FAQs

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  • Can I attend a Safety Commission meeting?

    Yes. The meetings are held the first Wednesday of each month in the Council Chambers at 276 Fourth Avenue, Chula Vista, CA 91910.

    To learn more, please visit our Safety Commission page.

  • Can I drain my swimming pool?

    Yes. Pool water may be drained into the storm water drainage system only under the following conditions:

    • Must be free of all chemicals including hydrogen peroxide products or dechlorinating products
    • Must be free of all debris and vegetation
    • Must have an acceptable pH of 7-8
    • Must be free of algae (no green coloring)
    • Must be controlled so the flow does not cause erosion
  • Can I get red curb painted for School Bus Stop?

    There is no need to paint road to identify “school bus stop.  When a bus needs to stop, a “Stop” sign is engaged to stop traffic in both directions for students’ safety, in accordance with the California Vehicle Code.  In addition, bus stops are frequently relocated based on need and school district policies.

  • Can I get red curb painted in front of the fire hydrant by my house?

    The California Vehicle Code has established the law regarding parking near fire hydrants. Pursuant to section 22514, no person shall stop, park, or leave standing any vehicle within 15 feet of a fire hydrant.

    Generally the City does not paint red curb in front of fire hydrants due to the high cost of maintenance.  The City has thousands of fire hydrants within the city limits and maintaining 30 feet of red curb in front of all of them would take away time that can be spent on other public facilities maintenance around the City.

    If a vehicle is parked too close to a hydrant in a fire emergency, the fire department will use all means necessary to gain access to the hydrant.  In non-emergency situations a vehicle parked within 15 feet of a fire hydrant is in violation of CVC22514 and can be cited by a Police Officer or Parking Enforcement Officer.

    If there is a vehicle parked in front of a fire hydrant, please call the Police Department at (619) 691-5151.  If there is a fire emergency, call 911 immediately.

  • Can I make a park reservation online?

    You may do so by visiting the Park Reservations page.
  • Can the City install Children at Play or SLOW signs on my street?

    Children at Play signs are not recognized by the State of California or the Federal government as official traffic control devices, and are therefore not installed on public streets in the City of Chula Vista.

    Traffic studies have shown that these signs do not increase driver awareness to the point of reducing vehicle speeds or pedestrian accidents.  In fact, placement of the signs may actually increase the potential for accidents by providing a false sense of protection that does not exist and cannot be guaranteed.

  • Can you put a crosswalk at intersection?

    The California Vehicle Code (CVC) defines crosswalks as the part of a roadway that is an extension of the walkways or sidewalks at the intersection.   Unless there’s a sign saying not to cross the street there, the crosswalk already exists.

    Not all crosswalks are marked.  That’s for a good reason: studies have shown that pedestrians at intersections where there are no stop controls or traffic signals are more likely to be struck by a vehicle while in a marked or painted crosswalk than in an unmarked crosswalk.  The reason apparently is that marked crosswalks may give pedestrians a false sense of security, believing that motorists will yield to them.

    Crosswalk markings are used to guide pedestrians to an appropriate crossing location.  The markings are not nearly as visible to an approaching motorist as they are to the pedestrian.  At intersections without stop signs or traffic signals (uncontrolled intersections) where it’s obvious where pedestrians should cross, crosswalks probably shouldn’t be marked.

  • Can you wash your car in your driveway?

    Yes. However, a better choice is to wash your car on or near personal grassy areas, so you're watering the lawn rather than the street and storm drains. Or better yet, take your car to a commercial carwash.
  • How are speed limits established and how can I reduce or increase the speed limit on a particular street?

    Speed laws, as well as other traffic laws, are enacted by the State Legislature and compiled in the California Vehicle Code (CVC). 

    All states base their speed regulations on the Basic Speed Law: “No person shall drive a vehicle at a speed greater than is reasonable or prudent and in no event at a speed which endangers the safety of persons or property” (CVC 22350).

    California state law also establishes maximum speed limits. For example the maximum speed on an undivided two-lane roadway is 55 MPH (CVC 22349b).  All other speed limits are called prima facie limits, which are considered by law to be safe and prudent under normal conditions. Certain prima facie limits are established by California law and include the 25 MPH speed limit in business and residential districts and the 25 MPH limit in school zones when children are present.

