What’s New at the DOB: AEU Updates, New Phones & DOB NOW

By Penny Laughlin

The New York City Department of Buildings (DOB) held its first industry meeting of 2017 on February 7.

  • DOB NOW. The public portal is now available for Plumbing, Sprinkler, and Standpipe filings. While filing representatives can only enter limited information at this time, the commissioner advised that additional options will be available by the end of March. Stay tuned.
  • DOB Project Guidelines. Ravi Patur reviewed the Project Guidelines recently posted on the DOB website. While only a few guidelines are available now, they expect to have 57 Project Guidelines by year end. Organized by audience—Owners, Design Professionals, Skilled Trades, and Contractors—the guidelines outline filing requirements to help users navigate DOB NOW.
  • Administrative Enforcement Unit (AEU) Backlog. Shamonda Graham, Director of the AEU, opened the meeting by discussing the November 2016 Service Notice and outlining their plan to speed up processing and wait times. Currently, wait times are prioritized according to requested task (e.g., drop-off, service desk, pick-up). As of the February 7 meeting, the AEU was processing drop-off and mail-in service requests dated 12/20, aiming for a 21-day response time. Updated forms will be posted on the AEU website later this year, and the DOB will announce upcoming changes in Service Updates.
  • New Phone System. The DOB launched a new phone system with interactive voice recognition (IVR) to improve efficiency and overall customer service. Customers can call the DOB’s main number to reach the appropriate unit: 212.566.5000. Numbers for specific agency units can be found here.
  • Fire Protection Plan (FPP) and Place of Assembly (PA) Applications. Good news: These applications no longer require ongoing renewal since these are administrative filings.

If you have any questions about these items, please contact Metropolis Group at 212.233.6344 or by email at contact@metropolisny.com.