District 5 - Encroachment Permit Branch - Frequently Asked Questions
What is an Encroachment?
An "encroachment" is defined in Section 660 of the California Streets and Highways Code as “any tower, pole, pole line, pipe, pipeline, fence, billboard, stand or building, or any structure, object of any kind or character not particularly mentioned in the section, or special event, which is in, under, or over any portion of the State highway rights of way. “Special event” means any street festival, sidewalk sale, community-sponsored activity, or community-approved activity.”
When is an Encroachment Permit required?
An encroachment permit must be obtained for all proposed activities related to the placement of encroachments within, under, or over the State highway rights of way. Some examples of work requiring an encroachment permit are: utilities, excavations, encroachment renewals, advertisements (when allowed by statute), vegetation planting or trimming, surveys, mail boxes, driveways, installation or removal of tire chains for compensation, special events, and commercial filming activities.
How/where do I apply for an Encroachment Permit and what are the fees to process my application?
Applicants must complete a Standard Encroachment Permit Application (TR-0100), attach supporting documentation such as: plans, location map, environmental documentation, letter of authorization, surety bonds, liability insurance, any applicable fees, etc. and submit them to the appropriate District Encroachment Permits Office having jurisdictional authority over the proposed encroachment site.
Fees vary depending on the type of encroachment. Typically a deposit is required when the application package is submitted. The current Standard Hourly Rate for calculating encroachment permit fees is $82.00 per hour. The total number of hours and fees required to review and approve your application will depend on the completeness of your submittal, scope, and complexity of the proposed work. Please contact the appropriate District Encroachment Permits Office for details.
How long will it take to process my Encroachment Permit application?
Section 671.5 (a) of the California Streets and Highways Code requires that the Department either approves or denies an Encroachment Permit Application submittal within 60 calendar days, upon determination that the submittal is complete. This section grants the Department the authority in what constitutes a completed Encroachment Permit Application submittal. It also stipulates that an Encroachment Permit Application submittal is complete when all other statutory requirements, including (CEQA), have been complied with. The term statutory requirement includes both federal and California statutes.
The actual time needed to review and approve your application will depend on the completeness of your submittal, scope, and complexity of the proposed work.
For additional information, please contact:
California Department of Transportation
District 5, Permits Branch
50 Higuera Street
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
Permit Office Contacts