Civic Site Permit (Courthouse Square)

One-time, annual or recurring events using Courthouse Square, the grounds of City Hall, Comstock Mall, Jeju Way and other Civic Sites located in Downtown Santa Rosa, beyond the normal pattern of use, require a Civic Site Permit. Please review Council Policy 000-09 "Event Permits" for all requirements and restrictions.

How to Obtain a Permit

  1. Fill out a Special Event Permit application at least 30 days before but no more than one year in advance of your event, and submit with the $50 application fee online. The online system will require you to create a login. Once logged in, click on "Apply for a Special Event, Filming..." under the Recreation & Parks section. Then select "Special Event Permit" as the record type. You may save, close and return to your application as many times as needed before submitting. If you are unable to submit the application online, please use the paper application (PDF).
  2. Staff will review application and contact applicant within 15 days.
  3. A pre-event meeting may be required to establish conditions of use, other required permits and any additional fees for City services, such as police, fire, traffic control plan and parking.
  4. Applicant must fulfill all permits requirements and pay any additional fees and/or deposits. In addition to the non-refundable application fee of $50, the following permit fees will be added to your approved permit: $50/day for Civic Sites except Courthouse Square.
Courthouse SquareBasic/Non-Profit Premium/Commercial
1-250 ppl$50/day$100/day
251-750 ppl$100/day$200/day
751-1500 ppl$200/day$400/day
1501+ ppl$350/day$700/day
Add on fee for Courthouse Square side streets: $25 each per day

Permit Requirements

Insurance: General Liability Insurance in the amount of $1,000,000 is required for all events permitted through a Civic Site Permit. The City of Santa Rosa, Its officers, agents, employees and volunteers must be listed as "Additional Insured" on the corresponding Endorsement page. Please note that the insurance certificate will not be accepted without the endorsement page and exact wording shown above. Special Event insurance is available for purchase through this on-line service. For more information on purchasing Special Event insurance through the City of Santa Rosa, please contact Mirella Stevens at (707) 543-3024 or [email protected].

Other Permits: The following additional permits may be required for some events

Courthouse Square Frequently Asked Questions

When is a permit required?

A Civic Site Permit is required for any organized activity if:

  1. It may impact other users, rendering the site unavailable for routine use
  2. Alcohol sales and/or consumption may occur
  3. Business will be conducted
  4. Event equipment, including stages, booths or tents will be placed on the site
  5. Portable toilets and additional dumpsters are necessary and will be placed on site
Is a diagram of the square available?

Yes. Here is an aerial diagram of Courthouse Square.

What is required to close the Courthouse Square side streets?

A pre-approved Traffic Control Plan is available from the City. Implementing the plan is the responsibility of the applicant.

Can we reserve parking spaces for our event?

Yes. Reserved metered parking spaces will be charged a lost revenue fee per meter. For events where "No Parking" restrictions will be in effect, signs must be posted a minimum of 24 hours in advance. The cost of the "No Parking" signs and posting of signs is the responsibility of the applicant. The signs must be purchased from the City to ensure the signs meet the legal requirements for possible vehicle towing.

Is electricity available for events?

Yes. Please request access to electricity on your application. There are various options and locations for power in the square (view diagram), which can be arranged after your application is received. Any additional costs related to City staff providing access to electricity will be assessed during the review process.

Are vehicles allowed on the square?

Vehicle access may be allowed in conjunction with a permit. Please indicate on the application the type and number of vehicle(s), the purpose of the vehicle(s) and the intended location of vehicle(s), including where the vehicle(s) will enter and exit the square. Vehicle access will be conditioned on approved location(s) and duration, and weight and size limitations may be imposed to avoid damage to property.

Can we fence the entire perimeter of the Courthouse Square?

No. Fencing the entire perimeter of the square to limit access by the general public is prohibited.

What is the best way to mark vendor and/or equipment locations?

Gaffers tape is the ONLY allowable material for indicating spaces within the square and on the side streets.

What kind of notification is required to affected residents and businesses?

Depending on the impact of your event, you may be required to notify residents and businesses at least 2 weeks prior to the event. The written notice must be approved by the City before distribution and must be sent to a mailing list provided by the City.


Civic Site Permit
[email protected]

Click here to apply now