Code Enforcement

Zoning Division

As of Monday, May 3, 2021 the City of Burlington transitioned to a new permit system: Open Gov

This new permit system is part of the city's permit reform efforts and enables online applications for all permits administered by the Department of Permitting & Inspections.  Paper applications and payments are no longer necessary.  Short form applications for simple projects including decks, windows, roofing, siding, fences, and repairs are available.  For other projects, a more comprehensive construction and zoning application form is available.  First time users need to create an account to log in and use the system.  

The Dept. of Permitting & Inspections is now open to the public Monday - Friday from 7:00 AM - 4:00 PM. 

Face masks are no longer required if you are fully vaccinated.  Please do not enter the building if you are sick. Staff contact info is noted on the Personnel Page.

Burlington's Comprehensive Development Ordinance includes both the City's zoning and subdivision regulations. Zoning is a City regulatory process concerned with land use and development. Zoning subdivides a community into "Zoning Districts" that define what types of land uses can go where, and controls the intensity of uses, the size of buildings, and their placement on the land. Subdivision regulations govern how properties are divided or combined in order to create individual lots for sale.

 Process Graphic

Zoning Permits are usually accompanied by Construction Permits which are issued by the Trades Division within the Department of Permitting & Inspections. Construction permitting ensures that all health and safety codes related to the actual construction and renovation of structures are taken into consideration. Construction Permits are issued for building, electrical, plumbing, mechanical and fire suppression systems.  You may apply for all of these permits concurrently in the online permitting system.

Once all of the permits have been approved and the work has been completed in accordance with those permits, you will need a Final Unified Certificate of Occupancy (this completes both the zoning and construction permit processes) before you can start using the new or renovated space.

Resources, checklists, and other information are available below to help guide you through the permitting process. A more detailed overview, history and summary of zoning today is also available.

The CIty of Burlington adheres to Vermont law that accessory use solar PV is by right in all zones.  To learn more about the state law, please visit: 

Title 24; Chapter 117; § 4413. Limitations on municipal bylaws (g)(1)(2)

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