Opening a Business

First, if you are a new business owner in the Village, we'd like to say "Welcome."

Park Forest welcomes all new and prospective business owners to the Village. Below are some basic details regarding permits that you may need. Permits and Approvals

  1. A permit may be required for any new construction, interior alterations, or business sign installation. Fees for these permits are based on the job cost. Permit requirements include:

    • Building Permit Application. It must be completely filled out. The signature of the landlord is required on all tenant work.
    • Fee for a permit, based on the cost of the job:
      • Value less than $250: No fee; a permit is required
      • $250 to $1500: $60
      • $1501 to $2000: $100
      • $2001 and over: $100 plus $10 per $1,000 on valuations over $2001
    • Fee for other inspections, when required:
      • Electrical Inspection $250
      • Plumbing Inspection $250
      • Fire Department Review Varies, depending on what work is being done
    • Signed and dated contract, including scope and cost of the job. All contractors must be licensed by the Village of Park Forest.
    • Existing/proposed layout of the space.
    • Architectural Plans (two sets of stamped plans; five sets of unstamped plans to facilitate a faster review process)
    • Plat of Survey
    • Thorn Creek Basin Sanitary District approved application (when necessary)
    • Landscape Plan
    • Separate permit is required for signage. (Fee-based on the total cost of the job.)
  2. An inspection is always required. In fact, the Building Inspector, the Fire Inspector, and the Health Department Inspector may all need to do an inspection, depending on the type of business.

  3. You will need to fill out a business re-occupancy application. This helps identify the landlord and tenant, and the location and type of the business. We also ask that you fill out a similar Police and Fire form, with emergency information.

  4. If you are leasing space in a shopping center or strip mall, all of these arrangements will be handled by the landlord. Or, you will need to bring in your signed and dated lease agreement, and a signed letter from your landlord stating his/her approval of your proposed plans and signs.

  5. If your business involves a new building being constructed, a set of architectural stamped plans, including a plat of survey and proposed drawing and landscape design, must be submitted to the Building Department for approval.

  6. Zoning maps are available at the Front Desk in Village Hall. The Community Development Department can provide you with specific zoning requirements.

If you have any questions about the information here, please call the Building Department at 708-503-7703. Assistance for commercial development and information about business incentive packages are available from the Economic Development Department at 708-283-5623.