City of Chicago - Building Energy Code

June 18, 2023


The Chicago Energy Conservation Code (CECC) requires residential buildings applying for building permits to comply with energy efficient measures which go beyond those required by the Illinois Building Energy Code. The applicability of the CECC to commercial construction was superseded when the state of Illinois adopted the more stringent IECC 2009 model code. Illinois state law in 2009 also mandated the IECC 2009 model code for residential buildings, but allowed for cities of home rule and more than 1,000,000 people (which includes Chicago) to adopt more stringent rules.

The CECC establishes standards to minimize solar energy absorbed by building roofs, a condition known as the urban heat island effect. Increased reflecting capacity of individual and aggregate buildings has been associated with cooler temperatures. In general, the energy conservation code establishes minimum standards for fenestration, insulation and roof reflectance. Refer to the Chicago Energy Conservation Code for detailed information on compliance standards for various roof slopes.

Compliance with the code is required for residential buildings that apply for a building permit through the city of Chicago's Department of Buildings. This includes all new buildings or additions to existing buildings, all occupancy changes in existing buildings, all conversions of existing unconditioned space to conditioned space and the replacement of an entire building system, including building envelope components such as the exterior wall finish, roofing membrane, windows, and doors, or the entire mechanical, refrigeration, service water heating, electrical or lighting system.

Building permits for any of these types of projects are required to include a statement of compliance from an architect or engineer listed as a Registered Energy Professional for Residential Buildings on the City of Chicago's Energy Conservation Code web site. Compliance documents, such as forms and worksheets, can also be found on the Department's CECC website. Click Here for a list of Registered Energy Professionals.

The 2019 Chicago Energy Conservation Code, based on the 2018 edition of the International Energy Conservation Code, applies to permit applications started between June 1, 2019, and October 31, 2022, as well as subsequent phases of projects where the first phase permit is subject to this code.

The 2022 Chicago Energy Transformation Code, based on the 2021 edition of the International Energy Conservation Code, applies to projects where the first permit application is started on or after November 1, 2022. Additional requirements of this code will apply to projects where the first permit application is started on or after January 1, 2023.

Program Overview

Implementing Sector: Local
Category: Regulatory Policy
State: Illinois
Incentive Type: Building Energy Code
Web Site:
Start Date:
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:
  • Roofs
  • Comprehensive Measures/Whole Building
Residential Code: 2021 IECC.


Name: Chapter 18-13 Energy Conservation
Date Enacted: 11/05/2008
Effective Date: 04/22/2009


Name: Public Information Officer
Organization: City of Chicago
Address: 120 N. Racine
Chicago IL 60602
Phone: (312) 744-7606

This information is sourced from DSIRE; the most comprehensive source of information on incentives and policies that support renewables and energy efficiency in the United States. Established in 1995, DSIRE is operated by the N.C. Clean Energy Technology Center at N.C. State University.