    Local jurisdictions have authority to establish reduced speed limits on the basis of engineering and traffic surveys (CVC 22358).  Such surveys must include an analysis of roadway conditions, accident records and a sampling of the prevailing speed of traffic, (CVC 627).  Other factors may be considered, but an unreasonable speed limit, which is called a speed trap, may not be established, (CVC 40802).

    The Legislature has declared a strong public policy against the use of speed traps, to the extent that citations issued where a speed trap is found to exist are likely to be dismissed, particularly if radar enforcement methods are used (CVC 40803 – 40805).

    A provision of the vehicle code that California Courts have generally considered very important reads, “It is the intent of the Legislature that physical conditions such as width, curvature, grade and surface conditions, or any other condition not readily apparent to a driver, in the absence of other factors, would not require special downward speed zoning, as the basic rule of section 22350 is sufficient regulation as to such conditions” (CVC 22358.5).  The words, It is the intent of the Legislature, are intended to get the attention of traffic engineers and local jurisdictions in setting and maintaining local speed limits.  Such speed limits must be set carefully, as justified by appropriate factors, to avoid making such limits unenforceable.

    In all other areas the speed limit is set by an engineering and traffic survey which is done once every seven years for each segment of roadway.

    When traffic problems occur, concerned citizens frequently ask why we don’t lower the speed limit.  There are widely held misconceptions that speed limit signs will slow the speed of traffic, reduce accidents, and increase safety.  Most drivers drive at a speed that they consider to be comfortable, regardless of the posted speed limit.  Before and after studies have shown that there are no significant changes in average vehicle speeds following the posting of new or revised speed limits.  Furthermore, research has found no direct relationship between posted speed limits and accident frequency.

    Realistic speed limits help preserve uniformity of speed.  Uniformity of speed is valuable for a number of reasons:

    • It maintains consistency in traffic gaps for crossing traffic.
    • It enables pedestrians to more accurately judge the speed of traffic.
    • It reduces the possibility of conflict between faster and slower drivers.
    • It makes unreasonable violators more obvious to enforcement personnel.

    If you have further questions regarding the establishment of speed limits or a missing or needed speed limit sign, please call Traffic Engineering at (619) 691-5026.

    If you have concerns regarding the enforcement of speed limits please contact the Traffic Division of the Chula Vista Police Department at (619) 691-5151.

  • How can I find lot dimensions?

    Please contact Engineering Permits at (619) 691-5024.
  • How can I find out about road closures and locations where road work is taking place in the City?

    You can find this and more information by signing up with Nixle, our subscription-based e-notification service. Information will also be regularly updated to our Road Closures page.
  • How can I get a stop sign installed on a neighborhood street to slow speeders down?

    Stop signs are installed according to the California Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (CA-MUTCD) to assign right-of-way at an intersection, not to control speeding.  According to the CA-MUTCD stop signs must meet certain sets of criteria, called warrants, so there is uniformity in their use around the nation.  As stated in the Manuals, uniformity must also mean treating similar situations in the same way, so every motorist understands what is expected of them, and the control devices are respected.  Stop signs are intended to assign right-of-way at an intersection and are not an effective means of speed control.  Installation of unwarranted stop signs results in a higher incidence of drivers violating the stop signs than occurs at a warranted installation.  This increases the possibility for the occurrence of accidents and also encourages a general disrespect for all stop sign installations.  Therefore, the City will not consider installing stop signs as a remedy for speeding problems and will, instead, refer the issue to the Police Department for enforcement.

    When evaluating an intersection for all-way stop control, various factors are studied to determine the need for an installation.  The physical factors (topography) of an area, vehicle volumes and speeds, roadway alignment (vertical and horizontal curves), accident history, pedestrian volumes and available sight distance are all taken into consideration. 

    All-way stop installations are for the assignment of right-of-way.  They work best where there are comparable traffic volumes on each intersecting street.  An all-way stop study may be warranted if there are significant traffic volumes entering the intersection, if there is an accident history at the location involving accidents that are correctable by the installation of an all-way stop and if existing traffic conditions cannot be mitigated by the addition of less restrictive controls (for example, improving sight distance by the addition of red curb).  All-way stop studies are generally not warranted for low volume or minor interior residential intersections where there is no accident history or for “T”- intersections involving a cul-de-sac.

