Industrial Waste (Pretreatment), oversees Chapter 15-10 of the Austin City Code (Wastewater Regulations) along with state and federal regulations. Approval from Industrial Waste Plan Review (Pretreatment Plan Review) is required prior to new construction or any plumbing or process change that could affect the quality or quantity of industrial wastewater discharged to the City's sewer system.

Staff must verify if pretreatment devices (grease traps, sand-oil interceptors, pH neutralization units, solids interceptors, etc.) are needed and, if so, are in place; are in working condition; or are adequately designed for the proposed processes.

The purpose of the plan review process is to ensure compliance from the very start. Those customers that bypass this process run the risk of project delays, expensive retrofits and/or unanticipated cost overruns.

Contact the Industrial Waste Plan Review Team

To optimize the customer service experience, the Industrial Waste team no longer accepts walk-in customers who do not have a pre-scheduled appointment. 

Industrial Waste appointments, both virtual and in-person, can be booked online and are available for general questions related to: Site or Building Plans, grease trap (GT) or grease interceptor (GI) questions related to variances, replacement, abandonment or complex situations.

Virtual Appointments

Schedule in English

Schedule in Spanish

In-Person Appointments

Schedule in English

Schedule in Spanish 

For specific questions related to a project, GT or GI sizing, pump-outs, inspections, Industrial Waste (IW) approval letters or Central Prep Kitchen Permit numbers, please contact IndustrialWaste@austintexas.gov via email or via phone at 512-974-7293 (walk-in customers without an appointment are no longer accepted). We are now part of the Commercial Plan Review (CPR) process, so we review plans and draft IW approval letters once plans are submitted through CPR.

Alternatively, customers with specific questions regarding a Site Plan, Building Plan Review, or existing pretreatment devices may directly contact the Pretreatment Specialist assigned to the project’s zip code.

Site Plan Reviews

What is the purpose of Site Plan Review process?

The Site Plan Review process (aka Land Use Review) allows Industrial Waste (IW) staff to communicate pretreatment-related requirements.  This ensures projects are completed in compliance with wastewater regulations under Chapter §15-10 of the Austin City Code, and that the necessary infrastructure is included in the site design.

What is required on the submitted Site Plans?
For a typical site plan, IW reviews the following sheets for the following items:

  • Cover Sheet - Contains a signature line for IW.
  • Existing Conditions Sheet - Shows existing plumbing items, pretreatment devices (if any), water services, wastewater services, both public and private plumbing lines, and all associated infrastructure which includes the water meter(s), manholes, cleanouts, etc.
  • Demolition Sheet - Shows the disposition of each existing plumbing item shown (e.g. to remain, to be removed, to be abandoned).
  • Site Plan Sheet - Shows the proposed use of the property and all buildings.
  • Utilities Sheet - Shows the proposed public and private water and wastewater plumbing, pretreatment devices, sample ports, water meters, etc.
  • Utility Details Sheet - Shows the approved standard details of structures such as manholes, water meters, cleanouts, sample ports, etc.

Where should Site Plans be submitted?
Site Plans should be submitted to Land Use Review.

What are some common compliance issues and comments noted by IW reviewers during the formal Site Plan Review process?

  • Existing conditions must accurately show present infrastructure, particularly water and wastewater plumbing, both on the public and private side of the lot line.
  • If a proposed project includes potential industrial wastewater source(s), the customer is notified of ordinance requirements related to pretreatment devices and discharge permits.  Additional IW approval is required during the Building Permit review process (click the “Building Plan Review Process” tab above for additional information).
  • Compliance with the sample port ordinance is verified and, if applicable, any requirement to install a sample port is noted (Sample Port Requirements).
  • Discharging stormwater to the sanitary sewer is prohibited. If the site includes any sanitary sewer drains or grates that are not adequately protected from rainfall or stormwater runoff infiltration, plans will require modification prior to IW approval.
  • If the site proposes the construction of multiple wastewater taps, the plans may require modification if the proposed flow from any one water meter is directed for discharge through more than one unique wastewater tap (exceptions can be made by IW if approved wastewater flow meters are installed at each tap).
  • For sites that operate within an Other Political Subdivision (OPS), IW staff notify the customer of any special requirements as they apply to the specific OPS involved.
  • As appropriate, IW staff notify customers of other specific project-based requirements and comments.

