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Permanent Signs on Private Property (By-law No. 2016-326)

Information on Permanent Signs on Private Property By-Law 2016-326

Disclaimer

By-laws contained in this section have been prepared for reference purposes only. Every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of this information; however it is not to be used in place of actual by-laws.

Actual by-laws can be obtained at the following locations:

City Archives
James Bartleman Centre
100 Tallwood Dr. (Corner of Woodroffe)
Ottawa, Ontario
tel.: 613-580-2857
fax : 613-580-2614
e-mail: archives@ottawa.ca 

Ottawa Public Library
120 Metcalfe, Ottawa Room
613-580-2945

Permanent Signs on Private Property By-Law 2016-326

A by-law of the City of Ottawa regulating permanent signs on private property and to repeal By-law 2005-439 (as amended).

Part 1 - Definitions

In this by-law:

“abut” means to share a property line, and abutting has a corresponding meaning; (contigu)

“access” means a way of ingress or egress to or from a street, and includes a highway, private road, driveway and any other private way; (accès)

“accessory” means a use that is normally, naturally and customarily subordinate and incidental to a principal use and is an integral part of the normal operation of that principal use; (acessore)

“Addressing By-law” means By-law 2014-78 of the City of Ottawa respecting the naming of private roads and highways and the numbering of buildings and lots and the repeal of By-law 2002-521 and By-law 2005-322, as amended; (Règlement sur l’adressage municipal)

“adjacent” means a property that shares a property line with the subject property as well as those properties directly across the street; (adjacent)

“agent” means a person designated by another person to act on his or her behalf; (mandataire)

“agricultural use” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (utilisation agricole)

“alteration” means any change to the sign structure or the sign face but does not include maintenance or a change in the message, and “altered” and “altering” have a corresponding meaning; (modification)

“animated”, in reference to a sign, means movement, motion or the appearance of motion by way of motion picture, video, television, LED screens or any technology that would facilitate motion or the appearance of motion, and does not include a static billboard with sign copy that changes mechanically; (animé)

“applicant” means a person applying for a permanent sign permit or a sign encroachment permit under this by-law; (demandeur)

“arterial road” means a highway identified as such in Schedule E, G or H; of the Official Plan; (artère)

“awning” means a retractable roof-like structure that projects from the exterior wall of a building; (banne)

“awning sign” means an awning that is or functions as a sign; (enseigne sur banne)

“banner sign” means a sign made of vinyl, canvas, polyethylene, or other non-rigid material, supported from the exterior wall of the building or structure to which it is attached and continuously mounted under tension so as to reasonably deter deformation for a period greater than 120 consecutive days; (bannière)

“bed and breakfast” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law and is permitted by the Zoning By-law; (gîte touristique)

“billboard”, when used without a qualifier, means both a static billboard and a digital billboard; (panneau d’affichage)

“building” means anything that houses, accommodates or serves a use or an accessory use, and includes a trailer and a vehicle when so used, whether or not the trailer or vehicle is connected to municipal services; (bâtiment)

“building canopy” means a permanent roof-like structure that: is an architectural component of a building regulated by the Building Code, is located at an entrance of a building, and extends over a walkway or roadway; (auvent de bâtiment)

“Building Code” means the Building Code Act, 1992, S.O. 1992, c.23, as amended, and includes any Regulations made under the Act, and a by-law enacted by Council under the Act; (Code du bâtiment)

“By-law 2005-439” means the City of Ottawa Permanent Signs on Private Property By-law, being By-law 2005-439 entitled “A by-law of the City of Ottawa regulating permanent signs on private property”, as amended; (Règlement no 2005-439)

“candelas per square metre” means the intensity of light emitted from a sign, or luminance, and may also be referred to as nits; (candela par metre carré)

“canopy” means a non-retractable structure that is not supported from the ground but is attached to and supported from the exterior wall of the building, but does not include a building canopy; (auvent)

“canopy sign” means a canopy that is or functions as a sign, but does not include a building canopy sign; (enseigne sur auvent)

“Chief Building Official” means the person in the office of the Chief Building Official of the City of Ottawa, or authorized designates; (chef du service du bâtiment)

“Chief, By-law and Regulatory Services” means the person in the office of the Chief of By-law and Regulatory Services of the City of Ottawa or authorized designates; (chef, Services des règlements municipaux) “cinema” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (cinéma)

“City” means the municipal corporation of the City of Ottawa or the geographic area of the City of Ottawa, as the context requires; (Ville, ville)

“City property” means any land or building owned by the City other than a highway; (propriété de la Ville)

“commercial use” means retail, commercial services, restaurant and office uses; (utilisation commerciale)

“commercial zone”, for the purposes of this by-law, includes the Local Commercial (LC), Traditional Mainstreet (TM), Arterial Mainstreet (AM), Transit-Oriented Development (TD), Mixed-Use Downtown (MD), Mixed-Use Centre (MC), General Mixed-Use (GM), Village Mixed-Use (VM) and Rural Commercial (RC) zones set out in the Zoning By-law; (zone commerciale)

“common property name” means the common name of the shopping centre, office building, or other facility; (nom usuel de la propriété)

“Condominium” means a corporation comprised of a complex in which units are owned individually while land and common elements are held in joint ownership with others, and which is governed by the Condominium Act, 1998, S.O. 1998, C. 19; (condominium)

“Co-operative” means a legally-constituted enterprise operating on a cooperative basis, as defined in the Co-operative Corporations Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. C-35; (coopérative)

“Council” means the Council of the City of Ottawa; (Conseil)

“curb” means a concrete or asphalt edge or border of a roadway; (bordure)

“development” means any use of land for any purposes, and includes redevelopment; and “develop”, developing”, “re-develop” and “redeveloping” have a corresponding meaning; (aménagement)

“development sign” means an on-premise sign that includes information relating to a new subdivision, development or the construction or renovation of a building or structure; (enseigne d’aménagement)

“digital billboard” means an off-premise sign that displays information or images on a digital or electronic screen; (panneau d’affichage numérique)

“digital menu board” means an on-premise sign with a digital or electronic screen with changing messages, displaying the menu and menu-related information, but does not include a drive-through menu sign or pre-menu sign; (panneau d’affichage du menu numérique)

“directional development sign” means an off-premise sign providing directions to a new development under construction by way of a directional arrow on the sign face; (enseigne d’aménagement directionnelle)

“directional farm sign” means an off-premise sign that provides directions to a registered farm or the farm-related products or services offered by the registered farm or directions to a rural farmers’ market and the products offered at the site of the farmers’ market; (enseigne directionnelle de ferme)

“directional sign” means an off-premise sign providing directions to a specific destination by way of a directional arrow on the sign face, and may contain other information as specified (or permitted) herein; (enseigne directionnelle)

“distance after intersection or crossing”, for the purpose of calculating the prohibited area, means the distance between the curb of the intersection or crossing and the end of the prohibited area; (distance après l’intersection ou le passage)

“double-faced sign” means a sign that has two sign faces of equal area and identical proportions where the sign faces are placed opposite each other in such a manner that the inside angle between the backs of the sign faces does not exceed 45 degrees; (enseigne à deux faces)

“drive-through facility” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (service au volant)

“drive-through sign” means a menu or pre-menu information sign displaying menu-related information for a restaurant with a drive-through facility; (enseigne de service au volant)

“driveway” means a private way used for vehicular access from a street, and includes a right-of-way or any land used to access other land; (entrée de cour)

dwell time” means the length of time a static image or message is displayed on a sign; (période de maintien)

electronic fuel pump sign” means a sign erected or displayed on or attached to a fuel pump authorized by law that displays, in whole or in part, electronic static copy or electronic moving copy; (enseigne électronique sur une pompe à carburant)

encroachment permit” means a permit issued under this by-law as an endorsement on the sign permit, authorizing a sign to project from private property on or over a street; (permis d’empiètement)

entrance”, in reference to a building, means an exterior entrance that provides direct access to the inside of a building and includes an exit serving the same or a corresponding function; (entrée)

environmental protection zone”, for the purposes of this by-law, means the Environmental Protection (EP) zone set out in the Zoning By-law; (zone de protection de l’environnement)

erect” means the constructing, erecting, placing, locating, relocating or altering of a sign or part thereof; and includes the painting or application of a mural sign and the posting of notices, and “erected” and “erection” and “paint” and “painted” have a corresponding meaning; (installer)

existing” means existing as of the date of the enactment of the provision that contains the word “existing”; (existant, actuel, en vigueur)

external illumination” means illumination of the sign that is external to or outside of the sign or sign box; (éclairage externe)

farm sign” means an on-premise sign that advertises or identifies the name of a farm or the farm related products or services offered on the premises or types of crops grown on the premises; (enseigne de ferme)

farmers’ market” means a seasonal, multi-vendor operation at a fixed rural location selling agricultural, food and arts and crafts products including home-grown-produce, home-made crafts and value-added products where the vendors are the primary producers; (marché de producteurs)

frontage” means the portion of a lot fronting on a street, but not on a lane or alleyway; (façade de terrain)

fuel price sign” means an on-premise sign that displays the current price of fuel only, and on which the price information is changed from time to time manually or automatically; (enseigne affichant le prix de l’essence)

fuel pump island sign” means a sign that is located on or over a single fuel pump island, but does not include an electronic fuel pump sign; (enseigne d’îlot de distribution d’essence)

full service restaurant” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (restaurant à service complet)

General Manager, Planning, Infrastructure and Economic Development Department” means the person in the office of the General Manager of the Planning, Infrastructure and Economic Development Department of the City, or an authorized designate; (directeur général, Services de la planification, de l’infrastructure et du développement économique)

grade”, except where otherwise indicated, means the average surface elevation of the ground adjoining any building or sign, exclusive of any berm or mound of earth created solely for the purpose of increasing the elevation of the ground at the base of the sign; (niveau du sol)

greenbelt” means the area shown in Schedule E of this by-law, and “inside the greenbelt” and “outside the greenbelt” have corresponding meanings; (Ceinture de verdure)

ground sign” means a sign that is affixed to the ground by a self-supporting structure that includes a permanent foundation below grade or above grade; (enseigne fixée au sol)

heritage building or structure” means a building or structure that is identified on the Heritage Reference List compiled by the City of Ottawa, or designated under Part IV or V of the Ontario Heritage Act; (edifice historique ou structure patrimoniale)

Heritage Register” means properties listed on the City’s Heritage Register under Section 27 of the Ontario Heritage Act; (2021-235) (Biens patrimoniaux)

highway” includes a common and public highway under the jurisdiction of the City and includes any street, avenue, parkway, driveway, square, place, bridge, viaduct or trestle, any part of which is intended for or used by the general public for the passage of vehicles and includes the area between the lateral property lines thereof; (“voie publique”) (2021-235) (voie publique)

home-based business” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law and is permitted by the Zoning By-law; (enterprise à domicile)

identification sign” means a sign that identifies a place or business that is on the premises upon which the sign is located; (panneau d’identification)

illuminated” means lighting of the sign by artificial means and “illumination” has a corresponding meaning; (lumineux)

industrial zone” for the purposes of this by-law, includes the Business Park Industrial (IP), Light Industrial (IL), General Industrial (IG), Heavy Industrial (IH), Rural General Industrial (RG) and Rural Heavy Industrial (RH) zones set out in the Zoning By-law; (zone industrielle)

information sign” means a sign that provides information about the uses of the building or premises upon which the sign is located, or directions that relate directly to a building or premises; (panneau indicateur)

“institutional zone”, for the purposes of this by-law, includes the Minor Institutional (I1), Major Institutional (I2), and Rural Institutional (RI) zones set out in the Zoning By-law; (zone institutionnelle)

intermittent illumination” means illumination that is capable of variation in intensity at periodic intervals; (éclairage intermittent) “internal illumination” means illumination of the sign with a source inside the sign or sign box; (éclairage interne)

“Lansdowne”, for the purposes of this by-law, means the lands described in Schedule B of this by-law and includes the buildings and structures located on the lands; (Lansdowne)

Lansdowne Signage and Wayfinding Plan” means the Lansdowne Signage and Wayfinding Plan approved by Council of the City of Ottawa on June 27, 2012, as referenced in Planning Committee Report 32A, Item 5, and on October 10, 2012, as referenced in the Finance and Economic Development Committee Report 25, Item 7, and as may be amended by Council from time to time, and is declared to form part of this by-law; (signalisation et carte de localisation de Lansdowne)

lateral offset”, for the purposes of calculating the prohibited area, means the distance between the property line abutting the street and the end of the prohibited area; (retrait latéral)

leisure zone”, for the purposes of this by-law, includes the Community Leisure Facility (L1), Major Leisure Facility (L2) and Central Experimental Farm (L3) zones set out in the Zoning By-law; (zone de loisirs)

“lightshed setback” means a cone-shaped area of visual impact that establishes the setback from a digital billboard; (retrait d’éclairage)

Illustration of lightshed setback
Illustration of lightshed setback

logo sign” means a wall sign located at the uppermost storey of a building that is an emblem, badge, symbol or other identifying mark used solely to identify a particular building or premises or to identify a particular occupant of a particular building or premises; (2017-343) (enseigne de symbole social)

lot” means all contiguous land under one ownership; (lot)

low-rise apartment dwelling” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (immeuble d’appartements de faible hauteur)

LUX” means one lumen per square metre, and is a measure of illuminance, or the intensity of light at the sign surface from all sources, measured at a specific distance; (lux)

maintenance” includes the replacement of the component parts of a sign structure by identical component parts; (entretien)

major collector” means a highway identified as such in Schedule E, G or H of the Official Plan; (route collectrice principale)

Mature Neighbourhoods Overlay” means the “Mature Neighbourhoods Overlay” layer displayed under the Zoning option of geoOttawa; (zone sous-jacente de quartiers établis)

message” means any visual communication whether in words, symbols, or any other visual form that conveys meaning; (message)

message centre” means an on-premise sign that is designed to have the alpha numeric characters or images that it displays changed by use of automatic, electronic or manual methods; (afficheur à message)

mid to high-rise apartment” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (immeuble d’appartements de moyenne à grande hauteur)

mobile home park” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (parc de maisons mobiles)

municipal law enforcement officer” means a person appointed by Council to enforce the provisions of this by-law and may be referred to as an officer, and includes the Chief, By-law and Regulatory Services; (agent d’application des règlements municipaux)

multi-faced sign” means a sign that has three or more sign faces; (enseigne multi faces)

municipal”, except where it refers to the Municipal Act, 2001, means relating to the City of Ottawa; (municipal)

Municipal Act, 2001” means the Municipal Act, 2001, S.O. 2001, c25, as amended; (Loi de 2001 sur les municipalités)

mural sign” means a sign that is an expression of public art painted directly on or applied to the exterior of a building or structure or on a backing that is affixed to the building or structure; (enseigne murale)

non-rural road network” means the urban road network shown in Schedule E of the Official Plan; (réseau routier non rural)

Official Plan” means the Official Plan of the City of Ottawa; (Plan officiel)

official sign” means a sign erected by a public body under the auspices or authority of a statute, by-law or regulation; (enseigne officielle)

off-premise sign” means a permanent sign that directs attention to a business, product, service or entertainment that is conducted, sold or offered elsewhere than on the premises on which the sign is located; (enseigne hors lieux)

on-premise sign” means a permanent sign identifying or advertising a business, person, activity, goods, products or services located on the premises where the sign is situated, operated and maintained; (enseigne sur les lieux)

Ontario Heritage Act” means the Ontario Heritage Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. O.18, as amended, and includes any Regulations passed under the Act; (Loi sur le patrimoine de l’Ontario) “open space zone”, for the purposes of this by-law, means the Parks and Open Space (O1) zone set out in the Zoning By-law; (zone d’espaces verts)

owner”, with respect to the sign, means any person whose name and address or telephone number appears on the sign, who manufactured, supplied or installed the sign, who is in lawful control of the sign, who benefits from the message on the sign, or the owner or tenant of the property upon which the sign is situated, and for the purposes of this bylaw there may be more than one sign owner; (propriétaire)

parapet wall” means a vertical wall section that is a component part of the building structure extending above a building roofline; (parapet)

permanent sign” means a sign that is that is installed, applied, projected onto or affixed to any building or structure and includes a ground sign, wall sign, logo sign, banner sign, window sign, mural sign, awning sign, canopy sign, projecting sign, message centre, digital menu board, digital billboard, static billboard, development sign, directional development sign, directional farm sign, rural business/industrial park directional, or village pedestrian directional sign, and shall not include a sign located inside a building with the exception of a window sign; (enseigne permanente)

permit” means a permit, other than an encroachment permit, issued under this by-law and includes a renewal thereof; and “sign permit” has a corresponding meaning; (permis)

permit holder” means a person who has obtained a permanent sign permit or a sign encroachment permit; (détenteur de permis)

person” means an individual, association, firm, partnership, incorporated company, corporation, agent or trustee, and the heirs, executor or other legal representatives of a person and for the purposes of this by-law includes an owner, or any person in temporary possession of the property; (personne)

planned unit development” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (complexe immobilier)

pre-menu video sign” means a pre-menu drive-through sign that contains an electronic screen displaying video images; (enseigne pré-menu avec écran video)

premises” means specific property, and includes all buildings and structures thereon; (lieux)

private property” means property under private ownership; (propriété privée)

private road” means any street, road, lane or other means of vehicular access to or egress from buildings located on private lands; (chemin privé)

prohibited area”, with respect to the area around a signalized intersection, pedestrian crossing or railway crossing, means the area encompassing the limits of the distance before the stop line, the distance after the intersection/crossing, and the lateral offset area from the property line on each side of the street. (zone interdite)

Illustration of prohibited area

Illustration of prohibited area
This diagram is intended to illustrate the prohibited area for the street on which the flows of traffic are shown. The prohibited area for the intersecting street must be determined separately.