    If there is an intersection that you think we should investigate for the installation of stop signs please contact Traffic Engineering at (619) 691-5026.

  • How can I get more information?

    Visit the City's Measure P page and sign up to receive the monthly Community Connection newsletter with updates about infrastructure projects and other City events and activities.

  • How can I locate my property line?

    Please contact Engineering Permits at (619) 691-5024
  • How do I go about having a stop sign or stop light installed?

    Contact Engineering at (619) 691-5021.
  • How do I report a pothole?

    You may now report potholes online at our online Service Requests page. Potholes can also still be reported by calling (619) 460-BUMP or (619) 460-2867.
  • How do I report a streetlight out/traffic signal malfunctioning?

    You may do so by visiting the Service Requests page, and submit a work request online. You will be provided with a confirmation email with a tracking number. You may also call the Public Works Department at (619) 397-6000.
  • How do I report an illegal discharge into storm drains?

    To report an illegal discharge, dumping, or spills into storm drains, please contact the Public Works Department at (619) 397-6000.
  • How do I request a speed bump?

    Please view the City's speed bump policy.
  • How do I request an all-way stop sign?

    Write a letter requesting an all-way stop sign at a specific location and the reasons why the request is being made. Address the letter to: 

    Traffic Engineering
    276 Fourth Avenue
    Chula Vista, CA 91910.

  • How do I reserve the Mountain Hawk Amphitheater?

    The Amphitheater is used by the public on a first-come, first-served basis and cannot be reserved at this time. However, for special events please contact the Office of Communications.
  • How long can a car stay parked on public roadway?

    Since the roadways are public, they are subject to the laws of the California Vehicle Code and the Chula Vista Municipal Code.  As long as vehicles are parked correctly, they are subject to the 72-hours parking limit.  Each home is typically required to have at least a 2-car garage and driveway in order to provide sufficient off-street parking.  For any home, the vehicles should first be parked within the garage.  Secondly, the driveway should be utilized.  Third, use any legal parking space available on the local public street.

    Any vehicle exceeding that limit is subject removal by the Police or Fire Departments in accordance with sections 22651 and 22669 of the California Vehicle Code.

    If you think there is an abandoned car in your neighborhood please call the Chula Vista Police Department at (619) 691-5151.

  • How often are the sewer main lines cleaned?

    The sewer main lines are generally cleaned on a yearly basis.
  • How to report traffic signal lights and street light malfunction?

    You can report malfunctioning traffic signal lights and street lights 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to the Police Department at (619) 691-5151 or during normal business hours to Public Works – Operations at (619) 397-6000. You may also do so online by visiting our Service Requests page.


  • I have questions regarding the SR-125 toll road. Who should I contact?

    Please contact South Bay Expressway at (619) 661-7070 or email them at customerservice@southbayexpressway.com.
  • I want to have an event in one of the City parks, do I need a reservation?

    It is unlawful in a City park to use a group picnic shelter or other public area designated for group use of 25 or more persons without prior authorization from the City or its designees. C.V.M.C. 2.66.310
  • I was involved in a traffic accident, how do I obtain information for traffic signals and timings?

    Please contact Traffic Engineering at (619) 691-5026.
  • I'd like to reserve a gazebo or picnic area in a park, who can I call?

    All Park Reservations can now be done online by visiting Park Reservations. Learn more about City Parks.
  • Is there any coordinated adaptive traffic system in the city?

    Yes, there is an existing Adaptive Traffic Signal System, Sydney Coordinated Adaptive Traffic System (SCATS).  Currently, the City has twelve (12) intersections on adaptive signal control along portions of East H St, Telegraph Canyon Rd, and Otay Lakes Rd.  This system aims to reduce driver delay, lower emissions, and improve safety through the optimization of adaptive signal control.

  • There’s a utility company working my area. How do I go about obtaining their contact information?

    We have various informative links on the Residents page of our City Website. On this page, there is a section for Utilities under which contact information is listed.
  • What are Engineering's business hours and contact information?

    The Engineering Division of the Public Works Department is located at 276 Fourth Avenue, Building B. You can also reach us at (619) 691-5021.

    The regular business hours are:

    • 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. | Monday - Thursday
    • 9:00 a.m. - Noon | Fridays
  • What are my sewer rates and how are they calculated?

    Visit the Sewer Rates page for more information.
  • What are the daily business operating hours for the Public Works Department?

