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The Zoning Office is responsible for administering the zoning laws of the City of Hoboken, Hudson County and the State of New Jersey. Zoning is the delineation of districts and the establishment of regulations governing land and buildings; uses; signage; historic preservation; related performance standards and conditions.

 A zoning permit is required for: all new construction, alteration-modification of existing buildings; yards, stoops and areaways alteration-modification; certification of use for all commercial enterprises; all signage; demolition/clean-out; any modification including repairs of a building’s exterior in the historic district, even painting and window replacement.  

 A zoning permit may be required even when abuilding permit is not. Check before starting any work.


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The Zoning Officer duties include:

  • Reviewing all applications for building permits, alterations, signs, and uses within the City of Hoboken;
  • Assigning those needing special approval to the Planning Board or Zoning Board of Adjustment;
  • Issuing zoning permits, First Certificates of Zoning Compliance, Final Certificate of Zoning Compliance authorizing the issuance of a Certificate of Occupancy or Temporary CO, sign permits, use certifications and other related approvals;
  • Issuing Sidewalk Café Licenses;
  • Overseeing adherence with Historic Preservation guidelines and compliance with directives of the Historic Preservation Commission;
  • Conducting field inspections and special investigations to ensure compliance with the Zoning Code; and
  • Responding to all inquiries with regard to zoning.

When do you need to go to the Zoning Office?

  • The Zoning Office is the first stop for anyone seeking permits to do construction or make alterations of any kind.  A simple rule-of-thumb is; if a building permit is required for the work you are doing, you will also need zoning approval. A First Certificate of Compliance must be obtained before building permits can be issued.
  • Before installing any type of sign or making alterations to a building façade you must check with the Zoning Office to see if permits or other approvals are required. Business signs and most permanent signs require zoning approval and a building permit for installation. Other types of signs that do not require a zoning or building permit may still be subject to certain guidelines and restrictions that you need to be aware of. It is always best to check with the office.
  • Before opening a business you must obtain a certification of use from the Zoning Office.  Different types of businesses are permitted in each zoning district.  Check with the zoning office to make sure your business is permitted and obtain a Certificate of Compliance certifying that it is compliant with the Zoning Code.  When permits are required for renovation or fit out associated with a new business application, the use and building permits will be handled together.

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