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Advertising devices

The display of an advertising device within the city may require a licence. An advertising device must have the required approval prior to its exhibition, to ensure compliance and public safety. Advertising signs may be temporary, mobile or permanent.

When a licence is not required

Subordinate Local Law No. 16.8 (Advertising Devices) 2016 lists the types of advertising devices that are exempt or require a licence.

Businesses do not require a licence for exempt advertising device types as long as their design and exhibition complies with the prescribed criteria and specific assessment criteria detailed in the above local law. Examples of advertising device types that do not require a licence (subject to compliance with prescribed criteria and assessment criteria) are:

  • Footpath sign
  • Real estate vendor sign
  • Real estate directional sign
  • Garage sale sign

Contact our Licensing and Approvals team on 07 5667 5987 if you need clarification about whether your advertising device needs a licence.

Advertising in the Southport Priority Development Area (PDA)

Advertising devices located in the Southport PDA do not require a licence. Instead the applicant is required to complete a PDA application form requesting development approval to undertake operational works to construct and exhibit the new advertising devices. No fee is involved.

Find a link to The Southport Priority Development Area application form below.

To establish if your Southport business is located in the Southport PDA, consult the Southport PDA map.

Advertising on State controlled roads or Heritage listed properties

Should your advertising device be on or over a State-Controlled road, please refer to the City’s management of advertising devices on state controlled roads document prior to displaying the sign.

Should your advertising device be on or over a heritage listed property, specific development rules apply. Advertising devices at a state heritage or adjoining a state heritage site may need approval from the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection.

Find out if your property is on the Queensland Heritage Register.

Contact us to find out if your property is on the local register.

How to apply

Complete an application for the type of advertising device licence that you wish to apply for either online or download a copy to complete offline, scan and email to the City, or alternatively submit at one of our customer service centres.

The following necessary documentation must be submitted with your application:

  • type, associated illumination and dimensions of each sign
  • image of each sign
  • site plan detailing position of sign(s) at location.

No fees are required for an advertising device licence application.

Please ensure the necessary documentation is attached to your application. If you have any questions about the application process please call us on 07 5667 5987.

If you are taking over an existing business, you may wish to apply for a Health licence search to confirm there is a current advertising device licence and to ensure the current owner is complying with the requirements.

Find a link to forms related to an advertising device licence and a health search request form below.

Making changes to a licence

Licence amendment

For changes to your business or contact information, adding or removing an advertising device, modifying the content of an advertising device or requesting a change to conditions of approval, you will need to submit an amendment application.

Licence cancellation

If you no longer wish to exhibit an advertising device, or it has been removed from display then please submit an advertising device licence cancellation.

Licence transfer

If you have sold your business or have purchased a business, then submit a completed Advertising Device Transfer form (no fees apply). In order to avoid delays don’t forget to obtain the name and signature of the existing licence holder to facilitate the quick transfer of the licence.

Licence renewal

Advertising device licences are renewed annually and are valid until 31 August of each year, unless otherwise specified by the applicant or the City (or unless cancelled or suspended). No fees apply for a licence renewal.

Lost or damaged licence - how to request a replacement

Find a link to the advertising device licence – replacement approval documentation application form below.

Fees apply for the above request and are detailed on the application form or can be seen in our Register of fees and charges. Payment can be made by:

  • cash, cheque, or credit card at any of our customer service centres
  • cheques or money orders made payable to City of Gold Coast can be mailed, along with the completed application form, to City of Gold Coast, PO Box 5042 GCMC QLD 9726.

Election signage

For information relating to the placement of election signage please refer to the summary of requirements for the placement of election signage.

City street light pole banners

For information about street light pole banners available for event organisers for the promotion of larger campaigns, please refer to the City street light pole banners page.

Non-profit organisations

For information about temporary banners and promotional signs for non-profit organisations, please refer to the Temporary signs for non-profit organisations page.

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