    The Public Works Department is open Monday through Thursday, from 6:30 am to 4:00 pm. We are closed every other Friday, and on the Fridays we are open, our hours are 6:30 a.m. through 3:00 p.m.
  • What are the different colored markings that I see on the streets?

    These markings identify the location of underground utilities, such as gas, water, electric, cable and phone.
  • What do I do if a vehicle is blocking my driveway?

    Contact the City of Chula Vista Police Department using their non-emergency number at (619) 691-5151.
  • What goes in your recycling bin?

    PAPERS - White paper, colored paper, letters, junk mail, dry food boxes, paper bags, cardboard, milk cartons, paper juice boxes, magazines, newspaper, catalogs, and phonebooks.

    CANS - steel/tin cans, aluminum cans, all California Redemption containers, EMPTY paint and aerosol cans.

    BOTTLES AND JARS - glass or plastic bottles and jars, all California Redemption containers.  For more information, click here.

    Please do not fill your recycling cart so full that the lid will not close.  Blowing litter contaminates and clogs waterways and storm drains.  An additional recycling cart is available at no charge, contact Republic Services at (619) 421-9400.

  • What if I already have a park reservation and want to add another air jump, have a bigger than 15x15 air jump or use another vendor like a food cart?

    The Parks Division has a Special Park Use Application for those types of requests and others that do not require additional permitting. All other events that are over 100 people need to go through the Office of Communications.
  • What if sewage is backing up in my house?

    If you are not using your service and you have sewage backing up in your home during business hours, please call the Public Works Department at (619) 397-6000. Otherwise, call the Police Department at (619) 691-5150.
  • What is a sewer lateral cleanout?

    Sewer lateral access connection for maintenance purposes. Learn more about the City's Sewer Lateral Policy. For more information, please call (619) 397-6000.
  • What is a sewer lateral?

    A sewer lateral sewer line is a privately-owned pipeline connecting a property to the publicly-owned main sewer line. For more information, please visit the Sewer Lateral page.
  • What is a speed hump and what is the speed hump policy?

    The City of Chula Vista does have a City Council Policy titled "Installation of Speed Humps for Residential Streets."  Please see the link below for specific information. A "speed hump" covers the entire width of a roadway, for a distance of about twelve feet, with a maximum height of about three inches. "Speed humps" differ significantly from the "speed bump" which are commonly found in parking lots and other private development areas. Bumps are often higher, and cover much less length of roadway, as little as one foot.

  • What is the City’s responsibility regarding my private sewer lateral?

    Please visit the Sewer Lateral Policy page for more information.
  • What is the process to have 25 mph Speed Limits posted?

    Regarding the posting of Speed Limit signs on the streets of residential areas in the City of Chula Vista, there are several factors that need to be considered. Generally, we do not post residential streets for two very basic reasons; 1) All residential streets in the State of California have a Prima Facie (“on the face of it”) speed limit of 25 M.P.H. as established by California Vehicle Code.

    This vehicle code section also defines exactly what constitutes a Residential Street, and, 2) the other reason for not posting speed limits on residential streets is simply a matter of money. We have hundreds if not thousands of residential streets in a city the size of Chula Vista, and the cost of posting speed limits on all of them, when it is already something that is enforceable by local Police Departments and should be something that all California drivers are aware of, is not a good use of the taxpayer's dollars. That is one of the reasons for the “Prima Facie” designation.

  • What kind of graffiti will the City clean up?

    The City of Chula Vista is responsible to remove graffiti from the public infrastructure only. Graffiti removal from private commercial and residential properties is the responsibility of the property owner. For more information, please call (619) 397-6000. You may also submit reports of graffiti online here.
  • What number should you call to report that your trash / recycling / yard waste was not picked up?

    Contact Republic Services at (619) 421-9400.
  • What publications does the City use to advertise bid opportunities?

    The City of Chula Vista advertises bid opportunities through the Chula Vista Star News, San Diego Daily Transcript and other various trade papers for construction within San Diego County.
  • Where can I dispose of a Christmas tree?

