University Marketing & Communications

Grounds and facilities

For general information and links to appropriate resources, please see the outdoor events and reservations page from University of Washington Facilities Services.

Grounds and facilities event planning

Reserving an outdoor space on campus

At least two weeks notice is required to reserve an outdoor space on campus. You will also be required to submit a Use of University Facilities Form. For a complete list of locations and information, please see the University Guide for Events.

Tents/canopies- Now being handled by Seattle Fire Department

As of January 1, 2015 tent, occupancy, and flame permits are being handled by the Seattle Fire Department. See this page for rules and regulations. See this page for fees.

Please note: A permit is required from the Seattle Fire Department (SFD) for a tent, canopy or air supported structure in excess of 400 square feet.  (Larger than 20×20)  EXCEPTION:  Tents/canopies open on all sides (roof only) are not required to get a permit issued by the Seattle Fire department if it meets all of the following conditions:

  •    Individual maximum size of 700 square feet.
  •    Aggregate area of multiple tents placed together is 700 sq ft or less.
  •    Minimum of 12 feet clearance between the tent and any structure.

IMPORTANT!  Complete application with fee must be received at least 30 calendar days prior to the event in order to avoid a late fee of 50%. Application and/or fee received 3 or fewer business days prior to the event may not be processed and the permit not issued.

If tents are being used in conjunction with assembly events, an additional permit is required for the assembly.  The good news is, if you pay for an assembly permit, the TENT FEE IS WAIVED.  But you still need to apply for a tent permit.

Applications for temporary assembly occupancy permits must be submitted 30 days prior to the event to allow time for review and help ensure the safety of event participants.  Anything less than that incurs a 50% penalty.

See this page for fees.  To sum up:  Tent permit applications are due 10 days in advance, and cost $248.  Assembly permits are due 30 days in advance, and vary from $221 for an indoor event up to 1000 people and $221 to $741 for an outdoor event depending on the number of people.

EHS is happy to assist you with questions regarding planning and safety requirements in advance of your event, or review plans prior to submittal to the SFD.  Check out their handy flowchart for permit information. They can be reached at (206) 543-7262 or via their website.


Contact Special Events Parking Services at 206-616-8710 to help with your parking needs. To arrange reserved parking, see Special Events Arrange Parking Form.

Garbage and recycling

For complete information, see the Facilities and Services Event Recycling page. You can also email or call 206-685-2811 if you have recycling or garbage questions. To request extra containers, please follow the recycling instructions.

Serving or selling alcohol

For step by step information please see the alcohol page here. You can also visit Frequently Asked Questions from the Special Programs Office, or contact Mei-Chun Woo at 206-543-9233.

To apply for a Banquet Permit online, see Authorization to Apply for a Banquet Permit.

Food service oermits, off campus caterers

Email Abebe Aberra or call 206-616-1623 if you are having a barbecue or food not catered by the University. See the Online Application for Temporary Food Service Event for information.


For general questions and assistance, contact the Care Team, at 206-685-1900.

Likewise, if you’d like to make the campus grounds look nice for an event (leaf blowing, pressure washing, tree trimming), contact the Care Team at 206-685-1900. Please allow plenty of time before the event. A budget number will be required for services to be performed.

Custodial services

If you need extra cleaning for your event, you can submit a work request through Facilities Services, or contact the Care Team directly at (206) 685-1900. For more information, visit Facilities Services custodial pages. You will need a budget number to pay for services when ordered.

Signage, sandwich boards and bike barricade

To post signage, or to reserve sandwich boards or barricade for your event, contact the Care Team, 206-685-1900.
See Signs and Banners Guide for information and permit applications.

Power and electricity outdoors

To get power to your event, start by submitting a work request through the Care Team, or call 206-685-1900. Please have a university budget number available for extra electrical services. Red Square has power available at the brick towers, in the tree wells near the food trucks, and in the wall of Kane behind the obelisk. Contact the Care Team before using any outlets.


Visit Facilities Services website or call the Care Team at 695-1900.