Design Professional Requirements: Electrical Systems

Applicability of Code

Electrical work, new installation or modifications to existing systems, must comply with the 2011 NYC Electrical Code, which includes both administrative requirements and the 2008 NEC amendments (NFPA 70). In addition, all work under the project must conform to the NYC Construction Codes, such as the Administrative Code, Building Code, Energy Conservation Code, Fuel Gas Code, Mechanical Code and Plumbing Code.

Depending on the location of work being performed, you may also need to comply with other city agencies requirements, such as but not limited to the Fire Department (FDNY), Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), Department of Transportation (DOT), and Landmark Preservation Commission (LPC).

Electrical work that requires submission of electrical plans for review and approval by DOB, shall comply with the following code and regulations that apply.

NOTE: While the followings is a list of key zoning, code and other regulations that may be relevant in the project design, it does not cover ALL applicable regulations.

Project Element

Applicable Code & Regulations

2011 NYC Electrical Code

Administrative Code of NYC

Title 27 Chap 3 Electrical Code


Article 100

Approval of Electrical Materials, Equipment and Installations

Section A110.2

Spaces about Electrical Equipment 600V, Nominal/ Less

Section 110.26 and A230.64

Spaces about Electrical Equipment over 1,000V, Nominal

Section 110.34 and A230.64

Voltage Drop

Section A210.19

Feeder GFP of Equipment

Section 215.10

Service Entrance Conductors and Busbar Ampacity

Section A230.42

Maximum # of Service Disconnects

Section 230.71

Grouping of Service Disconnects

Section 230.72

Service GFP of Equipment

Section 230.95

Service Overcurrent Protective Device Coordination

Section A240.12(A)

Feeder Taps

Section 240.21(B)

Transformer Secondary Conductors

Section 240.21 (C)

Series Rating

Section A240.86

A.C. Systems to be Grounded

Section 250.20

Grounding Service-Supplied A.C. Systems

Section 250.24

Grounding Separately Derived System

Section 250.30

Size of A.C. Grounding Electrode Conductor

Section 250.66

Size of Equipment Grounding Conductors

Section 250.122

Surge Protective Devices

Article 285

2014 Construction Codes

Incidental Uses

BC Section 509, Table 509

Fire Protection Systems

BC Chapter 9

Means of Egress

BC Chapter 10

Emergency and Standby Power Systems

BC Chapter 27; Emergency/Standby Power Systems Project Guidelines


BC Chapter 30

Construction and Demolition Safety

BC Chapter 33

Flood Zone

BC Appendix G

Voltage Drop

2016 NYC Energy Conservation Code

Other Regulation(s) for Reference

Rules of the City of New York
1 RCNY 4000-01(a)(1) – List of electrical installation types that require filing
1 RCNY 4000-01(b)(1) – Filing Requirements
1 RCNY 4000-01(b)(1)(i) – Filing Method and Applicant
1 RCNY 4000-01(b)(1)(ii) – Filing Fee and Payment Method
1 RCNY 4000-01(b)(1)(iii)(A) to (S) – Requirements For Plans and Drawing

Guidelines for Submission of Electrical Systems Project Plans

Prior to preparing the electrical drawings, the Registered Design Professional must perform a pre-design review that analyzes all of the existing site conditions and other components affected by the proposed scope of work. The information provided on the drawings and/or manufacturer specifications must clearly describe all of the work required for the code compliant execution and completion of the project.

The DOB guidelines outlined, provide an organized approach for the preparation of Electrical Drawings to facilitate the plan review process.  Drawings shall clearly indicate existing site conditions and proposed conditions affected by the scope of work.

Complete Submission of Electrical Plan Review Drawings

Electrical drawings should represent complete scope of work, including multiple disciplines such as but not limited to architectural, electrical, and fire alarm power. There must be close coordination between all disciplines for proposed scope of work to ensure code compliance.

Electrical Required Documents.  Drawings and specifications necessary to convey essential information such as general notes, floor plans, elevations, and details.

All submissions for electrical plan review, for service equipment totaling 1000KVA or more or above 1000Volts, shall include the following plans/drawings:

  • Title Sheet/Drawing Index.  Should clearly describe the project location, using a site/plot plan, and provide necessary drawing notes. Provide a drawing sheet index to assist with navigation.

    • Site/Plot Plan.  Clearly show the size and location of the lot, show Electrical Utility Property Line Box, or Point of Entry in reference to the Main Electrical Service Room, and location of additional Electric Room(s) that contains large equipment (1000 kVA or larger).

  • Floor Plan. Show proposed conditions; clearly identify rooms’ names and fully dimension all spaces. Coordinate between all trades / disciplines (architectural, energy, structural, mechanical, and electrical to ensure that the proposed scope of work is complete and shown on all submitted discipline drawings. Drawings must indicate the layout of walls, including required fire ratings; location of penetrations through such fire rated assemblies; roof plan, if work is located on the roof; code references, and path of egress from the equipment room.

  • One-Line Diagrams.  A one-line diagram must be submitted indicating the service equipment and the distribution equipment up to the 2nd level overcurrent protection, showing all overcurrent devices with their ampere rating, make and type, and interrupting current ratings.  Frame and trip sizes for circuit breakers must be indicated.

