Development Permits

Special Notice

PWSA offices are currently closed to the public and permitting staff is working from home. Please review our temporary policies and procedures for guidance on obtaining water and sewer permits. These policies are effective beginning May 1st, 2020 until further notice. 

Backhoe operator digging sewer line underground

The following steps are a general overview of the development permit process. This process does not apply if you are connecting one single-family home without fire sprinklers to the sewer and water system. Those projects should follow the Residential Permit requirements. All other developments must follow the development permit process. 

You will want to begin this process as early as possible in your development timeline. Some building permits require PWSA approval prior to issuance. Complete rules and regulations can be found in our Developer’s Manual

Installation of sprinkler systems requires coordination between the City of PIttsburgh Department of Permits, Licenses, and Inspections, Bureau of Fire, Allegheny County Health Department and PWSA. 

Any development that requires extensions or relocations of PWSA facilities will need to follow specific PWSA requirements. Make sure to identify any proposed work at your pre-development meeting.

Development Process Overview

Step One: Pre-Development Meeting

The pre-development meeting is an opportunity to discuss your project in person. All developments, regardless of the scope, are required to submit a request form. A PWSA representative will reach out to determine if a meeting is necessary for your project. Email the request and any preliminary plans to Additional instructions can be found on the request form. Please do not use this email address for any other communications as the messages only come through if the request form is attached. Questions should be emailed to our Development Coordinator directly. 

Step Two: Water and Sewer Availability Letter Request Form

This request form is required to determine if water and/or sewer service is available for your project. All projects must submit this request regardless of the scope. The form can be submitted at any time in your project timeline but is helpful to do prior to your pre-development meeting as we provide maps of our facilities near your project.

Complete the Water and Sewer Availability Letter Request Form and e-mail it to

Step Three: Water and Sewer Use Application

PWSA reviews the water and sewer use application to determine the amount of water and sewer flows produced by your project. All projects must submit this application and the required documentation. The only exception is for projects with a scope of work that includes installing a fire protection service line only.

More information, submission guidelines and application

Step Four: Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection Sewage Facilities Planning Module (DEP SFPM)

Most developments proposing an increase in flows or subdividing lots will be subject to a DEP SFPM review. During the water and sewer use application review, PWSA will evaluate the project for criteria that may require a DEP submission.

More information, submission guidelines, and application

Step Five: Water and Sewer Tap-in Plan Review

Any project proposing to connect, reconnect or terminate water and/or sewer service to PWSA owned infrastructure must submit Professional Engineer stamped plans for review.

More information, submission guidelines, and application

Permit Fees

All development permits require a $250 review fee. This includes review of the water and sewer use application, DEP Sewage Facilities Planning Module, and two (2) reviews of tap-in plans. Any reviews over two will require an additional $250 per review.

Development permits will also incur an additional tapping fee to be determined at the completion of a development application review. This fee includes the cost of connections (physical taps), meters, and Equivalent Dwelling Unit (EDU) fees. 

Currently, PWSA EDU fees are:

  • Water - $2,224/EDU
  • Sewer - $2,978/EDU

Calculating EDUs

Determining EDUs for a project begins by hiring an engineering firm to perform calculations. The calculations show how much water and sewer flows a project will produce. Flows are measured in gallons per day (GPD). 300 GPD is equal to 1 PWSA EDU.

A simple calculation of GPD/300 will give you the number of project EDUs. 

Then, use the following to calculate your tapping fee:

project EDUs x $2,224 = water tapping fee

project EDUs x $2,978 = sewer tapping fee

water tapping fee + sewer tapping fee = total tapping fee

Don't forget to add your connection and meter fees, too! A complete list of permit fees can be found in our Fee Schedule.

Additional Agency Approvals

Many developments within the PWSA service area require approvals from other governmental regulatory agencies. In order to expedite PWSA approvals, we maintain a list of resources and contacts for these agencies.

Maps and Records Requests

Looking for infrastructure maps, drill sheets, or other historical records for your project? PWSA maintains records that can be helpful for locating existing infrastructure.

Records provided may not represent current infrastructure due to policy changes over time. Maps and records do not supersede any State laws that require submission of a PA One Call request or the completion of any due diligence investigations on site.

Submit a request

Contact our Development Coordinator with any questions. 

Jordan Treaster