Commercial Permits

Whether you are an Asheville small business owner starting a new restaurant or a contractor building an office building, your project will need to obtain a permit. The process for obtaining a permit depends on the scope of your project. Development Services Department (DSD) staff can help you determine your project’s route through the development process.

The City of Asheville categorizes commercial construction and multi-family housing within three levels:

  • Level I: Commercial construction less than 35,000 square feet or less than 20 multi-family units; Level I permits are reviewed at the city staff level.
  • Level II: Commercial construction 35,000-100,000 square feet or 20-50 multi-family units; Level II projects are reviewed by city staff, the Technical Review Committee (TRC), and the Planning and Zoning Commission.
  • Level III: Commercial construction larger than 100,000 square feet or more than 50 multi-family units; Level III projects are reviewed by city staff, the Technical Review Committee (TRC), the Planning and Zoning Commission and Asheville City Council.

Visit the Permit Application Center (PAC) at 161 S. Charlotte St. on Monday to Friday from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm (closed public holidays) or contact or 828-259-5846 with questions. Click here for additional staff contacts.

Schedule an optional Early Assistance meeting or a mandatory TRC Pre-Application meeting with staff to review specific project requirements.

Click here for commercial applications and resources. Applications can be submitted in-person at the Permit Application Center or online through the Development Portal

All projects that require plan review must comply with applicable codes, specifications and zoning regulations. Work requiring a permit cannot begin until the permit holder or his agent posts the permit in a weatherproof, accessible and conspicuous location on the premises.