Street and Sidewalk Activities

What is a Street and Sidewalk Activities permit?

With a Street and Sidewalk Activities permit, you can use all or part of a public street, sidewalk, alley, or plaza for a planned activity. Shared activities in our public spaces enliven our neighborhoods. They help build and strengthen our sense of community. We encourage these positive uses!

Most Street and Sidewalk Activity permits are for one-time or occasional events, but we also issue permits for year-round, recurring, and seasonal events use. We offer permits for both public and private activities. We charge lower fees for events that are open for participation by the public. See our Applicant Guide to learn more about public versus private activities.

This permit type is for small and medium size activities that meet the following criteria:

  • Events that will draw less than 300 people at one time and have less than 99 people in an enclosed space.
  • No alcohol service or consumption.
  • Street closure events must be no more than one block in length (no intersections) and not on a street with a bus route. Events on arterial streets may be considered based on the location and impacts to the transportation network.
  • Does not require substantial City resources during the activity or approvals from multiple regulatory agencies.

Events that exceed these criteria are possible with a Special Event Permit from the Office of Economic Development. See the Special Events website FAQs to learn more.

We also offer a free permit for smaller-scale community events. This may be the right scale for your event – so also check out our Block Party and Play Streets permit page.

If you are still unsure which permit is right for you, please email Include your planned dates, event location, and description. We’ll point you in the right direction!

Ready to apply?

Get the details by clicking on the Applicant Guide link below for more information on our application and review process.

Note: We ask that you submit your application 8 weeks or more before your first event date. We'll need time to review and consult with others! You can check the status of your permit online through the Seattle Service Portal. Read more about our Street Use Permit timelines and updates here.

Permit Fee and Duration

Street and Sidewalk activities permits have an issuance fee. Depending on your proposal, you may be charged fees for secondary review and inspections. For fee information, visit our How to Estimate and Pay Permit Fees page.

Please note: By City Ordinance and as part of Seattle's Downtown Activation Plan, all permit fees for PUBLIC Street and Sidewalk Activities permits have been waived effective November 5, 2023 through December 31, 2025. This waiver does not apply to PRIVATE Street and Sidewalk Activities permits. See the Applicant Guide for descriptions of Public versus Private activities.

All Street Use permits are temporary in nature and do not grant you permanent rights to occupy the public right-of-way. We may revoke permits pursuant to Seattle Municipal Code 15.04.070. If a permit is revoked or terminated, the right-of-way shall be returned to its original condition.


Greg Spotts, Director
Address: 700 5th Ave, Suite 3800, Seattle, WA, 98104
Mailing Address: PO Box 34996, Seattle, WA, 98124-4996
Phone: (206) 684-7623

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The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) is on a mission to deliver a transportation system that provides safe and affordable access to places and opportunities for everyone as we work to achieve our vision of Seattle as a thriving, equitable community powered by dependable transportation.