The New York City Department of Buildings (DOB) launched a $29.6 million computer system designed to streamline the construction process. The plan is to change what was a paper-filing system into an all-digital process in four phases allowing contractors to schedule online inspections.
Four Phases
The first phase of DOBNOW launched in 2016 which allowed sprinkler and plumbing systems to file building and construction permits online. Over the past two years, the department has added applications for other construction activities. Soon, it will be possible to apply for permits for an entire building or to schedule a New York City online inspection from the comfort of a home or office. Using $120 million in funds allocated by the mayor, hundreds of new staff have been hired in New York in order to modernize processes in the city.
Four Main Components
The system consists of four main components. DOB NOW: Inspections allows for online inspections scheduling, tracking and notifications. It is also used for enforcement and development inspections. The component used to be known as Inspection Ready. DOB NOW: Build allows users to complete job filings, permits and Letters of Completion. DOB NOW: Safety provides online access to compliance filings and DOB NOW: Licensing will allow for online examination filing issuance as well as renewal for licensing. The licensing component is not complete but should be online soon.
Learning the System
New York City has created videos designed to show users how the program works. The videos, found on YouTube, provide in-depth instruction on each section of DOB NOW making it easier for users to navigate the system and to schedule a New York City online inspection. Once the program was launched, paper filings for inspections and permits were no longer accepted. The online program must be used for all permitting and filing requirements. In 2017, the City began asking borough commissioners and senior building code consultants to help technology experts adapt DOB Now to meet real-world challenges that occur during the filing process. Because permit filing is much more complex than other actions performed online, a human element as well as institutional knowledge are critical to the success of the program.
The permitting and filing requirements can be confusing. Insparisk can help guide you through the process to be sure you meet all requirements under the law. We have experience with DOB NOW and can put the pieces together to be sure you are compliant. You can reach us by phone at 888-GO-INSPARISK (888-464-7727) or by filling out the form on our website.
For now, check out this “How To DOBNOW” video created by Insparisk.