We'll save you the gory details (email us if you really want them) and just give you the short story. We applied for a permit on April 1. It went around to various people for review and then it got stuck on some one's desk at DPD while he went on vacation. Catherine did some digging, found out about the vacation hold-up and went a little nuts. She complained to the mayor's office and the mayor's office put the pressure on DPD to follow up on our project. After 4 rounds of review, we got the permit on July 1st.
What we learned? As the home owner you should complain your ass off to the mayor or anyone who will listen. Our architect was given the run around even though he knew the guys in DPD. Like Rodney Dangerfield, architects get no respect. Catherine's email to the mayor's office got a very valuable "in" at DPD -- Andy. We can't say enough about Andy. He pushed when we pushed. He followed up on our plans, called/emailed us and our architect Don personally when he had updates and let us vent about the process.
On the day our permit was approved, Andy called around and got it processed and issued that morning. Micah walked in and picked it up the same day. Andy gets mad props for that!
We are so excited that this phase of the process is over. Yes, there will be more difficulties and more bureaucracy to go through (inspections), but we're done with this piece and we are SO happy!
Yes, we are dorks and took a picture with our permit.