Signs located on private property, including signs that may encroach into the public right-of-way (e.g. sidewalk) and signs identifying an on-site business may require a permit and/ or approval from Zoning and other departments and agencies within the City and County of Denver. You will need to contact each department or agency for specific requirements.
Download the Complete Signs Customer Guide (PDF) for step-by-step instructions, application requirements, and permit application forms for signs requiring a permit. Please review the guide and checklist and include all required materials when submitting your permit application. Incomplete applications may delay processing and approval.
Public Works Right of Way Services
For signs located entirely within right-of-way, a permit is required. Visit the Public Works Plan Review Services webpage for more information.
Temporary signs that do not require a permit:
While certain temporary signs do not require permits, zoning regulations must be followed. See Section 10.10.3 of the Denver Zoning Code. The following is a summary only of what is allowed without a permit.
Temporary signs that require a permit:
For the step by step process, application requirements, and forms for signs requiring a permit, please download the Signs Customer Guide. (PDF)
Political and other noncommercial signs may be displayed on private property in accordance with the following zoning regulations. Remember, no signs may be placed in the public right-of-way! This includes median strips, highway entrance and exit ramps, traffic signs and posts, and utility poles.On residential property:
No zoning permit is required for real estate signs.
However, the display of real estate signs on your property must follow the zoning regulations. See Article10 of the Denver Zoning Code.
Real estate signs:
All portable signs are not allowed on private property.
"Accordion" style portable signs can be placed in the right-of-way. For more information, visit the Public Works Permit Operations web page under temporary signs.
Arts & Venues Denver
If a mural is constructed in public areas and excludes private residences, an application must be submitted to Denver Arts and Venues. Learn more in the Public Art section of Denver Arts and Venues website.
The installation of billboards in the City and County of Denver is a highly regulated and restricted process. Development Services recommends that you contact Zoning before proceeding.
Zoning Permit Staff
201 W. Colfax Ave., 2nd Floor, Dept 203
Denver, CO 80202
Comprehensive sign plans are a means to achieve a coordinated and balanced system of signs and street graphics. There are three types of comprehensive sign plans (CSPs):
Vital Sign Plans
A vital sign plan is required in downtown zone districts for all projecting or banner signs, or if a marquee or canopy sign is desired for uses without direct street access. The downtown zone districts include the following:
A vital sign plan is not required for projecting signs in the Golden Triangle (B-8-G; D-GT).
Vital sign plans are used in downtown zone districts to encourage urban, innovative signs and street graphics that help foster a unique downtown shopping and commercial area and facilitate simple, pleasant communication between people and their environment.
Large Facility Sign Plans
Large facility sign plans are used for facilities located in mixed-use commercial or non-residential zone districts that have at least
Large facility sign plans allow for flexibility in the size, type, and location of signs in order to accommodate complex layouts of large facilities, while maintaining a coordinated program of high-quality signage.
Supplemental Building Sign Plans
Supplemental building sign plans are sign plans for specific buildings within a large facility comprehensive sign plan. These may be used for projects that add buildings over time and require a comprehensive and balanced system of signage for each new building, while meeting the standards, locations, and size allowances detailed in the overarching large facility comprehensive sign plan.