Information from the City of Austin website:


The Use of a Sidewalk for: Protest, Demonstration or Picketing

Protesting, demonstrations or picketing activities that uses the public sidewalk do not require a permit from the City.

There are rules that you must follow so as not to violate several laws:

  • You can not block the sidewalk where it prevents the use by other citizens
  • You can not block ingress or egress to the doors of the building
  • You can not block driveways from the street to the property
  • You can not set up tables or other obstructions on the sidewalk
  • You can not get into the street for any reason
  • You can not get on “private property” without the permission of the property owner
  • Careful consideration to the wording and/ or graphics that are placed on posters or signs should be considered. Threatening, vulgar or pornographic; words or images could prompt other citizens to complain causing police action.
  • Banners or signs may not be hung off of or attached to bridges over roadways; signs may be carried while walking on sidewalks over bridges.

To request the use of a public street to hold “March”, a Parade Permit is required 10 days prior to the date of the event. Parade Permits are approved by APD – Special Events. The permit is at web site:

If you have further questions about your particular event, you may contact: Austin Police Department – Special Events Unit at: 512-974-5032 fax 512-974-6636

Other contacts:

The use of the State Capitol grounds for an event requires permits from the State Preservation Board, 512-463-3051; and coordination with the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS), Capitol District at 512-463-3556.

The use of City Hall Plaza is arranged through the City of Austin, Building Services Division, at 512-974-3962.

A request to use City of Austin parkland is approved through the Parks and Recreation Department, reservation office, at 512-974-6797.

2 Responses

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  2. Mary SedqyMay 13th, 2012

    Will I need a permit to picket the District Attorneys office? And what is the charge if one of us were arrested – the level.

    Thank you,


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