On March 31, 2020, the Alameda County Public Health Department extended the current Shelter in Place Order through May 3, 2020 to continue to limit the spread of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). The City of Fremont Building Inspection team is currently providing limited inspection services in order to support essential construction allowed under the County Order, while also protecting the safety of City employees and the community. For essential construction projects, building inspectors are performing remote video building inspections using apps like FaceTime and Google Duo to connect with customers.
The City understands that several residential developments in Fremont have units that are completed, require no additional construction, and are ready for occupancy. The City also understands that using video to conduct final building inspections for these units is not feasible due to the nature and scope of the inspection. The City recognizes that these inspections are important to facilitate the occupancy of completed residential units. Therefore, a policy has been established for the completion of in-person final building inspections during the ongoing Shelter in Place Order. The policy, outlined below, protects the safety of City employees while also enabling developers to receive final certificates of occupancy for their units that meet the requirements.
Types of Projects Eligible for Final Building Inspections
At this time, final building inspections will only be considered for completed residential units that require no additional construction to receive their final permit of occupancy.
Steps for Final Building Inspections
Step 1: Ensuring All Pre-Conditions are Met
- The project must pass all required fire inspections prior to scheduling the final building inspection.
- The developer must be able to provide the building inspector with the following documentation during the final building inspection:
- All special inspection reports for the units;
- Confirmation of acceptance from the architect and/or engineer on record for the project; and
- A City of Fremont Agency Checklist signed by all of the appropriate agencies for the final building inspection to receive a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy (TCO).
Step 2: Submitting Construction Safety Plan and Scheduling Inspection
- To schedule a final building inspection, developers should contact Building Inspection Manager Kono Soong by email with the following information:
- A Construction Safety Plan detailing the rules that have been implemented to reduce the spread of COVID-19 at the job site. The Construction Safety Plan must be in compliance with recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for reducing the spread of COVID-19 through social/physical distancing. Upon receipt, the City will review the Construction Safety Plan for compliance with CDC recommendations and either provide comments to the developer or notify them of approval.
- The following project information: building permit number, street address, type of inspection, preferred date and time for the inspection, and the name and contact number of the person that will be on site for the inspection.
Step 3: Conducting the Inspection
- The inspection will be performed by the building inspector originally assigned to the project. If this inspector is not available, an alternate inspector will be assigned based on their qualifications.
- The inspector will verify that the City-approved Construction Safety Plan is being actively followed and enforced on site.
- The inspector will review all of the documentation that the developer is required to provide, including all special inspection reports, confirmation of acceptance from the architect and/or engineer, and the City of Fremont Agency Checklist (see Step 1).
- The developer must provide access to all areas of inspection. The developer must open all doors and set up all ladders required to access areas of inspection in order to limit the inspector’s physical contact with surfaces on the job site.
Step 4: Inspection Results and Follow-Up
- Following the inspection, the inspector will create a correction list of any outstanding items.
- If the correction items are non-fire, life, and safety related, then a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy (TCO) request form may be submitted by the developer for approval, with signatures from the building inspector and building official required for acceptance.
Step 5: Paying the Temporary Certificate of Occupancy (TCO) Fee
- The City has the right to charge, and may charge, a monthly TCO fee per unit as indicated by the current City of Fremont fee schedule. The TCO fee will be applied to the current building permit and will be required to be paid when the County’s Shelter in Place Order is lifted and City offices re-open.
For more information on final building inspections, please contact Building Inspection at 510-494-4400 or by email.
For more information on essential services and updates on how the City of Fremont is monitoring the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), please visit the City’s Coronavirus webpage.