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Any construction, alternations, removal, hardscaping, or demolition in the City of Lewes requires a building permit from the City. This includes pretty much everything except for painting. Please call 302-645-7777 ext. 124 if you have questions regarding permitting requirements.
Applications for new construction or renovations, alterations, or demolitions may be obtained at Lewes City Hall, 114 E. Third Street, or from our website. Applications are reviewed to ensure compliance with the City’s Code. If your property is located within the Historic District, you may need to make an application to the Historic Preservation Architectural Review Commission. Please contact Building Department at (302) 645-7777 x124 should you have any questions.
New Construction & Additions
1.5% of the construction cost or ICC rate whichever is higher
All other Permits
1.5% of the construction cost
Call Chelsea Moore at 302-645-7777 ext. 124 to schedule all inspections. Please contact Chelsea 48 hours prior to the needed inspection.
The city adopted fire suppression to be required for all new residential construction on Oct. 11, 2021.
Fire suppression plans shall be submitted and approved prior to the scheduling of a framing inspection.
If the property is located within the floodplain an elevation certificate will be required along with sealed plans.
A copy of the approved plans shall remain on the job site and be available during inspections.
The city adopted an ordinance in 2014 requiring construction documents to be sealed by a licensed design professional for properties in the floodplain.
A survey, complete construction drawings, and contract with the property owner shall be submitted along with the Building Permit application.
Yes. (2012 IRC 105.1)
Yes, beginning July 1, 2022, a separate HVAC permit shall be submitted along with the Building Permit application if the HVAC information is not included as part of the overall Building Permit for the house. (2012 IRC 105.1)
Cut sheets showing specifications of the equipment to be installed.
HVAC plans/information shall be submitted and approved prior to the scheduling of a framing inspection.
Monday through Friday 7 am to 7 pm May 1 to September 30.
Saturday 9 am to 5 pm October 1 to April 30.
No construction on Sundays or holidays. Chapter 132-5A
It takes 1 -2 weeks depending on the number of permits that have been submitted for review.
Permits are reviewed in the order in which they are received.
A review letter is now being prepared as part of the plan review to address any concerns with the plans. The letter will be sent to the contractor, property owner, and design professional via email and/or regular mail.
20 ft.; 12 ft. within the TC, R-4, and R-4(H) Zoning District for single-family dwellings. This includes curb cuts on private streets. Ch. 197-61C(5).
Yes, a Building Permit and a Street Break Permit are required for work on a driveway.
The city is using the 2012 IRC.
Yes, all contractors and subcontractors are required to obtain a City of Lewes Business License. Chapter 128-4 of the City Code.
Household Garbage is offered to City of Lewes residents as follows:
Recycling is picked up by the City of Lewes weekly.
Bulk Trash Collection is available on the fourth Wednesday of each summer month (June through September) and the fourth Wednesday of every other month (November through May) at a charge of $50.00 per pick up. Pick-up can be scheduled by calling the City Manager's Office.
Items not collected include:
The City is changing the price of the 64-gallon trash cart from $48 to $70 per cart effective immediately. The 96-gallon trash and recycling cart originally priced at $70 has been increased to $80. In our efforts to replenish our trash and recycle cart inventories, city expenses relating to the purchase price and shipping costs have increased significantly therefore necessitating these fee changes. In the past the City of Lewes received a grant from the State of Delaware for recycle carts and passed on this savings to our property owners by offering free recycle carts. This grant funding is no longer available to the city. Sometimes the Maintenance Department staff can fix minor repairs to carts such as a damaged lid, malfunctioning wheel, or broken handle. When your trash or recycle carts are damaged beyond these repairs new carts must be purchased by the property owner. If you have questions or if you need a new cart, please contact City Hall at 302-645-7777.
For additional information on all City Services, please go to the 'Services' tab at the top of the main page.
8 a.m. to 4 p.m, year round, Monday through Friday, except Holidays.
A business license is required to rent property in Lewes. The license year is January 1st through December 31st with a fee of $83 per rental unit. Applications may be obtained at the Lewes City Hall or on the city's website under the Forms and Applications page. Call 302-645-7777 for additional information. Property owners who rent out are also required to pay a gross rental receipt tax. See "When are my taxes due?".
The current property tax rate is 57 cents per $100.00 of half the assessed value, which is 50% of the assessed value.
Taxes are billed annually on April 1. Tax bills are due upon receipt and become delinquent after June 30. A penalty of 1.5% is charged monthly on delinquent balances. Any property improvements done throughout the year may be billed on a Quarterly Supplemental Tax Billing.
