Key Project Terms: Alterations: Manufacturing

The following is a list of useful terms to use when researching additional Manufacturing information on each of the topics discussed:


An alteration is the addition, change of use, or occupancy of a building or structure in existence, and always results in a new or amended Certificate of Occupancy. Work may involve an enlargement, reduction in size of the building, or a major change to the building egress, zoning use group, and/or Building Code occupancy use

Building Systems Work

The installation of building systems including plumbing, boiler, sprinkler, standpipe, fire alarm, HVAC, and fire suppression systems. Such systems must be included in the project’s scope of work. The Zoning Resolution regulates noise, vibration, smoke and other particulate matter, odorous matter, toxic or noxious matter, radiation hazards, fire and explosive hazards, humidity, heat or glare applicable to the district in which such use, building or other structure or open area is located.

Certificate of Occupancy

A new or amended Certificate of Occupancy is issued for a building on completion of a project involving a change in occupancy or use, or when there are other changes that impact the existing Certificate of Occupancy. For example, where an existing building is vertically enlarged by a complete story, or if the use of a building is changed from commercial to residential, a new or amended CO is required. Reference AC 28-118.3 for more information.

The following may also be issued:

  • A Partial Certificate of Occupancy, for a portion of a building erected prior to January 1, 1938, depending on construction progress and safety;

  • Temporary Certificate of Occupancy, for a limited duration of time, because the project is not closed due to outstanding items such as final inspections and final surveys, etc., per AC 28-118.16.

Code and Zoning Determinations

Determination requests are submitted to the Borough Commissioner's office for an objection raised by a plan examiner or a possible future objection for an application not yet filed (pre-determination). To request a determination, file a Zoning Resolution Determination Form (ZRD1 Form), ZRD1 Instructions or a Construction Code Determination Form (CCD1 Form), CCD1 Instructions. Forms must be signed and sealed by a professional. Determination requests are limited to one per form and must cite all related code or zoning sections.


Per the Zoning Resolution, a conversion is a change of use. A use is any purpose for which a building, structure, or open tract of land is designed, arranged maintained or occupied.

Elevation in Flood Zones

Elevating a building to ensure that lowest occupied floor is above the flood levels per FEMA flood maps and as described in BC Appendix G and ZR Article VI, Chapter 4.


Per the Zoning Resolution, an enlargement is an addition to the floor area of an existing building or zoning lot, or an expansion of a use to an area not previously used for such purpose.

Per the Building Code, an enlargement is any addition to a building.

Fire District

The City of New York is divided into geographical territories known as fire districts, as described in BC Appendix D, which control the occupancy groups and construction classes permitted within them.

High Hazard Occupancy/Use Group

High-Hazard Group H occupancy includes, among others, the use of a building or structure, or a portion thereof, that involves the manufacturing, processing, generation or storage of materials that constitute a physical or health hazard in excess quantities, as per BC Tables 307(1) and 307(2). ZR Use Group 18 addresses hazardous materials.


Per the Building Code, Institutional Group I occupancy includes, the use of a building or structure, or a portion thereof, in which people are cared for or live in a supervised environment, having physical limitations because of health or age are harbored for medical treatment or other care or treatment, or in which people are detained for penal or correctional purposes. An institutional space could be located in a mixed occupancy manufacturing building.

Layout Changes

Include changes to floor layouts that add, relocate, remodel, enlarge or reduce the size of interior rooms while maintaining the same building envelope.

Major  Building

An existing or proposed building 10 or more stories or 125 feet (38,100 mm) or more in height, or an existing or proposed building with a building footprint of 100,000 square feet (30,480 m2) or more regardless of height, or an existing or proposed building so designated by the commissioner due to unique hazards associated with the construction or demolition of the structure.


Manufacturing establishments include occupancy classifications listed in Building Code (BC) Section BC 306, Group “F” which include, but are not limited to, moderate and low hazard factories, industrial processing plants, contractor facilities, auto & boat repairs, clothing manufacture, food processing, wrecking establishments, laboratories, etc., and BC 307 Group ‘H’ which include, but are not limited to, the processing, manufacturing, or storage of materials which represent a high physical hazard or health hazard.

Per the Zoning Resolution, Manufacturing, as applied to building use, is a building with high performance standards. ‘Manufacturing’ can also describe the type of zoning district such as Use Group 17 for lower hazard industrial uses, Use Group 18 for higher hazard industrial uses, or Use Group 16 for semi-industrial uses.

Mixed Building

Per ZR 12-10, a mixed building is a building used partly for residential use and partly for community facility and/or commercial use, but not manufacturing.

Mixed Use/Mixed Occupancy

Per the Building Code, a building with a mixed use would contain two or more occupancy classifications.


The purpose or activity for which a building or space is used or is designed, arranged or intended to be used.

Occupancy Classification

This is the use as defined in the Building Code, and is the purpose or activity for which a building or space is used or is designed, arranged or intended to be used.

Partial Demolition

Maintaining the same building envelope, any construction that involves the removal, replacement or repair of load bearing and/or non-load bearing interior partitions, changes to structural elements (interior or exterior), and facade changes or other upgrades.

Registered Land Surveyor

A person licensed and registered to practice the profession of land surveying under the education law of the State of New York.


Changes to an existing building, including the remodeling or replacing of outdated or damaged structure and materials, and the partial demolition of interior partitions. Building renovations can also include the installation or replacement of building systems, devices or equipment, materials or parts, as part of regular maintenance of the building. Renovation projects do not impact the existing means of egress, do not change the use of the building or space, and do not increase the occupant load.

Tax Lot

A tax lot is a tract of property on the New York City tax map, for which property taxes are assessed. Multiple buildings can be present on a single zoning lot or on a single tax lot.


The purpose for which a building, structure, or space is occupied or utilized, unless otherwise indicated by the text. Use (used) shall be construed as if followed by the words “or is intended, arranged, or designed to be used.”

Use Group

This is the use as defined in the Zoning Resolution, ZR Section 12-10, and is any purpose for which a building or other structure, or an open tract of land, may be designed, arranged, intended, maintained or occupied; furthermore the use is any activity, occupation, business or operation carried on, or intended to be carried on.

Zoning Lot

A zoning lot is a tract of land for which specific zoning regulations apply. A zoning lot does not have to coincide with a tax lot, and can consist of one tax lot or multiple tax lots.

Key Points & Project Terms Categories

  1. Alterations

  2. Building Systems Installation & Modifications

  3. Construction Equipment

  4. Demolition COMING SOON!

  5. New Buildings COMING SOON!

  6. Renovations

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