118 - Articles on Sidewalk - Madison

Ordinance #118
Streets & Alleys
Articles on Sidewalk - City of Madison

The Common Council of the City of Madison do ordain as follows:

1. Subsection (1) entitled "Unlawful to Place Articles on Sidewalk" of Section 10.25 entitled "Merchandise, Etc., Not to Be Placed on Sidewalk or Terrace" of the Madison General Ordinances is amended to read as follows:

(1) Unlawful to Place Articles on Sidewalk. except as permitted in other provision of these ordinances, no person shall place or deposit on any sidewalk or terrace or in any roadway any cask, box, crate, wood, stone, plank, boards, goods, wares, merchandise, ashes, bottles, cans or other substances or materials.

2. Subsection (1) of Section 10.31 entitled "Privileges in Streets' of the Madison General Ordinances is amended to read as follows:

(1) Privilege for an obstruction or enlargement or alteration to such obstruction beyond the lot line, or within the public street right-of-way, alley, or public ground, other than by permit issued under another provision of these ordinances, for encroachments of ninety (90) days or less, shall be granted only as provided in this section. All existing encroachments which are nonconforming to the provisions of this section are to hereafter comply with the requirements of this section. No building permits shall be issued under Section 29.05 on any premises where an encroachment exists until the requirements of this section are met, unless the Director of the Department of Planning and Development or her/his designee determines that an emergency condition exists which requires immediate remedy, provided an application for privilege in streets is submitted with the application for said building permit.

3. Section 10.32 entitled "News Boxes" of the Madison General Ordinances is created to read as follows:


(1) Purpose. To promote public health, safety, and welfare through the regulation of placement, appearance, maintenance, and insuring of news boxes in the public right-of-way.

(2) Applicability. The provisions of this ordinance shall apply to all news boxes, whether installed and maintained prior to or after the effective date of any of the provision of this ordinance. Those news boxes installed prior to the effective date of this ordinance shall be brought into compliance within thirty days of the effective date thereof.

(3) Definitions. For the purpose of this ordinance, the following words shall have the meaning indicated.

"News Box" shall mean any coin-operated or self-service box, container, or other dispenser placed in the public right-of-way for the vending of, or free distribution of newspapers or other news publications.

"Public Right-of-Way" shall mean the surface and space above and below an improves or unimproved public roadway, highway, street, bicycle lane and public sidewalk in which the City has an interest including other dedicated right-of-way for travel purposes.

"Person" shall mean any individual, corporation, company, association, firm, partnership, limited liability company or partnership, or other business entity and their lessors, transferees, and receivers.

(4) Administration. This section is administered by the Community and Economic Development and Building Inspection Units of the Department of Planning.

(5) Permit Required. No person may place a news box in the public right-of-way without having obtained a permit pursuant to this ordinance.

(6) Application. Application for a permit shall be made to the Community and Economic Development Unit. A permit shall issue within ten (10) days of the receipt of complete application materials. A complete application shall include:

(a) The name, address, and telephone number of the applicant.

(b) A list of addresses specifying the location of each news box the applicant wishes to place in the public right-of-way.

(c) A drawing of each type of news box used by the applicant including size specifications.

(d) A Certificate of Insurance showing General Liability Insurance, including Property Damage, in the amount of one million ($1,000,000) per occurrence and naming the City of Madison as an additional insured.

(e) An agreement, in a form acceptable to the City, that the applicant will hold harmless, defend, and indemnify the City, its officers, boards, committees, commissions, elected Officials, employees and agents, from and against all liability, damages, and penalties resulting from the installation, use, maintenance, or presence of the applicant's news box(es) in the public right-of-way.

(f) An application fee of fifty ($50) dollars.

(7) Appeal of Permit Denial, In the event an application is denied, the applicant shall be notified in writing of the reason(s) for denial. The applicant may appeal the decision to the Board of Public Works within thirty (30) days after the mailing of the notice of denial. Such appeal must be in writing and must state the reason(s) the applicant believes the denial was made in error. Within twenty (20) days of the request for appeal, the Board shall hold a hearing at which the applicant and the City may present and question witnesses and present oral and written argument. Within twenty (20) days after the hearing, the Board shall issue a written decision that shall affirm, reverse, or modify the determination of the Community and Economic Development Unit. Appeal of the Board of Public Works' decision shall be by Certiorari to Circuit Court and shall be commenced within thirty (30) days of the date of the decision sought to be reviewed or be waived.

(8) Fee Schedule. There shall be an annual fee of fifty dollars ($50) for the first news box and seven dollars ($7) for each remaining news box.

(9) Standards. Every permittee shall locate and maintain all news boxes as follows:

(a) No news box shall be placed within the sidewalk proper.

(b) No chaining, bolting, or other means shall be used to attach a news box to any property within the public right- of-way without prior express written permission of the owner.

(c) News boxes shall be maintained in a safe, clean, and neat condition and in good repair at all times.

(d) There shall be two (2) or more feet of open area behind any curb face.

(e) There shall be three (3) or more feet of open area behind the curb face at any bus stop, loading zone or other place where parking is prohibited or where stopping, standing or parking is otherwise restricted.

(f) There shall be at least five (5) feet between any news box and any driveway opening, fire hydrant, police or fire call box or other emergency facility.

(g) There shall be at least fifteen (15) feet between any news box and any fire station driveway, railroad track, intersecting property line at an intersection, and marked or unmarked crosswalk.

(h) A clear area shall be maintained at bus shelter openings and on the street side of bus shelters.

(i) No news box shall be used for advertising signs or publicity purpose other than that dealing with the display, sale, or purchase of the material sold or available within. Allowable advertising shall appear only once, shall be on the side of the news box facing the sidewalk, and shall not exceed 18" x 18". No news box shall be placed on Olin Terrace.

(k) No news box shall remain empty of current publications for more than fourteen (14) consecutive days.

(1) Any news box shall be removed upon ten (10) days written notice to the person named on the application for any lawful governmental purpose.

(10) Enforcement. The offices of the Community and Economic Development Unit and the Inspection Unit of the Department of Planning and Development shall enforce this ordinance.

(a) Appeals of any enforcement order or notice shall be governed by Sec. 29.18, Madison

General Ordinances.

(b) Failure to correct a violation of Section 10.32(9) or file an appeal under Sec. 10.32(10)(a) may result in a news box being summarily removed.

(c) Any person violating any provision of this ordinance shall be subject to a forfeiture of not less than twenty five dollars ($25) nor more than five hundred dollars ($500). Each day such violation continues shall be considered a separate offense.

4. Subdivision (a) of Subsection (3) entitled "Schedule of Deposits" of Section 1.08 entitled "Issuance of Citations for Violations of Certain Ordinances and Providing a Schedule of Cash Deposits" of the Madison General Ordinances is amended to read as follows: "Offense: Regulation of news boxes in public right-of-way: $50, 1st, $100, 2nd; $200, 3rd or more"