Permanent signs include billboards, ground signs, or signs attached to buildings (fascia signs).
To install a permanent sign you’ll need to apply for a sign permit to make sure it complies with the Sign By-law and the Ontario Building Code.
It usually takes about six to eight weeks to get a permit.
The cost will depend on the number of signs you’re installing and the size of each sign’s face. The size of your sign is measured by the square metre area of the sign’s face.
A permanent sign will cost $34 per square metre plus $55 per sign. The minimum fee is $385.
When you submit your permit request you’ll need to pay a deposit of $275. This will be credited towards the total cost of your sign permit.
Before you start a new project, check the Sign By-law to find out what the restrictions are on the type and size of the sign you can build in your area.
You’ll need to submit the following drawings and other documents as part of your application. Your drawings should clearly show the locations and size of all existing and proposed signs. Drawings must be to scale, and should use metric measurements.
The site plan must include the following information:
Depending on the location and type of sign you’re installing, you may need other approvals before your sign permit can be issued:
All sign applicants must have a valid Zoning Certificate of Occupancy. The zoning certificate must be approved for the same location as your sign permit.
If you’re installing a permanent sign within a quarter mile (0.40 km) of a provincial highway like Highway 401 or 403, you may need approval from the Ministry of Transportation.
To install a ground sign next to a regional road, you’ll need approval from the Region of Peel.
You can apply for a permanent sign permit online through the ePlans portal.
Shortly after submitting your permit request, you’ll receive an email from the City that includes your temporary project number and an invitation to upload drawings and supporting documents.
After you upload your drawings and documents, we’ll do a ‘pre-screen’ review to make sure the minimum requirements are met. This process usually takes three to five business days.
If everything is correct, we’ll let you know what additional fees need to be paid. You can reference the Permit Fee Schedule for a general idea of the charges.
If we still need more information, you’ll receive a “pre-screen corrections” email. You’ll need to make all of the pre-screen corrections in order to move ahead with the application process.
Once your request passes the pre-screen review and you have paid the fees required, your application will be created and we’ll email you a new application number.
Your application will be sent to the review group to make sure it meets the building code, sign by-law and other applicable approvals. If your application is complete this review will take about two weeks.
When the review is complete, the status of your application will be updated to either “approved” or “withheld.”
If your application is “withheld” you will need to resubmit revised or additional information. You can review our feedback in your “Project status report” in ePlans. We’ll send you an ‘applicant resubmit’ email telling you what to do next.
Resubmitting your application could add two weeks to the permit process.
Once your application is approved, you’ll be notified via email that your permit and drawings are available to download in ePlans.
Check the status of your building permit application by visiting “Project info” in ePlans. Learn how to check your application status in ePlans.
Your “workflow – project status report” provides real time comments from the review groups. This report will outline what additional information you will be required to submit. You will not be able to submit any additional information until all of the review groups have completed their review. Learn how to view your project status report.
If your application has been withheld, we will send an email telling you what to do next. Until you receive this email you cannot upload any additional information or respond to any comments in ePlans.
Due to COVID-19, payments for sign variance applications can only be made by electronic funds transfer at this time.
Your sign permit application will be reviewed by a sign examiner to make sure it complies with the Sign By-law. If your application does not meet Sign By-law requirements, you can either revise your application and re-submit it or apply for a sign variance.
A variance is an exception to the by-law, and is only granted for very specific circumstances, such as a pre-existing condition applying to the land or the building. Applying for a variance does not guarantee that one will be granted.
It is strongly recommended that you design your sign to comply with the Sign By-law whenever possible.
To apply for a variance, you will need to upload all required documents into your existing sign permit application and complete the “Applicant Resubmit Task” in ePlans.
You will also need to email the completed Electronic Payment Information Form to email@example.com.
If you’re applying for a variance for an electronic billboard, additional information will be required.
Urban Design staff will review your application. If additional information is required we’ll contact you.
If the variance is supported, staff will notify you. If all other outstanding items such as structural comments have been addressed, your permit will be issued.
If the requested variance cannot be supported, staff will notify you. You will be given an opportunity to resubmit an acceptable proposal.
Pay the non-refundable sign variance fee of $1226 by electronic payment. If a variance is required for an existing sign installed without a sign permit, a fee of $1500 is applicable.
Once you’ve received your permit and are ready to install your sign, you’ll need to schedule an inspection or multiple inspections by a City official. This is to make sure the sign is installed as per your permit and the Sign By-law.
The City may remove your sign if it’s unsafe or violates the Sign By-law. You may also be fined up to $5000, excluding costs.
If you have any questions or need help, please call 311 (905-615-4311 from outside City limits) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.