Commercial Filming Permitting
City of Saratoga Springs adopts new Commercial Film Permitting Protocols!
A wide variety of events and activities have chosen to make Saratoga Springs their home due to its natural beauty, diverse cultures, and the variety of locations available for use. Each of these events helps to contribute to the dynamic atmosphere found in Saratoga Springs. The City of Saratoga Springs Commercial Filming Application and instructions have been adopted by City Council to promote entrepreneurship within the City. The City's goal is to assist film organizers in planning safe and successful film-shoots that create minimal disruption to the surrounding communities. Upon the submission of a commercial filming application, you may be required to meet with the City’s staff to review various aspects of your film-shoot. While many city departments joined together to make this process convenient yet comprehensive, please be aware that in some cases you may have to contact other county or state agencies to complete the required application. Doing so in a timely fashion will avoid delays in processing your application. On behalf of the City of Saratoga Springs, we thank you for contributing to the spirit and vitality of our city. Best wishes for a successful film!
Commercial Filming: filming that involves the digital or film recording of a visual image or sound recording of a person, business, or other entity for a market audience. This includes recordings such as those used for a documentary, educational program, television or feature film, advertisement, or similar project. The following are general rules for film permitting within the City:
A permit is required for ALL commercial filming, outside of the noise ordinance hours.
A permit is required if a production plans to use special effects, explosives, and similar devices. (The use of Fireworks within Saratoga Springs requires specific approval via a City Firework Application.)
No film activity which involves the use of explosives, pyrotechnics, fire, smoke making machines or other special effects of this kind may be undertaken unless specifically approved by the City of Saratoga Springs Fire and Police Departments;
Productions with special effects, explosives, and similar devices must have a Certificate of Insurance stating their coverage.
Approval of the use of special effects, explosives, and similar devices may require more than two (2) weeks to process the request and will require approval by the Saratoga Springs Police Department.
Permits are NOT required for casual photographers, tourists or credentialed members of the media.
Productions using hand-held camera, props, or equipment, a camera on tripod, not asserting exclusive use of City property, not using prop weapons, prop vehicles, stunts, actors in police uniform and not requesting parking privileges for production vehicles do NOT need a permit. Standing on a City sidewalk, walkway of a City bridge or within a City park while using a hand-held camera and not otherwise asserting exclusive use of City property is NOT an activity that requires a permit.
Please use the link below to explore the nuances of commercial filming within our City. The online application is fillable and submittable to Marilyn.Rivers@Saratoga-Springs.org
If you have any questions pertaining to commercial filming within the City, please contact Marilyn Rivers at 518.587.3550 extension 2612.