Project Guide for Driveways & Parking Pads

This guide is intended to provide you an overview of the permitting process for driveways and parking pads.  All work on driveways must be completed by a licensed contractor.

Help Me Get Started . . .

Before you start your project, you need to know what regulations apply to your property and what factors may impact your project. You'll need to consider:


Historic Landmark Status

If your property is in a local historic landmark district or is a designated landmark structure, the Landmark Preservation staff must complete a design review of your project before you begin. Use the DevelopDENVER tool to the right to determine your property’s landmark status. Changes to the exterior of landmarked properties require approval from Landmark Preservation prior to the issuance of appropriate zoning, building, curb cut, or revocable permits.   Visit the design review web page for more information.

 

Zoning

Zoning establishes standards for things such as the size and location of structures and acceptable uses for your property. Before you begin construction, you need to be sure your project is in compliance with the Denver Zoning Code. Use the DevelopDENVER tool to the right to determine the zoning for your property. In the results, click on your zone district for descriptions and definitions; then, click on your neighborhood context for more information on zoning in your area.



Parkways

Any project that encroaches on a designated parkway setback will need to undergo parkways review. Certain parkways and boulevards are specifically designated by ordinance to preserve their unique character. Each designated parkway has its own right-of-way width and regulations of setback distance of structures and signs. If you are unsure if you live along a designated parkway or for your parkway’s specific regulations, enter your address into the DevelopDENVER tool at right. Look under “Designated Parkways” on the results panel on the left. If a specific parkway appears, click on the “Details” button for information on setbacks.



Denver Forestry

If any portion of your project has the potential to affect the trunk, canopy or roots of the street trees around your property, before you begin, you must contact Denver Forestry by email (forestry@denvergov.org) or phone (720-913-0651) to evaluate your project. Any removal, trimming or planting of trees within the public right of way must be permitted through the City Forester’s Office.  Damages to street trees may result in the issuance of administrative citations and/or fines. Visit the Denver Forestry web page and click on Property Owner Resources for information on hiring a licensed tree service company or requesting a permit.



Transportation

Transportation review and approval is needed if you are changing the location of any driveways that connect to public streets or proposing improvements, such as changing the curb cut, within the “right of way” (ROW), which includes public streets and sidewalks. All ROW projects must be performed by a licensed contractor and in full compliance with the City Charter, ordinances, permitting processes and all other applicable standards, specifications and requirements. Licensed contractors can obtain ROW permits at Public Works Permit Operations, 2000 West 3rd Avenue, or directly from the ROW inspector at (303) 446-3469. NOTE: Alterations to a driveway that connects to an alley, instead of a public street or sidewalk, do not require transportation review.



Location of Utilities

When designing your project, you need to know where utilities are located. You cannot build over existing utilities. Before you dig, contact the Utility Notification Center of Colorado at 1-800-922-1987 or 811 to mark underground utilities for your project.

Listed in the order they must be obtained. All permits must be in hand and at site before work may begin.

  1. Current City of Denver Contractor’s License
    NOTE: ROW improvements must be performed by a licensed contractor.
  2. Landmark Certificate of Appropriateness – if the project is in a designated historic district or landmark property. Visit the design review web page for more information.
  3. Forestry Review – required if your project will impact the canopy or roots of street trees. Contact Denver Forestry by email (forestry@denvergov.org) or by phone at 720-913-0651 to evaluate your project and visit the Denver Forestry web page for additional information. Allow about 3 to 5 business working days for inspections and approval.
  4. Parkways Review – if your property is along a designated parkway and the project encroaches on the parkway setback
    You will need: A completed Parkway Exception Request form and a site plan that includes property lines, parkway setback from property line, proposed type, location and dimensions of encroachment into parkway setback, location of existing residence on property and labeled streets. To get a copy of the form and additional information, contact parkways@denvergov.org
  5. Transportation Review - if project involves a new or modified driveway connection to the street (curb cut).
    You will need: A site plan that includes the location of the existing and proposed driveways; dimensions from the driveway to the property line and any adjacent driveways; width and length of driveway; and material used in construction. Find the city transportation engineer assigned to your area using the DevelopDENVER tool at right and contact him/her for more information.

The above must be in hand before you apply for the following:

  1. Zoning Permit (Residential Same Day Review)
    You will need: A site plan that includes the location of the existing and proposed driveways; dimensions from the driveway to the property line and any adjacent driveways; width and length of driveway; and material used in construction. 
  2. Street Occupancy and Street Cut Permit (PDF), if work will temporarily block the public right-of-way
  3. Right of way (ROW) Construction Permit – required for all work located in the ROW, which must be performed by a licensed contractor. Contractors can obtain the ROW permits at Public Works Permit Operations, 2000 West 3rd Avenue or directly from the ROW inspector at (303) 446-3469. NOTE: If significant improvements within the ROW are being proposed, you will need a transportation plan. Find your transportation engineer using the DevelopDENVER tool at right and contact him/her for more information. 

Sign in online or at the kiosk once for your zoning permit (Residential Same Day Review).

Estimate Fees
Zoning fees are based on valuation of the work to be completed including the labor and materials. ROW permit fees are based on the amount of work constructed and the amount of time they are occupying the ROW. View the permit fee schedules to estimate the fees required for your project. There is no additional fee for the Transportation, Parkways or  Landmark Preservation.

Pay Fees
Fees can be paid in person at our cashier on the 2nd floor of the Wellington Webb Building. We accept Visa, MasterCard and Discover Card, cash and checks at our counter.

To pay by mail, send checks to:
Development Services
Wellington Webb Municipal Building
201 W. Colfax Ave., 2nd Floor
Denver, Colorado 80202

 All approved construction set of documents, permits and inspector signature card are to be available on site upon request.

Typical inspections for driveways and parking pads include the following:

  • Improvements in the ROW will be inspected by the ROW inspector.
  • Denver Forestry

 

NOTE:  The inspections listed above may vary depending on the complexity of your project. You will be advised as to which inspections your project requires through the permitting process and by your inspector.

  • For existing driveways that are not going to be used anymore, the curb cut needs to be removed and replaced with standard curb, gutter, and sidewalk.
  • New or modified curb cuts need to be built per CCD STD DWG 6.0 (Standard Residential Curb Cut) and 6.3 (Corner Clearences & Minimum Distances between Access Points). See Transportation Standards and details
  • If the ROW inspector requires the replacement of any damaged improvements in the ROW adjacent to your site per Section 49-551.1 of the Denver Municipal Code, the property owner or lessee of any real property is responsible for the continuing care, maintenance, repair, and replacement of all improvements installed in the public ROW between the property line and the curb line adjoining their property. 
  • If the proposed driveway connects to a state hIghway, then CDOT access permits and a Transportation Engineering Plan will be required.   
  • For questions about the driveway location, Transportation Engineering Plan, or CDOT access permit requirements, please contact your Site Engineering Transportation Engineer using the DevelopDENVER tool at right.

Home Projects

Every project is different.  Depending upon the complexity of your project, the permit requirements and inspection process may vary from the information presented in this guide.  If you have any questions, please contact us.

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