New commercial and industrial buildings and new multi-family developments in Clackamas County, including commercial and industrial building additions and tenant improvements, are required to have a Certificate of Occupancy in order for the structure to be occupied for its intended purpose and open to the general public.
Clackamas County issues both Temporary Certificates of Occupancy (TCO) and Permanent Certificates of Occupancy (CO). The following information reviews what these certificates mean and outlines the process to apply for and obtain a TCO and CO for your project.
Temporary (TCO) vs. Permanent Certificate of Occupancy (CO)
|What it does||Provides temporary approval to use and open a building, addition or tenant improvement once all life, health and safety issues are resolved, while other issues related to the development are still pending.||Provides permanent approval to use and open a building, addition or tenant improvement once all issues related to the development are resolved and nothing further is required.|
|Required for||All new commercial, industrial and multi-family buildings, additions to commercial and industrial buildings, and tenant improvements in Clackamas County.||All new commercial, industrial and multifamily buildings, additions to commercial and industrial buildings, and tenant improvements in Clackamas County|
|Effective for||90 Days||Permanent|
|Extension||The County Building Official will grant one, 30-day extension of a TCO for a $100 fee. If you conclude that you will not be able to receive a CO by the end of the extension, contact the Building Official to discuss the situation.|
Commercial/Industrial/Multi-Family TCO/CO submittal checklist
Obtain sign-offs from following divisions/agencies as necessary:
- Submit TCO/CO application 2-4 weeks prior to occupancy date
- Pay $170 fee
- Call for and obtain approved final inspections for all permits
- WES or other jurisdiction for sanitary, storm sewers, erosion control; asbuilts must be submitted no later than two weeks prior to occupancy date—Storm & Sanitary Inspectors
- Engineering Division—Construction & Development Inspector
- Community Environment—Development Review Contact
- Building Division—Building Inspector for the project
- Plumbing Division—Plumbing Inspector for the project
- Electrical Division—Electrical Inspector for the project
- Fire District—Deputy Fire Marshal for district where development is located
- Soils Division (WES)—Soils Inspector for the project
- Public Health—Environmental Health Inspector assigned to the Plan Review (only necessary if we need to conduct a plan review on the construction)
- Planning Division—County Planner who issued the staff decision for the land use approval
- Apply for a CO when TCO is issued and repeat process above.
The building permit specialist will update the status of your TCO application each time a division or agency signs off.
You are responsible for following up on the various required sign-offs. The permit specialist will not send you updates on your TCO as sign-offs occur.
When the last division or agency signs off on the TCO, the Building Official will sign the TCO certificate and you will be contacted to let you know the TCO has been approved and issued.
The process for a CO is the same as for a TCO. The same agencies that signed off on the TCO must sign off on the CO once they are satisfied that their corrections or improvements have been completed.
Who to contact
- Building Division
- Engineering Division
- Planning Division
- Linda Preisz, Landscaping/Signs/Trash Enclosure
- Linda Preisz, Landscaping/Signs/Trash Enclosure
- Public Health
- Transportation & Development
- Water Environment Services
Frequently asked questions
You need to apply for and obtain a TCO if you want temporary approval to use and open a building, addition or tenant improvement once all life, health and safety issues are resolved, while other issues related to the development are still pending.
The county issues a permanent CO only after all the work (site work, landscaping, etc.) and all the corrections are completed. Certain divisions and agencies may allow you to bond for improvements that are not completed at the time of a CO.18836
You should file the application for a TCO 2 to 4 weeks before you intend to open the building to the public. This allows you to meet the required conditions of approval requested by the divisions and agencies reviewing the development.18836
No. Employees and other people, such as vendors and suppliers (excluding the general public) are allowed in the building after you have received an approved Fire/Life/Safety inspection from the County Building Inspector and Fire Marshall. A TCO is required when the building is opened to the public and the building is put to its intended use.18836
Yes, you do, unless the work is of a minor nature. When constructing a tenant improvement in a new or existing building you will need to obtain a TCO and a CO. You should also be aware that in order for you to receive a TCO or a CO for a tenant improvement the building shell must also have a CO.18836
After you file your application, have your contractor begin taking steps to:
- Obtain final approved inspections for all permits associated with the development.
- Review all land use conditions of approval related to life, health and safety issues that must be satisfied in order for the TCO/CO to be approved and issued.
You need a Letter of Completion (LC) when you want to close out permits for a new shell building. The final Certificate of Occupancy will be granted under the future tenant improvement permit.
Use the phone system to check the status of up to 13 division and agency sign-offs that may be required before a TCO/CO can be issued, call 503-742-4720, select option 4 and refer to the building permit number on the TCO/CO application.18836