“projected image sign” means a sign that is projected from or by a source external to the sign onto a surface where the sign copy image is displayed, but does not include a projected image that is displayed for a temporary sports, cultural or tourism event; (image projetée)

“projecting sign” means a sign that projects on the perpendicular from the surface to which it is attached, and may include a projecting banner sign; (enseigne en saillie)

“property” means a building or structure or part of a building or structure, and includes the lands and premises appurtenant thereto and all mobile homes, mobile buildings, mobile structures, outbuildings, fences and erections on the property, and includes vacant property; (propriété)

“property line”, for the purpose of calculating the prohibited area, means the property line abutting the street; (limite de propriété)

“public” means equally open and available to all and does not, necessarily, denote ownership; (public)

“public utility” means a board, commission, or corporation including the City that owns or operates a public service; (service public)

“radius setback” means a 360 degree circular setback around a sign, with the size of the setback area determined by the length of the radius of the circle; (rayon de retrait)

“registered farm” means a farming business that has obtained a farm 12 business registration number pursuant to the provisions of the Farm Registration and Farm Organizations Funding Act, 1993, S.O. 1993, c. 21, as amended; (ferme inscrite)

“relocating” includes any re-orienting or repositioning of a sign structure; (réinstaller)

“residential use building” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (bâtiment à utilisation résidentielle)

“residential zone”, for the purposes of this by-law, includes the Residential (R1 to R5), Rural Residential (RR), Mobile Home (RM), and Village Residential (V1 to V3) zones set out in the Zoning By-law; (zone résidentielle)

“retirement home” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (maison de retraite)

“roofline” means the uppermost point of the wall of a building where the wall and the roof meet, and excludes a parapet wall; (ligne de toiture)

“roof sign” means a sign located entirely on or above the roof of a building, including a sign on a building canopy that projects more than one metre above the building canopy, and a sign on a parapet wall or similar architecture feature that extends beyond the roofline for a distance greater than the measured storey height below the sign; (enseigne de toiture)

“rural business or industrial park” means a grouping of four or more commercial uses or industrial uses, or both, but not including shopping centres, on property zoned rural commercial or rural industrial, on parcels of land under one or multiple ownership; (parc d’affaires ou parc industriel rural)

“rural business or industrial park directional sign” means an on-premise directional ground sign that includes the name of the rural business park or rural industrial park and the businesses located in the park; (enseigne directionnelle de parc d’affaires ou de parc industriel rural)

“rural road network” means the road network shown in Schedule G of the Official Plan; (réseau routier rural)

“rural village pedestrian directional sign” means an on-premise or off-premise directional sign in the form of individual or multiple blades on a post with each blade identifying a business located in a village; (enseigne directionnelle de village pour les piétons)

“Scenic Entry Route” means a public street identified as a Scenic Entry Route in Schedule I or J of the Official Plan; (route d’entrée panoramique)

“shopping centre” has the same meaning as in the in the Zoning By-law; (centre commercial)

“sidewalk” means those parts of a highway set aside for the use of pedestrians or used by the general public for the passage of pedestrians; (trottoir)

“sign” means any visual medium used to convey information by way of words, pictures, graphics, emblems or symbols; any device used for the purpose of providing direction, information, identification, advertisement, or the promotion of a product, activity, or service; and a mural sign; (enseigne)

“sign box” means a box frame, which may or may not be illuminated, which holds or supports a face plate that displays a message; (boîtier d’enseigne)

“sign face” means that portion of the sign upon, against or through which the message of the sign is displayed, but does not include the sign structure; (face de l’enseigne)

“sign face area” means the total area of all sign faces on one sign structure; (superficie de la face de l’enseigne)

“sign structure” means a structure that is constructed to support a sign face; (structure d’enseigne)

“signalized intersection or crossing”, for the purpose of calculating the prohibited area, means an intersection, pedestrian crossing or railway crossing which has traffic lights or signals to control traffic; (intersection à feux ou passage avec signalization)

“Signs on City Roads By-law” means the City of Ottawa Signs on City Roads By-law, being By-law 2003-520 entitled “A by-law of the City of Ottawa to regulate signs and advertising devices on City roads", as amended; (Règlement sur l’affichage sur la voie publique)

“stacked dwelling” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (habitation superposée)

"static billboard" means an off-premise advertising sign that displays printed information or images, and includes a sign with printed sign copy that changes mechanically; (panneau d’affichage fixe)

“stop line”, for the purposes of calculating the prohibited area, means the marking on the pavement prior to a signalized intersection, pedestrian crossing or railway crossing where a vehicle is required to stop, when necessary; (ligne d’arrêt)

“storey” means a level of a building included between the surface of a floor and the ceiling or roof immediately above it; (étage)

“storey, first” means the storey that has its floor at or nearest grade and has its ceiling, or the roof immediately above the floor, if that is the case, at least 1.8 m above grade; (rez-d-chaussée)

“street” means a highway, private road, road allowance or a lane, and includes the surface, grassed area, ditch, curb, gutter, sidewalk, and any other structure constructed thereon by the City or with the City’s approval; (rue)

“structure” means something constructed; (structure)

“Temporary Signs on Private Property By-law” means the City of Ottawa Temporary Signs on Private Property By-law, being By-law 2004-239 entitled “A by-law of the City of Ottawa regulating the placement of temporary signs on private property”, as amended; (Règlement sur les enseignes temporaries sur les propriétés privées)

“theatre” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (théâtre) “townhouse dwelling” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (habitation en rangée)

“traffic control device” means a sign, traffic control signal or other device placed for the purpose of regulating or directing vehicular, pedestrian or other traffic within the street and includes the utility pole, post or other supporting members, control boxes and other ancillary elements; (dispositif de signalisation)

“transition time” means the time it takes to change an electronic message; (période de transition)

“transportation zone”, for the purposes of this by-law, means the Air Transportation Facility (T1) and Ground Transportation (T2) zones set out in the Zoning By-law; (zone de transport)

“use” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (utilisation)

“utility installation” has the same meaning as in the Zoning By-law; (installation de services publics)

“village” means a rural village as designated in the Official Plan; (village)

“visibility triangle” means the area within a triangle formed by measuring a prescribed distance along two specified intersecting lines and a third line joining the terminal points of the two measured lines; (triangle de visibilité)

“wall sign” means a sign that is flat to a wall or window and may include a painted wall sign, banner sign, building canopy sign, projected image sign, or window sign; (affiche murale)

“window sign” means a sign on the inside or outside of any part of a window on a wall, including a sign located within or in place of the glass of a window, or any other sign in a window erected or displayed in a manner so as to be visible through the window from the exterior of the building; (2018-42) (enseigne de vitrine)

“zone” means any zone established in the Zoning By-law and includes all subzones and exception zones; (zone)

“Zoning By-law” means the City of Ottawa Zoning By-law, being By-law 2008-250 entitled “City of Ottawa Zoning By-law regulating the use of all land and the density, size, location and use of all buildings within the City of Ottawa”, as amended. (Règlement de zonage)

Part 2 - Interpretation

Section 2

Where a situation arises that is not covered by a specific regulation, or where two or more regulations are equally applicable, all provisions shall be complied with or, where it is not possible to comply with all the applicable provisions, the most restrictive provisions shall prevail. 

Section 3

Unless otherwise defined, the words and phrases used in this by-law have their normal and ordinary meaning.

Section 4

The zone abbreviations in the tables in this by-law are based on the zones in the Zoning By-law, and refer to:

  • R1 Residential First Density
  • R2 Residential Second Density
  • R3 Residential Third Density
  • R4 Residential Fourth Density
  • R5 Residential Fifth Density
  • RM Mobile Home
  • RR Rural Residential
  • V1 Village Residential First Density
  • V2 Village Residential Second Density
  • V3 Village Residential Third Density RI Rural Institutional
  • I1 Minor Institutional
  • I2 Major Institutional
  • L1 Community Leisure Facility
  • L2 Major Leisure Facility
  • L3 Central Experimental Farm
  • O1 Parks and Open Space
  • EP Environmental Protection
  • LC Local Commercial
  • TM Traditional Mainstreet
  • AM Arterial Mainstreet
  • TD Transit Oriented Development
  • MD Mixed-Use Downtown
  • MC Mixed-Use Centre
  • GM General Mixed Use
  • VM Village Mixed-Use
  • RC Rural Commercial
  • IP Business Park Industrial
  • IG General Industrial
  • IL Light Industrial
  • IH Heavy Industrial
  • RG Rural General Industrial
  • RH Rural Heavy Industrial
  • RU Rural Countryside
  • AG Agricultural
  • ME Mineral Extraction
  • MR Mineral Aggregate Reserve
  • T1 Air Transportation Facility
  • T2 Ground Transportation
  • DR Development Reserve

Section 5

This by-law includes the schedules annexed hereto and the schedules are declared to form part of this by-law and enact the regulation, the description or the map they contain.

Section 6

The headings and subheadings used in this by-law are inserted for convenience of reference only, form no part of this by-law and shall not affect in any way the meaning or interpretation of the provisions of this by-law.

Section 7

Unless the context requires otherwise, or a number is used to modify the term, reference to items in the plural include the singular, and words imparting the masculine gender shall include the feminine.

Section 8

The following abbreviations and symbols stand for the words respectively set forth opposite thereto as follows:

  • cd/m2 candelas per square metre
  • cm centimetre
  • ha hectare
  • km kilometre
  • km/h kilometres per hour
  • m metre
  • mm millimetre
  • m² square metre
  • % per cent

Section 9

If any section, subsection paragraph or part thereof is declared by any Court to be bad, illegal or ultra vires, such section, subsection, paragraph, part or parts shall be deemed to be severable and all parts of this by-law are declared to be separate and independent and enacted as such.

Section 10

Reserved for future use

Section 11

Reserved for future use

Section 12

Reserved for future use

Section 13

Reserved for future use

Section 14

Reserved for future use

Part 3 - Administration

Section 15 - Chief building official

The Chief Building Official is authorized to administer the provisions of this by-law.

Section 16 - Chief, by-law and regulatory services

The Chief, By-law and Regulatory Services, is authorized to enforce the provisions of this by-law.

Sections 17 and 18 - Types of signs

Section 17

  1. For the purposes of this by-law, signs are divided into the following sign types:
    1. ground sign;
    2. wall sign, including window sign, projected image sign and banner sign;
    3. logo sign;
    4. canopy sign;
    5. projecting sign, including banner sign;
    6. pre-menu and menu sign;
    7. digital menu board;
    8. message centre;
    9. billboard, including static billboard and digital billboard;
    10. fuel pump sign, including electronic and non-electronic;
    11. development sign; (l) directional development sign; and
    12. directional farm, rural business or industrial park and rural village pedestrian sign.

Section 18

  1. Any sign that is not:
    1. one of the types of signs referred to in Section 17, and
    2. permitted in one of the zones referred to in Table 1 through Table 9 is prohibited.

Sections 19 to 21 - Lawfully existing signs

Section 19

The by-law does not apply to a sign that was lawfully erected or displayed on the day the by-law comes into force if the sign is not substantially altered, and the maintenance and repair of the sign or a change in the message or contents displayed shall be deemed not in itself to constitute a substantial alteration.

Section 20

Where a sign referred to in Section 19 is substantially altered, Section 19 no longer applies and that sign shall be brought into full conformity with this by-law.

Section 21

Section 19 does not confer immunity with respect to the provisions of any other statute, by-law or regulation applicable to the sign in question. Where such sign has been legally installed but where a change of use or zoning amendment has occurred which impacts such sign, Section 19 does not apply. (2021-235)

  1. A Billboard permit which has expired, or is about to expire, may, subject to the provisions of this by-law in effect at the time, be renewed for a period of up to five years upon submission of a new static billboard or digital billboard permit application. (2021-235)

Section 22

Reserved for future use.

Section 23

Reserved for future use.

Section 24

Reserved for future use.

Part 4 - Permits

Section 25 - Permits

No person shall erect or cause to be erected, operate or maintain any permanent sign on private property in the City without first having obtained a permit for the sign under this by-law.

Section 26 - Exemptions

  1. Despite Section 25, the following signs do not require a permit:
    1. awning sign;
    2. non-electronic fuel pump island sign that is no higher than 3.5 m above grade and no greater than 0.5 m2 in area;
    3. electronic fuel pump sign;
    4. ground sign if the sign face is horizontal to and flat on the ground;
    5. non-illuminated information sign that is less than 1 m²;
    6. non-illuminated window sign;
    7. mural sign;
    8. official sign;
    9. farm sign that does not exceed 4 m²;
    10. wall sign located on a temporary sales centre building,
    11. directional farm sign that does not exceed 4 m2
    12. rural village pedestrian directional sign; and
    13. an illuminated window sign, limited to those displaying “open/closed” or “vacancy/no vacancy” messages. (2018-42)
  2. Every owner of an exempted sign under subsection (1) shall ensure that the sign and the sign structure comply with the regulatory provisions that apply to the type of sign and with all maintenance and safety requirements of this and other applicable by-laws.
  3. Changes to sign copy of existing lawfully-erected signs do not require a permit provided no other changes are made to the sign.

Sections 27 to 33 - Permit application

Section 27

  1. Every applicant for a sign permit must complete and submit a permit application, which shall:
    1. be in the form required by the Chief Building Official;
    2. where applicable, include plans, specifications, documents and any other information as required by the Chief Building Official, at the applicant’s own expense;
    3. be accompanied by the fee set out in Schedule A of this by-law; and
    4. be submitted to the Chief Building Official.

