There are many things we take for granted. Electricity at the flip of a switch, water at the turn of a knob, and waste disposal at the flush of a handle. Another aspect of our everyday lives that is often overlooked is the structural safety of our homes and or local businesses. Fortunately, while many of us take building safety for granted, the City of Happy Valley has Building Plans Examiners and Inspectors ensuring high-quality construction standards are met.
Obtaining a building permit is often one of the last steps in the development process. Once all land use criteria have been met and public improvements are constructed, contractors are able to get a building permit. Prior to acquiring a permit, builders are required to submit construction drawings. Building Plans Examiners make sure that proper fire suppression measures such as sprinklers and fire retardant materials will be installed. They certify that exits will be well marked and easy to locate in emergencies, adequate structural support will be provided, water and sewer pipes will be placed correctly, electrical wires will be routed appropriately, and many more standards will be followed.
Throughout construction, inspectors ensure that everything is built according to plan and contractors adhere to best practices. When construction is complete, they sign off on certificates of occupancy and allow the doors to open.
By reviewing plans against proven structural standards and inspecting the construction, the goal is to ensure our community is built to last. More than that, it is to protect the safety of those inside buildings during emergencies.
In 2017, the City issued 154 new single-family home permits and 5 new commercial/industrial permits. The City also averaged 1,048 building inspections per month! We did all of this while prioritizing customer service and quick turn-around times.
While most of us take building safety for granted, we can all be thankful that there are people who prioritize it every day. It is because of their efforts that our real estate investments will last and disasters are prevented.