  • Asbestos Abatement Compliance Required Documents.  Statement confirming that all fuses and/or circuit breakers have been coordinated for selective short circuit overcurrent protection must be on drawings.

  • Drawings Detail.  The drawings listed above are required to include all details for the electrical plan examination in accordance with Administrative Code and Rules of the Department and shall include but not be limited to the following:

    • All new work must be clearly identified. In addition, drawings must be clearly marked to indicate new and existing installations to remain.
    • The plan view must be drawn to scale, showing the point of service entrance into the building. If the building sets back from the property line, the underground service conductors must be shown, including wire and raceway sizes.
    • The means of egress from the switchboard room and where it leads to must be shown.  The legal exit(s) to which egress door(s) lead must also be shown.
    • When there is more than one service location within a building, drawings must contain a notation indicating that signs are posted at the entrance door of each switchboard room showing the location of all the other switchboard rooms.  The location and wording of the signs must be specified.
    • Drawings must show grouping of service equipment at the point of service entrance.
    • When the service equipment totals 2000 KVA or larger, the drawing must show ventilation of the room (this may be in the form of a note on the drawing).
    • Drawings must indicate that transformers are properly grounded. Service and distribution equipment proposed for future installation must be marked on the drawings as future.
    • All voltages must be clearly shown on the drawings, which must include voltages pertaining to all of the equipment overcurrent protection up to and including the second level protection.
    • When a generator (or other non-utility source) is part of a 1000 KVA submission and the generator itself is rated below 1000 KVA, a one-line diagram must be submitted showing how the generator is connected to the normal service.  The drawings must include the grounding of the generator frame and neutral bonding, if needed (four pole transfer device).  For generators rated 1000 KVA or larger, a room layout must be submitted along with a one-line diagram.

Submission of Project Application

When submitting documents to DOB, a Registered Design Professional, who may be the Applicant of Record, is responsible for the submission of a complete package as summarized below.

  1. Job Number Request. Request a Job Number by emailing

  2. Pay Fee. Pay required fees in person at 280 Broadway, 1st Floor

  3. Application Intake. Submit plans as described above via email to:

  4. Statement. A statement confirming that all fuses and/or circuit breakers have been coordinated for selective short circuit overcurrent protection must be on the drawing.

  5. Required Documents. Based on scope of project, following submissions may have to accompany drawings at intake.

    • DEP - Asbestos Abatement

  6. Review. Review and approval of plans will be conducted by a DOB electrical plan examiner.

    • Objections and Status. Objections and status of reviews will be communicated via email.
    • Approval. Approval number is issued when no objections are issued or when objections are resolved.

  7. Electrical Permit Application. Electrical permit application can be filed electronically by a Master Electrician once the Department issues the Approval No. above.

  8. Final Approval. Before the Electrical Inspection is requested for the project, the applicant must receive final approval for the project, the following must be submitted to the Department:

    1. Post Amendment Approval (PAA). Where installation of equipment differs from the original approved drawings, amended drawings showing the as-built condition must be filed with the Department prior to electrical inspection.
    2. Selective Coordination Report. A selective coordination report prepared by a professional engineer must be filed with the Department prior to electrical inspection. Such engineer may be different from the applicant.

Special and Progress Inspections

As per Chapter 17 of the Building Code, new building work may require certain Special and Progress Inspections to be performed during and at the end of construction as outlined in the table below. Prior to approval, the Applicant of Record is required to identify all required Special and Progress Inspections (BC 1704.1).  Prior to DOB permit issuance, the owner must typically engage a registered Special Inspection Agency (SIA) who will take responsibility for the Special and Progress Inspections.  The Applicant of Record may perform these inspections if they are also an SIA. Inspection discrepancies and hazardous conditions shall be reported to the super-intendment of construction, as well as to the site safety coordinator or site safety manager, for correction, per BB 2016-006 and 1 RCNY 101-06. Per BC 1704.1.2, the contractor cannot hire the special inspector.

Based on the scope of work, a new building project may be required to comply with the following Special and Progress Inspection requirements:

Special/Progress Inspection

Description Of Code Requirements

Fire-resistant Penetration and Joists

Special Inspections for penetration of fire-resistant elements and assemblies; and related firestops in accordance with Sections BC 1704.27.1, BC 1704.27.2 and BC 713.4.1.1.

Required Electrical System Inspections

In accordance with 27-3017 and 27-3018, DOB requires inspections at various stages of completion during work, as well as at final completion of all permitted work. Access must be provided to the work site for all inspections of permitted work. Based on the scope of work, the following inspections from different DOB Inspection Units may be required:

  • Electrical Inspection – Final Inspection

Licensed Master and Special Electricians and property owners are responsible for scheduling and completing all required inspections. Prior to scheduling an inspection, Electricians must:

  • Confirm that all electrical work completed matches the approved drawings
  • Confirm that relevant progress and special inspections are on-site and clearly approved by the SIA.
  • Periodically check that no safety hazards exist on the active construction project
  • Confirm that work complies with code and other requirements

Inspection Requests

The Department’s online portal for scheduling appointments for required DOB inspections must be used. DOB NOW provides robust online accounts, making it easier to submit applications, make payments, schedule appointments, check the status of an application or inspection, pull permits, and make renewals.

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