Main Office
69 W Washington Street Room 1900
Chicago, IL 60602
(312) 603-8200
(312) 603-9828
Sunday: Closed
Monday: 8:30 am-4:30 pm
Tuesday: 8:30 am-4:30 pm
Wednesday: 8:30 am-4:30 pm
Thursday: 8:30 am-4:30 pm
Friday: 8:30 am-4:30 pm
Saturday: Closed
Walk-in Hours for Asbestos and Demolition Permits
69 W Washington Street Room 1900
Chicago, IL 60602
Monday: 9:00 am-12:00 pm
Wednesday: 9:00 am-12:00 pm
Location and Contact Information Hide

A permit is required by the Cook County Department of Environment and Sustainability when deconstructing, destroying, razing, tearing down, wrecking or altering or renovating any structure in suburban or unincorporated Cook County. Alteration or renovations include the removal of any load-supporting structural member of a facility, the removal of an exterior wall or the removal or partial removal of the roof of a structure. NOTE:  For unincorporated areas of Cook County, a demolition permit is also required from the Cook County Department of Building & Zoning.  Permit information can be found at:

The Cook County Demolition Debris and Diversion Ordinance requires that 70% of demolition debris from commercial and residential structures (garages and sheds are exempt from this requirement) must be recycled, with 5% of the residential structures being reused, during the demolition process.

Demolition Resources

  • Enter a demolition debris diversion plan ––The Cook County Environmental Ordinance requires that 70% of residential and commercial structures (garages and sheds are exempt from this requirement).  In order to simplify the reporting requirements for recycling demolition debris, Cook County is requesting that the demolition contractors use the Green Halo System to record their recycling plan and recycling manifests/tickets.
  • U.S. EPA Region 5 report and bid specification development tools for use by cities, counties or land banks undertaking large-scale residential demolitions.

Demolition Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to process my application?Typically it takes us about 48 hours to review and process your application before the permit is mailed out.  Commercial Application, Residential Application

What is the cost of a demolition permit?It depends.  If you intend to demolish a residential structure the fee is $300.00 for the first structure and $150.00 for each additional structure.  All commercial demolition the fee is $750.00 per structure.

How do I schedule my start and end dates?Per Federal, State, and local governments the 10-day rule must be followed.  It’s usually based on the postmark or the day the application was mailed to us for review.  Count off 10 business days starting with the day you mail the application and write that date down, as your start date.

How long is my permit good for?The maximum number of days your permit is good for is 30 calendar days as a time. 

Can I extend my permit’s end date?Yes, in fact you can revise anything on the application if needed.   You’ll need to fill out a revision application to make such a request and submit a revision fee of $55.00.  Please take note, but we must receive your revision form at least 2 business days prior to the permit expiring.  Revision Application

Do I need to submit an asbestos inspection report as part of the demolition requirements?Yes.  Cook County Department of Environment and Sustainability requires asbestos inspection reports for all proposed demolition projects including but not limited to houses, garages, sheds, and commercial structures.  In some cases we may waive this requirement, but only on a case by case basis.    

Who can I call to have an asbestos inspection done on my structure?Cook County Environmental Control has a list of licensed and registered asbestos contractors for that will perform this task.  Call 312-603-8215 for a list or click here.

Can Cook County Department of Environment and Sustainability waive the standard 10 day waiting period? Yes, a variance may be granted, but only in extreme circumstances such as a structure that has become a health and safety risk.

Who is the permit mailed to once it’s issued?We typically mail all permits to the demolition contractor unless instructed otherwise by the applicant.

What is a HOLD used for?A HOLD may be applied to a demolition in order to eliminate the possibility of your permit expiring.  Placing a permit on HOLD allows you to keep the permit valid for a calendar year without it expiring.  It’s typically used when a third party is holding up the project and you believe that your permit will expire before you commence with your project.

Can I demolish my own structure?Yes, the homeowner can demolish the structure themselves.  On the demolition application, under the Demolition Contractor Information one should list the owner’s information.

What if I don’t have a plat of survey?You can substitute the plat of survey with photos of the structures you intend to demolish. 

How do I obtain a property tax summary?Locate your 14 digit PIN number and enter it on the Cook County Treasurer’s website.  It will give you a summary based off that PIN number.  Make sure it states “paid in full” or shows a balance of $0.00.  Submit this summary along with your application packet.

As of December 1, 2017, the Cook County Department of Environmental Control is now the Department of Environment and Sustainability