Approval to erect advertising signage/portable advertising devices (Brisbane) - Queensland

Service summary

Outdoor signage that is visible from a road, footpath or any other public place is regulated by council in order to prevent visual clutter and ensure public safety. 

Depending on the type of sign and its location in the city, a sign may be classified as permitted (does not require a licence), licensable (you must apply for a licence) or prohibited (the sign is not allowed) under the advertisements subordinate local law.  To be permitted or licensable, a sign must also meet the conditions set out in the subordinate local law.

  • If the property or building on which the sign is to be placed is a heritage site, you must submit an application even if the sign type is classified as permitted.
  • If your sign type is not described in the subordinate local law, you must submit an application (describe the sign as a new sign type).

Service type


A licence defines the need to obtain recognition / certification and registration to undertake a certain business activity.

Definition of terms


means an advertisement or sign that is visible from a road or other public place and includes a structure that forms part of the advertisement or sign, or to which it is attached, or on which it is exhibited.

Permitted advertisement

means an advertisement classified as a permitted advertisement (e.g. real estate, construction and election signs).

Eligibility requirements

Incomplete applications may be rejected by council. Please refer to the following pre-requisites to ensure your application is complete.
  • Written consent from the owner of the property, if neither the applicant or licence holder is the owner.
  • The supporting structure of an advertisement must comply with the Building Code of Australia.
  • Mega banners and road banners - a public liability letter and a certificate of structural adequacy from a certified engineer.
  • Inflatable signs - a public liability letter and electrical safety certification for any electrical wiring.
  • Approval from the Queensland Department of Transport and Main Roads if the sign is within the boundary of a state-controlled main road.

See advertising signs fact sheet for details of the fee levels for specific sign types.

A Level 2 application and assessment fee will be charged if any of the following apply:

  • the property is a heritage site
  • any of the signs being applied for is a Level 2
  • any of the signs being applied for is prohibited in the relevant city environment.


This licence remains in effect for 12 months from the date of approval. In the case of temporary signs it is for the period specified on the permit. You will be sent a notice prior to the expiration of your current approval that will require your immediate attention. If you need to amend details on your approval or require a copy of your approval, contact council.


Contact council to determine applicable fees.


Complete an Advertising signs licence application online or submit a completed form to council with the required fees and documents, by mail or at a council regional business centre.

You must submit the following documentation with your application:

  • Site plan with location of all proposed and existing signage, building footprints, roads and landscaping
  • Site photos:
  1. wide view of whole site from each frontage
  2. view facing outwards from the site from the position of the proposed sign
  3. photos of any existing signage on the site. Photos must be for existing unlicensed signs.
  • Sign details drawn to scale including fixing details, shape, size, illumination etc. .
  • A certificate of structural adequacy from a certified engineer if:
  1. the advertisement is of a size, type, shape or height, or attached to a structure that would be subject to significant wind or other loading; or
  2. the advertisement is located above or within a place commonly used by the general public, where the collapse of the device could cause injury to a person in that place.
  • A copy of the relevant conditions if the advertisement is subject to the conditions of a Town planning or Development permit previously given by Brisbane City Council.
  • List of locations and permitted signs if making an Advertising package application (large developments and housing/industrial estates with multiple lots only)
  • Copy of signed owner's consent if applicable.

A council officer may inspect the sign prior to granting approval.

If you have any questions about your application contact the Brisbane City Council call centre.

Transfer details

This licence can be transferred by completing an Advertising sign licence application and ticking transfer on the form.

Additional information

For further information on sign types and classification see the advertising signs fact sheet.

See the advertisments subordinate local law for descriptions and drawings of the different sign types and details of requirements and conditions.


Administering agency

Brisbane City Council

Local law(s) name

Brisbane City Council - Local Law 01 (Control of Advertisements)

Contact details

Brisbane City Council

Operating address:
Library & Customer Centre, 266 George Street
Queensland 4000
Mailing address:
GPO Box 1434
Queensland 4001


07 3403 8888


07 3403 9982

Supporting information


The information contained on the Australian Business Licence and Information Service (ABLIS) web site, or via packages or other sources is intended for general guidance only.

To the full extent permitted by law, the Federal, State, Territory and Local Governments make no representations or warranties (expressed or implied) in relation to the information, including its accuracy, currency or completeness.

The business information provided does not constitute professional or legal advice, nor is the use of any third party resource an endorsement of the information contained, the associated organisation, product or service. It is recommended that you obtain appropriate professional and /or independent legal advice to ensure that the material provided here is relevant to your particular circumstances.

To the full extent permitted by law the Federal, State, Territory and Local Governments, their employees and agents do not accept any liability for any reason, including without limitation, liability in negligence, to any person for the general information which is provided herein, or in respect of anything, including the consequences of anything done, or not done, by any such person in whole or partial reliance upon the information.