Sign Regulations

“The City of Mill Creek is committed to supporting our business community and keeping our City beautiful through the application of reasonable Sign Regulations.”

Mill Creek residents and businesses place a high value on the community's appearance. To maintain an attractive appearance, the City regulates signs to avoid visual clutter, ensure traffic and pedestrian safety, enhance property values, and prevent the accumulation of litter and debris.

There are three types of signs regulated by the City: permanent signs (such as monument signs and wall signs), temporary signs (such as A-Board signs, banners, and post-style commercial signs), and prohibited signs. Signs are regulated by Chapter 17.26 of the Mill Creek Municipal Code (MCMC)

Both temporary and permanent signs require permits, which are issued by the Building Division. Some permanent signs also require Design Review Board (DRB) approval. Print a copy of the Sign Regulations Brochure.

Permanent Signs Allowable sign area is calculated as follows:
  • Wall Signs - The maximum wall sign area, excluding directional and information signs not subject to design review, shall not exceed 15% of the storefront surface area.
  • Storefront surface area = 12 (average storefront height) x ____ lineal feet of building frontage. (The building frontage will be measured along the wall containing the main public entrance.)
  • Small tenants (less than 12,000 square feet) are permitted a maximum sign area equal to the lesser of 15% of the storefront surface area or 50 square feet.
  • Large tenants (more than 12,000 square feet) are permitted a maximum sign area equal to the lesser of 15% of the storefront surface area or 300 square feet.

The allowed signage may be distributed to one or more signs located on any side of the building facing a parking lot or street. In cases where a building frontage is not visible from any street and the rear of the building faces the adjoining street, the permitted sign area may be increased by 100 percent to place an additional sign on the rear of the building facing the adjoining street.

Freestanding / Monument Signs are permitted in commercial, business and industrial zone districts and are subject to size and setback requirements contained in Section 17.26.020.E MCMC. Freestanding signs are also permitted in residential zones to identify a neighborhood.



Temporary Signs The following temporary signs require a temporary sign permit:

For Lease or For Sale Signs, which advertise the premises for sale, rent or lease, or identify the project under construction, are permitted subject to specific size and setback requirements.

Off-premise Real Estate Directional Signs, typically A-Boards, are permitted only when the person sponsoring the “open house” or “sale” is in attendance and at apartment buildings with a leasing office. A-Boards are not permitted for other types of commercial businesses.

Banners-one 3 x 12 foot banner per year is permitted to celebrate a grand opening, a business anniversary, advertise a multifamily building for sale or rent, and /or announce major sales. The banner can be displayed for a period not to exceed 45 consecutive days for existing businesses and 60 days for new businesses.

Post-Style Commercial Signs - are permitted subject to the following performance standards:

  • Maximum height-4 feet
  • Maximum sign area-2 x 2 feet.
  • Sign frame shall be constructed of black wrought iron or similar metal material.
  • Sign can only be displayed during business hours.
  • One sign allowed per business.


The following is a list of some of the signs that are prohibited:

  • Permanent signs that are designed to rotate or move by any means.
  • Signs mounted on trailers.
  • Signs with exposed braces and guy wires.
  • Signs with blinking, flashing or moving lights, not including time/temperature and similar public service displays.
  • Flags or banners, balloons, or inflatable signs.
  • All off-site signs except approved temporary signs.
  • Please see MCMC Title 17.26 and the Town Center Design Guidelines for additional signs that are prohibited.

For complete legal information regarding sign regulations, refer to the Mill Creek Municipal Code.