Department of Public Works Permits

When Do I Need a Street Opening Permit?

Permits are required for any type of excavation, including, but not limited to:

  • Crossing a sidewalk or driveway apron with heavy equipment
  • Installing, repairing or replacing conduit, pipes, laterals and underground utilities
  • Installing, replacing or removing street curbing
  • Resurfacing the street; resurfacing, widening, or repairing any sidewalk or curb cut in the public right-of-way
  • Storing materials, dumpsters, or equipment in the public right-of-way

Standard application forms for street opening permits can be obtained from the Department of Public Works (DPW) at 124 Orchard Street during normal business hours. Permit applications must be filled out by the contractor doing the work. Insurance and bonding requirements apply. DigSafe confirmation numbers must be provided.

Street opening permits are valid for 30 days from the date of their issuance unless a longer or shorter duration is expressly specified in the permit.

View Street Opening Permit Regulations (PDF).

Plans Required

All new construction requires a site plan and site plan review by DPW prior to issuance of a street opening permit. This includes, but is not limited to new driveways, new water and sewer services, new buildings, residential conversions, and new building construction.

Driveway & Parking Lot Paving

Paving of all driveways and parking lots requires a permit  Approval from the Zoning Enforcement Officer is required prior to issuance.

Parking Lot Drainage Retrofits

Stormwater controls must be installed during the resurfacing of any parking lot with 4 or more spaces. In these instances, particle separators must be constructed on any drainage pipe exiting the property. If there is no drainage on the property, then other measures must be assessed to address stormwater quality on site.


The Town of Watertown maintains a moratorium on street opening activities between November 15 and April 15. Any exceptions must be approved at the discretion of the Superintendent of Public Works.

Roads paved within the past five years are subject to a street opening moratorium, except in emergency conditions as determined by the Superintendent of Public Works. In such circumstances, the DPW may require that the permanent patch be treated by a process (i.e. infra-red, microwave, or curb-to-curb) that will ensure that the patch is integrated into the existing bituminous surface in a seamless manner. The DPW will consider petitions to waive the five-year moratorium on a case-by-case basis.

View the Moratorium Street List (PDF).

Attention Contractors

The Town of Watertown is not a member of the Dig Safe program. Separate notification of the DPW is required.

Inspections of all concrete and curbing is required prior to setting or pouring.