Puslinch building department is going online
The building department for the township of Puslinch in Ontario, Canada, will soon be offering an online building permit system. Cloudpermit, a building permit application system that has been adapted for small municipalities, has been approved by the Township of Puslinch Council for purchase and implementation.
“We’ve been looking at some type of software in order to bring the building department online for a while and when COVID-19 hit it pretty much pushed us into that predicament right away — we needed to be able to take in permits electronically,” said Puslinch Chief Building Official Gerald Moore. “We needed to be able to issue permits electronically, we needed to be able to book inspections electronically.”
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, building permit applications were brought to the township office for review. However, since the township office closed to the public in March, those applications have come in via email. An abundance of staff time has been spent going through email and trying to ensure that nothing gets missed. Additionally, some applications were missed because they were either too large for email or sent to the incorrect email address.
Going onto a cloud-based system would offer cost savings for both the municipality and for builders. For the municipality that means cost savings in staff time and for applicants it means not having to travel to the township office, being able to upload files from anywhere, allowing consultants to also upload a piece of the application if necessary, checking the application’s status online and scheduling an inspection virtually. There is no app for the program; it’s all done online through a link from the township’s website. The applicant would know right away if their application were complete. The system also has multiple mechanisms that check the applications for completeness. Once the application is completed, staff will do a review. People could still make in-person building permit applications once the township office opens back up, but the department is finding that a majority of customers want to submit online. Applicants will also be able to call to make an inspection appointment if they don’t want to do it online.
Read more at the Wellington Advertiser.