Curb Cut Permit

What Is It?

You need a curb cut permit when you make a new driveway in an existing sidewalk curb. The curb cut permit is often part of a building construction permit, but may also be issued as a stand-alone permit. The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) oversees curb cut permits, because curbs are on the City right-of-way. However, we review, approve, and issue the permits.    

When you design your curb cut size and location, consider:

  • Tree and power pole clearances
  • The size and number of curb cuts allowed on your property
  • The required distance between your curb cuts and those on nearby property

What It Isn't

A curb cut permit does not address parking and car storage or location, size, and number of parking spots.

How Much Does It Cost?

We charge $86 for each curb cut on a single-family property. We charge $170 for each curb cut on all other types of property.

How Long Does It Take?

You may be able to get a curb cut permit as a same-day permit called a subject-to-field-inspection permit. Your project may qualify for a subject-to-field-inspection permit if:

  • You do not change the property use (such as retail, restaurant, or warehouse)
  • You are not doing any construction on the property
  • You are not establishing a parking lot 

If you have a construction project on the site, your curb cut permit will be part of your single-family or duplex construction permit or your multi-family, commercial, mixed use, or industrial construction permit.

Steps to Get Your Permit

Get your property information. Find property information to help you plan your project.

Determine restrictions to your project. Research the codes to determine curb cut limits and the SDOT standard plans to determine construction requirements.

Attend a coaching session. We offer 20 minutes of free coaching to answer drainage, land use, geotechnical or construction permit questions. If you need a longer coaching session, we offer one-hour sessions for $315.

Start your application. Complete the Curb Cut Application online using the Seattle Services Portal. You will need to include a site plan.

Request a pre-application site visit. You need a pre-application site visit if you will disturb more than 750 square feet of land or disturb any land on a site with an environmentally critical area (other than liquefaction or peat-settlement prone areas). Request a pre-application site visit online through the Seattle Services Portal. Our report will include information about your next steps, what to include in your plans, and what to provide at your intake appointment.

Prepare your plans. Plans should be to scale and easy to read.

You need to indicate the curb cut location on your site plan, as well as where there are trees and power poles. You need to include curb cut detail sheets that meet requirements in the SDOT standard plans and the Land Use Code. See the SDOT Right-of-Way Improvements Manual for curb cut standard plans and design criteria.

Fill out forms.

Coordinate with other agencies. You may need permits or approvals from other agencies. These are the most common agencies you may need to work with for your permit type:

Get your project screened by our permit techs. We screen your application to make sure it’s ready to submit. Screening is available through your Seattle Services Portal. You may schedule an appointment without screening if you are a consistently prepared applicant with a rating of 80 percent or better.

Schedule an intake appointment. Schedule an electronic intake appointment through the Seattle Services Portal

Pay fees. Approximately 75 percent of your permit fees are due at intake. The fees are calculated based on your project value.

Make corrections and resubmit your plans. Your project reviewer will send you a corrections letter if changes are needed.

Pay final fees. We will notify you if you need to pay any final fees before we issue your permit.

Print your permit. We will notify you when we have issued your permit and the documents are available in your Seattle Services Portal. Print the permit and approved plan. Display your permit. Place your permit in a visible location on the project site.

Get related permits. You may need to get additional permits or approvals from other departments.

Contact SDOT. Call your SDOT street use inspector to schedule an inspection or if you have any questions about when an inspection is required. A list of street use inspectors may be found at SDOT Street Use Inspection.

Close your permit. Your permit information will be archived in our Seattle Services Portal.