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Highways Consents for Building Works in France

Use of the public highway as part of a building works project requires a particular type of administrative authorisation.

Depending on the use for which access is required the authorisation may be either a permis de stationnement or a permission de voirie.

If you need to divert traffic then you will also need a arrêté de circulation.

Permis de stationnement

A permis de stationnement is needed if you are proposing to install on the public highway either scaffolding, a skip, equipment, machinery or materials to be used in connection with the building project.

In short, any temporary occupation of the highway requires submission of a demande de permis de stationnement.

(Strictly speaking, the same requirement applies in relation to removal lorries parked temporarily on the highway.)

All highways are concerned by this rule, whether a local road or a national highway.

The relevant body to whom application should be made will depend on who is responsible for the road; the local mairie (or inter-communal body) in the case of communal roads; the conseil général in relation to a departmental road and the préfecture for national roads.

The timescale for considering the application is two months but is generally a lot less.

It is not unusual for a daily charge to be imposed for use of the highway, although the charge is generally not excessive.

The authorisation is issued in the form of an Arrêté de Voirie.

Permission de voirie

A permis de voirie is necessary where you are proposing to create an access from a private property onto a public highway (création d'un bateau) or where you wish to install pipes or cables under the highway into your property (pose de canalisations et autres réseaux souterrains) to, say, a public drain or services.

The same application process applies to the permis de voirie as applies to the permis de stationnement.

Arrêté de circulation

If in either of these uses you require that the highway is temporarily closed you will also need to apply for an arrêté de circulation to divert traffic.

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This article was featured in our Newsletter dated 06/05/2014

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