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Right-of-Way Use Permits

This page provides examples of right-of-way use permit policies, procedures, and regulations for local governments in Washington State.


Several different terms are used to describe right-of-way use permits and the many activities that are regulated. For the purposes of this page, the term "right-of-way use permit" will be used generically. Other terms that are found in the sample codes and ordinances include "street use permit," "excavation permit," "special events permit," and "construction permit."

Some cities have developed comprehensive right-of-way use codes covering all uses, while others have code sections for each type of use. The following can be included in a right-of-way use permit ordinance:

  • Special events permit (not necessarily in right-of-way)
  • Right-of-way use permit
  • Accommodation of utilities in terms of standard locations, franchises (and fees), conditions of use, etc.
  • Construction or activities on private property that impact a street or road in terms of traffic volume or functionality
  • Construction and/or excavation in right-of-way including standards for pavement restoration, compaction, etc.
  • Short term non-construction uses (parades, processions, street fairs, etc.)
  • Longer term non-construction uses (seasonal sidewalk cafés, mobile vendor stands, etc.)
  • Long term non-construction uses or leases (permanent sidewalk cafés, newsstands, newspaper racks, obstructions, etc.)

Sample Right-of-Way Use Regulations

  • Bellevue Municipal Code Ch. 14.30 - Right-of-Way Use Code
  • Bonney Lake Municipal Code Ch. 12.08 - Work Within the Public Right-of-Way
  • Burien Municipal Code Ch. 12.17 - Right-of-Way Use Code - General Provisions
  • Cheney
    • Cheney Municipal Code Ch. 12.38 - Right-of-Way
    • Cheney Municipal Code Ch. 12.44 - Excavations
  • Duvall Municipal Code Ch. 8.04 - Public Improvement Development Standards
  • Edmonds Municipal Code Ch. 18.70 - Street Use and Encroachment Permits
  • Gig Harbor Municipal Code Ch. 12.02 - Encroachment Permits
  • Issaquah Municipal Code Ch. 12.12 - Excavations
  • Kent Municipal Code Ch. 6.07 - Street Use Permit
  • King County Code Ch. 14.28 - Rights-of-Way
  • Longview Municipal Code Ch. 12.30 - Use and Occupancy of Rights-of-Way
  • Poulsbo Municipal Code Ch. 12.08 - Public Property Construction
  • SeaTac Municipal Code Ch. 11.10 - Right-of-Way Use Code
  • Woodinville Municipal Code Ch. 15.42 - Fees for Work in Public/Private Rights-of-Way
  • San Juan County Code Ch. 12.04 - County Road Excavations
  • Tacoma
    • Tacoma Municipal Code Ch. 10.22 - Rights-of-Way 
    • Tacoma Municipal Code Ch. 10.24 - Streets - Installation of Utilities

Right-of-Way Manuals

Lane Rental Fee

Street Cut Mitigation

Sample Applications and Information

Recommended Resources

Last Modified: November 09, 2018