Advertising devices

Council regulates advertising devices and signs to ensure public safety and to maintain the local amenity.

An advertising device is any permanent structure, device, sign, or the like, intended for advertising purposes. It includes any framework, supporting structure or building feature as part of the advertisement.

Advertising devices may be temporary, mobile or permanent. They are commonly called signs, although they can be a structure, a flag or other type of device.

Council regulates advertising devices to ensure public safety and to maintain the local amenity.

Temporary signs

Council’s local law regulates temporary signs or moveable advertising devices. This can include real estate and election signs. It also includes temporary signs on public land like temporary roadside banners.

Read our information pack about managing roadsides

Roadside signs

An agreement between the Department of Transport and Main Roads and council allows certain local laws to be applied on all roads in the region.

Read about advertising devices on council and state controlled roads.

For advertising signs on power poles, refer to Energex.

Read our fact sheet about portable electronic billboards and variable message signs.

Permanent advertising signs

Permanent advertising devices, such as structures and signs, are regulated by the Sunshine Coast Planning Scheme 2014. Examples of permanent signs include:

  • a free-standing sign attached to the ground by posts or a frame
  • a sign connected to the top of a building or part of a shop awning
  • a sign painted on a flat surface like a wall or fence

Permanent signs are classified as operational work under the planning scheme. They are also regulated under the Building Regulation 2021, schedule 1 section 6.

Do I need approval for my sign?

You may need to lodge an application for your sign to carry out operational work and building work. This depends on the size, type and location of the signage proposed.

Election signage

Election signage is regulated where the sign poses risks and hazards to the public. Read about election signage requirements from the State government.

A permanent advertisement for a political party or a sitting member may need assessment under the Sunshine Coast Planning Scheme 2014.

Home-based businesses

Lawfully established home-based businesses are entitled to an advertising sign. The criteria for these are outlined in the Home based business code.

Sign maintenance

Further approval is not required for general maintenance or repainting an existing, lawfully established sign, provided the new wording is not third-party advertising.

More information

For further advice, council recommends engaging a private planning consultant.

You can request development advice services from council about specific development proposals.

Sunshine Coast Planning Scheme 2014:

Managing roadsides

Managing roadsides

Council applies local laws across all roads, including state-controlled roads, to improve attractiveness and safety.


Forms and fact sheets relating to signage on the Sunshine Coast including election signage, movable advertising devices and advertising on council and state controlled roads.