12 - Encroachment in Public Way (R Permit)

Revised on 05-21-2021

Applications for building permits filed with LADBS are checked to determine encroachment into the public right of way.  All cases of actual or possible encroachment are referred to BOE for review.  In some instances, there may be multiple scenarios contained in one clearance.  The provisions of Chapter 32 CBC allow for the encroachment of structures into the Public Right of Way (PRW) with certain limitations and with the approval of the Department of Public Works (DPW).

Note: BOE created the Customer Service Request (CSR) Portal (located in the Customer Portal) to allow members of the public to make contact with City Staff for questions and/or assistance on any permit or development services related matter.  This includes requesting clearances for building permits.

Codes and regulations that govern this process include but are not limited to:

Processing Building & Safety Clearances

The goal of this procedure is to provide Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety (LADBS) customers with an early acknowledgment that their project may require Bureau of Engineering (BOE) review for impact to public right of way.  Encroachments that require approval by BOE may also require the applicant to obtain a BOE Revocable Permit prior to BOE  providing clearance of the item on the Clearance Summary Worksheet.  

BOE staff should verify/collect the following based on the scope of work of the project: 

  1. Copy of the Clearance Summary Worksheet
    1. If a balcony, LADBS will determine if the balcony will be used to satisfy the requirements of LAMC 12.21.G - Open Space Requirement for Six or More Residential Units (BOE shall not make this determination). 
    2. If BOE confirms the balcony complies with CBC 3202.3.2, BOE would change the status of the Clearance item to "Approved" 
  2. Copy of the Building Permit Application
  3. Copy of the plans submitted to LADBS  to determine what type of encroachment is to be reviewed.  Review the R Permit Technical Procedures Section of this manual to determine project specific requirements for the type of encroachment being reviewed
  4. Go to NavigateLA and search for the street address
    1. Check an aerial view to confirm the encroachment is in the public right-of-way (only applies to existing encroachments)
    2. Review any MapNotes to identify any previous concerns with the subject project
  5. Look at Google Maps to confirm encroachment from NavigateLA aerial view
  6. If required, submit an on-line R-Permit Application.  City Plan Checker will not sign off on the clearance until the Applicant has applied and paid for the R- Permit.
  7. BOE staff to login to PCIS and complete tasks 1-5 as shown in the document 00 - Clearance Summary Worksheet for Building Permit Application Clearances,  Plan Check and Inspection System (PCIS) Usage, under Building Permit Clearances, Technical Procedures, Clearance Summary Work Sheet Clearances.
    1. Confirm Encroachment in Public Way is listed in the Condition / Clearance Name field 
      1. Click the "Comment" box in the upper right side on the screen
        1. Comments should provide information to the District Office who will issue the Revocable Permit
          1. Sample Comment 1 - R-Permit must be issued prior to C of O, "Insert R-Permit Reference #"
          2. Sample Comment 2 - Revocable Permit #
  8. Update the "Status" field to one of the following:
    1. Pending - Applicant has not paid for an R-Permit
    2. Denied - Applicant will NOT apply for an R-Permit and one is required
    3. Approved - Used for the following two situations:
      1. Applicant has provided proof of an issued R-Permit 
      2. BOE has determined the encroachment is allowed per CBC and/or LAMC therefore the Applicant is not required to obtain a R Permit  
    4. Approved with Conditions - Applicant can show proof of applying and paying for an R Permit but no permit has been issued
    5. Approved for Drainage - Not used
    6. Exempt - Not used
    7. Not Required - BOE has determined there is no actual encroachment
  9. Click "Save Status" (if this is not clicked, the worksheet will not save)