Where can I get additional information?
For additional information, please review the below items:

Disclaimer: Site Plans vary greatly from one project to another. Please keep in mind that the information above is applicable to most, but not all projects. Additionally, the information above is not intended to, and may not cover every situation, especially for unique or highly complicated projects.

Building Plan Reviews

What is the purpose of the Building Plan Review Process?
Industrial Waste (IW) reviews building plans for compliance with pretreatment regulations and issues Approval Letters for pretreatment devices and/or systems that meet our requirements. An IW Approval Letter is required prior to any installation, modification, or removal of a pretreatment device, system, or process which alters the quality or quantity of industrial wastewater discharging to the City’s sewer system.

What projects need IW Review?
The majority of building plans IW provides reviews for are commercial and institutional facilities that prepare food (e.g., restaurants, cafeterias, food processors, hotels, nursing homes, day care facilities, etc.). Building plan reviews from IW are also required for car washes, dental offices, auto shops, analytical laboratories and businesses with a manufacturing or industrial component, etc. 

Please see Projects Requiring Building Plan Review by Industrial Waste for additional information of project types which need IW review. 

What is required on the submitted plans?
The submitted plans must include:

  • An approved City of Austin Utility Plan from a Site Plan, Site Plan Correction or Site Plan Exemption showing water and wastewater connections to city mains, water meter location(s), sample port(s), and location of the pretreatment device(s) if exterior to the building.
  • Plumbing layout plan or floor plan (to scale) that includes all fixtures with labels, piping with the type and diameter labeled, and pretreatment equipment.
  • Equipment layout
  • Drain, waste, and vent riser diagram
  • Pretreatment equipment detail and specifications

Where should projects be submitted?
IW is part of the concurrent review process with Commercial Plan Review, creating a more streamlined process for customers. For further information on submitting projects to Commercial Plan Review, please click here

When submitting projects which need IW’s review, please remind Intake staff to add IW onto the reviewer list. 

Where can I get additional information?
For additional information, please review the below items:

Building Plan Projects Requiring Industrial Waste Review:

Industrial Waste Sample Port Requirements:

Grease Trap/Grease Interceptor Requirements:

Car Wash Requirements:

Disclaimer: Building Plans vary greatly from one project to another. Please keep in mind that the information above is applicable to most, but not all projects. Additionally, the information above is not intended to, and may not cover every situation, especially for unique or highly complicated projects. 

Grease Traps/Grease Interceptors

Please refer to the Sizing Criteria for Grease Interceptors webpage for information on sizing and design criteria.  For additional information on grease traps/grease interceptors, also use the resources below.

 

Industrial Waste Sample Port Requirements:

 

Other Political Subdivisions & State Projects

Contact the City of Austin's Development Services Department (DSD) to verify whether the project needs to be reviewed by DSD staff. If a permit is required from the City, the process will be identical to the one described for all other City of Austin customers.

However, projects that fall within this category, but are connecting to Austin Water either via water or wastewater service do need review by Industrial Waste. The proposed discharge of any industrial waste must include the provision of adequate pretreatment and compliance with all applicable effluent limitations.

As an example, a direct City wastewater customer located in Austin's Extra-Territorial Jurisdiction (ETJ) would be required to obtain Industrial Waste approval prior to the construction of a restaurant, regardless of whether a City of Austin Building Permit was required.

Requirements, Design Criteria & Other Useful Resources 

Building Plan/Site Plan Projects Requiring Industrial Waste Review:

Industrial Waste Sample Port Requirements:

Car Wash Requirements:

Parking Garage Requirements: