Always Growing

Republican Committee of Pittsburgh


City of Pittsburgh

Municipal Code


* 423.01 Legislative intent

* 423.02 Definition

* 423.03 Signs prohibited

* 423.04 Removal of prohibited signs

* 423.05 Public nuisance

* 423.06 Notice

* 423.99 Penalty


The City Council makes the following findings:

(a)     Unauthorized signs along City roads and on utility poles are a danger because they are intended to distract motor vehicle operators and because they often obstruct views of other vehicles;

(b)     Unauthorized signs along City roads spoil the natural beauty that is an invaluable asset treasured by residents, commuters and visitors;

(c)     Residents, commuters and visitors have frequently asked City Council members what could be done to eliminate roadside signs including, but not limited to, signs supporting candidates for elected public and labor union offices and signs soliciting for a variety of business interests; and

(d)     There are a number of alternatives available to advertisers that do not have the negative impacts that signs on roadsides and utility poles have.

(Ord. 4-1998, eff. 3-16-98)

* 423.02 DEFINITION.

For the purpose of this Chapter, the following definition shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning.

SIGN. Any surface, fabric or device bearing lettered, pictorial or sculptured matter designed to convey information visually and exposed to public view; or any structure including billboard or poster panel designed to carry the above visual information.

(Ord. 4-1998, eff. 3-16-98)


Unless a permit has been issued and is valid in accordance with the provisions elsewhere in this Code, all signs are prohibited from:

(a)     The area within the right-of-way lines of all public streets, sidewalks, boulevards, highways, avenues, alleys, roads, or other public ways (the area within the right-of-way lines includes unpaved areas); and

(b)     Any utility poles or structures within the right-of-way lines.

(Ord. 4-1998, eff. 3-16-98)


(a)     Removal Procedure. Any sign found to violate this Chapter may be removed forthwith by the Department of Public Works employees or by any other City employee duly authorized by the Mayor or the Director of the Department of Public Works. If the sign is located upon a state or county right-of-way, the City may notify the designated state or county authorities of the pending violation.

(b)     Notice, storage, return. Upon removal of any sign in violation of this Chapter, a designated employee of the Department of Public Works shall keep a record of the location from which the sign was removed. Further, a reasonable attempt shall be made to contact the owner by telephone. If such attempt is successful, the owner shall be notified of the removal and of the location where the sign may be retrieved. If telephone contact is not achieved, written notice of the violation and the retrieval location may, but is not required to, be provided. In either case, the Department of Public Works shall store any removed sign for at least ten (10) days. After expiration of the ten-day period, the City shall be permitted to destroy or discard any sign.

(c)     Persons deemed responsible. The person(s), organization(s), or business(es) named or promoted on the sign posted in violation of this Chapter shall be deemed the owner responsible for the violation, absent prior notification to the Director of the Department of Public Works of another responsible party. Nothing in this Chapter shall be interpreted to make any person, organization, or business liable for any signs posted by persons over whom he/she/it has no control.

(Ord. 4-1998, eff. 3-16-98)


Any sign posted in violation of this Chapter is hereby declared to be a nuisance. In addition to any other remedy provided by this Chapter, the City may apply to a court of competent jurisdiction for an injunction to prohibit the continuation of any violation.

(Ord. 4-1998, eff. 3-16-98)

* 423.06 NOTICE.

The Director of the Department of Public Works is authorized to send written notices to individuals or organizations the Director believes have violated this Chapter or who may be inclined to do so in the future, including candidates for elected office. The notice may include a copy of this Chapter and intentions of the Director to enforce it.

(Ord. 4-1998, eff. 3-16-98)

* 423.99 PENALTY.

A violation of this Chapter shall be a summary offense. Each sign in violation of this Chapter shall constitute a separate offense. The owner of the sign and/or any person who caused the violation of this Chapter shall be subject to prosecution and fine. The fine shall be no more than three hundred dollars ($300.00) per sign and no less per sign than the total cost to the City to remove the sign (including proportionate wages and benefits for employees while removing the sign, attempting to locate the offender and storing the sign; proportionate vehicle cost, maintenance and fuel for transportation of the sign; storage costs and disposition costs).

(Ord. 4-1998, eff. 3-16-98)

Music - "Signs" - by Steppenwolf



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