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Project Approvals

An approval must be obtained from the Maricopa County Environmental Services Department (MCESD) Subdivision, Infrastructure and Planning Program for a water, wastewater or reclaimed water facility or system when:

  • A new facility or system is to be constructed.
  • An existing facility or system is to be modified and the modification affects the capacity, quality, flow, location or operational performance of the facility or system.
  • A new or revised plan for a facility or system is being proposed.
  • A new subdivision requires an approval of sanitary facilities.
  • A new mobile home and/or recreational vehicle park is to be constructed or an existing mobile home park is to be modified and the modification affects the capacity of the park’s sewer or water system.
  • An existing facility or system is to be decommissioned.

Projects Requiring Approvals

Projects to construct and/or modify the following types of facilities and systems are reviewed and approved by the Subdivision, Infrastructure and Planning Program:

  • Water distribution system pipelines located in the public right-of-way, pressure reducing valve stations, ground water wells, storage and pressure tanks, booster pump stations and facilities that include only disinfection treatment.
  • Wastewater collection and force main pipelines located in the public right-of-way, sewage pump and lift stations, air/vacuum relief stations and sewer flow control or diversion structures.
  • Reclaimed water distribution system pipelines and booster pump stations located in the public right-of-way.

The Subdivision, Infrastructure and Planning Program does not review or approve water and wastewater treatment facilities, reclaimed water recharge facilities, reuse systems or treatment/disposal wetlands. These projects are reviewed and approved by the MCESD’s Water and Wastewater Treatment Program.

The Subdivision, Infrastructure and Planning Program also reviews and approves projects that do not necessarily involve the construction of or physical modification to a facility or system. These types of projects include:

  • Subdivision sanitary/water system approvals
  • Condominium conversion sanitary/water system approvals
  • Mobile Home Parks sanitary/water system approvals
  • Soils/geological reports for subdivisions served by septic systems
  • Master plans

Types of Approvals

The application and instruction forms for submission of projects requiring the below approvals can be found on the Forms/Applications page. Answers to common questions about the review and approval process may be found on the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) pages, Projects and Approvals sections. Additional information about the review and approval process for each type of approval is presented in the sections below.

Approval To Construct/Approval Of Construction

A project that requires the construction of or physical modification to a facility or system must be submitted for approval. The review and approval of a typical project usually occurs in three distinct phases:

  1. Submission of an application and fee, an Engineering Design Report, design drawings, specifications and other documentation for review. When the review is complete, an Approval To Construct certificate per component is issued and a plan cover sheet is signed to allow construction of the facility or system to commence.
  2. Construction of the facility or system within a specified timeframe.
  3. Submission of construction test reports, bacteriological and disinfection residual reports, an application that includes the Engineer's Certificate of Completion per component, and as-built design documentation for review. When the review and approval of the submitted documentation is complete, an Approval Of Construction (AOC) certificate is issued. The AOC is the operational permit for the facility/system

The Approval To Construct and Approval Of Construction application and instruction forms can be found on the Forms/Applications page.

Approval Of Sanitary Facilities for a Subdivision

When a new subdivision is to be constructed or an existing apartment complex is to be converted to condominiums, an approval must be obtained from the Department.

The specific requirements and the review and approval process depend on the type and characteristics of the particular project. However, for all of these types of projects, a final recorded Plat of the development must be submitted before an approval is issued. Please contact the Subdivision, Infrastructure and Planning Program for additional information concerning what is required for review and approval of these types of projects.

Subdivisions which will utilize onsite wastewater systems (i.e. septic systems) have an additional “step” that must be completed prior to the issuance of the Approval Of Sanitary Facilities for a Subdivision certificate, also known as the Health Certificate. The Maricopa County Environmental Health Code requires a Geologic Report to be prepared demonstrating that it is reasonable to expect that onsite wastewater systems will function properly on every lot. The approval requirements for a subdivision using onsite wastewater disposal systems (i.e. septic systems) to manage sanitary sewage are detailed in the Septic Subdivision Approval Requirements memorandum.

The Soils Test Plan (STP) is submitted to the Subdivision, Infrastructure and Planning Program with an application and fee for review and approval. Once the field work is completed, a Geologic Report is prepared and submitted for review and approval by the Department.

Another aspect of “septic subdivisions” is that there are limitations on lot size for these types of developments. Lot sizes must be a minimum of 35,000 square feet net per lot. “Dry Lot” subdivisions (i.e. subdivisions having an onsite individual well and septic system on each lot) are no longer supported by the Maricopa County Planning & Development Department or by the MCESD. Septic subdivisions must, like all subdivisions, be served with potable water by a municipal water system or an Arizona Corporation Commission accredited water system.

The Approval Of Sanitary Facilities for a Subdivision application and instruction forms can be found on the Forms/Applications page.

Approval Of Sanitary Facilities for a Mobile Home Park

When a mobile home and/or recreational vehicle park is to be constructed or an existing mobile home park is to be modified, an approval must be obtained from the Department.

The specific requirements and the review and approval process depend on the type and characteristics of the particular project. Please contact the Subdivision, Infrastructure and Planning Program for additional information.

The Approval Of Sanitary Facilities for a Mobile Home Park application and instruction forms can be found on the Forms/Applications page.

Approval Of A312G Alternative Features

A feature of improved or alternative technology, design, setback, installation or operation that differs from a permit requirement for General Aquifer Protection Permits Types 4.01 to 4.23 as specified in Arizona Administrative Code (AAC) R18-9-A312G requires an approval. This type of approval is requested in conjunction with a request for Approval To Construct.

The specific requirements and the review and approval process depend on the type and characteristics of the particular project. Please contact the Subdivision, Infrastructure and Planning Program for additional information.

The Approval Of A312G Alternative Features application and instruction forms can be found on the Forms/Applications page.