New York State issues licenses for Professional Engineers and Registered Architects. A State-licensed P.E. or RA must submit the required plans and work permit applications to the Department of Buildings. For sign projects, design professionals may submit a professionally-certified project application to certify their plans satisfy applicable laws and Codes.
The Department issues Master Sign Hanger (MSH) and Special Sign Hanger (SSH) licenses to those contractors qualified to install/repair signs, according to the size and weight of the sign per AC Article 415. A Special Sign Hanger is authorized to hoist, lower, hang or attach any sign not exceeding one hundred fifty square feet in area, measured on one face only, nor exceeding one thousand two hundred pounds in weight, upon or on the outside of any building. A Master Sign Hanger is authorized to hoist, lower, hang or attach any sign, irrespective of weight, upon or on the outside of any building. Other hoisting or rigging licenses may also be needed for associated equipment operation per AC Articles 404 and 405. If an unqualified/unlicensed contractor performs the work, it can result in work that is not in accordance with the Construction Codes or the Zoning Resolution and threaten the safety and quality of life of the general public and occupants of the associated property. The Department allows licensed contractors (Special Sign Hangers and Master Sign Hangers) to file applications with the Department of Buildings. A Rule shall be promulgated to clarify the size and types of signs that a licensed sign hanger contractor may file.
A Licensed Sign Hanger must have a place of business in New York City as per AC §28-415.5.2. All licensees shall include their license number and business information on trucks, business cards and advertisements. For more detailed requirements pertaining to contractors, see the NYC Administrative Code Articles 401 and 415.
Licensed Sign Hangers must register first to use the Department’s online permit processing ePermit system. A permit application must be completed online by the licensed Sign Hanger for the issuance of a permit. Prior to issuing a permit for the approved project, the following are required:
Payment of any unpaid project application fees
Identification of responsible Special Inspection Agencies
If required, Borough Commissioner or his/her designee approved request(s) for the waiver of civil penalties (former L2 Form), lifting of all stop work orders, and the clearing of violations.
Licensee must have his/her license and insurance active and up-to-date.
A foreman, properly designated by the Licensed Sign Hanger and in possession of a DOB-issued Foreman’s card, may also perform such work as the issuing Sign Hanger is licensed to perform. A Foreman may not act as applicant or permit holder.
The Administrative Code of the City of New York §28-301.1 requires Owners to maintain their properties in a safe condition. Property Owners, Contractors and Construction Site Managers must minimize the risk of accidents and fire.
Site Safety Regulations
Tobacco, lighters and matches are prohibited on asbestos abatement sites. Local Law 35/09.
Open fires are illegal on construction sites. NYC Fire Code §1404.3.
Approved portable fire extinguishers must be available on floors where combustible materials or liquids are stored, combustible waste is being generated and at the entrance of each storage and construction shed. NYC Fire Code §1415.1.
Temporary heating equipment used at construction sites. NYC Fire Code §1403.
If you have a Fire Department variance to use a coal-fired heater, you must minimize the fire load on concrete construction projects. NYC BC §3303.6 and NYC Fire Code §307.2.2. To apply for a variance, contact FDNY’s Bureau of Fire Prevention at (718) 999 – 2377.
Store materials away from flames. NYC Fire Code §308.2.
When work involves relocation or modification of sprinkler, standpipes, fire protection systems, etc., the Contractor must notify FDNY and obtain approval if required. NYC Building Code 3303.7 and BC 3303.8.
All shanties and contractor sheds shall be built from fire-retardant or non-combustible materials and shall be located in safe area. NYC Building Code §3303.1.3.
Follow Tenant/Occupant Protection Plans. NYC BC 3303.10.
Tenant/Occupant Protection Plan
Construction documents for renovation in an occupied building during construction shall include a Tenant Protection Plan. Such plan shall contain a statement that the building contains dwelling units, offices, or similar, that will be occupied during construction. It shall also include the specific units that are occupied during construction and the means and methods employed to safeguard the safety and health of the occupants with details such as temporary fire-rated assemblies, opening protectives, or dust containment procedures.
The elements of the Tenant Protection Plan shall have detailed and specific provisions for egress, fire safety, structural safety, health requirements, and demonstrate compliance with housing standards and noise restrictions (AC §28-104.8.4). In an occupied building, protective means (barricades, signs, drop cloths, etc.) shall be installed and maintained as necessary to provide protection for the occupants against construction hazards and nuisances. Such protective means shall be indicated on the Tenant Protection Plan (TPP) per NYC BC §3303.10.
Temporary Construction Equipment
Renovation projects such as excavation, demolition and façade repair can require the installation of temporary construction equipment such as sidewalk sheds, fences, scaffolds, material chutes, hoist, etc. This equipment is required to safely move materials associated with the project to protect workers and the public, per AC Section 28-105.8 and BC Chapter 33. Also refer to Construction Project Guidelines for Temporary Construction Equipment. Special attention should go to restrictions on signage attached to temporary construction equipment. Typically, advertising signage may not be placed upon temporary construction equipment, the placement of lawful accessory signage is limited per BC 3301.10.