Section 28

  1. The Chief Building Official shall issue the sign permit unless:
    1. the sign contravenes this by-law or any other applicable law;
    2. the erection of the sign contravenes,
      1. this by-law,
      2. the Building Code, or
      3. any other applicable City by-law;
    3. the permit application, including plans, specifications, documents and other information required by the Chief Building Official, is incomplete; or
    4. any fees required under this by-law are unpaid.
  2. The Chief Building Official may require the applicant to submit such additional plans, specifications, documents or other information as he determines are necessary to determine whether or not a permit may be issued, and those plans, specifications, documents or other information may be different for different signs or for signs used for different purposes.

Section 29

Where a sign that is located within 400 m of a controlled access highway under provincial jurisdiction is visible from that highway, the approval of the Minister of Transportation (Ontario) shall accompany an application for a permit for that sign.

Section 30

The plans, specifications, documents and other information submitted with an application under this by-law are the property of the City and, upon the permit being issued, become public information.

Section 31

  1. The Chief Building Official may issue the permit:
    1. with a term imposed by this by-law, or
    2. with a term, provision or restriction imposed as a condition of granting a minor variance or waiver to this by-law.

Section 32

No person shall contravene a term, provision or restriction in a permit.

Section 33

No person shall erect, cause to be erected, operate or maintain a sign that is not as specified in the application for the permit for the sign.

Section 34 - Permit application lapses

  1. An application for a permit lapses six months after the date of filing unless the application is being actively pursued or a permit has been issued.
  2. Subsection (1) does not apply to a delay caused by the City in processing the application.
  3. Where an application for a permit lapses under subsection (1), the application fee is not refundable.

Section 35 - Revocation of a permit

  1. The Chief Building Official shall revoke a permit issued under this by-law where:
    1. the permit was issued in error;
    2. the permit was issued on false, misleading, mistaken or incorrect information;
    3. the permit holder requests in writing that the permit be revoked;
    4. the permit holder has breached this by-law; or
    5. the permit holder does not comply with conditions imposed from a minor variance approval.
  2. The Chief Building Official shall notify the permit holder of the revocation of the permit under where applicable and this notice may be given in the manner prescribed by Section 205.

Section 36 - Permit lapses

  1. A permit lapses and is null and void when:
    1. the work authorized by the permit is not completed within six months of the date of the permit being issued;
    2. in the case of an identification sign, the business, product, activity or service to which the sign relates ceases to operate or is no longer available at the premises upon which the sign is located; or
    3. the permit expires, if it has been issued for a specific duration.
  2. No permit holder shall fail to remove the work that was commenced to erect the sign from the premises immediately after the permit has lapsed.
  3. Every owner of a sign or part thereof that no longer advertises or identifies a bona fide business, product, activity or service on the premises shall ensure that the sign is removed within sixty days of the termination of such business, product, activity or service and the premises are reinstated to its original state.

Sections 37 to 42 - Encroachment permits

Section 37

  1. No person shall erect, cause to be erected, operate or maintain a permanent sign or any part of a permanent sign on or over a highway in the City without first having obtained an encroachment permit.
  2. Nothing in this by-law entitles any person, as of right, to an encroachment permit or to a renewal or to a transfer thereof.
  3. An encroachment permit is required for each sign encroaching on or over a highway.

Section 38

  1. The Chief Building Official may issue an encroachment permit authorizing a sign to project on or over a highway to any person who meets the requirements of this by-law for such permit.
  2. Sections 27 to 33 apply, with all necessary modification, to the application and issuance of an encroachment permit.
  3. The term of the encroachment permit is for one year or less and it is deemed to have been issued on the first day of January in the year of issuance and expires on the thirty first day of December of that year.

Section 39

The Chief Building Official may issue an encroachment permit subject to such terms, conditions and restrictions as are set out in this by-law or by a Standing Committee of Council in approving a minor variance.

Section 40

The Chief Building Official may include the encroachment permit as an endorsement on the sign permit and no additional permit is required for the sign encroachment.

Section 41

The holder of an encroachment permit shall pay an annual encroachment fee set out in Schedule A of this by-law.

Section 42

  1. Any part of an unpaid encroachment fee is a debt due the City and may be recovered,
  2. in any court of competent jurisdiction, or
  3. by adding the cost to the tax roll and collecting the fee in the same manner as taxes.

Sections 43 to 46 - Encroachment permit renewals

Section 43

  1. An encroachment permit shall be renewed before its expiry, or the encroachment which that permit authorized shall be removed.
  2. The encroachment permit referred to in subsection (1) is deemed to be renewed upon receipt by the Chief Building Official of the required fee.
  3. No person shall fail to remove a permanent sign from the premises immediately after the encroachment permit has expired.

Section 44

  1. Every encroachment that is renewed under subsection 43(2) is deemed:
    1. to have been issued on the first day of January immediately following the expiration of the permit period that is renewed, and
    2. to take effect immediately upon the expiration of the permit that is renewed.

Section 45

  1. Where the renewal fee for an encroachment permit is received after January 1, Section 44 applies with all necessary modification to,
    1. the renewal encroachment permit, and
    2. an encroachment permit that includes a term, condition or restriction that limits the duration of that permit to a period of less than one year.
  2. No reduction in the renewal fee is to be given for,
    1. a renewal encroachment permit that is renewed after January 1, or
    2. a renewal of an encroachment permit that is renewed for a period of less than a year.

Section 46

  1. When a sign changes ownership, the new and former owners of the sign shall notify the Chief Building Official within thirty days of the change.
  2. The new owner of the sign shall comply with the provisions of this by-law as if he was the original applicant.

Sections 47 to 50 - Encroachment permit cancellation

Section 47

  1. The Chief Building Official may, at any time, cancel an encroachment permit upon providing the permit holder 60 days notice of the cancellation. Upon receiving such notice, the permit holder shall, at his own expense, remove the encroaching sign from the highway.
  2. The notice referred to in subsection (1) may be given by registered mail sent to the last address for the permit holder contained in the records of the Chief Building Official, or by a notice posted on the sign or on the land upon which that sign is located.
  3. The notice referred to in subsection (1) shall be deemed to have been received by the permit holder five days after the date of the mailing or upon the posting of the notice.

Section 48

  1. Where a sign required to be removed under this by-law is not removed from overhanging the highway, the Chief Building Official may, not sooner than 61 days after the mailing or posting of the notice, have the encroachment removed at the expense of the permit holder.
  2. Where the Chief Building Official has a sign overhanging the highway removed pursuant to subsection (1), the cost of doing so may be recovered in the manner provided for in Section 212.

Section 49

Despite the cancellation or non-renewal of an encroachment permit, the fee in respect to the encroachment continues to accrue as a debt to the City until the encroachment is removed from the highway.

Section 50

  1. Despite any other provision of this by-law, no encroachment permit shall be issued or renewed if the sign to which the encroachment permit relates either is not permitted under this by-law, or if the sign has been removed or is required to be removed under this by-law.
  2. Any encroachment permit issued under this by-law is null and void when the sign to which it relates is removed or is required to be removed under this by-law.

Section 51

Reserved for future use.

Section 52

Reserved for future use.

Section 53

Reserved for future use.

Section 54

Reserved for future use.

Part 5 - Minor variances

Sections 55 to 64 - Minor variances

Section 55

Any person may submit an application for a minor variance to the regulations in this by-law.

Section 56

  1. An application under Section 55 shall:
    1. be in the form required by the Chief Building Official;
    2. be accompanied by such plans, specifications or other information as the Chief Building Official may require, at the applicant’s own expense;
    3. be accompanied by the fee set out in Schedule A of this by-law; and
    4. be submitted to the Chief Building Official.
  2. Where an application under subsection (1) is incomplete, the Chief Building Official may refuse to accept the application.

Section 57

Upon receipt of an application under Section 55, the details of the requested variance will be circulated to the owners of the properties abutting the property on which the sign is or will be located, with 14 days provided for the submission of comments in writing to the Chief Building Official.

Section 58

In accordance with this by-law, the Chief Building Official is authorized to approve or refuse an application for a minor variance from the provisions of this by-law.

Section 59

  1. Despite any other Section in this Part, the Chief Building Official is not authorized to approve an application for a minor variance that:
    1. permits a sign of a type that is prohibited under this by-law;
    2. permits a billboard in a residential or environmental protection zone;
    3. permits an off-premise sign other than a billboard or directional sign;
    4. permits a digital wall sign other than a digital menu board or a message centre for a theatre or cinema; and
    5. with respect to digital signs, varies the by-law’s prescribed operational standards regarding the brightness, transition times, dwell times and restrictions on special effects, including flashing, blinking and audio.

Section 60

  1. In considering an application for a minor variance, the Chief Building Official shall have regard for:
    1. whether the minor variance sought is consistent with the general intent and purpose of the by-law and the objectives for signage, including public safety, context-sensitive design and location and economic development;
    2. whether the minor variance would have adverse impacts on the surroundings, including adjacent properties;
    3. in respect of the sign in question, whether there are physical impediments or obstructions or topographical barriers that preclude the placement or design of the sign in compliance with the by-law;
    4. whether the minor variance is desirable for the development or use of the property;
    5. the cumulative effects of the minor variance sought, or of other minor variances previously approved for the sign or site in question; and
    6. the feedback received in response to the circulation required in Section 57.
  2. In considering whether the proposed sign is context-sensitive in its design and location for the purposes of subsection (1)(a), the following factors will be taken into account:
    1. the Official Plan and any applicable Secondary Plans;
    2. Community Design Plans;
    3. Council-approved design guidelines;
    4. Ontario Heritage Act objectives and designated Heritage Conservation District plans; and
    5. impacts on the National War Memorial, the Parliamentary Precinct, Confederation Boulevard, federal and local historic sites and landmarks, and the Rideau Canal.

Section 61

  1. The Chief Building Official shall advise the Councillor in the Ward where the minor variance is proposed of his recommendation under delegated authority.
  2. The Chief Building Official’s decision shall proceed under delegated authority:
    1. unless the Councillor indicates, in writing, within 14 days of the recommendation being provided, that he does not concur with the recommended approval or refusal, in which case the application will be forwarded to the appropriate Standing Committee of Council for a decision; or
    2. if the Councillor does not respond, in writing, within 14 days of the recommendation being provided.

Section 62

The Chief Building Official or the Standing Committee of Council, as the case may be, may impose a term, provision or restriction as a condition of granting a minor variance to this by-law that will be imposed upon the associated sign permit.

Section 63

The disposition of the minor variance application by the Chief Building Official or by a Standing Committee of Council, as the case may be, shall be final and binding.

Section 64

No person shall contravene a term, provision or restriction in a sign minor variance that was imposed by the Chief Building Official or by a Standing Committee of Council as a condition of approving the sign minor variance.

Section 65

Reserved for future use.

Section 66

Reserved for future use.

Section 67

Reserved for future use.

Section 68

Reserved for future use.

Section 69

Reserved for future use.

Part 6 - Refunds and fees

Section 70 - Fees and refunds

The fees associated with this by-law are set out in Schedule A of this by-law.

Section 71 - Work commenced without permit 

  1. Where work to erect a sign is commenced prior to the issuance of a permit authorizing that work, an additional administrative surcharge of 50% of the permit fee set out in Schedule A of this by-law shall be paid prior to the permit being issued.
  2. Where work to erect a sign is commenced under subsection (1) and requires relief from the by-law in the form of a minor variance application, an additional administrative surcharge of 100% of the sign minor variance fee shall be paid prior to the permit being issued.

Sections 72 to 74 - Refunds

Section 72

  1. An applicant may withdraw an application for a sign permit at any time prior to the issuance of the permit.
  2. Where an applicant withdraws an application under subsection (1), he may be entitled to a refund on the following basis:
    1. 75% of the application fee if a request for a refund is received by the Chief Building Official prior to the start of the review of the application; and
    2. 50% of the application fee if a request for a refund is received once review has commenced.

Section 73

Where an issued permit has been revoked or cancelled under this by-law, no refund is payable.

Section 74

  1. Where an applicant withdraws a sign minor variance application, he or she may be entitled to a refund, upon authorization of the Chief Building Official, on the following basis:
    1. 50% of the application fee will be refunded if a request for a refund is received by the Chief Building Official prior to the technical circulation and public notification; and
    2. No refund will be provided after the technical circulation and public notification.

Section 75

Reserved for future use. 

Section 76

Reserved for future use. 

Section 77

Reserved for future use. 

Section 78 

Reserved for future use. 

Section 79

Reserved for future use. 

Part 7 - General sign provisions

Section 80 - General sign provisions

The regulations set out in this Part apply in addition to the regulations set out in the specific regulations and tables applicable to each sign type.

Sections 81 to 83 - Prohibited signs

Section 81

A permanent sign that is not specifically permitted by this by-law is prohibited.

Section 82

No person shall erect or cause to be erected, operate or maintain any permanent sign that is not specifically permitted by this by-law.

Section 83

  1. Without limiting the generality of Sections 81 and 82, no person shall erect or cause to be erected, operate or maintain any of the following permanent signs:
    1. a roof sign;
    2. a sign that is affixed to a shed, tree, pole, post, fence, another sign or any other structure if that sign is visible from either a highway or a private road;
    3. a sign that imitates, resembles or could reasonably be mistaken for a traffic control device or an official sign;
    4. a sign that could obstruct the view or the visibility of,
      1. vehicular or pedestrian traffic using or entering a street or railway crossing,
      2. a traffic control device, or
      3. an official sign;
    5. a sign that is illuminated, animated or operated in such a way that it constitutes a hazardous distraction for vehicular or pedestrian traffic;
    6. a sign structure that could, in any manner, endanger a person or property;
    7. a sign that interferes with electrical light, power or telephone wires; and
    8. a sign that obstructs entry through or egress from a window, door, fire escape, or emergency exit.

Section 84 - Temporary signs and signs on highways

This by-law does not apply to a sign regulated by the Signs on City Roads By-law and the Temporary Signs on Private Property By-law.

Section 85 - Sign encroachment prohibited

  1. No person shall erect, cause to be erected, operate or maintain a permanent sign that is on or over a highway.
  2. Subsection (1) does not apply to:
    1. an official sign; or
    2. a sign in respect of which an encroachment permit authorizes the sign to be on or over a highway.

Sections 86 to 94 - Maintenance and operation of signs

Section 86

Every owner of a permanent sign shall ensure that the sign and related sign structure complies with all applicable by-laws and Provincial and Federal laws and regulations.

Section 87

Every owner of a permanent sign shall ensure that the sign is maintained in a proper state of repair and operated in a manner so that it does not become unsafe, structurally unsound, unsightly or dangerous.

Section 88

Every owner of a message centre, digital menu board, digital billboard, electronic fuel pump sign or projected image sign that malfunctions so as to create a danger or distraction to the public shall turn off the sign until the problem is rectified.

Section 89

Every owner of the premises on which a permanent sign that has been defaced, damaged, or destroyed or that fails to operate properly is located shall immediately repair the sign to its original condition or remove it.

Section 90

Where a sign structure has a missing face, the owner of the sign shall ensure that, in lieu thereof, it has a solid, opaque or translucent panel completely covering the sign face opening.

Section 91

Every owner of a permanent sign shall ensure that the materials, components and structure of the sign comply with all applicable requirements of the Building Code, the Electrical Safety Authority, and any other code or legislation having jurisdiction over such matters.

Section 92

Every owner of a permanent sign shall locate the sign so as to be serviceable entirely from the premises upon which the sign in located.

Sections 93 and 94 - Electrical requirements

Section 93

No person shall erect, cause to be erected, operate or maintain any illuminated, digital, electronic or any other sign that requires a power supply, or any portion thereof, that is not visibly identified by the sign installer’s or manufacturer’s identification tag, including any applicable Canadian Standards Association and Electrical Safety Authority certification tags.

