Applications & Forms

General Forms and Guides

Master Application Form
The Master Application is used to streamline the collection of generic information about a project, particularly those that require the submission of multiple application forms.  It should accompany the submission of applications marked with an asterisk* below.
Fee Schedule Most applications require the submission of a fee in order for the application to be processed. This fee schedule is effective as of January 1, 2024.
Understanding Zoning Use this quick guide to get a better understanding of what zoning is and how it may impact potential work from construction projects to opening a business. 

Application Forms

Form Name Description
An administrative adjustment allows for minor adjustments of the dimensional standards within the USDO by the Chief Planning Official. The Allowable Administrative Adjustments Table in Section 375.504.1 lists the development standards and limits that may be reviewed as an administrative adjustment.
An application for an Area Variance is a request for relief from the dimensional or development standards of the USDO for a specific property. An application may be submitted after denial of a proposed project or development by the Chief Planning Official or the Chief Building Official.
375-505(4) & 375-505(21)
A Certificate of Appropriateness is required for all applications for permits involving any exterior alteration, restoration, reconstruction, demolition, new construction or moving of a locally designated historic landmark or a property within a local historic district.
Certificate of Appropriateness - Window Diagram For any repair or replacement of windows on properties within Local Historic Districts, this form should be used to clarify proposed improvements to existing and new windows.
A Conditional Use Permit is a careful case-by-case review of the location, design, configuration and impact of a use deemed to have potential unforeseen impacts or unique form to determine the desirability of permitting the use at any particular site.   This application is required for a property with a proposal for a use listed in the Permitted Use Table in Section 375-302 as a conditional use for the Zoning District.
Demolition Review is required prior to receiving any building permit that involves the total or partial demolition of a building (excepting small accessory structures) located outside of a local historic district.
This review is performed to assure a proposed development conforms to the standards in the USDO, the Albany 2030 Comprehensive Plan, and any other applicable provisions of City Code. 
Development Plan Review - Waiver
An applicant may request, in writing, a waiver or modification of any of the development plan review development standards. Such request shall set forth the specific relief sought and the reasons why the same are necessary. The Planning Board may grant waivers from the development standards established in Article IV, except that the Planning Board shall not grant a waiver of the dimensional standards established in § 375-401 or the standards relating to signs established in § 375-409.
A Floodplain Variance provides relief from the floodplain development standards of the Floodplain Overlay (FP-O).
A Historic Property Hardship Waiver may be sought where a landmark, contributing structure, or property within an Historic District is to be demolished, removed, or relocated, or when seeking relief from a denied Certificate of Appropriateness for major exterior work.
A Lot Modification application is required to consolidate, subdivide or adjust lot boundaries.  This review may be used to conform an existing lot or development to the current dimensional standards of a Zoning District (e.g., lot size, setbacks, etc.) or to create a single larger lot for (re)development. If you are looking to consolidate two or more lots, you can use the Lot Consolidation Guide to assist in preparing your application.
A Revocable Street Privilege may be sought to utilize portions of the City right-of-way adjacent to a food or beverage establishment selling on which food and drinks are served to patrons of the establishment.
A Use Variance is for those unique conditions where relief is required from the permissible use regulations due to unique circumstances associated with a particular property.  The hardship must be established based upon a showing of competent financial evidence and the allowance is limited to the minimum variance necessary in order to relieve the hardship.
This application applies to all displays on walls (murals) or structures that exceed the height, size, duration, or another physical standard for an attached sign in the Zoning District.
Use this form to apply for either type of compliance: Basic Zoning Compliance or Detailed Zoning Compliance.
Zoning Map Amendments are reviewed by the Chief Planning Official who then initiates the amendment process.  The Planning Board reviews the proposed amendment at a public hearing and makes a recommendation to the Common Council.  The Common Council reviews the application and recommendations, holds a public hearing, and decides on the change in accordance with Section 375-505(20)(c)(i & ii).
Zoning Text Amendment*
Zoning Text Amendments are reviewed by the Chief Planning Official who then initiates the amendment process. The Planning Board reviews the proposed amendment at a public hearing and makes a recommendation to the Common Council. The Common Council reviews the application and recommendations, holds a public hearing, and decides on the change in accordance with Section 375-505(20)(c)(i).

Supplemental Documents

Site Plan Checklist Please use this Site Plan Checklist to ensure that your site plan is properly prepared and complete prior to submitting your application. 

Application types require a range of necessary sheets in addition to the overall site plan, some of the requirements are necessary for larger projects while conversion of existing structures or smaller projects may not require an extensive plan set. Please coordinate with your design professional (engineer, architect, etc.) to ensure the plan set is comprehensive and complete prior to submission with application. 
Inclusionary Zoning & Compliance Plan Guidelines
All new residential or mixed-use development or redevelopment project containing 20 or more new dwelling units is required to complete an inclusionary zoning compliance plan. As part of the plan, a percentage of the dwelling units must be sold or rented at sales or prices affordable to persons earning no more than 60% of the area median household income.
Presentation Template Proposing a (re)development project to the City of Albany? Use this power point template to prepare your professional presentation to City Boards, the Common Council, or the general public.
Lot Modification Guide Lot consolidations, splits and adjustments require a submittal of a Lot Modification Application. Use this step-by-step guide to understand the process and documents needed.