Planning & Community Development

Housing Action Plan Request for Proposals

On September 14, 2021, City Council authorized the City Manager to apply for a grant from Washington State Department of Commerce in the amount of $100,000 to fund a Housing Action Plan.  The City has issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) for consultant services from qualified firms with experience in housing policy, data analysis, public outreach, and general communications to develop this Housing Action Plan.  The work to be performed by the consultant consists of researching and developing a housing action plan, to be developed consistent with the requirements of RCW 36.70A.600(2).  Proposals must be submitted by 4:00 PM Friday, October 1, 2021.  View the RFP for additional information.

Process Improvement Day Recap

PCD was closed for process improvement day on Thursday, September 16. The items the Department focused on were:


  1. Final review comments of our upcoming programmatic buoy permit. 

This permit will provide a more streamlined and predictable permit process for buoys.


  1. Subdivision standard code updates.

The subdivision code was recently adopted in 2019 and with almost two years of application, staff has identified sections of the code that need to be revised to improve clarity and predictability.


  1. Changing our appointment calendar to be more user friendly.


  1. Creating a web page of commonly asked questions for realtors (and the general public) to access time sensitive information about land use and building requirements. 


  1. Improvements to our permitting database, SmartGov.

The Department has been actively engaged this past year in transitioning our permitting system to allow applicants to apply anytime/anywhere. In order for this to occur successfully, changes to the software and training of our team are required. Each process day we work to take steps to bring this service to our community.  


The goal of these days is to provide time for our staff to work on items that improve the customer experience. We thank you for your support and look forward to serving you. If you have suggestions on items you would like us to focus on, please send them our way by e-mailing  Our next Process Improvement Day is scheduled for Thursday, October 21.

New Alteration/Subject to Field Inspection Online Permit Rolled Out

The City has created a new online permit for residential alterations or remodels that are solely within the interior of a home.  These alterations must not involve going outside the existing footprint or raise roof lines.  

Examples of work covered under the R-ALT-STFI permit type include:

  • Kitchen remodel - Moving appliances around within the kitchen space and/or adding a beam to eliminate posts.
  • Interior space remodel - Moving or deleting walls.
  • Reconfiguring bedrooms - Does not include adding a bedroom.
  • Small structural changes - Requires stamped engineering plan at time of submittal.
  • Bathroom remodel.
  • Adding interior LP gas lines for new appliances (gas fireplace)
  • Above existing garage space - Creating ADU's are not eligible for this type of permit.
  • Changing staircases or railings.

Work that is NOT eligible for this permit type:

  • Alterations outside the existing footprint work.
  • LP tank replacements.
  • Additions to existing homes.
  • Detached garages.
  • Grading on property.
  • New utility installation.
  • Tree clearing or vegetation management.
  • Commercial improvements.
  • Raising of roof or changing roof heights and/or size.
  • Drainage improvements.
  • Seismic retrofitting of either interior or exterior of home.

This permit is supported by an online application process very similar to our residential mechanical (R-MEC) permit and may be applied for using the Online Permit Portal.

City hall reopened on July 1, 2021, with resumed counter service to the public. Open counter hours are Monday through Friday, 8:00 AM to 12:00 Noon on a first come, first served basis. Permit application submittal continues to be by appointment only and we will only accept digital documents.

*NEW* On July 1 we will also be holding 15 minute counter consultations with either a Planner or a Building Inspector at 1:30 PM.  These are by appointment only and will be offered Monday through Friday.  

City to Resume In Person Payments July 1, 2021

Beginning July 1, the City will resume in-person payments. Customers will be responsible for convenience fees for any credit card payments. 

Planning & Community Development rolls out new phase in electronic permitting process:  Applicant Uploaded Submittals. 

Steps for applying and uploading documents are found on our Submitting a Permit Application webpage.  

To see the most commonly required submittal documents for each permit type, please click one of the links below:

Land Use Permits
Commercial Building Permits
Residential Building Permits

  1. Main
  2. Pay an Invoice
  3. Appointments & Inspections
  4. Online Permit Center

What We Do 

The Planning and Community Development (PCD) department coordinates and manages land use activity on Bainbridge Island, WA. 

Responsibilities include:

  • Implementation of the Comprehensive Plan 
  • Development Review
  • Building permits & inspections
  • Code Compliance
  • Administration of Building, Shoreline, Environmental, and Subdivision regulations