Plan Review Guidance for Restaurants

Clackamas County Public Health Division’s Environmental Health Program is required by law to conduct a plan review for all new construction, remodeling, or changes in the type of food service (e.g. a bar adding cooked foods to their menu). The process ensures that both construction and operation will comply with the applicable health codes.

Failure to apply for the Public Health Division’s Plan Review prior to construction may result in work being redone. All applications, fees, etc. will still be required. Many local building departments (including Clackamas County) require a Public Health Division’s Plan Review prior to final approval.

Note: New construction and remodels usually require the approval of other agencies. Please contact other appropriate authorities including zoning, planning, building, plumbing, and fire departments to determine requirements.

The Public Health Division’s Plan Review process involves two steps:

  1. An evaluation of structural and operational plans through the Environmental Health Program.
  2. An on-site pre-opening inspection that verifies the construction is done according to the submitted plans and operational procedures are in place for code adherence.

To apply for a plan review, submit the Plan Review Application, Floor Plan, Menu, and appropriate fee to Clackamas County, either in our office or by mail:

Clackamas County Public Health Division
Environmental Health Program
2051 Kaen Road, Suite 367
Oregon City, OR 97045

**Be sure all information is complete to avoid delays.

You will receive a response within 10 working days. If changes are required to your plans, you will be notified. Construction may not begin until your plans receive approval from this office.

Restaurant Plan Review Requirements

ORS 624.630 requires that plans be submitted for review when a food service establishment is constructed or extensively remodeled. All construction must conform to OAR 333-150-0000 as printed in the "Oregon Food Sanitation Rules" published by the Oregon Health Authority.

Visit Oregon Food Sanitation Rules where you can read in more detail the rules and requirements:

The following is a general list of items that will be reviewed:

  1. Proposed Menu (be specific)
  2. Floor Plan to Scale
  3. Required Plumbing Fixtures
    • Mop sink or mop washing facilities.
    • Hand sink in each food prep area.
    • Vegetable washing sink with an indirect waste.
    • Dishwashing facilities with an indirect waste.
    • Hot water heater
    • Restrooms.
    • Floor sinks and drains for all equipment used to hold food or ice that produces disposable wastewater.
  4. Seating layout; indicate the maximum number of seats.
  5. Designate employees break area for eating, drinking and smoking.
  6. List surface finishes for all walls, floors and ceilings.
  7. Ventilation.
  8. Hot water; heater tank size, BTU rating, and location.
  9. Garbage storage area and surfaces.
  10. Operational policies and procedures listed on the plan review application.

*Note for Remodeling Facilities: During remodel construction, your facility may not operate if there is an interruption in power, gas, sewage disposal, or water supply. Complete all construction activities that create dust or other possible contamination during closed hours or under methods of contamination containment. If your facility is closed for business during the remodel, an inspection is required prior to re-opening. If your facility is open during the remodel, the remodeled area must be inspected prior to use.

General Restaurant Requirements

The following is not a complete list of the rules. Please see the current Oregon Food Sanitation Rules for complete information.

  1. All new food service establishments, establishments not previously licensed by Clackamas County Public Health, and those closed for 12 months or more must comply with all current rules regarding plumbing, construction and equipment.

