Engineering Division

The Engineering Division of the Public Works Department has many responsibilities.  We manage the City's Capital Improvement Program including program planning & development, engineering design, management of consultant contracts, construction management, and inspection.  We provide engineering review and inspection of public improvements that are part of land development projects.  We process and issue Encroachment Permits for various activities within the public right-of-way, and we process and issue Grading Permits.  We manage the City's state-mandated Stormwater Management Program.  We also administer the Santa Ynez Valley Transit bus system, and much more.

Encroachment Permits


The Engineering Division issues two types of Encroachment Permits:

1. Encroachment Permit for Construction - This covers excavation, utility work, concrete work and other construction activities within the public right-of-way.  In most locations throughout the City the public right-of-way covers the paved roadway and extends 5' to 10' behind the curb.

2. Encroachment Permit for Obstruction - This covers benches, tables, planters and other private structures that upon City review and approval may be placed or located within the public right-of-way such as dining tables located on public sidewalks in the commercial areas of town.  Obstructions within the public right-of-way are only allowed if public safety can be maintained.  Permits issued for obstructions are subject to revocation if the private structures are not properly maintained.

Once an Encroachment Permit application is deemed complete, applicants should plan on two weeks for Engineering Division staff to review and approve the application, and issue a Permit.  Contact our Engineering Technician with any questions you may have.

Design Standards


The Engineering Division maintains and enforces City of Solvang Public Works Design Standards for improvements within the public right-of-way.  The Public Works Design Standards apply to all land development projects and improvements within the public right-of-way.  Improvements within the public right-of-way include street improvements such as sidewalks, curb & gutter, driveway approaches and asphalt pavement, as well as storm drain, water and sewer improvements.  The City of Solvang Public Works Standard Details make up a portion of the Public Works Design Standards.  The Public Works Design Standards are currently being updated.  Contact our Engineering Division staff to find out more or obtain copies of our Design Standards.

Standard Details


The Engineering Division maintains City of Solvang Public Works Standard Details for improvements within the public right-of-way.  In some instances the City also follows standard details of the American Public Works Association and the County of Santa Barbara.  The Public Works Standard Details are currently being updated.  Contact our Engineering Division staff to find out more or obtain copies of our Standard Details.

Grading Permits


A Grading Permit is required whenever excavation or embankment (cut or fill) of 50 cubic yards (CY) or more is proposed to occur on a parcel. A Grading Permit may also be required for grading work less than this if certain conditions apply. See the Solvang Municipal Code Title 10 - Building Regulations, Chapter 1-4.X for all conditions requiring a Grading Permit. Minor utility trenching typically does not require a Grading Permit.

Whenever a Grading Permit is required, Grading Plans prepared by a registered Civil Engineer are also required.  Contact the Engineering Division staff for more information on Grading Plan requirements.  Whenever grading work may occur between October 1 and April 30 an Erosion Control Plan will also be required.  Applicants should be aware that under certain conditions a Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP), Water Pollution Control Plan (WPCP), and/or Stormwater Control Plan may also be required.  Contact the Engineering Division staff to learn what other requirements may apply to your proposed grading project.

Once an Grading Permit application is deemed complete, applicants should allow four to six weeks for Engineering Division staff to review the plans and provide correction comments to the applicant.  Contact our Engineering Division staff with any questions you may have.