Building & Housing Department
The Building & Housing Department was created in December 2017 as a result of a merger between the Building and Housing Inspection Departments. We are working to create a combined presence for the new department on this website, but in the meantime please use the information and links below to find what you're looking for. If you're not sure where to start, please call the Building & Housing Department at 216-491-1460.
3400 Lee Road
Shaker Heights, OH 44120-3493
216-491-1460 | Email
Select Building for help with:
- Building Permits/Inspections
- New Construction/Renovation - Residential/Commercial
- Business Licenses
- Stop Work Orders
- Building Code Plan Review
- Construction Guidelines & Building Specifications
- List of Registered Contractors
- Commercial Property Maintenance
3450 Lee Road
Shaker Heights, OH 44120-3629
216-491-1470 | Email
Select Housing for help with:
- Housing Inspections
- Point of Sale (POS)
- Residential Periodic Inspections
- Complaint Inspections
- Rental Inspections
- POS Escrow
- Residential Property Maintenance
- Vacant House/Lot Complaints
- Complaints About Landlords
- Housing Code Compliance
- Inspection Guidelines and Forms
The Van Aken District: Fit Out Information
Resources for Tenants, Design Teams, and Contractors
Learn more about:
- Tenant Mailing Addresses
- Storefront Systems and Signage
- Building Plan Review Process
- Food Licenses
- Contractor Registration Requirements
- Fire Extinguishers
- Fire Protection Acceptance Tests
- Work Hours
- Contractor Parking
- Business License - Commercial Occupancy Permit Requirements
Tenant Mailing Addresses
The Van Aken District includes three new streets: Walker, Tuttle, and Meade. The Building & Housing Department is working with the U.S. Postal Service to create mailing addresses for these streets. Your specific mailing address will be assigned by RMS. Please refer to the Master Mailing Address List (maintained by RMS).
It is critical that all communications, including permit applications and plan submissions, reference the specific mailing address for the tenant location. Office tenants must also include their suite number.
Review of Storefront Systems and Signage
Storefront systems, signage, and any other exterior modifications require review by the City's Architectural Board of Review (ABR). We strongly recommend you get your application in early. ABR meets the first and third Monday of every month and may require several re-submissions before granting approval.
City Hall, Building & Housing Department, 3400 Lee Rd.
Application for Plan Approval
A completed application with drawings is required.
No payment is due at the time of submission. You will be required to pay your plan review fees when your permits are issued.
Number of Sets
Click here to find out how many sets of your plans you are required to submit. All sets must be dropped off at the Building Department and will be routed accordingly (Fire, Plans Examiner, etc.).
Reviews can take up to 30 days, though we strive to turn around small submissions in 10 business days. If we do not approve your plans the first time, you will be required to re-submit them. In general, we recommend design teams get their plans in as early as possible to accommodate necessary re-submissions.
Contractor Registration Requirements
All contractors, including sub-contractors, are required to be registered with the City of Shaker Heights. Registration is $125 per trade and must be renewed each calendar year. Click here for more information.
Permits are required for your project. No work may start until permits are issued, even if you have submitted your plans.
Note: If you intend to make changes to your plan after your permits have been issued, you must submit your revised plans for another round of review and approval.
These rules are strictly enforced. Any work performed without the proper permit is subject to a penalty of double the permit fee.
Refer to the fee schedule to calculate your payment. All tenant fit outs for the Van Aken District are considered "New Construction." Please add state tax of 3 percent to your fee total. As noted, you will also be expected to pay the costs of your plan review when your permits are issued.
When your permits are issued, you will also get a set of approved plans. Please keep these plans on site for inspectors to reference.
Food Licenses: Please contact the Cuyahoga County Board of Health at 216-201-2000 to schedule your pre-licensing inspection. Please call at least one week prior to your anticipated opening date. Learn more about the County's food licensing process.
Fire Protection Acceptance Tests
Any construction work that creates a noise disturbance in a residential area is not permitted during the following times:
Monday–Friday, 7 pm to 7 am
Saturday and Sunday, 5 pm to 9 am
- Street parking on adjacent streets.
- First row of parking spots next to the Rapid tracks in Shaker Plaza.
- Municipal Farnsleigh Rd. parking lot. (Note: most of this lot is controlled by Marous Brothers. One row is available to the public and/or other non-Marous Brothers contractors.)
- Thornton Park. Two lots are available; one lot is accessible from Warrensville Center Rd., and the other is accessible from Farnsleigh Rd.
- As directed by RMS and Turner Construction (temporary parking may become available).
Do Not Park:
- Any row other than the first row next to the Rapid tracks in Shaker Plaza.
- Ohio Savings or Key Bank.
- Any other private property.
Business License - Commercial Occupancy Permit Requirements
To open for business, you will need to obtain a Business License - Commercial Occupancy Permit. All other permits must be finaled out before we issue the Commercial Occupancy Permit.
Submit your application for the Business License - Commercial Occupancy Permit to the Building & Housing Department with the required $100 fee.
As part of this process, please schedule the final life safety check of your space by calling the Building & Housing Department at 216-491-1461. The Assistant Fire Chief and a Building Inspector will conduct this inspection, which takes 30 minutes on average. Food operators must also provide a copy of the food license at this inspection. If everything checks out, your Commercial Occupancy Permit will be issued and you may open for business.
Van Aken District: Tenants
Below is a list of new tenants confirmed for the Van Aken District (plus a list of what's open now). We will keep this page updated, so check back for more announcements in the coming months. Want to learn more about the Van Aken District? Visit our New Construction page.
