Anyone who intends to temporarily occupy a portion of the public roadway and/or sidewalk is required to obtain either a Street Space Permit or a Temporary Occupancy Permit: Article 15, Section 724 Public Works Code. Temporary Occupancy Permits are generally issued for short duration activities requiring occupation of the public right of way to perform the work, typically less than 7 days. Excavation work is not allowed under the Temporary Occupancy Permit, a separate permit will be required.
Lift equipment (i.e. JLG Boom and Scissor Lift equipment)
Tree Trimming trucks, equipment and facilities (i.e. Chippers)
Refrigerated Shipping/Storage Containers
Debris Box (for short duration)
Monitoring Well Sampling work
Working in and around any manhole (no excavation)
Street closures and other public events and venues that require semi-large to large structures (i.e. Carnival Rides, Large Media Equipment, Stages, Large Tents, etc.)
Mobile Food Facility for a single day private event, see section below
All other temporary facilities, equipment and material not covered above
Exception: Mobile storage containers in the public right of way will require a Mobile Storage Container Permit, click here for more information.
San Francisco Public Works-Bureau of Street Use and Mapping (BSM)
1155 Market Street, 3rd Floor
Office Hours are 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (Note: all cash and check transactions must be submitted before 4:00 p.m.)
Telephone: (415) 554-5810
Fax: (415) 554-6161
Alternatively, if you have an account with Public Works-BSM you may apply online by clicking here. (Note: If applying online, please allow for up to 5 business days for processing)
To apply for a Temporary Occupancy Permit, submit to Public Works the following:
Application – Temporary Occupancy Permit Application.
Site Plan – If occupying the sidewalk and/or when required by Public Works, submit a detailed layout plan of the area and the proposed occupying elements. Show on the plan that a minimum 4-foot clear path of travel will be provided for pedestrians, in commercial/retail areas provide a minimum 6-foot path of travel.
Certificate of Insurance (COI) – Submit a COI as evidence of general commercial liability coverage and language that complies with Public Works-BSM’s requirements as identified in the Sample COI.
Payment of Fees – the permit will not be approved until all fees have been paid. The fee is calculated on per-block face, per-day basis and includes SFMTA parking meter fees when applicable.
See the San Francisco Public Works Fee Schedule.
Additional approvals/documents may be required based on the proposed occupancy
Special Traffic Permits may also be required: See SFMTA Blue Book for requirements. All submitted plans, applications and attachments shall comply with all rules, regulations and guidelines set forth by DPW Order No. 165,716.
For night time occupancy, See section on Nighttime Work below.
If the occupancy is in the parking lane, the permit will need to be approved and the “no parking” signs will need to be registered a minimum of 72 hours in advance in order to have towing privileges at the subject site.
When a Special Event or a Street Closure Event has been approved by SFMTA through ISCOTT, a Temporary Occupancy Permit may be required by the Street Closure Permit. A Temporary Occupancy Permit will be required if any large elements (i.e. Carnival Rides, Large Media Equipment, Stages, Large Tents, etc.) are proposed to occupy the public right of way.
For information about Special Events and Street Closures please contact SFMTA-Traffic Engineering at (415) 701-4500 or visit the webpage: https://www.sfmta.com/services/streets-sidewalks/apply-street-closure
A Night Noise Permit may be required in conjunction with other Public Works permits for work taking place between the hours of 8:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. (See Police Code, Section 2908/Night Noise Requirements)
In situations where a mobile food facility is requested for a private catering event, a Temporary Occupancy Permit can be issued. No monetary transactions in the public right of way will be permitted under this permit.
Recommend applying for this permit a minimum of 4 business days prior to the event date (permit date). The "No Parking" signs will need to be posted at the site and activated a minimum of 72 hours prior to the permit date.
No exceptions will be granted.
To apply, please submit the following:
All Tow-Away Signs are provided and installed by the Permittee. Tow-Away (no parking) Signs must be posted and registered at least 72 hours in advance. For additional information, see links below:
Contact the SFMTA Tow Desk at (415) 553-1200.
Violations of this Permit and/or the Public Works Code may result in the imposition of a financial penalty of up to $1,000 per day. Nonconformance to any related City regulation may result in the revocation of the Temporary Occupancy Permit.
For more information or clarification on any of the permit requirements, please contact us at:
San Francisco Public Works • Bureau of Street-Use & Mapping
1155 Market Street, 3rd Floor • San Francisco, CA 94103
Telephone : (415) 554-5810 • Monday-Friday - map
Office Hours : 7:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Note: all cash and check transactions must be submitted before 4:00 p.m.