Section 94

  1. Unless otherwise authorized by the Chief Building Official, every owner of an illuminated, digital, electronic or any other sign that requires a power supply shall ensure that the electrical wiring carrying the power supply to the sign is not above ground or not in the open.
  2. Subsection (1) does not apply to electrical wiring that is inside a building and is fed through the wall of that building directly to the sign.

Sections 95 to 102 - Public safety

Section 95

Every owner of a permanent sign shall ensure that the sign structure is located so as not to interfere with vehicular or pedestrian movement or become a nuisance or hazard for any vehicle or person.

Section 96

  1. No person shall erect, cause to be erected, operate or maintain any permanent sign or sign structure that obstructs:
    1. entry or egress from an emergency exit;
    2. an emergency standpipe;
    3. a fire hydrant; or
    4. any means of access by an emergency service to any part of a building.

Section 97

  1. No person shall erect or cause to be erected, operate or maintain a permanent sign or a sign structure at a street corner within a visibility triangle formed by measuring 3 m along the lot lines from the intersection of any two streets or at the intersection of two parts of the same street meeting at an angle of not more than 135 degrees.
  2. In the case of any lot, no person shall erect or cause to be erected, operate or maintain a permanent sign that is greater than 75 cm in height at any point within a visibility triangle formed by measuring 2 m along the lot line and a driveway, at the intersection of the driveway and the lot line abutting the street.

Section 98

Despite Section 97, one column only supporting the upper portion of a sign structure is permitted within the triangle referred to in that Section if the cross-sectional dimension of the column is 45 cm or less between grade and 3 m above grade.

Section 99

Despite Section 97, the upper portion of a sign or a sign structure is permitted within the triangle referred to in that Section if the underside of the sign and the sign structure is at least 3 m above grade.

Section 100

  1. No person shall erect or cause to be erected or maintain any permanent sign or sign structure, or any part thereof, within 8 m of a traffic control signal unless otherwise permitted under this by-law.
  2. Subsection (1) does not apply to a wall sign or to a canopy sign that projects less than 380 mm from the surface to which it is attached.

Section 101

  1. Where a sign projects more than 5 cm from the surface to which it is attached, the owner of the permanent sign shall ensure that the underside of the sign is: 
    1. at least 2.5 m above the surface of a sidewalk, walkway or other route or area usually used by pedestrians; and
    2. at least 4.3 m above a street, private road, lane, parking lot, or any other area usually used by vehicles.
  2. The following signs are exempted from the height requirements in subsection (1):
    1. a non-illuminated sign on an overhead height bar or other overhead physical barrier indicating a height restriction for access to and from a parking lot, parking garage, drive-through facility or other area usually used by vehicles, provided the sole information on the sign is the height restriction or the words “drive thru”, “drive through” or “service au volant”;
    2. a sign projecting less than 15 cm over an area usually used by vehicles at a drive-through facility; and
    3. a digital menu board or an information wall sign attached to a wall. (2017-343)
    4. a sign installed at least as far above the parking lot or other area travelled or used by vehicles as is the overhead height bar or other overhead physical barrier. (2021-235)

Section 102

  1. The owner of a permanent sign shall ensure that every part of the sign structure is at least 0.5 m from:
    1. the travelled portion of a highway, private road, lane or driveway; and
    2. a parking lot or other area usually used by vehicles.
  2. A sign for a drive-through facility is exempted from the setback requirements in subsection (1), provided it is:
    1. a menu or a pre-menu sign or a non-illuminated sign solely containing height restriction information or the words “drive thru”, “drive through” or “service au volant”; and
    2. a sign projecting less than 15 cm over an area usually used by vehicles.

Sections 103 to 105 - General illumination restrictions

Section 103

  1. Except where otherwise permitted by this by-law, no person shall erect, cause to be erected, operate or maintain:
    1. an illuminated sign within 30 m of a residential dwelling in a residential zone, if it is visible from that residential use; or
    2. a message centre within 45 m of a residential dwelling in a residential zone.

Section 104

All external illumination, where permitted, must be downward facing to direct light away from adjacent properties and streets and the sky.

Section 105

  1. Except where otherwise permitted by this by-law, no permanent sign shall contain flashing, blinking or intermittent illumination, a strobe, or a rotating or changing light beam or beacon.
  2. No external light source that emits flashing, blinking or intermittent illumination, or a rotating or changing light beam, beacon or strobe, is permitted to draw attention to a permanent sign.

Sections 106 and 107 - Sign face area

Section 106

  1. Where the sign size requirements in this by-law refer to a maximum sign face area, that maximum includes all the sign faces of all the signs on the building or structure, or lot, as applicable.
  2. For the purposes of this by-law, the maximum sign face area is calculated by determining the total area contained within the rectilinear outline that uses the least number of horizontal and vertical lines to enclose the sign face and all other components of the sign that constitute the complete message.
  3. For a sign attached to a building or structure, the permitted sign face area calculation relates to the exterior wall area of the storey on which the sign is located, including any windows.
  4. Where a sign is attached to a building and straddles a storey, the permitted sign face area calculation relates to the exterior wall area of the building storey, including any windows, on which the majority of the area of the sign is located.

Section 107

  1. A double-faced sign or multi-faced sign may have up to twice the sign face area that would be permitted if it were only a single-faced sign.
  2. The sign face area permitted by subsection (1) shall be divided equally between or among all the sign faces referred to in subsection (1).

Section 108

Reserved for future use.

Section 109

Reserved for future use.

Part 8 - Ground sign regulations

Sections 110 to 112 - Rules applicable to all ground signs

Section 110

Every owner of a ground sign shall ensure that the sign is permitted by Sections 111 to 122, by Tables 1A and 1B (Size, Height, Illumination and Location Requirements for Identification Ground Signs) and by Tables 2A and 2B (Size, Height, Illumination and Location Requirements for Information Ground Signs).

Section 111

Every owner of a non-illuminated ground sign shall ensure that it is located at least 6 m from a residential use in a residential zone.

Section 112

  1. Only external illumination is permitted for a ground sign if it is located:
    1. between 30 m and 45 m from a residential use in a residential zone, if it is visible from that use;
    2. on a property that contains, or is within 30 m of,
      1. a building or structure designated under Part IV or V of the Ontario Heritage Act, or
      2. a building or structure shown on the City’s Heritage Register (2021-235).

Sections 113 to 117 - General rules applicable to all identification ground signs

Section 113

At least one identification ground sign on the premises must clearly display the civic number in accordance with the Addressing By-law and the common property name. The area of the civic number will not be calculated as part of the total sign face area provided the area of the municipal address complies with the Addressing By-law and does not exceed 1m².

Section 114

Where two or more identification ground signs are on the same premises and on the same street frontage, the signs must be located at least 30 m apart.

Section 115

An identification ground sign must be located at least 15 m away from a billboard.

Section 116

  1. One ground sign is permitted for a home-based business or a bed and breakfast in any zone provided:
    1. the building containing the use is set back a minimum 10 m from the front property line; (2021-235)
    2. it is an identification ground sign;
    3. it is the only sign on the premises;
    4. it is non-illuminated;
    5. it does not exceed an area of 0.5 m2 ; (2021-235)
    6. it does not exceed a height of 1.5 m; and
    7. it is set back at least 1 m from any lot line.
  2. Despite subsection (1), One ground sign is permitted for a home-based business or a bed and breakfast in an RU or AG zone provided: (2021-235)
    1. the building containing the use is set back a minimum 10 m from the front property line;
    2. it is an identification ground sign;
    3. it is the only sign on the premises;
    4. it is non-illuminated;
    5. it does not exceed an area of 2.5 m2;
    6. it does not exceed a height of 2 m; and
    7. it is set back at least 1 m from any lot line.

Section 117

Where a gas bar, automobile service and repair, or service station use is permitted, an illuminated automated fuel price sign with a maximum area of 1 m2 is permitted as part of the ground sign.

Sections 118 to 121 - Rules for message centres and digital menu boards on ground signs

Section 118

Unless otherwise permitted by this by-law, a message centre and a digital menu board can only display on-premise information.

Section 119

  1. The following operating standards apply to message centres and digital menu boards under this by-law:
    1. only static alphanumeric text and images are permitted, with no scrolling text or any flashing text, characters, images, video or audio;
    2. except where otherwise specified in this by-law, the minimum dwell time is 20 seconds for alphanumeric text, an image or an alphanumeric text and image, where permitted;
    3. there is a maximum transition time of one second between messages;
    4. any portion of the sign has a maximum luminance of 5,000 cd/m2 between sunrise and sunset, and 220 cd/m2 between sunset and sunrise, where sunrise and sunset times are determined according to the National Research Council of Canada Sunrise/Sunset Calculator;
    5. the controlled display areas are programmed by an automatic sensor so as to display brightness of no more than 3 LUX above ambient light conditions; and (f) time and temperature displays may be updated as required.

Section 120

  1. The following location standards apply to message centres permitted under this by-law:
    1. a message centre must only be on a property having a minimum frontage of 45 m on the frontage where the message centre is located;
    2. unless otherwise specified, there must be a minimum setback of 18 m from the message centre to the nearest intersection of two public street lines, which includes the natural extension of lot lines on a corner lot, having traffic signal heads;
    3. there must be a minimum setback of 60 m from another ground sign incorporating a message centre or from a digital billboard, where the signs are facing the same oncoming traffic; and
    4. unless otherwise specified, a message centre must not be located on a property with or within a 30 m radius setback from a building or structure designated under Part IV or V of the Ontario Heritage Act or a building shown on the City’s Heritage Register.

Section 121

Sections 103(b), 119 and 120 do not apply to a manual message centre.

Section 122 - Size, height, illumination and location requirements for identification ground signs

The following size, height, illumination and location requirements apply to identification ground signs (2017-343) (2021-235):

Residential zones - Table 1A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for identification ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Setbacks from property lines (m) - Front Setbacks from property lines (m) - Side Setbacks from property lines (m) - Rear Message Centre Additional Regulations/Endnotes
R1
R2
R3
Residential use not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted 2,8
Non-residential use 2 1.5 no 1 3 1.5 yes 2
R4
R5
Residential use not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted 1,2,8
Non-residential use 3 2 external 1 1.5 1.5 yes 1,2,8
RM Residential use not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted 1,8
Non-residential use 2 1.5 no 1 3 1.5 yes 1,8
RR Residential use not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted 8
Non-residential use 2 1.5 no 1 3 1.5 yes 8
V1 Residential use not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted 8
Non-residential use 2 1.5 no 1 3 1.5 yes 8
V2 Residential use not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted 8
Non-residential use 2 1.5 no 1 3 1.5 yes 8
V3 Residential use not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted 1,8
Non-residential use 3 2 external 1 1.5 1.5 yes 1,8
Institutional and leisure zones - Table 1A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for identification ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Setbacks from property lines (m) - Front Setbacks from property lines (m) - Side Setbacks from property lines (m) - Rear Message Centre Additional Regulations/Endnotes
R1 All 7 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 3
I1 All 5 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 10
I2 All 7 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 3
L1 All 5 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 3
L2 All 7 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 3
L3 All 3 2 external 1 1.5 1.5 yes 3
Open space and environmental protection zones - Table 1A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for identification ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Setbacks from property lines (m) - Front Setbacks from property lines (m) - Side Setbacks from property lines (m) - Rear Message Centre Additional Regulations/Endnotes
O1 All 5 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 8
EP All 2 1.5 no 1 3 1.5 no  
Mixed-use and commercial zones - Table 1A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for identification ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Setbacks from property lines (m) - Front Setbacks from property lines (m) - Side Setbacks from property lines (m) - Rear Message Centre Additional Regulations/Endnotes
LC All 7 4.5 yes 1 1.5 1.5 no 7, 11
TM All 7 4.5 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 6,7
MD All 7 4.5 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 4,6,9
AM All 14 8 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 4,5,6,9
TD All 14 8 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 4,5,6,9
MC All 14 8 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 4,5,6,9
GM All 14 8 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 4,5,6,9
VM All 10 6 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 4,5,6,9
RC All 14 8 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 4,5,6,9
Industrial zones - Table 1A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for identification ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Setbacks from property lines (m) - Front Setbacks from property lines (m) - Side Setbacks from property lines (m) - Rear Message Centre Additional Regulations/Endnotes
IP All 14 8 external 1 1.5 1.5 no 7
IG
IL
IH
All 14 8 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 6,7
RG
RH
All 14 8 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 4,6,9
Rural zones - Table 1A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for identification ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Setbacks from property lines (m) - Front Setbacks from property lines (m) - Side Setbacks from property lines (m) - Rear Message Centre Additional Regulations/Endnotes
RU
AG
ME
MR
Residential use not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted 8
Non-residential use 7 4.5 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes
Transportation zones - Table 1A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for identification ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Setbacks from property lines (m) - Front Setbacks from property lines (m) - Side Setbacks from property lines (m) - Rear Message Centre Additional Regulations/Endnotes
T1 All 14 8 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 4,6
T2 All 10 4.5 yes 1 1.5 1.5 yes 64,6
Other zones - Table 1A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for identification ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Setbacks from property lines (m) - Front Setbacks from property lines (m) - Side Setbacks from property lines (m) - Rear Message Centre Additional Regulations/Endnotes
DR Residential use not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted 8
Non-residential use 2 1.5 no 1 3 1.5 yes

Table 1B: Additional regulations/endnotes

    1. One ground sign is permitted for a planned unit development, an apartment dwelling, lowrise, an apartment dwelling, mid-high-rise, a townhouse, a stacked dwelling, a retirement home, a retirement home, converted, a rooming house, a rooming house, converted and a mobile home park, provided:
      1. it is an identification ground sign;
      2. the use has a minimum of ten dwelling or rooming units;
      3. it is non-illuminated or externally illuminated;
      4. it does not exceed an area of 3 m2 ; and
      5. it does not exceed a height of 2 m.
  1.  
    1. One ground sign is permitted for properties zoned with a Residential Neighbourhood Commercial suffix (“-c”), provided:
      1. it is an identification ground sign;
      2. the building containing the neighbourhood commercial use is set back a minimum of 18 m from the front property line;
      3. it is the only sign on the premises;
      4. it is non-illuminated;
      5. it does not exceed an area of 0.5 m2 ; and
      6. it does not exceed a height of 1.5 m.
  2.  
    1. A message centre is permitted for a school, place of worship, library, university, college, hospital or recreational and athletic facility use, provided:
      1. it is incorporated in a ground sign that also serves to identify the use of the site and its municipal address;
      2. it does not exceed 25% of the area of the ground sign, up to a maximum area of 1.75 m2 ;
      3. the sign is located along an arterial or major collector road, but excluding Scenic Entry Routes;
      4. it complies with the other location and operating standards of Sections 119 and 120.
  3.  
    1. A message centre is permitted, provided:
      1. it is incorporated in a ground sign that also serves to identify the use of the site and its municipal address;
      2. it does not exceed 40% of the area of the ground sign, up to a maximum area of 6 m2 ; and
      3. it complies with the other location and operating standards of Sections 119 and 120.
  4.  
    1. For a shopping centre:
      1. on a property larger than 6 ha in area, and
      2. with gross leasable space exceeding 25,000 m2 , and
    2. with continuous street frontage greater than 500 linear m, 
    3. an identification ground sign is permitted, provided:
      1. the primary sign, which must display the civic number and name of the shopping centre and be located on the main street frontage, can be 3 m2 for each ha, up to a maximum size of 25 m2 , with a maximum height of 10 m;
      2. the maximum size of a message centre on the primary sign is:
        1. 6 m2 if the property is located inside the greenbelt; and
        2. 7.5 m2 if the property is located outside the greenbelt, provided it is located more than 50 m away from a signalized intersection, pedestrian crossing and railway crossing;
      3. the maximum size in (a) can be split between two signs on the same street frontage; and
      4. additional signs, up to a maximum size of 14 m2 per street frontage, with a maximum height of 8 m, are permitted along additional street frontages, provided the street frontage exceeds 100 linear m.
  5. Where two or more buildings are on the same property and have direct access to an internal road within the property, an additional ground sign is permitted to identify a building or occupant of a building. The sign must be located at the main entrance to the building and cannot exceed an area of 2 m2 .
  6. Ground signs are not permitted for properties subject to the Mature Neighbourhoods Overlay.
  7.  
    1. A message centre is only permitted for a golf course, recreational and athletic facility, community centre, and sports arena, provided:
      1. it is located at least 60 m from an adjacent or abutting residential use in a residential zone;
      2. it does not exceed 25% of the area of the ground sign; and
      3. it complies with the other location and operating standards of Sections 119 and 120.
  8.  
    1. For a shopping centre that does not meet the requirements of Additional Regulation/Endnote 5 (a) through (c) regarding minimum property size, gross leasable space and continuous street frontage, an increase in the sign face area for one street frontage is permitted, provided:
      1. the shopping centre has a minimum leasable floor area of 5,000 m2 and a minimum of 10 commercial occupancies;
      2. the increase is no more than 6 m2 ;
      3. at least 2 m2 of the increased area is used to identify the shopping centre name; and
      4. at least 0.5 m2 of the increased area is used to display the civic address at 1.2 m above grade.
  9.  
    1. A message centre is permitted for a school, place of worship, recreational and athletic facility use, provided:
      1. it is incorporated in a ground sign that also serves to identify the use of the site and its municipal address;
      2. it does not exceed 25% of the area of the ground sign, up to a maximum area of 1.75 m2 ;
      3. the sign is located along an arterial or major collector road, but excluding Scenic Entry Routes;
      4. if directly across from a residential zone on which there is a residential use building, the minimum dwell time is 6 minutes; and
      5. it complies with the other location and operating standards of Sections 119 and 120.
    2. For the purposes of (1)(d), the message centre is deemed to be directly across from a residential zone if it is located across the street from any portion of the residentially-zoned property.
  10. Internal illumination is permitted provided: (2021-235)

    1. the site has frontage along an arterial or major collector road; and
    2. the sign is setback a minimum of 45m from a residential use in a residential zone.

