California Department of Transportation
 

Outdoor Advertising Permit Requirements

The below information is to be used as general guidelines and does not guarantee approval.

STATE OF CALIFORNIA
BUSINESS, TRANSPORTATION AND HOUSING AGENCY

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
Outdoor Advertising Branch

1120 "N" Street, MS-36
P. O. Box 942874
Sacramento, CA 94274-0001
OUTDOOR ADVERTISING PERMIT REQUIREMENTS

Edmund G. Brown Jr. , Governor

In order for an outdoor advertising display application to be considered for a permit adjacent to an Interstate or primary highway the following criterion must be met:

Display Location

  • Must be outside the right of way of any highway.
  • Must be outside of any stream, or drainage channel.
  • There must be an existing business activity within 1000 feet of proposed display location on either side of the highway.
  • Location of property where display is to be placed must be zoned industrial or commercial.
  • Must have current property owner consent, in writing, to place the display at desired location.
  • Must have written permission (building permit) from the local governement having jurisdiction where the display is to be located.
  • Location may not be adjacent to a landscaped section of a freeway. *
  • Location may not be adjacent to a scenic highway. **
  • If adjacent to a Bonus*** segment of an Interstate freeway, copy, size, and spacing is more restrictive.

Display

  • Display must be 500 feet from any other permitted display on same side of any highway that is a freeway.
  • Display must be 300 feet from any other permitted display on same side of any primary highway that is not a freeway in an unincorporated area.
  • Display must be 100 feet from any other permitted display on same side of any primary highway that is not a freeway and is within the limits of an incorporated city.
  • Display must be 500 feet from an interchange; intersection at grade or safety roadside rest if the highway is a freeway and the location is outside the limits of an incorporated city and outside the limits of an urban area.
  • An electronic changeable message center display must meet the above spacing requirements and be 1000 feet from another electronic message center display.
  • Maximum height for the advertising display area is, 25 feet in height and 60 feet in length, not to exceed an overall maximum of 1200 square feet.

The above information is to be used as general guidelines and does not guarantee approval.

For a permit application contact the Department of Transportation.

*
Landscaped freeway is a section of a freeway which is now, or hereafter may be, improved by the planting at least on one side of the freeway right-of-way of lawns, trees, shrubs, flowers or other ornamental vegetation which shall require reasonable maintenance.
**
Scenic highway is a section of a highway that has been officially designated and maintained scenic pursuant Section 260, 261, 262, and 262.5 of the Streets and Highways Code or as referred to in Section 131(s) of Title 23 of United States Code.
***
Bonus segment is any portion of an Interstate freeway which is constructed upon any part of right of way, the entire width of which was acquired for right of way subsequent to July 1, 1956, except those segments of the Interstate system that traverse commercial or industrial zones within the boundaries of incorporated municipalities, as such boundaries existed on September 21, 1959, or other areas where the land use, as of September 21, 1959 was clearly established by State law as industrial or commercial.

Laws and Regulations:

Federal State Agreement:

Forms:

Highway Designations:

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