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Fire Alarm Variance

New Application Fees $420 HOW TO APPLY


City Fire Department

Fire alarm systems and auxiliary radio communication systems (ARCS) are required in accordance with the NYC Building Code based on use/occupancy requirements, and other building characteristics.

Fire alarm systems and ARCS must be designed in accordance with NYC Building Code, NYC Electrical Code and NFPA 72 standard as modified by the NYC Building Code.

A Fire Alarm Variance Application should be used to apply to the Fire Department, pursuant to NYC Fire Code Section FC 104.7.2, for technical assistance or for a modification/variance of any Fire Code provision, Fire Department rule, bulletin, or policy requirement for fire alarm or auxiliary radio communication systems.

During review, the Fire Department will consider many factors including the necessity of the request, the life safety of occupants & first responders, protection of property, Department policies, and others when applicable.

Fire Alarm Variance application types include, but are not limited to, the following: /p>

  • Fire Alarm Variance application types include, but are not limited to, the following:
  • Technical assistance for fire alarm system and ARCS design
  • Mixed-use occupancy fire alarm systems
  • Phased installations and inspections
  • Fire Command Center locations
  • Secondary Fire Command Centers
  • Dual Fire Command Centers
  • Networking of fire alarm systems
  • Phased upgrades
  • Campus-wide fire alarm systems and Campus Loops
  • Fire Alarm Legalization
  • Complex pre-signal system design
  • Smoke detector bypass
  • Studio on-air bypass for notification appliances
  • Mass notification systems
  • Sequence of operation modification
  • Vivarium alarm notification modifications
  • ARCS waivers
  • ARCS fire protection alternatives
  • FDNY concurrence with DOB CCD1’s for fire alarm and ARC systems

FDNY Business Support Team

Questions about the New York City Fire Code, call 311 and ask for the FDNY Customer Service Center or send an email to

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