Sign Program


No sign, whether permanent or temporary, including any supporting structure and lighting thereof, shall present any hazard to the safety of pedestrian or vehicular traffic by obstructing the flow of such traffic, by obstructing the sight lines required for the safe movement of pedestrian or vehicular traffic, by interfering with the visibility and effectiveness of any traffic control or warning device or in any other manner. Please refer to the Chapter 19.904 of the Zoning Ordinance for details concerning the sign regulations.

A zoning compliance sign permit is required prior to the erection, alteration, or relocation of any sign subject to sign guidelines established in accordance with Section 19.904. In addition, the provisions of the Building Code shall be complied with prior to the erection, alteration, or relocation of any sign.

Signs in conformance with an approved sign program or business name signs which are in conformance with the standards of the maximum allowable sign area for the site may receive approval by the Planning Division in the Community Development Department. City staff will be able to advise you on the appropriate review process. Applications must be submitted on forms provided by the Community Development Department for individual signs and sign programs that require Planning Commission's approval.

The following signs shall be subject to restrictions and limitations but are exempt from the requirements for obtaining a zoning sign permit. Please see Section 19.904.080 of Division 9 - Sign Regulations for specific restrictions and limitations of each listed sign.

  • Public signs, warnings and notices
  • Directional signs
  • Memorial Signs and Cornerstones
  • Residential Directory Signs
  • Window Signs
  • Construction Signs
  • Real Estate Signs

The following signs are prohibited in the City of Buena Park:

  • Any form of moving, oscillating, or rotating sign;
  • Inflatable signs (other than forced cold-air inflatables);
  • Portable signs, not including temporary signs which are otherwise permitted;
  • Off-premise signs (billboards), not including temporary signs which are otherwise permitted; and 
  • Roof signs.

Exception: Any property located in the Entertainment Corridor Specific Plan (ECSP) zone or Auto Center Specific Plan (ACSP) zone is subject to special sign criteria. Please refer to the development standards of ECSP and ACSP for sign regulations for these specific areas.

Application Submittal
The applicant should submit the completed application, filing fee, and other required information to the Planning staff. A planner will be assigned to review the material to make sure all the required information is provided. The applicant will be notified within 30 days after filing as to whether the application is complete or what additional information is required.

Click Sign Program to download an application

Required Information
Prepare and submit a complete set of plans and an application for each sign. A complete set of plans includes:

  • A colored graphic drawing of the proposed sign, drawn to scale. Indicate the dimensions and area of the proposed sign, including the dimensions of the letters;
  • A site plan showing lot, structure and sign dimensions and locations. Indicate the total business area;
  • Elevation(s) of building, including existing and proposed signage with dimensions;
  • Color chips and/or color brochure samples of all sign materials, including fabric, on an 8-1/2x11 sheet. (Material samples, poster board, cardboard or foam core will not be accepted);
  • All lighting specifications and/or brochures of fixtures and bulbs including lumens;
  • Colored photographs of the site and any existing signs; and
  • A complete building permit application is required for anywall sign, pylone sign, monument (ground) sign or new awning sign.

Pre-Application Conference
Prior to submitting a formal application, the applicant is advised to make an appointment with a member of the Planning staff to discuss the feasibility of the request. This will allow staff to review the request for compliance with the City's General Plan, Zoning Ordinance, applicable Specific Plans and other applicable City standards.

Planning Division Review for Planning Commission
The Planning staff will study the application by reviewing the relationship of the request with the City's Zoning Ordinance, General Plan and any applicable Specific Plans, and analyze the environmental, land use, traffic, site plan and other concerns of the proposed project. A written staff report will be prepared for the Planning Commission which will include a description of the project and staff recommendations.

Planning Commission Review
The Planning Commission will review the Sign Plan application and make a decision approving or conditionally approving the request, denying the request, or postponing the decision to a later date. The Planning Commission's decision is final, unless an appeal is filed as described below.

City Council Review
The decision of Planning Commission is final unless it is appealed to the City Council or called up for review by the City Council. The appeal must be filed within 10 working days after the date of the decision. After the appeal is filed, a public hearing will be scheduled before the City Council. To obtain appeal processing requirements, contact the City Clerk's office at (714) 562-3750.

The Planning Division is open from 7:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and closed alternating Fridays. If you have any questions, please contact the Planning Division staff at (714) 562-3620.