ESTABLISHED 2005

In-House Permit
Expediting

We're putting our expert staff to work for you!

Let our expert staff handle your signage permit needs with our Permit Expediting service. Our team assists with sign code research, licensing, forms, follow ups and all the processes to obtain your permit. Leave the paperwork to us, so you can focus on your customers.

NYC

Sign, Structural, Awning and Electrical Permits

Code Check, DOB NOW System filing, Landlord Approval, Drawings and Professional Certification (Fast Track)

Landmark Permit and Landmark Public Hearing Process

DOT Sidewalk, lane, Canopy permits and MTA Approvals

CD5 Permits

NYC ECB Violation Remediation

NYC Shop or Field Electrical Inspection

NJ & NY

Code Research

Engineer Review, Calculations and Certification

Variance process

Sign, Awning, and Electrical permits

Zoning, Planning, or Historic Board Representation

UL Certification

Questions & Answers

According to the NYC Administrative Code 26-182, all signs within New York City, spanning across its 5 boroughs, must be installed by, or under the supervision of, a licensed NYC Sign Hanger. The code (§ 26-182 and § 28-415.1) mandates that hanging or attaching any sign on the exterior of a building within the city must be conducted by, or under the guidance of, an individual licensed as a sign hanger as per the regulations outlined in section 26-131 of this subchapter

  • Special sign hanger – Can install signs up to a Max of 150 square feet or 2000 pounds.
  • Master sign hanger – Can hang any sign regardless of size or weight.

Regrettably, we solely aid NYC Licensed Sign Hanger Contractors in obtaining sign permits. We don’t permit other companies to use our license for their own sign installations.

  • A registered architect, licensed engineer, or a licensed sign hanger, must submit plans. 
  • LANDLORD information, name, address, Phone number, EMAIL registered to DOB NOW account 
  • Exact address of location, Plans showing the sign(s) with dimensions (no size charts) – height, width, projection, height above grade to the bottom of the sign and a cross section showing method of attachment to the wall
  • Attachment Details: Number, Type, Size, Quantity and Location of Brackets, bolts, screws, etc.  DOB is now requiring the length/depth of penetration into the wall and the wall type (i.e. Brick, Mason Wood, etc.) 
  • Provide all electrical components specifications including quantity, type of transformer, ballast, lamps, amps, etc. 
  • Plans showing the sign(s) superimposed on the building – Showing  the exact location of the sign

SURFACE AREA  

ZONING CODE 12-10

The “surface Area” of a sign shall be the entire area within a single continuous perimeter enclosing the extreme limits of writing, representation, emblem, or any figure of similar character, together with any material of color forming an integral part of the display or used to differentiate such Sign, from the background against which it is placed.  The supports or uprights on which such sign is supported shall not be included in determining the #Surface Area# of a #sign#

When two signs of the same shape and dimensions are mounted or displayed back-to-back and parallel on a single free-standing structural frame, only one of such signs shall be included in computing the total surface area of the two signs.

For the purpose of determining permitted surface area of signs for zoning lots occupied by more than one establishment, any portion of such zoning lot occupied by a building or part of a building accommodating one or more establishments on the ground floor may be considered as a separate zoning lot.

 

When a double-faced sign projects from the wall of a building, and its two sides are located not more than 28 inches apart at the widest point and not more than 18 inches apart at the narrowest point, and display identical writing or other representation, the surface area shall include only one of the sides. Any additional side of a multi-faced sign shall be considered as a separate sign for purposes of computing the total surface area of the sign.

 

TOTAL SURFACE AREA The Total surface area of all permitted signs, including Illuminated and Non-Illuminated signs Shall NOT Exceed the Limitation established for Non-Illuminated signs.

If the sign is illuminated and extends beyond the building line, an annual illuminated sign permit may also be required. Illuminated sign permits must be renewed annually and owners will be automatically billed. 

 

NYC code, only Licensed Electrician are allowed to connect, disconnect or service an electric sign.

600.6 Disconnects

Each sign and outline lighting system, feeder conductors, or branch circuits supplying a sign, outline lighting system, or skeleton tubing shall be controlled by an externally operable switch or circuit breaker that opens

all ungrounded conductors and controls no other load.