Sections 123 to 125 - General rules for all information ground signs

Section 123

No more than two information ground signs are permitted at the entrance to or exit from any premises.

Section 124

  1. For a restaurant with a drive-through facility, a static or digital drive-through ground sign for pre-menu information and a static or digital drive-through ground sign for menu information are permitted, provided (2021-235):
    1. the static or digital pre-menu sign face area is not more than 1 m2;
    2. the static menu sign face area is not more than 4.6 m2
    3. the digital menu sign face area is not more than 2.2 m2
    4. the height of the static pre-menu sign or static menu sign does not exceed 3 m;
    5. the height of the digital pre-menu sign or digital menu sign does not exceed 2.5 m
    6. the pre-menu sign video screen, if it is included, is not more than 0.15 m2; and
    7. the pre-menu sign video screen does not produce a sound.
  2. A static drive-through menu sign may have an electronic screen displaying static alphanumeric characters and images providing information on the menu, customer order or other related activities that are associated with a restaurant with a drive-through facility, provided that such screen is no greater than 0.1 m2 in area and 1.5 m above grade in height.
  3. A drive-through pre-menu sign may have an electronic screen displaying video images providing information on the menu or other activities associated with the drive through facility, and may contain public service messages.
  4. A digital drive-through menu sign and digital pre-menu sign must comply with the operating standards of section 119. (2021-235)

Section 125

  1. A sign used to convey interpretative or historical information related to a conservation area, environmental area, museum, park, or public trail is permitted, provided:
    1. it is non-illuminated;
    2. it does not exceed an area of 2 m2 ;
    3. the height does not exceed 3 m; and (d) any acknowledgement recognizing sponsors does not exceed 5% of the area of the sign.

Section 126 - Size, height, illumination and location requirements for information ground signs

The following size, height, illumination and location requirements apply to information ground signs (2016-361) (2017-184) (2021-235):

Residential zones - Table 2A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for information ground signs
Zone Use Max Area
(m2)
Max Height (m) Illumination Front setbacks (m) Side setbacks (m) Rear setbacks (m) Additional regulations/Endnotes
R1
R2
Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use 0.2 1.5 no 1 1.5 1.5
R3 Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted 1,2
Non-residential use 0.2 1.5 no 1 1.5 1.5
R4
R5
Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted 1,2
Non-residential use 0.2 1.5 external 1 1.5 1.5
RM Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use 0.2 1.5 no 1 1.5 1.5  
RR Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted 1,2
Non-residential use 0.2 1.5 no 1 1.5 1.5
V1 Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use 0.2 1.5 no 1 1.5 1.5  
V2
V3
Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted 1,2
Non-residential use 0.2 1.5 external 1 1.5 1.5
Institutional and leisure zones - Table 2A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for information ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Front setbacks (m) Side setbacks (m)  Rear setbacks (m) Additional Regulations/Endnotes
R1 All 0.5 1.5 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3
I1 All 0.5 1.5 yes 1 1.5 1.5  
I2 All 1 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3
L1 All 0.5 1.5 yes 1 1.5 1.5  
L2 All 1 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3
L3 All 0.2 1.5 external 1 1.5 1.5  
Open space and environmental protection zones - Table 2A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for information ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Front setbacks (m) Side setbacks (m) Rear setbacks (m) Additional Regulations/Endnotes
O1 All 0.5 1.5 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3
EP All 0.2 1.5 no 1 3 1.5  
Mixed-use and commercial zones - Table 2A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for information ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Front setbacks (m) Side setbacks (m) Rear setbacks (m) Additional Regulations/Endnotes
LC All 0.5 1.5 yes 1 1.5 1.5 6
TM All 1 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3,4,5
AM All 1 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3,4
TD All 1 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3,4
MD All 1 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3,4
MC All 1 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3,4
GM All 1 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3,4
VM All 1 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3,4
RC All 1 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3,4
Industrial zones - Table 2A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for information ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Front setbacks (m) Side setbacks (m) Rear setbacks (m) Additional Regulations/Endnotes
IP All 1 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3
IG
IL
IH
All 1 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3
RG
RH
All 1 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3
Rural zones - Table 2A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for information ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Front setbacks (m) Side setbacks (m) Rear setbacks (m) Additional Regulations/Endnotes
RU
AG
ME
MR
Residential use not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted  
Non-residential use 0.5 1.5 yes 1 1.5 1.5  
Transportation zones - Table 2A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for information ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Front setbacks (m) Side setbacks (m) Rear setbacks (m) Additional Regulations/Endnotes
T1 All 1 3 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3
T2 All 0.5 1.5 yes 1 1.5 1.5 3
Other zones - Table 2A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for information ground signs
Zone Use Max Area (m2) Max Height (m) Illumination Front setbacks (m) Side setbacks (m) Rear setbacks (m) Additional regulations/endnotes
DR Residential use not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted not permitted  
Non-residential use 0.2 1.5 no 1 3 1.5  

Table 2B: Additional regulations/endnotes

    1. One rental information sign is permitted for a townhouse dwelling, stacked dwelling, apartment dwelling low-rise, apartment dwelling mid-high rise, a retirement home, or a planned unit development of these uses on each frontage of the lot, provided:
      1. the use comprises at least ten dwelling units or rooming units;
      2. the sign is non-illuminated;
      3. the height does not exceed 1.5 m; and
      4. the area does not exceed 1.5 m2 .
    2. A second rental information sign is permitted on the frontage of a lot that exceeds 100 linear m.
  1.  
    1. One sign that provides information limited to the sale of real estate is permitted for a townhouse dwelling, stacked dwelling, apartment dwelling low-rise, apartment dwelling mid-high rise, or a planned unit development of these uses on each frontage of the lot, provided:
      1. there is a Condominium or Cooperative ownership agreement in place for the property;
      2. the use comprises at least ten dwellings;
      3. the sign is non-illuminated;
      4. the height does not exceed 1.5 m;
      5. the area does not exceed 1.5 m2 ;
      6. the sign is located at least 6 m from an abutting residential use within a residential zone; and
      7. there is no rental information sign already on the property.
  2. Where two or more buildings are on the same property and have direct access to an internal road within the property, an additional ground sign in the form of a map showing the location of the individual buildings or occupants on the premises is permitted. The sign must be located at the main entrance to the property and cannot exceed an area of 3 m2.
  3.  
    1. Unless otherwise specified, a digital menu board is permitted for a full-service restaurant, provided (2017-184):
      1. the area of the sign does not exceed 0.2 m2 (excluding the frame);
      2. the sign displays only the menu and menu-related information;
      3. the sign is set back a minimum of 18 m from the nearest signalized intersection of two public street lines, including the natural extension of lot lines on a corner lot; and 
      4. the sign is set back a minimum of 45 m from a residential use in a residential zone or a property zoned environmental protection; and
      5. the menu board complies with the operating standards of section 119.
    2. A digital menu board is not permitted for a property abutting Preston Street between Somerset Street and Albert Street. (2017-184)
  4.  
    1. On a property zoned TM or TM12 abutting Preston Street between Somerset Street and Albert Street, an information ground sign is permitted, provided:
      1. the area does not exceed 0.5 m²;
      2. the height does not exceed 1.5 m;
      3. it is not illuminated; and
      4. it is located on the street frontage facing Preston Street. (2017-184)

Section 127 - Electronic fuel pump signs

  1. An electronic screen is permitted on a fuel pump, provided:
    1. there is only one screen on each fuel pump;
    2. the maximum area of the screen does not exceed 0.2 m2 ;
    3. the height does not exceed 2.5 m;
    4. the screen displays only electronic static copy or electronic moving copy, with no audio; and
    5. the screen is perpendicular to the street, except where it is not visible from the street or if it is set back a minimum of 12 m from the street.

Section 128

Reserved for future use.  

Section 129

Reserved for future use.  

Part 9 - Wall, logo and mural sign regulation

Section 130 - Wall, logo and mural sign regulation

Every owner of a wall and logo sign shall ensure that the sign is permitted by Sections 131 to 139 and by Tables 3A and 3B (Size, Illumination and Location Requirements for Identification and Information Wall and Logo Signs).

Sections 131 to 134 - Rules applicable to all wall signs

Section 131

  1. A wall sign:
    1. is permitted on any wall on a building;
    2. must only be on the first or second storey of a building;
    3. must not extend beyond the corner of the wall on which it is mounted;
    4. unless otherwise specified in this by-law, must not project:
      1. more than 0.5 m from the wall to which it is attached;
      2. above the roofline of the building it is on;
      3. above the deemed main building roof line for a distance greater than the measured storey height below the sign, where a building has a parapet wall or other similar extended architectural extension feature above the deemed main building roof line; and
      4. more than 1 m above the top of the roofline of the canopy itself, where the sign is on a building canopy or a gas pump island canopy;
    5. must not be painted on a brick, wood or stone wall of a building or structure that is designated under Part IV or Part V of the Ontario Heritage Act or listed as a building of heritage interest on the City’s Heritage Register, except where the records of the City’s Heritage Planning Branch indicate that the wall of the building or structure had been painted prior to the designation or listing of the building or structure, or the sign is painted on a surface such as plywood or canvas that is attached to the wall of the building or structure and fastened into the mortar joints and not through the brick masonry itself; and
    6. if located on or within 30 m of a building or structure that is designated under Part IV or Part V of the Ontario Heritage Act or listed as a building of heritage interest on the City’s Heritage Register, and where illumination is permitted, must only be externally illuminated.
  2. Wall signs on separate elevations of the building that meet at the corner of the building are considered two signs for the purposes of calculating the permitted number of signs and permitted sign area.

Section 132

A sign on a building canopy is considered a wall sign.

Section 133

The area of a banner sign, illuminated window sign and projected image sign is included in the calculation of the maximum sign face area permitted per wall façade.

Section 134

  1. A home-based business and a bed and breakfast is permitted a wall sign, provided:
    1. it is a non-illuminated identification sign;
    2. it is the only sign on the premises; and
    3. it does not exceed an area of 0.2 m2 .
  2. Despite subsection (1), a home-based business located within a secondary dwelling unit, rooming unit or dwelling unit within an apartment dwelling, low rise or an apartment dwelling, mid-high rise, is not permitted a wall sign.

Sections 135 to 138 - Rules for message centres and digital menu boards on wall signs

Section 135

Unless otherwise permitted by this by-law, a message centre and a digital menu board can only display on-premise information.

Section 136

  1. The following operating standards apply to message centres and digital menu boards, where permitted:
    1. only static alphanumeric text and images are permitted, with no scrolling text or any flashing text, characters, images, video or audio;
    2. the minimum dwell time is 20 seconds for alphanumeric text, an image or an alphanumeric text and image, where permitted;
    3. there is a maximum transition time of one second between messages, with no transition effects between images;
    4. any part of it has a maximum luminance of 5,000 cd/m2 between sunrise and sunset, and 220 cd/m2 between sunset and sunrise, where sunrise and sunset times are determined according to the National Research Council of Canada Sunrise/Sunset Calculator;
    5. the controlled display areas are programmed by an automatic sensor so as to display brightness of no more than 3 LUX above ambient light conditions; and
    6. time and temperature displays, where applicable, may be updated as required.

Section 137

  1. Except where otherwise permitted by this by-law, the following location standards apply to message centres:
    1. a message centre can only be on lands having a minimum frontage of 45 m on the frontage where the message centre is located;
    2. there must be a minimum setback of 18 m from the message centre to the nearest intersection of two public street lines, which includes the natural extension of lot lines on a corner lot, having traffic signal heads;
    3. there must be a minimum setback of 60 m from a ground sign incorporating a message centre or from a digital billboard, where the signs are facing the same oncoming traffic; and
    4. a message centre shall not be located on a lot with or within a 30 m radius setback from a building or structure designated under Part IV or V of the Ontario Heritage Act or a building shown on the City’s Heritage Register.

Section 138

Sections 136 and 137 do not apply to a manual message centre.

