the state to get your CDR in a few days. Last year, owners of over a hundred projects chose this option and is one of the main causes of the back-up in the system.
The timing issues with state plan review have not gone unnoticed. Currently House Bill HB1301 is working its way through the legislature. It is a hastily put together group of band-aide fixes produced by political pressure. Among other things, it proposes to help the situation by releasing the CDR for many projects without any plan review for code compliance – a big public life safety concern.
Even if this new legislation passes, it will take months or longer for it to come into effect, and I believe that it does not really address the real solutions needed to correct the review timing problem. Therefore, we believe this problem is going to be with us for the foreseeable future. Please contact PDMi as soon as possible for help with your next construction project so that start of construction and final occupancy are not delayed.
P.S. The adoption of the new 2014 Indiana Building, Fire, Mechanical, & Fuel Gas Codes has also slowed down and the effective date has been delayed from July 1st to at least September 1st of this year.