    Each year, Chula Vista residents can recycle their Christmas trees by placing them out at the curb with their regular trash for pick-up between December 26 and January 5. The trees must not exceed 48-inches in length. Longer trees must be cut to this size. Metal tree stands must be removed. Wooden stands are acceptable. Flocked trees will be picked-up as regular trash. City residents living in apartments should contact their apartment manager for information regarding FREE Christmas Tree Pick-Up. Trees will be collected one day a week at each apartment complex when scheduled through Pacific Waste Services.
  • Where can I dispose of household hazardous waste materials?

    Residents ONLY of Chula Vista, Imperial Beach and National City may dispose of these items at the Household Hazardous Waste Disposal Facility at 1800 Maxwell Road, within the parking lot of the Chula Vista Public Works Facility. Visit their website or call (619) 691-5122 to learn more.
  • Where can I find a list of City parks?

    Please visit the Parks homepage for more information, including a list of all City Parks and their locations.
  • Where can I find information about buying a commemorative brick for the walk of honor at Veterans Park?

    Visit the Recreation Facilities page and click on Veterans Park Center Commemorative Brick link for further details and inscription form. You can also call (619) 691-5260 for further information. 
  • Where can I find information about the Adopt-A-Park Program?

    Please visit the Adopt-A-Park Program page.
  • Where can I find information regarding bus and trolley routes/fares in Chula Vista?

    For more information, please visit www.sdmts.com.
  • Where can I find maps of City Parks?

    We now have an interactive map of our City parks, with the addresses and links to PDF versions of maps. To learn more, please visit the Parks page.
  • Where can I obtain sandbags?

    Chula Vista residents can receive up to ten sandbags (per address) by simply going to the Public Works Center with valid proof of residency. The full sandbags can be obtained at 1800 Maxwell Road. We are open Monday - Thursday from 6:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Fridays, 6:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Closed every other Friday.

    To pick up the sandbags, take the second driveway at 1800 Maxwell Road, and follow the sandbag signs around the complex.
  • Where do you dispose of old paint and other unwanted household hazardous waste?

    The City of Chula Vista's household hazardous waste collection facility is now open to the community on Wednesdays and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., except for holiday weekends. The facility is located at the City's Public Works Operations Center at 1800 Maxwell Road. Residents can bring up to 15 gallons or 125 pounds of household hazardous waste including paint, auto fluids, etc. For more information, please visit Hazardous Waste Disposal
  • Where is the sewer line for my property?

    Please contact Engineering Permits at (619) 691-5024.
  • Who can answer my questions regarding traffic safety?

    Please contact Traffic Engineering at (619) 691-5026. You may also visit the Traffic Safety page.
  • Who do I call about faded street lines/walkways?

    You may now submit requests by visiting the Service Requests page.
  • Who do I call about getting a tree trimmed/cut down?

    Requests for non-safety related tree trimming will be filled in the order received and may be addressed in the future. Please visit the Service Requests page to report such issues. You may also call (619) 397-6000 to report these issues.
  • Who do I call for sewer issues?

    Please contact the Public Works Department at (619) 397-6000.
  • Who do I call for traffic signal timing issues?

    Please visit the Service Requests page to report this and much more.
  • Who do I call to obtain speed limit surveys?

    Please contact Traffic Engineering at (619) 691-5026.
  • Who do I call to report a sidewalk in need of repair?

    You may now report sidewalk repair at our Service Requests page. However, the option of submitting your request over the phone is still available by calling the Public Works Department at (619) 397-6000.
  • Who do I call to report graffiti?

    You may do so by calling the Graffiti Hotline at (619) 691-5198. Requests for graffiti removal may now also be submitted online using our Service Requests page. If you have any further questions, please contact the Public Works Department at (619) 397-6000. To learn more about our graffiti program, please visit the Graffiti page.
  • Who do I call to trim trees away from traffic signs and/or from obstructing line of sight?

    Please visit the Service Requests page to report this and much more.
  • Who do I contact to report a damaged/missing street sign?

    You may now report damaged or missing street signs at the Service Requests page, or by calling (619) 397-6000.
  • Who is the responsible party if sewage backs up and damages my property?

    If the damage is a result of a sewer main backup, the city will provide a cleaning company, and you can submit a damage report to Risk Management.
  • Why is sediment considered a pollutant?

    Dirt and sediment are considered pollutants because excessive amounts may cause damage to our delicate aquatic ecosystem. Significant dirt and sediment will smother and suffocate aquatic plant and animal life, and destroy important habitat. Dirt and sediment also carry other pollutants to our sensitive waterways.
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