On January 30, 2018, the Urbanization and Licensing Department of the Municipality of São Paulo (SMUL) announced the launch of “Aprova Rápido,” a program to streamline and accelerate the review of applications for licenses to build in the city.

Corroborating the innovations set forth in the São Paulo’s new Buildings' Code, Aprova Rápido is part of the city’s plan to coordinate the urbanistic and environmental analysis performed by its administrative departments. For this purpose, the Intersecretarial Group of Analysis of Specific Projects in the Municipality—GRAPROEM—was created. GRAPROEM will manage Aprova Rápido, running the license applications by various municipal entities for conformity to law. GRAPROEM also will provide standardized training to all technicians reviewing the applications so that they can meet the demands for new licenses quickly and effectively.

Aprova Rápido is being implemented in two phases: the first phase, which began in March 2018, is structuring and training the technical teams; the second phase, which will begin in October 2018, will introduce an electronic process management system.

In this first stage, Aprova Rápido is processing only requests for licenses that were filed from March 12, 2018 and that comply with the requirements of Municipal Decree No. 58,028.

Currently, the average time required to issue a license for a new building in São Paulo is 18 months. It is estimated that Aprova Rápido will shorten the processing time to 6 months. Aiming to standardize and modernize the fulfillment of license requests, optimize process governance and eliminate lag and inefficiency, Aprova Rápido intends is to better serve everyone involved. We’ll be watching how effectively the program meets that goal.