The Real Deal New York

DOB kicks off e-filing program

$30M system starts with sprinkler and plumbing filings, will expand after trial run
August 09, 2016 04:12PM

DOB Commissioner Rick Chandler

DOB Commissioner Rick Chandler

The city’s Department of Buildings rolled out the first phase of its $29.6 million computerized filing system that, when fully realized, hopes to make paper transactions a thing of the past.

The first phase of the new system – called DOB NOW – allows builders to file plans online for sprinkler and plumbing work, Crain’s reported. The DOB will expand the program more widely after it conducts a trial run with a handful of companies this summer.

The program “will not only offer the public a far more user-friendly experience, but it will also help [the DOB] perform a wide range of tasks, from critical functions like addressing safety lapses at construction sites, to routine items such as issuing licenses and permits,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a statement.

The new system will eventually cover all aspects of the DOB filing procedure, and will give investigators more data to help them spot potentially unsafe trends on worksites, DOB commissioner Rick Chandler said.

While many in the industry have longed for the DOB to modernize its filing process, at least one group had its misgivings.

The New York Coalition of Code Consultants, which represents expeditors that navigated the arcane system, told Crain’s the new system would cut out its members. [Crain’s] – Rich Bockmann