Update (March 2018): Download the latest retail tenant announcements from The Van Aken District's website.
Opening Summer 2018
Jonathon Sawyer restaurant
Andrews Colour Atelier
CLE Clothing Inc.
Double Rainbow Children’s Clothing
Mitchell’s Ice Cream
Restore Cold Pressed Juice
Rising Star Coffee Roasters
The Orman Building
The Orman Building is a 22,000 square-foot artisanal food and retail market in the heart of the Van Aken District. The market will be anchored by two chef-driven concept restaurants, including one from Jonathon Sawyer, who is also helping to steer the dining strategy for the District as "curator of food experiences." Inside the market, up to 20 stalls will offer a mix of dining, prepared foods, retail, and other services.
The following businesses are open and welcome your patronage.
Brew at Juma (20100 Chagrin)
Shaker Community Gallery (3445 Warrensville Center)
Core Life Chiropractic (20134 Van Aken)
A.J. Heil Florist (3233 Warrensville Center)
Blulens | Dawn Cook (3235 Warrensville Center)
MotoPhoto (20116 Chagrin)
Christ Episcopal Church (3445 Warrensville Center)
Chagrin Corporate Center (20820 Chagrin Blvd.)
CTL (20521 Chagrin Blvd.)
Shaker Medical Building (3461 Warrensville Center Rd.)
Tower East (20600 Chagrin Blvd.)
University Hospitals (3605-3645 Warrensville Center Rd.)
As of: March 2018
Residential Property Tax Abatement
Buyers of newly built homes in the Transit Village and Southern Moreland Community Reinvestment Areas (CRAs) may be eligible for a residential property tax abatement.
Specifically, property owners who apply for and receive the abatement will get a tax exemption of 100 percent of the increase in the assessed value of the property resulting from new construction. The period of the abatement is up to 10 years.
Note: The abatement is granted only for the value of the improvements related to the newly constructed home. During the term of the abatement, the property owner is responsible for paying all taxes associated with the land value of the property.
To be eligible for the abatement, properties must meet certain criteria. These include:
- New construction
- Located in the Transit Village or Southern Moreland CRAs (see map below)
- Residential, single-family dwelling
- Minimum investment of $125,000
- Owner occupied
To receive the abatement, eligible property owners must:
1) Apply for the abatement (see links below) and;
2) Have the application certified by a Shaker Heights Housing Officer.
Applications must be filed with the Shaker Heights Housing Officer no later than six months after completion of the new construction. The Housing Officer will determine whether an application meets the requirements for the program.
- View a map of the Transit Village and Southern Moreland CRA Districts
- Learn about building a new home on a city-owned vacant lot
- Read Shaker Heights Ordinance 14-97 (enacted February 23, 2015) and Ordinance 16-33 (enacted March 28, 2016) for details about and requirements for each CRA
- Download a printable PDF version of this page
- Residential Property Tax Abatement—Application
- Residential Property Tax Abatement—Updated Owner Form
All applications must be submitted digitally via the forms linked above.
Facility Reservations/Rentals and Block Parties
The City offers residents several facilities for hosting parties, meetings, and events. Rates vary and some restrictions apply. Review the locations and policies to determine which facility best meets your needs and to learn more about reserving/renting the space.
Please note: Special events, including parades, races, and festivals, require permission from the City. Visit Special Events Guidelines for an application and details.
Ice Arena Rental
Select dates are available for pool parties at Thornton Park (residents only). You may reserve a table outside the pool area at a cost of $30 for two hours or reserve the Community Room for $40/hour (two-hour minimum). The pool, pool deck, or any area within the pool fence is not available for parties or reservations. Pool admission rates apply. A minimum of two weeks advance notice is required. For availability and reservations, please contact Thornton Park at 216-491-1295.
Community Room Rental
The Community Room at Thornton Park may be reserved by individuals or groups when not in use for Recreation Department programs. Cost is $40 per hour for Shaker residents, $50 per hour for non-residents. A two-hour minimum is required. For availability and reservations, please contact Thornton Park at 216-491-1295.
Book your party in the large pavilion up to one year in advance. A permit is required and dates fill quickly. Weekday reservations are available May 31-August 31. Reservations are available weekends only in September. No reservations will be taken for Memorial Day, Independence Day, or Labor Day. Pavilions may be used on a first-come, first-served basis on these holidays. Restrooms are open May 1-October 30. For information, availability, and reservations, call 216-491-1351 or learn more online.
A block party in Shaker is for residents of the street being blocked off (i.e., all residents on the street are invited) and their guests; it is not open to the public; and it is non-sectarian, non-partisan and non-commercial. The City does not block streets for private events. The contact person for the block party should be a resident of the street.
All Shaker block parties receive:
- Special brush pick-up/street cleaning prior to the event
- Delivery of barricades to block the street
- Police car or Fire truck for youngsters to see up close
- Mayor and Council member visits
Contact the Fire Department to obtain a tent permit, if necessary. Also, the City does not have tables or chairs to loan or rent, and the City is not able to deliver equipment (excluding barricades).
Meeting space is available to Shaker residents on weekdays for meetings only. The rooms are not available for private parties or gatherings. Meeting rooms include Room 102 (capacity of 15) and Room 115 (capacity of 20). Room 114 accommodates 150 people and is ideal for larger meetings, lectures, and classes.
Call 216-491-1360 to reserve a room. Some restrictions apply.
The Dealership offers room rentals to businesses, organizations, community groups, and individuals for retreats, meetings, workshops, classes, parties or events. Available spaces accommodate anywhere from five to 200 people.
Visit the online home of Shaker Life magazine.