Section 139 - Size, illumination and location requirements for wall signs and logo signs

The following size, height, illumination and location requirements apply to wall signs and logo signs (2017-184) (2017-343) (2021-235):

Residential zones - Table 3A: Size, illumination and location requirements for wall signs and logo signs
Zone Use Identification wall sign - Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Identification wall sign - Illumination Logo sign - Max Area (% of top storey) Logo sign - Illumination Information wall sign Additional regulations/endnotes
R1 Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted 6
Non-residential use 0.5 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
R2 Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted 6
Non-residential use 0.5 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
R3 Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted 6
Non-residential use 10% no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
R4 Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted 1,2,6
Non-residential use 10% external 5% no Not permitted
R5 Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted 1,2,6
Non-residential use 10% external 5% no Not permitted
RM Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use 10% no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
RR Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use 0.5 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
V1 Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use 0.5 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
V2 Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use 10% external Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
V3 Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted 1,2
Non-residential use 10% external 5% no Not permitted
Institutional and leisure zones - Table 3A: Size, illumination and location requirements for wall signs and logo signs
Zone Use Identification wall sign - Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Identification wall sign - Illumination Logo sign - Max Area (% of top storey) Logo sign - Illumination Information wall sign Additional Regulations/Endnotes
R1 All 20% yes 10% no yes 1,3
I1 All 15% yes 5% no yes 3
I2 All 20% yes 10% no yes 1,3
L1 All 15% yes 5% no yes 3
L2 All 20% yes 10% no yes 1,3
L3 All 10% external 5% no Not permitted 1
Open space and environmental protection zones - Table 3A: Size, illumination and location requirements for wall signs and logo signs
Zone Use Identification wall sign - Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Identification wall sign - Illumination Logo sign - Max Area (% of top storey) Logo sign - Illumination Information wall sign Additional Regulations/Endnotes
O1 All 10% yes 5% no yes 1
EP All 0.5 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Mixed-use and commercial zones - Table 3A: Size, illumination and location requirements for wall signs and logo signs
Zone Use Identification wall sign - Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Identification wall sign - Illumination Logo sign - Max Area (% of top storey) Logo sign - Illumination Information wall sign Additional Regulations/Endnotes
LC All 20% yes 5% no yes 1,3,5,12
TM All 20% yes 10% no yes 1,3,4,5,7,8,9,10
AM All 25% yes 15% yes yes 1,3,4,5,7,8
TD All 25% yes 15% yes yes 1,3,4,5,7,8
MD All 25% yes 15% yes yes 1,3,4,5,7,8
MC All 25% yes 15% yes yes 1,3,4,5,7,8
GM All 25% yes 15% yes yes 1,3,4,5,7,8
VM All 20% yes 10% no yes 1,3,4,5,7,8
RC All 25% yes 15% yes yes 1,3,4,5,7,8
Industrial zones - Table 3A: Size, illumination and location requirements for wall signs and logo signs
Zone Use Identification wall sign - Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Identification wall sign - Illumination Logo sign - Max Area (% of top storey) Logo sign - Illumination Information wall sign Additional Regulations/Endnotes
IP All 25% yes 15% yes yes 1,3,5,11
IG All 25% yes 15% yes yes 1,3,5
IL All 25% yes 15% yes yes 1,3,5
IH All 25% yes 15% yes yes 1,3,5
RG All 25% yes 15% yes yes 1,3,5
RH All 25% yes 15% yes yes 1,3,5
Rural zones - Table 3A: Size, illumination and location requirements for wall signs and logo signs
Zone Use Identification wall sign - Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Identification wall sign - Illumination Logo sign - Max Area (% of top storey) Logo sign - Illumination Information wall sign Additional Regulations/Endnotes
RU
MG
ME
MR
Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted 3
Non-residential use 15% no Not permitted Not permitted yes
Transportation zones - Table 3A: Size, illumination and location requirements for wall signs and logo signs
Zone Use Identification wall sign - Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Identification wall sign - Illumination Logo sign - Max Area (% of top storey) Logo sign - Illumination Information wall sign Additional regulations/endnotes
T1 All 25% yes 15% yes yes 1,3
T2 All 25% yes 15% no yes 1,3

DR

Other zones - Table 3A: Size, illumination and location requirements for wall signs and logo signs
Zone Use Identification wall sign - Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Identification wall sign - Illumination Logo sign - Max Area (% of top storey) Logo sign - Illumination Information wall sign Additional regulations/endnotes
Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted    
Non-residential use 0.5 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted    

Table 3B: Additional regulations/endnotes

  1.  
    1. A logo sign is permitted, provided:
      1. it is an identification sign;
      2. it does not contain any advertising;
      3. it is located on the top storey of the building;
      4. there is no more than one logo sign on the same wall of a building;
      5. there are no more than four logo signs on any one building; and
      6. if located on a building or structure that is designated under Part IV or Part V of the Ontario Heritage Act or listed as a building of heritage interest on the City’s Heritage Register, and where illumination is permitted, must only be externally illuminated.
  2.  
    1. An identification wall sign is permitted for an apartment dwelling mid-high rise or apartment dwelling low-rise, provided:
      1. it is non-illuminated;
      2. it contains only the name of the building on which it is located;
      3. it contains no advertising;
      4. it is at or over the principal entrance to the building; and
      5. the sign face area is no more than 10% of the area of the wall of the storey on which it is located.
  3.  
    1. An information wall sign is permitted provided that:
      1. it is no more than 1 square metres in area;
      2. it is limited to a non-residential use building;
      3. the area does not exceed 2 square metres per wall face; and
      4. despite subsection 131 (1)(d), it does not project more than 10 centimetres over the surface of a sidewalk, walkway or other route or area usually used by pedestrians, or over a street, private road, lane, parking lot, or any other area usually used by vehicles. (2017-343)
  4.  
    1. A message centre is only permitted for a theatre or cinema, provided:
      1. it does not exceed 75% of the sign face area of the wall sign on which it is located;
      2. the wall sign on which it is located does not exceed 40% of the wall area of the storey where it is attached;
      3. it is not within 45 m of a residential use in a residential zone, where it is visible from the residential use; and
      4. it complies with the operating standards in Section 136.
  5.  
    1. An illuminated window sign is permitted, provided:
      1. the area of the window sign is included in the calculation of the maximum permitted area for wall signs;
      2. it displays only static messages that do not change with the exception of a sign that displays either “open/closed” or “vacancy/no vacancy”, which may alternate occasionally, subject to sections 83 and 105; (2018-42)
      3. it is located only on the first or second storey of the building; and
      4. it is not located on a building or structure that is designated under Part IV or Part V of the Ontario Heritage Act or listed as a building of heritage interest on the City’s Heritage Register.
  6.  
    1. Properties zoned with a Residential Neighbourhood Commercial (“-c”) suffix are permitted one wall sign provided:
      1. it is an identification sign;
      2. it is non-illuminated;
      3. it is the only sign on the premises; and
      4. it does not exceed an area of 0.5 m2 .
  7.  
    1. A digital menu board is permitted for a full-service restaurant, provided:
      1. the area of the sign does not exceed 0.2 m2 (excluding the frame);
      2. the sign is located only on the ground floor;
      3. despite subsection 131 (1)(d), it does not project more than 10 cm over the surface of a sidewalk, walkway or other route or area usually used by pedestrians, or over a street, private road, lane, parking lot, or any other area usually used by vehicles;
      4. the sign is set back a minimum of 18 m from the nearest signalized intersection of two public street lines, including the natural extension of lot lines on a corner lot; and
      5. the sign is set back a minimum of 45 m from a residential use in a residential zone or a property zoned environmental protection; and
      6. the sign complies with the operating standards in Section 136.
  8.  
    1. Unless otherwise specified, a projected image sign is permitted, provided (2017-184):
      1. the projected image is generated by a permanently-placed projector mounted on the ground, or to a building or structure, but not by a laser;
      2. the image remains static;
      3. the sign does not incorporate audio, video, strobes, animation or other special effects;
      4. the projected image is not visible from a residential use in a residential zone or from an environmental protection zone;
      5. the permit application is accompanied by a written statement confirming the sign has the permission of the owner of the property onto which it is projected;
      6. the source of the projected image sign is identified on the permit;
      7. the area of the sign, combined with other permitted wall and logo signage, does not exceed the allowable wall signage permitted for the building storey on which the image is projected; and
      8. there is a maximum lighting level of 5,000 cd/m2 between sunrise and sunset and 220 cd/m2 between sunset and sunrise, where sunset and sunrise times are determined according to the National Research Council of Canada Sunrise/Sunset Calculator.
    2. A projected image sign is deemed to be located on the façade of a building onto which it is projected, regardless of its source.
  9. Despite Section 103 (a), externally-illuminated signs are excluded from the 30 m setback from a residential use in a residential zone.
  10.  
    1. On a property zoned TM or TM12 abutting Preston Street between Somerset Street and Albert Street,
      1. a wall sign, if illuminated:
        1. must be externally illuminated; and
        2. can only be located on the building façade facing Preston Street;
      2. a projected image sign is not permitted;
      3. a message centre for a theatre or cinema is not permitted;
      4. a digital menu board is not permitted;
      5. an illuminated window sign:
        1. is not permitted for a residential-use building; and
        2. must be on the façade of the building facing Preston Street;
      6. a non-illuminated logo sign is permitted, provided:
        1. the area does not exceed 5% of the wall face of the storey on which it is located; and
        2. it is located on the building façade facing Preston Street. (2017- 184)
  11. Illumination of a logo sign is permitted provided it is located at least 60 metres from a residential zone. (2017-343)
  12. Internal illumination is permitted provided: (2021-235)
    1. the site has frontage along an arterial or major collector road; and
    2. the sign is setback a minimum of 45m from a residential use in a residential zone.

Sections 140 to 143 - Mural signs

Section 140

  1. A mural sign is permitted on a building or a structure, such as a retaining wall, fence or utility structure, in all zones.
  2. Despite subsection (1) a mural sign in a residential, open space or environmental protection zone is restricted to a school, place of worship, university, college, hospital, library, day care, recreational and athletic facility, sports arena, community centre or utility installation.

Section 141

  1. Despite Section 140, the Chief Building Official may authorize a mural sign on a residential-use building or structure in a residential zone provided the mural:
    1. complies with Section 142 and 143;
    2. is on a property that directly abuts or is adjacent to a property that is zoned:
      1. commercial, industrial or institutional; or
      2. residential, if the mural meets the criteria of the City’s Paint It Up! Program;
    3. is located on a wall or structure that had reported incidents of graffiti; and
    4. has the concurrence of both the Councillor of the ward in which the mural sign is to be located and the owner of the property on which the mural sign is to be located.

Section 142

  1. No person shall use a mural sign for any form of commercial advertising or public information or solicitation of any kind.
  2. No person shall erect or cause to be erected or maintain a mural sign that exceeds a maximum sign face area equal to 100% of the exterior wall area of the first three storeys on which the mural sign is located.
  3. No person shall paint or otherwise apply a mural sign on the exterior wall containing the main entrance to a building.
  4. Despite subsection (1), up to 10% of the sign face of a mural sign may be used as an acknowledgement recognizing the sponsor of the mural sign, providing the owner of the mural sign ensures:
    1. the acknowledgement does not exceed a maximum area of 1 m2 ;
    2. the acknowledgement is located at a bottom corner of the mural sign; and
    3. the acknowledgement shall be located at the lowest point of the mural sign face, if the mural is not rectangular in shape.

Section 143

  1. No person shall paint or apply a mural directly to a brick, wood or stone wall of a building or structure that is designated under Part IV or Part V of the Ontario Heritage Act or listed on the City’s Heritage Register.
  2. Despite subsection (1), a mural may be permitted:
    1. if the records of the City’s Heritage Planning Branch indicate that the wall the building or structure has been painted prior to the designation or listing of the building or structure; or
    2. the mural is painted on or applied to a surface such as plywood or canvas that is attached to the wall of the building or structure and, where applicable, is fastened into the mortar joints and not through the brick or masonry itself.

Section 144

Reserved for future use. 

Part 10 - Projecting and canopy sign regulations

Section 145 - Projecting and canopy sign regulations

Every owner of a canopy or projecting sign shall ensure that the sign is permitted by Sections 146 to 152 and by Tables 4A and 4B (Size, Illumination and Location Requirements for Projecting Signs and Canopy Signs).

Sections 146 to 158 - Rules for all projecting and canopy signs

Section 146

Projecting and canopy signs are only permitted on the first or second storey of a building.

Section 147

  1. Where a projecting or canopy sign projects more than 5 cm from the surface to which it is attached, the underside of the sign structure must be,
    1. at least 2.5 m above the surface of a sidewalk, walkway or other route or area usually used by pedestrians; or
    2. at least 4.3 m above a street, private road, lane, parking lot, or any other area usually travelled or used by vehicles.

Section 148

A projecting or canopy sign can only be externally illuminated on a building or structure designated under Parts IV or V of the Ontario Heritage Act or on the City’s Heritage Register.

Section 149 - Rules for all projecting signs

  1. A projecting sign cannot project:
    1. above the roofline of the building or structure it is on; or
    2. more than 1 m beyond the face of the wall of the building or structure to which it is attached.

Sections 150 and 151 - Rules for all canopy signs

Section 150

  1. A canopy sign cannot project:
    1. above the roofline of the building or structure it is on; and
    2. more than 1 m over a highway.

Section 151

Canopy signs on separate elevations of the building that meet at the corner of a building are considered two separate signs for the purposes of calculating the permitted number of signs and permitted sign area.

Section 152 - Size, illumination and location requirements for projecting and canopy signs

The following size, height, illumination and location requirements apply to projecting signs and canopy signs (2017-184) (2017-343) (2021-235):

Residential zones - Table 4A: Size, illumination and location requirements for projecting and canopy signs
Zone Use Projecting sign Max Area (m2) Projecting sign illumination Canopy sign Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Canopy sign illumination Additional regulations/endnotes
R1
R2
Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use Not permitted Not permitted 1 no 1
R3
R4
R5
Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use Not permitted Not permitted 10% external 1
RM Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use Not permitted Not permitted 10% no 1
RR Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use Not permitted Not permitted 1 no 1
V1 Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use Not permitted Not permitted 1 no 1
V2
V3
Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use Not permitted Not permitted 10% external 1
Institutional and leisure zones - Table 4A: Size, illumination and location requirements for projecting and canopy signs
Zone Use Projecting sign Max Area (m2) Projecting sign illumination Canopy sign Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Canopy sign illumination Additional regulations/endnotes
R1 All 1 yes 20% yes  
I1 All 1 yes 15% yes 1
I2 All 1 yes 20% yes  
L1 All 1 yes 15% yes 1
L2 All 1 yes 20% yes  
L3 All Not permitted Not permitted 10% no 1
Open space and environmental protection zones - Table 4A: Size, illumination and location requirements for projecting and canopy signs
Zone Use Projecting sign Max Area (m2) Projecting sign illumination Canopy sign Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Canopy sign illumination Additional regulations/endnotes
O1 All 1 external 20% yes  
EP All Not permitted Not permitted 1 no 1
Commercial and mixed-use zones - Table 4A: Size, illumination and location requirements for projecting and canopy signs
Zone Use Projecting sign Max Area (m2) Projecting sign illumination Canopy sign Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Canopy sign illumination Additional regulations/endnotes
LC All 1 yes 20% external 3
TM All 1 yes 20% yes 2
AM
TD
MD
MC
GM
All 2 yes 25% yes  
VM All 1 yes 20% yes  
RC All 2 yes 25% yes  
Industrial zones - Table 4A: Size, illumination and location requirements for projecting and canopy signs
Zone Use Projecting sign Max Area (m2) Projecting sign illumination Canopy sign Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Canopy sign illumination Additional regulations/endnotes
IP All 2 yes 25% yes  
IG
IL
IH
All 2 yes 25% yes  
RG
RH
All 2 yes 25% yes  
Rural zones - Table 4A: Size, illumination and location requirements for projecting and canopy signs
Zone Use Projecting sign Max Area (m2) Projecting sign illumination Canopy sign Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Canopy sign illumination Additional regulations/endnotes
RU
AG
ME
MR
Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use 1 external 15% yes  
Transportation zones - Table 4A: Size, illumination and location requirements for projecting and canopy signs
Zone Use Projecting sign Max Area (m2) Projecting sign illumination Canopy sign Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Canopy sign illumination Additional regulations/endnotes
T1 All 2 yes 25% yes  
T2 All 1 yes 20% yes  
Other zones - Table 4A: Size, illumination and location requirements for projecting and canopy signs
Zone Use Projecting sign Max Area (m2) Projecting sign illumination Canopy sign Max Area (m2 or % of wall) Canopy sign illumination Additional regulations/endnotes
DR Residential use Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
Non-residential use Not permitted Not permitted 1 no 1

Table 4B: Additional regulations/endnotes

  1. A canopy sign is limited to an identification sign.
  2. On a property zoned TM or TM12 abutting Preston Street between Somerset Street and Albert Street, a canopy or projecting sign is permitted, provided that:
    1. if illuminated, it must be externally illuminated;
    2. it is located on the building façade facing Preston Street, and
    3. if a projecting sign, the area cannot exceed 0.7 m². (2017-184)
  3. Internal illumination is permitted provided: (2021-235)
    1. the site has frontage along an arterial or major collector road; and
    2. the sign is setback a minimum of 45m from a residential use in a residential zone.

Section 153

Reserved for future use.

Section 154

Reserved for future use.

