The Greatest Challenge: When tornadoes roared through our community December 11, 2021, the loss of lives and destruction of property created the greatest challenge our community has faced in modern time. This is our story of resiliency through the eyes of your City employees and other community leaders. Read Our Story

If you'd like to contribute your own personal tornado story, please email your story to Stories may be edited at the City's discretion.

Building Permits

A building permit is required when you plan to undertake any of the following activities: construct, enlarge, alter, repair, move, demolish or change the occupancy/use of a building or structure.

Demolitions require demolition permit.  Fences greater than 7 feet require fence permits.  In-ground swimming pools require pool permits (see pool permits section).  New signs or changes to existing signs require sign permits

A sitework permit is required for any grading, excavation, filling or removal of soil, or paving, on any lot or parcel of ground, in excess of 350 square feet.  A separate sitework permit and building permit would only be necessary if it is the desire of the applicant to begin grade work prior to obtaining final building plans from the architect/engineer or if there will be no building permit ultimately filed.   A separate sitework permit would not be required if all grade work and structure construction can commence at one time, when the building permit is issued.

Comprehensive Development Review (CDR) is required when: a) greater than one acre will be disturbed or b) for any proposed or additional public improvement.


As a citizen it is my responsibility to...

Visit the Building Division office to apply for a permit.  Many forms are also available online for print-out. The following items will be requested for the Building Inspector’s review:

A completed building permit application with all applicable spaces filled. You may obtain a blank application from the Building Division or online at: . Any condition unique to the project should be completely explained in the General Description of work being performed.

1. Professional plot plan is required for new structures or additions exceeding 750 square feet and for all in-ground pools.

2.  Dimensioned drawings for your proposed project should include:

    a.  Detailed wall sections including footing, foundation, joists, walls, rafters/truss, insulation, roofing/roof pitch.

    b.  Floor plans of all floors, door and window sizes, designating materials, fire separation walls, smoke detectors, and other pertinent details.

3.  Architect and/or engineer stamps may be required, depending on the use and occupancy classification, occupant load, and size of structure.


Also for any sitework, building, or pool permit requiring the submittal at a plot plan level, a City of Bowling Green Erosion Prevention & Sediment Control (EPSC) Certified Contractor must be identified on the application.  A current listing of EPSC Certified Contractors can be found on the City's website:

In addition to a building permit, be sure your plumbing contractor obtains a permit from the State Plumbing office, your HVAC contractor obtains a State HVAC permit and your electrical contractor obtains an electrical permit.  Once the permit has been picked up, there is responsibility to contact the Building Division and request inspections for each phase of the project.

It is the responsibility of the city to...

A Building Inspector will meet with you to review the material for compliance with the current edition of the Kentucky Building Code which comes under the enforcement of the Kentucky Building Code.  The Building Division then forwards your application for review and approval by the utility company, City-County Planning Commission, Contractors Licensing Board, Treasury and the Occupational License Division. If any agency adds a condition to the application, that agency will notify you. You must comply with the condition in order for your permit to be valid.
Each phase and highlights of some of the items to be inspected are included for your information:

  • Footing Excavation - proper depth of excavation per Code for this area (i.e.. footing/foundation must be below frost line); engineer certification of compaction tests if unbalanced fill is installed.
  • Footing/Foundation - placement, PSI rating, and reinforcement of concrete.
  • Framing - building materials used; spans; building construction methods.
  • Ducts and Vents - proper location, framing, notching.
  • Final - all specifications have been met and are in accordance with the appropriate Code.

In addition, the Building Inspector may make interim general inspections to ensure the quality of work and compliance with Code.

After the building has passed final inspection, a Certificate of Occupancy (CO) will be issued by the Building Division within 5 days to close out the permit. This CO certifies that all codes have been met and the structure is in compliance at the time of the final inspection. After receiving your CO, the structure can be occupied. The structure is then subject to the International Property Maintenance Code and existing International Building Code, as adopted by the City.

If I am interested, who do I contact...

Building Division, Neighborhood & Community Services Dept., NCS Building, 707 E. Main Avenue, (270) 393-3615

Sitework Permits, Facilitated by Building Division, Neighborhood & Community Services Dept., 707 E. Main Avenue, (270) 393-3676 or (270) 393-3615 (Note: These permits are enforced and inspected by the Public Works Department.)

Plumbing Permits, State Plumbing Office located in Barren River District Health Department, 1109 State St, (270) 781-2490 Ext. 245

HVAC Permits, State HVAC Permits, (270) 349-4644

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