    Plans: Submit plans for review and approval before the construction or remodeling of a food service establishment.
  2. Hand Washing Sinks are required in all food preparation and dishwashing areas and must be easily accessible. Hand washing sinks must be separate from other sinks and may not be used for any other purpose. If you are planning on dumping or rinsing, such as in a coffee or bar station, the plans must include a second sink in this area. The placement of hand sinks, soap and towel dispensers next to food storage, equipment, or food-contact surfaces must include protection from splashing and dripping.
  3. Food Preparation Sink(s) must have an indirect waste line. Hand washing, dishwashing, and dumping are not allowed in the sink used for preparing food. If you will need a food preparation sink for both produce and raw meat, it is highly recommended that you install 2 separate food preparation sinks to reduce the risk of cross-contamination.
  4. Dishwashing must be accomplished either by means of a 3-compartment sink or by an approved commercial dishwashing machine. The dishwashing area must have drain boards or sorting tables for dirty and clean utensils. One or two-compartment sinks for dishwashing are not allowed.
    1. Three-compartment Sinks: The size of the compartments must be large enough to accommodate the largest utensil/equipment used in the establishment. Hot and cold running water must reach all 3-compartments. When possible these must have an indirect waste (depending on the local agencies’ plumbing codes).
    2. Mechanical Dishwashing: The pressure of the final sanitizing rinse water supplied to the machine shall not be less than 15 nor more than 25 pounds per square inch (psi) measured in the water line immediately adjacent to the final rinse control valve. A 1⁄4 inch Iron Pipe Size (IPS) valve must be provided immediately upstream from the final rinse water. Machine or water line mounted thermometers, accurate to +/-3°F, must be provided to indicate the temperature of the final rinse water as it enters the manifold. Plumb the drain lines with an indirect connection. There must be a pre-rinse sink next to the dishwasher.
      1. Hot Temperature Type: If the machine sanitizes by means of hot water, it must maintain a minimum wash and rinse temperature as specified by the manufacturer and measured at the dish rack to at least 160°F during the sanitizing cycle.
      2. Cold Temperature Type: If the machine sanitizes by means of chemical injection, it must maintain a minimum wash temperature of 120°F and a minimum rinse temperature of 75°F or higher if specified by the manufacturer. The concentration of the chemical sanitizer injected during the final rinse must be at least 50 ppm for chlorine types, 12.5 ppm for iodine types. An approved test kit to accurately measure the concentration of the chemical sanitizer must be provided and used on a regular basis.
  5. Mop Sink is required in all restaurants. Hose bibs require installation of vacuum breakers.
  6. Cold Holding: Provide adequate refrigeration and freezer units for storage, cooling, and thawing of potentially hazardous food. All refrigeration units must have a visible and accurate thermometer inside.
  7. Hot Holding: List all equipment to be used for holding hot foods before service. Hot holding units must maintain food at a temperature of 135°F or more throughout.
  8. Cooking/Reheating: Provide details of all equipment used for cooking and reheating.
  9. Equipment: All equipment should be easily cleanable and in good repair. All metal equipment should be free of rust and corrosion. Rusty/corroded metal equipment should be replaced or refinished in an approved manner. Chipped, painted wooden surfaces must be refinished. Stationary equipment should be movable or installed to provide easy cleaning beneath and behind the equipment.
  10. Indirect Waste: Any piece of equipment utilized to hold food, ice or dishware that is equipped with a drain must waste indirectly to floor drains or floor sinks. The distance between the bottom of the waste pipe and top of the drain must be at least one inch or two waste pipe diameters. Indicate clearly on the plans where all floor sinks and indirect waste connections exist.
  11. Hot Water: The water heater must be large enough to meet the peak hot water needs of the facility. The minimum required hot water temperature at all hand sinks must be 100°F at the tap through a mixing valve. The minimum required water temperature of the wash solution in a 3-compartment sink must be at least 110°F.
  12. Hoods and Grease Traps: As per building and fire regulations.
  13. Wall, Floor and Ceiling Construction: Floors, walls and ceilings must be finished (no open ceilings in food prep areas), smooth, non-absorbent and easily cleanable. The walls behind the dishwashing area, mop sink, and other equipment where moisture damage may occur should be constructed of water resistant materials (Formica, stainless steel, FRP fiber glass reinforced polyethylene, etc.).
  14. Finishes: All finishes must be durable, smooth, cleanable, non-absorbent, non-toxic, and installed properly. Floor wall junctions must have a coved base. All wood and concrete surfaces must be sealed to be non-absorbent and washable. Painted surfaces are highly recommended to have a semi-gloss to enamel finish for ease of cleaning. All gaps, cracks, crevices and holes must be repaired, filled, sealed and made smooth. Use light colors for walls and ceilings in food preparation areas.
  15. Light Fixtures must all be shielded.
  16. Doors and Windows: Restroom doors must be self-closing. Exterior doors shall be rodent proof (clearance should not exceed 1⁄4 inch and should be as tight fitting as possible). All openings to the outer air area to be screened to prevent fly access (includes ventilation ports) unless an integrated pest control plan is approved and followed.
  17. Storage Areas: All storage must be at least 6 inches off the floor, except where storage is on a wheeled platform or sealed base. Storage shelves must be approved for design and finish.
  18. Locker, Dressing Rooms and Break Areas: Adequate separate storage areas should be provided for employee clothing and personal items. Designate an area where employees will break for eating, drinking and smoking.
  19. Garbage Areas: Provide hard, cleanable surfaces of adequate size in these areas. Outside containers must be covered and adequately sized.
  20. Toxic Items must be stored, labeled and used properly to prevent contamination of food and food preparation surfaces. Please refer to Oregon OSHAfor additional requirements on chemical usage, storage, and employee safety (e.g. eyewash).
  21. Customer Self-serve: Food and food work surfaces open to customers must be protected from customer contamination by a sneeze shield, packaging or other approved means. This includes salad bars, buffet lines, condiments, etc.

Pre-Operational Inspection

As you near completion of your facility but before you open for business, you must pass a pre-opening inspection with our department. This inspection is to verify construction has been completed according to the approved plans, and your operations will comply with current Health Codes.

Please call the plan reviewer at least one week before you wish to open to schedule. Your restaurant license application and license fee must be received prior to the pre-opening inspection. Your facility may not open for business until you pass your pre-operational inspection and receive approval from this office and other required agencies.

Call 503-655-8384 for general questions or to be connected to the Environmental Health Specialist completing your plan review.


2051 Kaen Road, Suite 367, Oregon City, OR 97045

Office Hours:

Monday to Thursday
7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Report a public health emergency or communicable disease 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at 503-655-8411.

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