Tent Regulations

Fire Code Requirements

  1. Section 3103 Temporary tents and membrane structures
    1. 3103.2 Approval required. Tents and membrane structures having an area in excess of 400 square feet (37 m2) shall not be erected, operated or maintained for any purpose without first obtaining a permit and approval from the fire code official.

Building Code Requirements

The Building requirements below apply to Commercial Tent Requirements only.

Based on 2017 Ohio Building Code (OBC) Section 3103 Temporary Structures and 2017 Ohio Fire Code (OFC) Chapter 24 Tents and Other Membrane Structures.

Temporary Tents and Membrane Structures erected for a period of less than 180 days.

Approval (Permit) required for tents and membrane structures. For the purpose of determining required distances, support ropes and guy wires shall be considered as part of the temporary tent or membrane structure. (Section 3103.1.2 OBC)

  1. An individual tent or membrane structure with an area in excess of 400 square feet; or
  2. Multiple tents or membrane structures with an aggregate area in excess of 400 square feet when adjacent temporary tents or membrane structures are located within 12 feet of one another.


  1. Tents used exclusively for recreational camping purposes.
  2. Tents open on all sides which comply with all of the following:
    2.1. Individual tents having a maximum size of 700 square feet.
    2.2. The aggregate area of multiple tents placed side by side without a fire break clearance of 12 feet, not exceeding 700 square feet total.
    2.3. A minimum clearance of 12 feet to all structures and other tents.

The following information is required for tents over 400 square feet:

  1. Site Plan (Includes: lot dimensions, footprint of existing buildings and location of tent.)
  2. Anchorage Detail (Section 2403.9 OFC)
  3. Flame Resistant Material Certificate complying with NFPA 701 (Section 2404.4 OFC)
  4. Floor Plan for tents with 50 or more persons indicating means of egress, seating arrangement and location and type of any heating or electrical equipment. (Section 2403.6 OFC)

Tents having a square footage of 400 or less do not require a permit, but must comply with Building & Fire Codes.

An inspection is required from the Building Department when the tent is erected and ready for use.

Approved Plans with Anchorage Detail is REQUIRED On Site.

Zoning Code Requirements

From Section 1141.02(c):

  1. Tents (Residential).
    1. Tents for graduations, weddings or other similar events are permitted for a period not to exceed three (3) days and no more than two (2) times a year.
    2. No permit is required except for tents over 200 square feet.
    3. Such tent shall be placed in such location that will not interfere with access drives into or within the property, or will reduce required parking spaces.
  2. Tents Sales (Non-Residential).
    1. Tent Sales are only permitted in relation to the business conducted on the property.
    2. Tents and all display items shall maintain a 30-foot setback from all adjacent thoroughfare rights-of-ways.
    3. Such activities shall be placed in such location that will not interfere with access drives into or within the site, or reduce required parking spaces.
    4. Tents are permitted for a maximum 30-day period per calendar year. No permits are required except as required by the Ohio Basic Building Code.