 

The disconnecting means shall be accessible and located in accordance with 600.6(A)(1), 600.6(A)(2), or 600.6(A)(3). If the disconnecting means is remote from the sign it controls, it shall comply with 600.6(A)(4).

 

(2) Within Sight of the Sign

The disconnecting means shall be within sight of the sign or outline lighting system that it controls. Where the disconnecting means is out of the line of sight from any section that is able to be energized, the disconnecting

means shall be lockable in accordance with 110.25. A permanent field-applied marking identifying the location of the disconnecting means shall be applied to the sign in a location visible during servicing.

 

(3) Within Sight of the Controller

The following shall apply for signs or outline lighting systems operated by electronic or electromechanical controllers located external to the sign or outline lighting system:

 

Exception: Where the disconnecting means is not located within sight of the controller, a permanent field-applied marking identifying the location of the disconnecting means shall be applied to the controller in a location visible

during servicing.

 

(4) Remote Location

The disconnecting means, if located remote from the sign, sign body, or pole, shall be mounted at an accessible location available to first responders and service personnel. The location of the disconnect shall be marked with a

label at the sign location and marked as the disconnect for the sign or outline lighting system.

  • DOB Sign or Structural Permit: A DOB Permit is essential for affixing a Sign or Awning to a wall, and separate permits are necessary for additional structures supporting the sign, such as concrete foundations with steel poles, roof structures, banner structures, etc.
  • Electrical/Illuminated Sign Tag Permit: This permit is mandatory for electrical inspection during sign fabrication and the final connection of an illuminated sign, conducted by a master licensed electrician.
  •  Landmark Permit: The Landmark Commission oversees all historical buildings in NYC and issues three types of permits:
  • Minor work: Doesn’t require a DOB permit and won’t impact the building’s architectural integrity, such as painted signs or signs smaller than six square feet, approved at a staff level.
  • No effect: Requires a DOB permit but won’t alter the building’s architectural details, approved at a staff level.
  • Appropriateness: Used when architectural changes are proposed, necessitating public review by the Landmarks and Preservation Commission. Even after Landmark Approval, DOB structural, Sign, or Electrical Permits might still be necessary

Construction Code §28-105.1 requires Department permits for SIGN displays and installations.

 

A Sign permit must be filed for the copy, text or image to be displayed.  This is filed through DOB NOW: Build. If the sign is attached to a structure and not directly placed on the wall or façade of a building, then an Alteration permit (ALT) for the structure must be filed with the Department office for the borough in which the sign is located.

 

SIGN: A “sign” is any writing (including letter, word or numeral), pictorial representation (including illustration or decoration), emblem (including device, symbol or trademark), flag, (including banner or pennant) or any other figure of similar character, that:

  • (a)       is a structure or any part thereof, or is attached to, painted on, or in any other manner represented on a building or other structure;
  • (b)       is used to announce, direct attention to or advertise; and
  • (c)       is visible from outside a building. A sign shall include writing, representation or other figures of similar character, within a building, only when illuminated and located in a window.
  • However, non-illuminated signs containing solely non-commercial copy with a total surface area not exceeding 12 square feet on any zoning lot, including memorial tablets or signs displayed for the direction the public, shall not be subject to the provisions of this Resolution.

 

Almost every sign requires sign permits except

 

  • 28-105.4.5 A sign permit shall not be required where the sign is: 
  1. Painted directly on the exterior wall surface of a building or on the surface of a fence;
  2. 2. A non-illuminated flat wall sign of not more than 6 six square feet (0.56 m2 ) in area; 
  3. Erected by employees of a city agency, including traffic and other similar signs; 
  4. A ground sign offering the sale or rental of the premises on which it is erected, provided the sign does not exceed 12 square feet (1.1 m2 ) in area; 
  5. Temporary Banners and Graphics erected during construction work and related thereto; 
  6. Temporary for special decorative display use for holidays, public demonstrations, or the promotion of civic, welfare or charitable purposes, except that signs that utilize streets or cross streets shall be subject to the requirements of the department of transportation; or 
  7. Temporary signs and Banners offering the sale or rental of real property when erected on the premises offered for sale or rent

 

Banners over 75 sq. with a structure to support/attach the temp banner requires a structural permit for the attachment system.