Part 11 - Billboard regulations

Section 155 - Billboard regulations

Every owner of a static billboard or a digital billboard shall ensure that the sign is permitted by Sections 156 to 167, by Table 5 (Size and Illumination Requirements for Billboards), by Table 6 (Location Requirements for Billboards), and by Table 7 (Prohibited Areas for Digital Billboards).

Sections 156 to 158 - Permits

Section 156

A permit for a billboard is valid for a period of up to five years from the date it is issued.

Section 157

A billboard, including the structure and electrical supply, must be removed from the premises on which it is located within 30 days of the expiry of the permit or the refusal of a minor variance.

Section 158

A permit which has expired, or is about to expire, may, subject to the provisions of this by-law in effect at the time, be renewed for a period of up to five years upon submission of a new static billboard or digital billboard permit application.

Sections 159 to 161 - Size, type and illumination requirements

Section 159

A static billboard must be either a wall sign or a ground sign.

Section 160

A digital billboard must be a ground sign.

Section 161

  1. The following size and illumination requirements apply to all billboards (2021-235):
    Table 5: Size and illumination requirements for billboards
      Minimum Maximum
    Area 9 m2 20 m2
    Height Not permitted 8 m
    Clearance between underside of structure and grade 2.5 m 4.5 m
    Illumination yes
    If externally-illuminated, downward facing
  2. For a static billboard, where the message component extends beyond the ordinary rectangular shape of the sign face, the sign face area can be increased by up to 5%.
  3. Grade, with respect to a billboard, means the average of:
    1. the mean elevation of the natural or finished level of the ground at the base of a sign; and
    2. the crown of the street at the nearest point to the sign.

Section 162 and 163 - Location restrictions

Section 162

  1. A billboard is not permitted within 500 m of the following:
    1. Airport Parkway;
    2. Aviation Parkway;
    3. Colonel By Drive;
    4. Queen Elizabeth Driveway;
    5. Sir George-Étienne Cartier Parkway;
    6. Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway;
    7. Stittsville Main Street, between Fernbank Road and Hazeldean Road;
    8. Vanier Parkway; and
      1. a rural village designated in the Official Plan.

Section 163

A billboard is not permitted within 15 m of any identification ground sign.

Section 164 - Location requirements for static billboards

A static billboard is permitted in the zones shown in Table 6A, subject to the specific requirements in Table 6A for the applicable zones. (2017-343)

Table 6A: Location requirements for static billboards
Requirements Zone permitted
O1P AM, TD, MD, MC, GM, IG, IL, IH, T1 RC, RG, RH
Separation distance from another billboard
  1. 150 m from the nearest part of any other billboard
  2. 1,000 m from a billboard in an RC, RG, RH, VM, AG, ME, MR or RU zone if it is visible from that billboard
  1. 150 m from the nearest part of any other billboard
  2. 1,000 m from a billboard in an RC, RG, RH, VM, AG, ME, MR or RU zone if it is visible from that billboard
1,000 m from the nearest part of any other billboard
Setback from other zones 60 m from adjacent or abutting residential or environmental zone 30 m from adjacent or abutting residential or institutional zone 30 m from adjacent or abutting residential or institutional zone
not located within 30 m of property containing a building or structure designated under Part IV or V of the Ontario Heritage Act; or shown on the City’s Heritage Reference List not located within 30 m of property containing a building or structure designated under Part IV or V of the Ontario Heritage Act; or shown on the City’s Heritage Reference List not located within 30 m of property containing a building or structure designated under Part IV or V of the Ontario Heritage Act; or shown on the City’s Heritage Register
not located within 300 m of a lot having on it a residential use in a residential zone, where there is no visible obstruction or barrier provided by an existing building or structure that would mitigate the impact of the billboard and its illumination not located within 300 m of a lot having on it a residential use in a residential zone, where there is no visible obstruction or barrier provided by an existing building or structure that would mitigate the impact of the billboard and its illumination not located within 300 m of a lot having on it a residential use in a residential zone, where there is no visible obstruction or barrier provided by an existing building or structure that would mitigate the impact of the billboard and its illumination
Setback from a lot line abutting a street
  1. 2 m, or
  2. where the billboard is within 30 m of a building on an abutting lot that fronts onto the same street as the billboard and is set back more than 2 m from the front lot line, the billboard must be set back the same distance as the building from the lot line.
  1. 2 m, or
  2. where the billboard is within 30 m of a building on an abutting lot that fronts onto the same street as the billboard and is set back more than 2 m from the front lot line, the billboard must be set back the same distance as the building from the lot line.
  1. 12 m, or
  2. where the billboard is within 30 m of a building on an abutting lot that fronts onto the same street as the billboard and is set back more than 12 m from the front lot line, the billboard must be set back the same distance as the building from the lot line.
Setback from an interior side or rear lot line 1.5 m 1.5 m 1.5 m
Setback from a driveway, lane or aisle 1.5 m 1.5 m 1.5 m
Other
  1. must abut a MD, MC, AM, GM, T1, TD, IG, IL, IH, RC, RG or RH zone
  2. the Hydro corridor where it is located must be at least 30 m wide
  the separation distance between any building or structure and the billboard is equal to the height of the billboard

Sections 165 and 166 - Location requirements for digital billboards

Section 165

A digital billboard is permitted in the zones shown in Table 6B, subject to the specific requirements in Table 6B for the applicable zones. (2017-343)

Table 6B : Location requirements for digital billboards
Requirements Zone permitted
AM, TD, MD, MC, GM, IG, IL, IH, T1 RC, RG, RH
Separation distance from another billboard
  1. 150 m from the nearest part of any other static billboard
  2. 300 m from another digital billboard
1,000 m from the nearest part of any other billboard
Setback from other zones
  1. not within a lightshed setback that extends 300 m at a 140 degree angle from each vertical edge (perpendicular to the ground) of the screen, and a 45 m radius setback from:
    1. Lots zoned residential or institutional;
    2. A building or structure designated under Part IV or V of the Ontario Heritage Act or a building shown on the City’s Heritage Reference List;
    3. Federally-designated heritage buildings and National Historic Sites, including the Parliamentary Precinct, Confederation Boulevard and the Rideau Canal system;
  2. 300 m radius setback from open space and environmental protection zones (O1, EP)
  1. not within a lightshed setback that extends 300 m at a 140 degree angle from each vertical edge (perpendicular to the ground) of the screen, and a 45 m radius setback from:
    1. Lots zoned residential or institutional;
    2. A building or structure designated under Part IV or V of the Ontario Heritage Act or a building shown on the City’s Heritage Register;
    3. Federally-designated heritage buildings and National Historic Sites, including the Parliamentary Precinct, Confederation Boulevard and the Rideau Canal system;
  2. 300 m radius setback from open space and environmental protection zones (O1, EP)
Setback from a lot line abutting a street
  1. 2 m, or
  2. where the billboard is within 30 m of a building on an abutting lot that fronts onto the same street as the billboard and is set back more than 2 m from the front lot line, the billboard must be set back the same distance as the building from the lot line.
  1. 12 m, or
  2. where the billboard is within 30 m of a building on an abutting lot that fronts onto the same street as the billboard and is set back more than 12 m from the front lot line, the billboard must be set back the same distance as the building from the lot line.
Setback from an interior side or rear lot line 1.5 m 1.5 m
Setback from a driveway, lane or aisle 1.5 m 1.5 m
Setback from a ground sign incorporating a message centre 60 m from a ground sign incorporating an electronic message centre where the signs are facing the same oncoming traffic 60 m from a ground sign incorporating an electronic message centre where the signs are facing the same oncoming traffic
Other  
  1. The property on which the digital billboard is located must abut at least one other RC, RG, or RH zone
  2. The collective frontage of an individual or abutting RC, RG or RH zones must be a minimum of 500 m on the side of the street where the digital billboard is located

Section 166

  1. A digital billboard must not be situated within 100 m of:
    1. the nearest curb of a highway ramp; and
    2. the nearest part of the internal circulatory roadway of a roundabout.
  2. A digital billboard must not be situated in the prohibited area at signalized intersections, pedestrian crossings and railway crossings as shown in Tables 7A and 7B.
    Table 7A: Non-rural road network : Prohibited Area for Digital Billboards
    Speed limit (km/hour) Distance before Stop Line (m) Distance after Intersection/ Crossing (m) Lateral Offset Area from Property Line on each Side of Street (m)
    50 or less 65 90 16
    60 85 110 20
    70 110 125 23
    80 or more 140 130 26
    Table 7B: Rural road network : Prohibited Area for Digital Billboards
    Speed limit (km/hour) Distance before Stop Line (m) Distance after Intersection/ Crossing (m) Lateral offset area from Property Line on each Side of Street (m)
    50 or less 65 55 13
    60 85 65 15
    70 110 65 17
    80 140 65 20
    90 or more 170 80 24

Section 167 - Operation standards for digital billboards

  1. A digital billboard is not permitted to:
    1. display or use animation, video, audio, movement, flashing effects, odours, gases, pyrotechnics or interactive devices;
    2. have a transition time between images that is more than one second or that has any transition effects between images;
    3. have a minimum dwell time of less than 10 seconds for any image; and
    4. display sequential images or messages that form one continual advertisement, whether on the same digital billboard, or on more than one digital billboards in a row;
    5. have any part of it exceed a luminance of 5,000 cd/m2 between sunrise and sunset, and 220 cd/m2 between sunset and sunrise, with sunrise and sunset times being determined according to the National Research Council of Canada Sunrise/Sunset Calculator; and
    6. fail to be equipped with an ambient light sensor that automatically adjusts the brightness levels to no more than 3 LUX above ambient light conditions.

Section 168

Reserved for future use.

Section 169 

Reserved for future use.

Part 12 - Development sign and directional development sign regulations

Section 170 - Development sign and directional development sign regulations

Every owner of a development sign or directional development sign shall ensure the sign is permitted by Sections 171 to 174 and by Tables 8A and 8B (Size, Height, Illumination and Location Requirements for Development Signs and Directional Development Signs).

Section 171 - Rules for development signs

  1. A development sign:
    1. can be a wall or ground sign;
    2. if illuminated, cannot be within 30 m of a residential use in a residential zone, except if located at a sales centre;
    3. if a ground sign, must not be within 30 m of another development ground sign on the same street frontage;
    4. if a wall sign, must be the only development sign on the building or structure; and
    5. must be removed from the premises no later than 60 days after the substantial completion of the construction of the development.

Section 172 - Rules for directional development signs 

  1. A directional development sign:
    1. must only display the development name, the developer or builder name, the developer or builder logo, and the distance to the development;
    2. if a ground sign,
      1. is permitted on vacant land, except in residential zones and DR, O1 and L3 zones;
      2. must be located within a 12 km radius from the development to which it applies;
      3. is not permitted within 500 m of a village; (iv) is not permitted within 100 m of a road intersection;
      4. is not permitted within 30 m of any other ground sign; (vi) be setback a minimum of 1 m from a side or rear property line; and (
      5. if outside the greenbelt, must comply with the provisions of Additional Regulation/Endnote 1 to Table 8;
    3. if a wall sign, is permitted in all zones except residential zones and DR, O1 and L3 zones;
      1. on a building zoned for commercial or industrial use;
      2. on a wall other than the front wall; and
      3. on the first storey;
    4. must be removed no later than 60 days after the substantial completion of the construction of the development.

Sections 173 and 174 - Size, height, illumination and location requirements for development signs and directional development signs

Section 173 

  1. A sign for a development with four or fewer dwelling units must:
    1. be a non-illuminated ground sign displaying information about the contractor or architect;
    2. not exceed a maximum height of 1.5 m;
    3. not exceed a maximum area of 1.4 m2 ; and
    4. be removed after the construction is complete.

Section 174 

Development signs and directional developments signs must comply with the size, height, illumination and location requirements in Tables 8A and 8B.

Table 8A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for development signs
Zone Area of development Max sign face area – Total all signs (m2) Max sign face area - any one sign (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Additional Regulations/ Endnotes
EP Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
All other zones ≤ 550 m2 2 2 3 external  
>550 m2 but ≤1,000 m2 6 6 5 external  
>1,000 m2 but ≤5,000 m2 20 6 5 external  
>5,000 m2 but ≤10,000 m2 50 20 7 external  
>1 ha 50 per ha 22 7 external  
Table 8A: Size, height, illumination and location requirements for directional development signs
Zone Ground sign - Max area (m2) Ground sign - Max height (m) Ground sign - Illumination Wall sign - Max area Wall sign - Illumination Additional Regulations/ Endnotes
EP Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted  
All other zones inside the greenbelt 3 3 no 50% of wall area, up to 6 m2 no  
All other zones outside the greenbelt 9 5 no 50% of wall area, up to 6 m2 no 1

Table 8B : Additional regulations/endnotes

  1. A directional development ground sign outside the greenbelt must:
    1. be located more than 1,000 m from another directional development sign on the same side of the street or in the public right of way; and
    2. be setback a minimum of 2 m plus the height of the sign from a property line abutting a street.

Section 175

Reserved for future use.

Section 176

Reserved for future use.

Section 177

Reserved for future use.

Section 178

Reserved for future use.

Section 179

Reserved for future use.

Part 13 - Other directional signs

Sections 180 to 184 - Other directional signs

Section 180

Every owner of a directional farm sign, a directional rural business park/industrial park, and a directional rural village pedestrian sign shall ensure that the sign is permitted by Sections 181 to 184 and by Table 9 (Size, Height, Illumination and Location Requirements for Directional Signs).

Section 181

  1. A directional farm sign must:
    1. be located on non-residential use property;
    2. be located within a 12 km radius from the registered farm to which it applies;
    3. be a minimum distance of 150 m from another directional farm sign for a different registered farm;
    4. be a minimum distance of 1,000 m from another directional farm signs for the same registered farm;
    5. have a minimum setback of 1 m from any property line;
    6. be located at least 30 m from any other ground sign; and
    7. be removed immediately after a registered farm or farmers’ market ceases to exist.

Section 182

  1. A directional rural business park or industrial park sign must:
    1. be located on a non-residential use property;
    2. be located at the entrance to a business park or industrial park adjacent to a primary access road to the park;
    3. be located a minimum of 1,000 m from any other rural business park or industrial park sign;
    4. include the name of the business park or industrial park, and may include the name(s) and logo(s) of a business(es) located within the park, and a directional arrow to the individual businesses;
    5. include the municipal address of the property, where the businesses in the business park or industrial park are located on one property;
    6. have a minimum clearance from grade to the underside of the sign face of 1.2 m; and
    7. have a minimum setback of 1 m from any property line.

Section 183

  1. A directional village pedestrian sign must:
    1. be located on a non-residential use property;
    2. not be located on a property with a school, place of worship, hospital, college, university or community centre;
    3. be comprised of blades that are of the same size and have the same lettering and background colour as every other blade in the sign;
    4. identify the registered company name, contain a directional arrow, and may include the company logo as additional information;
    5. provide a minimum clearance of 2.13 m from grade to the underside of the lowest blade on the sign; and
    6. the post of the sign is set a minimum of 0.9 m in the ground in a manner that it is stabilized to maintain its vertical orientation.

Section 184

The size, height, illumination and location requirements for directional signs are set out in Table 9.

