Sign Permits & Inspections

About the Sign Bylaw

The City-wide Sign Bylaw was introduced April 6, 2010. The bylaw reduces the number of sign bylaws that had been in existence in Toronto from six to one. The new bylaw also contains one common, updated set of definitions and regulations for the entire city. Click here to view a copy of the Sign Bylaw.

Sign Districts

Whereas the sign bylaws of the former municipalities relied heavily on the zoning bylaws in order to apply sign regulations to properties, the new sign bylaw created nine Sign Districts across the city.

These nine Sign Districts are:

  • Residential
  • Employment Industrial Office
  • Residential Apartment
  • Institutional
  • Commercial
  • Open Space
  • Commercial Residential
  • Utility
  • Employment (Industrial)

As well as the nine sign districts, the bylaw now identifies six Special Sign Districts. These are areas of the city where signage is a defining characteristic.

These six Special Sign Districts are:

  • University Avenue
  • Nathan Philips Square and City Hall
  • Gardiner Gateway
  • Dundas Square
  • Downtown Yonge Street
  • Chinatown

Use Signview to find the sign district designation of your property and see what sign regulations apply.

Sign Permits and Building Permits:

To build a sign you are required to get a sign permit and a building permit. The exceptions to this will be signs that are affixed to windows and signs that are painted directly onto building, these signs will only require a sign permit.

Sign PermitBuilding Permit
Issued under Chapter 694 of the Municipal Code Issued under Section 8 of the Building Code Act
Required for any permanent sign not exempted by Chapter 694 Required for any 'building' or alteration to a 'building'
Penalties and enforcement mechanisms found in Chapter 694 and the City of Toronto Act Penalties and enforcement mechanisms found in Building Code Act

 

Although most signs will now be required to get two permits, this application and review process will be similar to the way in which have been reviewed historically.

For submission requirements for Sign Permits and Building Permits, click here