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Rooftop Access

New Application Fees $420 HOW TO APPLY


City Fire Department

Rooftop Operations are a key component of the overall Firefighting Operations and can be critical during the early stages of a fire emergency.

Firefighters use Rooftop Operations to search the building perimeter, transmit vital information to the incident commander, rescue people or ventilate rooftop. To assist in these firefighting operations, it is imperative that there is adequate perimeter access and clearance on the rooftop.

New York City Fire Code FC504.4 requires that rooftops be designed in a way that supports rooftop operations.

FC512 addresses the installation of solar panels and related equipment on the rooftop.

When do I need to file?
You are only required to file a Rooftop Access Variance Application if you are planning to work on a rooftop that is 100 feet or less in height and the existing and/or proposed configuration(s) are not in full compliance with the requirements of FC504.4 and FC512.

The following are examples of when application is and is not required. This is not a comprehensive list. If you are not sure whether your work requires an application, contact FDNY Customer Service Center for further assistance.


  • Fire Code non-compliance, existing or proposed

Any of the following:

  • New equipment on a rooftop including: Telecommunications Sites, Solar/PV Arrays, HVAC, Fencing
  • Vertical Enlargements (penthouses, bulkheads, new floors)
  • Construction of Accessory/Incidental use of roof: deck, bar, greenhouse
  • Construction of Green Roofs, Blue Roofs
  • New Building Construction
  • Cantilever buildings


  • Work on rooftops that are over 100 feet in height.
  • Ordinary repair and maintenance on roofs which includes but not limited to:
    • Reroofing
    • Parapet repair
    • Façade repair
    • Like for like replacement of equipment that is NOT an upgrade of equipment

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