Residential zones - Table 9 : size, height, illumination and location requirements for directional signs (other than directional development signs)
Zone Farm directional Rural business/Industrial park directional Rural village pedestrian directional
Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination
RR
MR
RV
Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
Institutional and leisure zones - Table 9 : size, height, illumination and location requirements for directional signs (other than directional development signs)
Zone Farm directional Rural business/Industrial park directional Rural village pedestrian directional
Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination
RI
IL
Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
Open space and environmental protection zones - Table 9 : size, height, illumination and location requirements for directional signs (other than directional development signs)
Zone Farm directional Rural business/Industrial park directional Rural village pedestrian directional
Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination
O1
EP
Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
Mixed-use and commercial zones - Table 9 : size, height, illumination and location requirements for directional signs (other than directional development signs)
Zone Farm directional Rural business/Industrial park directional Rural village pedestrian directional
Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination
LC Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
TM Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
AM 4 3 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
TD 4 3 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
MD 4 3 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
MC 4 3 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
GM 4 3 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
VM1
VM2
Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted 1 3 no
All other VM 4 3 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted 1 3 no
RC 4 3 no 14 3 yes 1 3 no
Industrial zones - Table 9 : size, height, illumination and location requirements for directional signs (other than directional development signs)
Zone Farm directional Rural business/Industrial park directional Rural village pedestrian directional
Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination
IP Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
IG 4 3 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
IL 4 3 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
IH 4 3 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
RG 4 3 no 14 3 yes 1 3 no
RH 4 3 no 14 3 yes 1 3 no
Rural zones - Table 9 : size, height, illumination and location requirements for directional signs (other than directional development signs)
Zone Farm directional Rural business/Industrial park directional Rural village pedestrian directional
Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination
RU 4 3 no 14 3 yes 1 3 no
AG 4 3 no 14 3 yes 1 3 no
ME 4 3 no 14 3 yes 1 3 no
MR 4 3 no 14 3 yes 1 3 no
Transportation zones - Table 9 : size, height, illumination and location requirements for directional signs (other than directional development signs)
Zone Farm directional Rural business/Industrial park directional Rural village pedestrian directional
Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination
T1 4 3 no Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
T2 Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted
Other zones - Table 9 : size, height, illumination and location requirements for directional signs (other than directional development signs)
Zone Farm directional Rural business/Industrial park directional Rural village pedestrian directional
Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination Max area (m2) Max height (m) Illumination
DR Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted Not permitted

Section 185

Reserved for future use. 

Section 186

Reserved for future use. 

Section 187

Reserved for future use. 

Section 188

Reserved for future use. 

Section 189

Reserved for future use. 

Part 14 - Special sign districts

Sections 190 to 193 - Lansdowne Special sign district

Section 190

The Lansdowne Special Sign District is established for the area of Lansdowne shown in Schedule B of this by-law.

Section 191

  1. Despite any other section of this by-law, a permanent sign located within Lansdowne shall conform to the objectives, and applicable policies and guidelines, of the Lansdowne Signage and Wayfinding Plan as determined by the General Manager, Planning, Infrastructure and Economic Development Department, and to the regulations of the Lansdowne Signage and Wayfinding Plan.
  2. The provisions of this by-law shall apply to any permanent sign located within Lansdowne but in the event of a conflict between the provisions of this by-law and the Lansdowne Signage and Wayfinding Plan, the Lansdowne Signage and Wayfinding Plan shall take precedence to the extent of any such conflict.

Section 192

  1. The Chief Building Official shall only issue a permit for a permanent sign located within Lansdowne upon the approval of the General Manager, Planning, Infrastructure and Economic Development Department.
  2. A permit for a permanent sign issued by the Chief Building Official pursuant to subsection (1) shall contain any conditions set out in approval of the General Manager, Planning, Infrastructure and Economic Development Department.

Section 193

There are no permit fees for information, wayfinding, gateway, or stadium signs at Lansdowne.

Sections 194 and 195 - Palladium site special sign district

Section 194

The Palladium Site Special Sign District is established for the area of the Palladium Site shown in Schedule C of this by-law.

Section 195

  1. Despite any other section of this by-law, a permanent sign located within the Palladium Site is permitted:
    1. to have animation (meaning any action or motion of a sign or any part thereof);
    2. to be illuminated, including intermittent illumination (meaning illumination that can vary in intensity at periodic intervals);
    3. for a ground sign, a maximum height not exceeding 9 m in height above grade;
    4. for building-mounted sign, a projection not to exceed 0.6 m from the building face to which it is affixed;
    5. to be a billboard sign;
    6. to have a message centre, whether as part of a ground or wall sign, on lands legally described as Parcel 2-1 and 3-1 on Plan 4M-818;
    7. to contain off-premise content for an information sign (being a sign containing a message or directions for the purpose of advising the public in respect of an activity or the nature of their surroundings); and
    8. if within a sight triangle, being the triangular space on a lot formed by two intersecting street lines and a line drawn from a point in one street line across such lot to a point in the other street line, each such point being 6 m from the point of intersection of the street lines (measured along the street lines). Where the two street lines do not intersect at a point, the point of intersection of the street lines shall be deemed to be the intersection of the projection of the street lines or the intersection of the tangents to the street lines.

Section 196 and 197 - Parliamentary precinct, Confederation Boulevard and Rideau Canal special sign district  

Section 196

The Parliamentary Precinct, Confederation Boulevard and Rideau Canal Special Sign District is established for the area shown in Schedule D of this by-law.

Section 197

In addition to complying with the applicable provisions for the type of sign in the specific zone where it is located, all signs in the Parliamentary Precinct, Confederation Boulevard and Rideau Canal Special Sign District require confirmation, in the form of a written statement, from the National Capital Commission, that they do not detract from, interfere with or obstruct the views of these landmarks.

Section 198

Reserved for future use.

Section 199

Reserved for future use.

Part 15 - Compliance and enforcement

Section 200 - Production of permit

No permit holder shall fail to produce his or her permit for inspection upon the request of a municipal law enforcement officer.

Section 201 - Entry

  1. A municipal law enforcement officer may, at any reasonable time, enter upon or into any property for the purposes of an inspection to determine:
    1. compliance of a sign that is subject to this by-law;
    2. whether the sign has been erected, operated or maintained in compliance with:
      1. this by-law;
      2. a condition of a permit issued under this by-law or a sign minor variance; or
      3. an order made under this by-law; and
    3. if a sign is unsafe for the purposes of Section 202.
  2. A municipal law enforcement officer may, for the purposes of an inspection under subsection (1)(a),
    1. require the production, for inspection, of documents or things relevant to the inspection;
    2. inspect and remove documents or things relevant to the inspection for the purposes of making copies or extracts;
    3. require information from any person concerning a matter related to the inspection; or
    4. alone, or in conjunction with a person possessing special or expert knowledge, make examinations or take tests, samples or photographs necessary for the purpose of the inspection.
  3. No person shall hinder or obstruct, or attempt to hinder or obstruct a municipal law enforcement officer in the discharge of his duties under this by-law.

Section 202 - Unsafe sign

  1. A sign is unsafe if:
    1. it is structurally inadequate or faulty;
    2. it is in a condition or operated in such a manner that could be hazardous to the health or safety of any person; or
    3. it is located in a manner so as to cause an obstruction or to be hazardous to the health or safety of any person.

Section 203 - Notice of violation

  1. Where a sign,
    1. is not erected, operated or maintained
      1. in compliance with a provision of this by-law; or
      2. in accordance with condition of a permit issued under this by-law or under a sign minor variance; or
    2. is in an unsafe condition as provided in Section 202, a municipal law enforcement officer may issue a Notice of Violation, requiring the contravener to remove the sign or correct the violation and bring the sign into conformity in the manner and within the time specified in the Notice.
  2. The Notice of Violation referred to in subsection (1) shall be served on the owner or persons who the municipal law enforcement officer believes is contravening this by-law.

Section 204 - Contents of notice of violation

  1. The Notice of Violation referred to in Section 203 shall:
    1. set out the contravention or unsafe condition;
    2. identify the required corrective action;
    3. provide a deadline for compliance or state that the Notice of Violation is to be complied with immediately; and
    4. include a statement that if the requirements of the Notice of Violation have not been complied with within the time specified, the Chief, By-law and Regulatory Services, his contractor or other agent may enter the property and pull down or remove the sign and, in so far as possible, restore the site to its original condition at the expense of the owner without any further notice.

Section 205 - Service of notice of violation

  1. The Notice of Violation referred to in Section 203 may be given:
    1. by personal service upon the party being served;
    2. by registered mail sent to the address of the party being served as shown on the records of the Chief, By-law and Regulatory Services; or
    3. by prominently posting a copy of the notice either;
      1. on the sign in respect of which the notice is given, or
      2. on the land where that sign is located.
  2. Where the notice is given in accordance with subsection (1)(a), it is deemed to have been received by the party being served on the date of service.
  3. Where the notice is given in accordance with subsection (1)(b), it is deemed to have been received by the party being served on the fifth day after the document is mailed.
  4. Where the notice is given in accordance with subsection (1)(c), it is deemed to have been received by the party being served upon posting of the notice.

Section 206 to 208 - Non-compliance with notice of violation

Section 206

No person shall fail to comply with a Notice of Violation made pursuant to Section 203 and served pursuant to Section 205.

Section 207

In addition to any other enforcement action, where a Notice of Violation under Section 203 is not complied with within the time specified in the Notice, the Chief, By-law and Regulatory Services may have the sign removed and the site restored as far as possible to its original condition and, for this purpose, Chief, By-law and Regulatory Services, his contractor or other agent may at any time enter upon the land containing the sign in respect of which the Notice was made.

Section 208

After making a Notice of Violation under Section 203, and where the sign is in an unsafe condition, the Chief, By-law and Regulatory Services may, either before or after the Notice is served, have the sign removed and in so doing may take any intermediate measures as are considered necessary to terminate any immediate danger and, for this purpose, the Chief, By-law and Regulatory Services, their contractor or other agent may at any time enter upon the land containing the sign in respect of which the Notice was made.

Section 209 - Sign may be removed from City-owned property

Where a permanent sign is placed on City-owned property contrary to any provisions of this by-law, the Chief, By-law and Regulatory Services may, without notice, pull down or remove the sign or cause the sign to be pulled down or removed at the expense of the owner.

Section 210 - Sign to be stored

A permanent sign removed pursuant to this by-law shall be stored by the City for at least thirty days, during which time the owner or agent may claim and retrieve the sign upon payment to the City of the impound and storage fees in accordance with Schedule A of this by-law.

Section 211 - Sign may be destroyed

If the permanent sign that is removed pursuant to this by-law is not claimed and retrieved by the owner or agent within thirty days of its removal, the Chief, By-law and Regulatory Services is authorized to destroy or otherwise dispose of the sign without any notice or compensation to the owner.

Section 212 - Costs to be recovered

  1. The cost incurred by the City in removing a sign, restoring a site or destroying a stored sign under Sections 48, 203 or 211, including the cost of any intermediate measures taken to terminate an immediate danger, is a debt due to the City and may be recovered in any court of competent jurisdiction.
  2. Despite subsection (1), the costs incurred by the City under Sections 48 or 203 may be recovered by adding the costs to the tax roll and collecting them in the same manner as taxes.

Section 213 - Liability

The owner of a permanent sign and any person erecting, causing to be erected, operating or maintaining any permanent sign or sign structure shall be liable and responsible for such sign or sign structure.

Sections 214 to 216 - Immunity and indemnity

Section 214

The City shall not be liable for any damage to or loss of a permanent sign that was erected or operated in contravention of the provisions of this by-law and removed by the City.

Section 215

The City shall not be liable for any loss of revenue resulting from the removal of a sign pursuant to the provisions of this by-law.

Section 216

The City is hereby indemnified and saved harmless from and against any and all claims, demands, causes of action, loss, costs, damages, expenses or otherwise arising from the erection, maintenance, faulty operation removal or falling of such sign, sign structure or part thereof.

Section 217

Reserved for future use.

Section 218

Reserved for future use.

Section 219

Reserved for future use.

Part 16 - Offences and penalties

Section 220 - Offences

Every person who contravenes any of the provisions of this by-law is guilty of an offence.

Sections 221 and 222 - Penalties

Section 221

  1. Every person who is convicted of an offence under this by-law is liable to a minimum fine not exceeding $500 and to a maximum fine not exceeding $100,000 for each day that the offence occurs or continues pursuant to subsection 429(1) and (3) of the Municipal Act, 2001, and all such offences are designated as continuing offences as provided for in subsection 429(2), paragraph (a), of the Municipal Act, 2001.
  2. In addition to subsection (1), the total of all daily fines for the offence is not limited to $100,000 as provided for in subsection 429(3), paragraph 2, of the Municipal Act, 2001.

Section 222

When a person has been convicted of an offence under this by-law, the Superior Court of Justice, or any court of competent jurisdiction may, in addition to any penalty imposed on the person convicted, issue an order:

  1. prohibiting the continuation or repetition of the offence by the person convicted; and
  2. requiring the person convicted to correct the contravention in the manner and within the period that the court considers appropriate.

Section 223

Reserved for future use.

Section 224

Reserved for future use.

Part 17 - General provisions

Section 225 - General provisions

No person shall knowingly furnish false or incorrect information for the purposes of obtaining a permit, permission or approval under this by-law.

Section 226

Reserved for future use. 

Section 227

Reserved for future use. 

Section 228

Reserved for future use. 

Part 18 - Repeal and transition

Section 229 - Repeal 

By-law 2005-439 entitled “A by-law of the City of Ottawa regulating Permanent Signs on Private Property” is repealed.

Section 230 - Status of previously-approved signage

  1. Any permit issued under the authority of By-law 2005-439 shall be considered to have been issued under this by-law for the period for which it has been issued, and remains in full force and effect until the permit expires, unless for some reason other than the repeal of that by-law, the permit is repealed, revoked or forfeited.
  2. The repeal of said By-law 2005-439 shall not affect any offence committed against the provision of that by-law, or any penalty incurred in respect thereof, or any investigative proceeding commenced thereunder.
  3. Despite any other provision of this by-law, properties abutting Preston Street between Somerset Street and Albert Street are exempt from the provisions of this by-law and are subject to By-law 2005-439 as it was the day before the coming into force of this by-law.

Sections 231 and 232 - Status of pending application

Section 231

If a complete application for a sign permit, encroachment permit, or sign minor variance is received prior to the coming into force of this by-law, the application will be reviewed pursuant to the provisions of By-law 2005-439.

Section 232

For the purpose of Section 231, a complete application means an application which would have been approved on the date of enactment of this by-law had it been processed or disposed of on that day.

Section 233 - In force dates

The provisions of this by-law will take effect on January 27, 2021.

Section 234 - Short title

This by-law may be referred to as the “Permanent Signs on Private Property By-law”.

Schedules

Schedule A: Fees (2021-22)

Sign permit
Type of application Fee
Permanent Sign Permit $401.00
Permanent Sign Permit – submitted through eportal $357.00
Message Centre $569.00
Digital Menu Board with Changing Messages $467.00
Home-based Business $223.00
Bed and Breakfast $223.00
Static Billboard $2,239.00
Digital Billboard $2,969.00
Directional Development Sign $401.00
Development Sign - Development area ≤1,000 m2 $401.00
Development Sign - Development area 1,000 to 5,000 m2 $732.00
Development Sign - Development area >5,000 m2 $1,416.00
Encroachment permit
Type of application Fee
Permit (per sign) $336.00
Permit Renewal $133.00
Sign minor variance
Type of application Fee
For Digital Billboard $2,969.00
For All Other Signs $2,088.00
Access to sign permit information (All fees are non-refundable)
Type of application Fee
Application for Access to Sign Permit Records (excluding reproduction costs) $73.00
Copies - Paper (per page) $0.30 (+ HST)
Copies - USB (per USB) $16.40 (+ HST)
Copies - drawings (per drawing) $11.00 (+ HST)
Other fees
Type of application Fee
Impound and Storage Fees $183.00 per month
Administrative Surcharge for sign installed prior to issuance of sign permit Permanent Sign Permit fee plus 50% of the Permanent Sign Permit fee
Administrative Surcharge for sign installed prior to obtaining variance approval Sign Minor Variance fee plus 100% of the Sign Minor Variance fee

Schedules B to E