Some temporary signs require permits. Temporary signs are signs that are not permanently attached or fixed to a structure or surface.

The Signs Bylaw regulates the size and location of all temporary signs on private and public property.

Signs that require a permit

  • A-frame signs
  • new development signs
  • mobile signs
  • portable signs

Signs that do not require a permit

  • garage sale signs
  • real estate signs
  • open house directional signs
  • community and/or charitable organizations
  • religious organizations, schools

*Exceptions to this for parks and recreation facilities

A completed application form and application materials may be submitted via email to mlsroadallowance@toronto.ca.  An invoice will be sent to you via email, which you may pay online.

For not-for-profit, sport organizations, and community groups promoting their events taking place in a park or recreation facility, please note the application process in Mobile Signs in Parks & Recreation Facilities.

Temporary a-frame sign.
Example of an a-frame sign.

A-frame signs are rigid, free-standing movable signs (not fastened to the ground or a structure) and include information on one or both sides.

  • Wherever you place your sign, there must be 2.13 m of unobstructed sidewalk between your store front and the road.
  • If your store frontage is 6.1 metres or less, one A-frame sign is allowed.
  • If the store frontage is more than 6.1 metres, two A-frame signs are allowed.

Requirements:

  • No larger than 0.6 m wide x 1 m high x 0.75 m long
  • Only permitted on public property if not able to be located on private property
  • Located against the front wall
  • First part advertising only
  • One per business location
  • Sign can only be out during business hours
  • No illumination, sound, motion etc.
  • Area around sign must be kept free of litter, debris and weeds

A-frame sign permits are not available and not allowed to be placed in the following locations:

  • Bloor St. W. between Avenue Rd. and Yonge St.
  • Bloor St. E. between Yonge St. and Sherbourne St.
  • Yonge St. south of Davenport Rd.
Development signs are used for new building developments, such as condos or new homes.
Example of development signs.

New development signs are used to promote new building developments, such as condominiums, townhouses or other new homes. Many of these signs are a-frame signs; self-supporting structures, shaped like an “A”.

Requirements:

  • One application is required per development
  • Maximum 10 signs per development
  • Maximum five signs within 10 metre span
  • Maximum two groups per intersection
  • 100 metre separation between groups
  • Development must be approved (rezoning)
  • Not permitted where there is on-street parking
  • Cannot be higher than 1.2 m

mlsroadallowance@toronto.ca

Example of a mobile sign.

Mobile signs are used for advertising various events, activities and promotions.  They are easily moved, with changeable letters.

Requirements:

  • Thirty day maximum per permit
  • Maximum of three permits per year
  • Minimum of 30 days between permits
  • Private property only
  • First party advertising only, in front of unit
  • Two sign faces maximum, five square metres each
  • Black and white lettering only
  • Cannot be within 23 metres of another mobile sign
  • No larger than 2.5 m high x 3.05 m wide
  • Area around sign must be kept free of litter, debris and weeds

Temporary mobile signs can be placed in parks or on recreation facility properties by not-for-profits, sport organizations and community groups promoting their events taking place at that City location.

How to Apply

  1. Contact Customer Service Office at 416-396-7978
  2. Complete the Temporary Mobile Sign Application Form submit it along with supporting documents and payment to a Customer Service location or to parks@toronto.ca.

A Temporary Mobile Sign permit will be issued once all of the forms are completed, the permit fee is paid and approval is received from the City supervisor for the location.

You must reapply for another 30-day permit. You may only have three, 30-day permits within one calendar year.

Fee

  • Not-for-Profit programming: $25.09
  • Not-for-Profit festivals and events: $25.09
  • Parks and recreation programming: waived

Customer Service Locations

Toronto City Hall

  • 100 Queen St. W.
  • 1st Floor

Etobicoke Civic Centre

  • 399 The West Mall
  • 2nd Floor

North York Civic Centre

  • 5100 Yonge St.
  • 3rd Floor

Scarborough Civic Centre

  • 150 Borough Dr.
  • 5th Floor

A-frame signs: $126.39 per year

Mobile signs:  $166.32 for 30 days

New development signs:  $266.09 per sign

Portable signs: $266.09 per sign

*All fees include HST

The permit must be prominently displayed on the sign.

Temporary Sign Permit Sticker
Temporary Sign Permit Sticker

For permanent signs, contact signbylawunit@toronto.ca

ML&S shall deny an application for, or a renewal, for all businesses required to be licenced under this chapter that has:

    1. Been convicted at any time of a sexual offence against a minor or a person with a disability under any of sections 151 to 153.1 of the Criminal Code;
    2. Been convicted of any sexual offence under the Criminal Code in the preceding ten years;
    3. Been convicted of an offence under the following Criminal Code sections in the preceding five years:
      1. 84 to 117.15 (Firearms and Other Weapons);
      2. 264.1 to 286.1 (Offences Against the Person);
      3. 321 to 378 (Offences Against Rights of Property);
      4. 379 to 462 (Fraudulent Transactions, Wilful and Forbidden Acts of Certain Property, Offences Relating to Currency);
      5. 462.3 to 462.5 (Proceeds of Crime).
    4. Been convicted at any time of an offence under the following Criminal Code sections:
      1. 83.01 to 83.33 (Terrorism);
      2. 219 to 248 (Major Offences Against the Person);
      3. 267, 268, 270.01, 272, 273 (Major Assaults or Major Sexual Assaults).
    5. Been convicted of an offence under the following Controlled Drugs and Substances Act sections in the preceding ten years:
      1. 5 (Trafficking);
      2. 6 (Importing and exporting);
      3. 7 (Production);
      4. 7.1 (Possession for use in production or trafficking).
    6. Been convicted of any offence under section 4 (Possession or obtaining) of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act in the preceding five years;
    7. Been convicted of five or more offences under Chapter 545 or 546 of the Toronto Municipal Code in the preceding three years;
    8. Any overdue by-law fines, unless the applicant provides proof that such fines have been subsequently paid.

Despite these screening criteria, if a licence has been previously issued or renewed and the applicant’s or licensee’s record discloses no new breach of the screening criteria, the licence may be issued or renewed without the matter being referred to the Toronto Licensing Tribunal.

These screening criteria do not apply to any offence for which a licensee or applicant has been granted a criminal record suspension (i.e. a pardon) by the Parole Board of Canada.

A-frame signs

A-frame sign renewal fee $99.78

Your permit will expire annually on the anniversary of the date that the licence was first issued.

A renewal notice, identifying any documents required to renew the permit, will be mailed to the address on file.

Payments received after the permit expiry date are subject to late fees in addition to the annual permit fee.

If you fail to renew your permit according to the bylaw, your permit will be cancelled and you will have to reapply.

New development signs

One time fee for each permit per sign. Renewal is not required.

Mobile signs

There is no renewal fee. You must reapply for another 30-day permit. You may only have three, 30-day permits within one calendar year.