  • Wall signs projecting more than 12 inches beyond the street line, except on C6-5, C6-7, C7 Districts
  • Projecting signs, projecting more than 10 feet beyond the street line  (except on C6-5, C6-7, C7 Districts) or closer to the curb line than 2 feet. no  part  of a projecting sign should be  less  than  10  feet  above  the  ground or sidewalk level.
  • H103.1Location restrictions: Signs shall not be erected, constructed or maintained so as to obstruct any fire escape or any window or door or opening used as a means of egress or so as to prevent free passage from one part of a roof to any other part thereof. A sign shall not be attached in any form, shape or manner to a fire escape or exterior stair, nor be placed in such manner as to interfere with any opening required for natural light or natural ventilation.
  • H103.2 Fire Department access. Signs erected to cover doors or windows required by Section 501.3.2 for Fire Department access to existing buildings shall be provided with access panels to such openings.
  • Ground /Pole sign projecting over the property line

Any Illuminated proposed sign requiring an electrical connection must have a separate work permit to install it. This permit is filed by a licensed electrician through DOB NOW: Build.

 

Except cord-connected signs with an attachment plug.

In short, every time you need to do Electric work, except cord-connected sign designed with an attachment plug.

ELECTRICAL WORK: The installation, alteration, maintenance, or repair of electric wires and wiring apparatus and other appliances used or to be used for the transmission of electricity for electric light, heat, power, signaling, communication, alarm or data transmission

NYC requires ALL illuminated signs be inspected by a NYC Electrical Inspector and the city offers 2 types of inspections, SHOP INSPECTION and FIELD INSPECTIONS.

 

 

Electrical Shop Inspection:

This Inspection is performed PRIOR to installation at our Bronx warehouse Located at 1177 east 178th st Bronx NY to have your sign Inspected by a city inspector at our shop, Inspector focuses only on the sign, making sure its properly manufactured, it has UL labels, draining holes, disconnect switches, and proper grounding.

and If everything is good, the sign gets an inspection labeled, and no other inspection is needed in the future.

PROS

• Inspection appointment is received within a 3-4 days.

• We can get multiple signs inspected the same day.

• Existing electrical conditions, or violations on the property will not affect the outcome.

• 99% of signs will pass on the first inspection attempt.

 

 

CONS

• Signs must arrive to our shop 2 weeks before scheduled install to allow time to schedule the inspection.

 

• Not ideal for large signs that require complex logistics to transport.

Field Inspection

Once sign is installed & final connection is complete. We get an appointment with Dept of Buildings, this is a thorough inspection, where they check the sign and the power feed from breaker panel to the sign to make sure circuit is dedicated among many other things.

Field inspections are very time consuming, we must arrive at least 1 hour prior to inspection to set up the truck or lift and have sign open before inspector arrives. the inspection can take 1 hour or more depending on how many signs, If the sign is high or hard to reach, then specialty equipment may also be required and added to the inspection quote.

Additionally, if we fail the inspection or it gets canceled due to the weather, or any other unrelated issue, the project will be subject to a re-inspection fee to go back and complete the inspection.

Therefore, when choosing field inspection, we suggest performing a pre-inspection visit to the site to verify that the store is open, we have access to the electrical room, make sure breaker panel is up to code, and all the electrical work onsite is compliant to avoid failure during actual inspection.

 

 

PROS

• Ideal for very large signs.

• If time is of the essence and fast turnaround for install is required. 

CONS

• You can fail for onsite issues, such as Inadequate access to breaker panel or site not ready for inspection.

• Inspection may get canceled due to bad weather or if the inspector is delayed, even if we are Onsite.

• Existing electrical violations on site unrelated to the sign, can hinder the inspection. 

 

  • Signs must be UL Compliant and bear proper UL and Manufacturing sticker (not Handwritten sticker).
  • Sign must have draining holes 
  • The electrical room and breaker panel. must be accessible, we must know where all the connections are, and the breaker box and breaker number that controls the sign.
  • Signs must have a Disconnect Switch, including for remote channel letters. 

If a larger or special bucket truck or lift is required to reach the sign during a Field Inspection, it will be discussed with customer and billed extra.

Let’s make it happen