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Complex Edmonton Sign Permits


Edmonton Sign Permits

Installed Freestanding Sign Display

Although Edmonton has one of the most progressive digital signage bylaws in North America, there are still a few locations throughout the City that require careful consideration from Planning & Development officials prior to approving the LED sign permit. Such was the case with our friends Norquest College at their downtown Edmonton location.

Edmonton Sign Permits

Building Signage Artwork Rendering

We have assisted Norquest College with comprehensive signage services for their locations across the province for many years when we were approached to help them replace their existing readograph (changeable letter) displays. Their desire was to upgrade displays on their main campus building, as well as a freestanding pylons sign to modern electronic signage to better advertise and communicate the educational services they can offer to to a broader range of students, and to celebrate academic excellence and achievements.

Edmonton Sign Permit Process

Once we had decided on a design concept, the Edmonton sign permit application was made, and we began consultation with the city immediately. Not only was the zoning complex, but their location also fell within several downtown overlays (Edmonton Downtown Plan, Neighbourhood plans, ext.) which would affect every aspect of the project.

Site Plan- 750

Site Plan with Signage Locations Noted for Transportation

The first major concern came from the department of Transportation; they were concerned about safety for both drivers and pedestrians in the busy downtown location. After numerous meetings with city officials, we negotiated a solution that worked for Norquest’s advertising needs, as well as satisfied Transportation that the displays were safe by implementing 30-second hold times on messages.

Fly-By Presentation

The City then determined that we needed Edmonton Design Committee (EDC) approval. The Edmonton Design Committee review permit applications in recognized regions of Edmonton to maintain a “high-level of Urban Design” (1), and will either approve or decline the permit application; there is no opportunity to appeal their decisions.


Edmonton Sign Permits

Edmonton Design Committee Presentation Cover Page

Our presentation was complex (over 20 pages long), and took several weeks to prepare. On behalf of Norquest College, we pitched our presentation to the EDC, and answered questions to ultimately get their conditional approval.

Our Permitting Approach

Our approach to solving complex permit applications is working towards finding a balanced solution that works for the business we are representing as well as the individuals employed by the city to enforce the process. By offering collaboration and cooperation with the various governing bodies, we were able to work with the city to have the Edmonton sign permit approved.

Edmonton Sign Permit

Installed Building Signage


(1) http://www.edmonton.ca/city_government/urban_planning_and_design/edmonton-design-committee-background.aspx