As of April 1, 2009, GRRT will be 5% tax of the rent for occupancy of all private and public lodging facility and housing accommodations, other than those subject to the State of Delaware Lodging Tax. The tax on rent is for the period January 1 through December 31 of each year. Taxes are payable on or before February 1 of each year. A penalty of 1.5% is charged monthly until the tax is paid in full.
Any construction, alternations, removal, hardscaping, or demolition in the City of Lewes requires a building permit from the City. This includes pretty much everything except painting. Please call 302-645-7777 if you have questions regarding permitting requirements.
Applications for new construction or renovations, alterations, or demolitions may be obtained at Lewes City Hall, 114 E. Third Street, or from our website. Applications are reviewed to ensure compliance with the City’s Code. If your property is located within the Historic District, you may need to make an application to the Historic Preservation Architectural Review Commission. Please contact John Robitaille at (302) 645-7777 x120 should you have any questions.
Any person, firm or corporation engaged for profit within the City limits shall pay an annual (January 1 through December 31) license fee to the City. Application may be obtained under the Forms and Applications page, or in person at:Lewes City Hall114 E 3rd StreetLewes, DE 19958
Residential property rentals $83 per year, per unit.
Licenses for contractors vary according to the number of employees in the company:
Parking is permitted on public streets unless otherwise posted as "No Parking".
Municipal parking lots are also available at the following locations:
Metered parking locations are:
The meter fee at Savannah Beach and Johnnie Walker Beach is $2.50 per hour while all other locations are $1.50 per hour. Everyone must pay, including vehicles with handicapped plates and placards. Credit cards (Visa, Mastercard, and Discover) are accepted at
Another way of paying the meter is through a Parkmobile account or Parkmobile app which is downloadable on any smartphone. There is a 2-hour minimum charge when a credit card or Parkmobile account is used. Coin change machines are available at Savannah Beach, Johnnie Walker Beach, and Mary Vessels Park.
Meters are in effect from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. every day beginning May 1st through October 14th, except the meters at Savannah Beach1 and Johnnie Walker Beach which are in operation from May 1st through September 30th.
Free parking is available at the corner of Schley and Franklin Avenue, in addition to Otis Smith Park on Savannah Road.
Lifeguards are on duty from Memorial Day through Labor Day each year, 7 days a week, between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
It is unlawful for the owner of any dog to permit it to run at large within the City limits. It is unlawful not to have a bag or device for removal of any excrement that the animal shall drop.
No dogs are allowed on any beach between the hours of 8 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. any day between May 1st and September 30th.
The City of Lewes operates two docking facilities; the Canalfront Park Marina and the Otis Smith City Dock, both located along Front Street on the southern bank of the Lewes and Rehoboth Canal. Additional information about the Canalfront Park Marina and the City Dock may be obtained by calling the Dockmaster at 302-644-1869 or by reviewing the City's Operations and Maintenance Plan.
The Canalfront Park Marina is open between April 1 and November 30 and has 19 boat slips to accommodate seasonal and transient boaters. Thirteen of the slips are reserved for seasonal use by Lewes residents. Seven of the slips (three large and three small) are available for transient boaters. The large slips can accommodate a boat up to 55 feet in length and 16 feet beam. The small slips can hold a boat up to 25 feet in length and 12 feet beam. The existing water depth within the marina basin is generally 6 feet (plus or minus) mean low water based on 2009 dredging.
Effective April 1, 2017, the fee for seasonal leaseholders for large slips is $3,900 per slip and for small slips is $3,000.
The City Dock is a 200 foot long dock on Front Street, near the Canalfront Park Marina. It has an existing water depth of 10 feet (plus or minus) mean low water. The City Dock is sectioned into four 50 foot long boat slips that can accommodate small and larger vessels. Boat slips may be reserved in advance for seven consecutive days, longer depending on availability.
Effective April 2, 2012, the rental fees for transient boat slips at the Canalfront Park Marina and the City Dock are based on the following schedule:
Between October 1 and November 30, transient slips that are not reserved are available for monthly reservations at $475 per month.
Persons under twelve years of age may use or employ roller skates, inline skates, skateboards or similar devices on any sidewalk within the City of Lewes. No person twelve years of age or older shall use roller skates, inline skates, skateboards or similar devices on any sidewalk within the City of Lewes, except the sidewalk on the east side of the Savannah Road drawbridge.
On any sidewalk where persons are using or employing roller skates, inline skates, skateboards or similar devices, such persons shall yield the right-of-way to pedestrians.
No person shall use roller skates, inline skates, skateboards or similar devices within the areas of any City Parks, except Blockhouse Pond Park.
Commercial airports within two hours driving distance of Lewes include: