Public Space is defined as all the publicly owned property between the property lines on a street and includes, but is not limited to, the roadway, tree spaces, sidewalks and alleys. Certain uses of public space require a permit from Public Space Management, operated by DDOT's Public Space Regulations Administration (PSRA).
DDOT has launched a web application permitting system called Transportation Online Permit System (TOPS) which will allow users to apply online for public space permits. To apply for public space permits go to tops.ddot.dc.gov . Beginning October 1, 2012, all applications for public space permits must include an electronic submission of all required materials. This can be done through the Document Upload feature found in TOPS.
Also available is the Public Space Permit Lookup Tool that is enabled by GIS (geographic information system). This system gives the public the ability to see permits on an interactive map. A user can enter a specific address or area and pull up all the Public Space Occupancy and Construction permits issued for that location or within that area, and see information including who the permits were granted to and for how long. They can also see permit applications that are pending approval and/or pending payment, and can export the data for the selected area in spreadsheet format.
However, if an applicant prefers to submit in person, then go to the Permitting Center, located at 1100 4th Street, SW, 2nd Floor, between the hours of 8:30 am and 4:15 pm, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday. On Thursday the hours are from 9:30 am to 4:30 pm. The Permit Office is on the third floor. Applicants must go to the second floor to apply for permits.
At the Permitting Center is an electronic kiosk to streamline the public space permit application process. Using the kiosk, a public space permit applicant will be able to prepare an electronic application for a permit. The kiosk will print a paper receipt that includes the receipt number, date of preparation, and a listing of the supporting documentation, such as plans, that must be submitted in person to the public space permit counter to complete the permit application and trigger the permit review process.
If you are a first-time applicant you must click on the “New User Registration” button on the login screen to establish a user name and password. A red asterisk “*” denotes a required field; the information for these fields must be entered to register and use the system. You will need to remember this user name and password in the future in order to access details of your application at any of the public space permit kiosks.
Transportation Online Permit System (TOPS) is currently available to apply for permits to operate oversize and overweight vehicles in the District of Columbia, including annual tags and single haul permits.
Frequently asked questions can be answered at the Kiosk or you may call the Permitting Office at (202) 442-4670 between 8:30 am and 4 pm, Monday through Friday, on normal business working days.
Uses of public space in the District of Columbia requires a permit from the Department of Transportation.