Addressing Standards


Sumner County 9-1-1 Emergency Communications District implemented a County-wide Addressing Project in 1987 to provide Enhanced 9-1-1 to the residents and businesses of Sumner County. The project assigned street names and numbers to every residence and business in Sumner County that did not already have a valid address. The project eliminated all rural route and box numbers. The project also collected landline telephone data that was integrated into the 9-1-1 database. This information allows the Emergency Communications Center (9-1-1 dispatchers) to locate anyone dialing 9-1-1 in an emergency and quickly directs the appropriate public safety agencies to the location in question. This information is CONFIDENTIAL and used only by 9-1-1 in emergencies. Location of 9-1-1 calls from cell phones are not as specific as land line calls, please review FCC 9-1-1 wireless services for a better understanding.


Addressing Authority comes from Tennessee’s Code §7-86-127


Sumner County 9-1-1 ECD is responsible for addressing the entire county with the exceptions of Portland City and White House City. Please note, if any discrepancy is found between the information provided and completion of fieldwork, Sumner County 9-1-1 ECD reserves the right to make necessary changes to addresses to correct any errors. Information required when obtaining address:

  • Tax Map and Parcel Number
  • Property Owner’s Name
  • Acreage or Lot Size
  • Type of Structure (Single Family Home; Duplex; Apartment Building; Etc.)
  • Location of driveway, structure and any other pertinent information.
Addresses are assigned based on driveway location and are not assigned where the mailbox is located or which way the house faces. Exceptions are houses on unnamed alley ways or alley ways that are too narrow for emergency vehicles.


Sumner County 9-1-1 ECD when necessary will during office hours verify driveway location if needed.


Sumner County 9-1-1 ECD maintains a database for the municipalities of existing and proposed streets in Sumner County to prevent duplication of street names. Proposed road names should be submitted to us in writing using our approval form. Before any name is approved, a thorough review of our street list and proposed road names will be completed. When choosing road names, the following information should be taken into consideration:

  • Duplicate names in its entirety or just part of the name or similar pronunciation will be denied, (Examples: Smith, Smyth or Smythe; Allen or Alan) regardless of street type used.
  • Names which may be offensive or contain double meanings will be rejected.
  • Use of frivolous or complicated words with unconventional spellings will be denied.
  • Do not use special characters in road names such as hyphens, apostrophes or dashes.
  • Avoid the use of standard suffixes, directional suffixes, prefixes, or numbers in the road name (Examples: North Blvd, Avenue of Pines, West Street, Three Doors or 3 Doors).
  • A street name should be easy to read and pronounce so that children can use the name in an emergency situation and should add to the community pride by promoting local heritage, history and traditions, as well as reflect local geography and character (historically used road names should be retained where possible)
  • Names with the same theme (i.e., flowers, states) are suggested for naming streets in an entire subdivision as a means of general identification
Engineers/Surveyors submitting a subdivision or land development plan with new streets, a paper copy or digital image of the plan (PDF, JPEG, ETC) is required and should be attached to the road name request. Road names can be reserved for a period of three (3) years from submission.

Municipalities have the final approval for all road names in any subdivision or land development plan within their municipality.

We encourage the use of correct street types to match what type of thoroughfare it is.

Examples: Court is a dead end, Alley is a narrow lane behind or between buildings, a Boulevard is a street with a median, etc.


Sumner County 9-1-1 ECD encourages the installation of street signs to identify all named roads. Street signs for public streets/roads are the responsibility of the municipality. Please check with your municipality to determine their policy on street signs for private roads.


House numbers are assigned on a 20′ increment in the city and 50′ increment in the county with even numbers on the right and odd numbers on the left. The numbers are to be in consecutive numerical sequence and no half or fractional numbers are to be used. In the event that multiple residence share a driveway, Sumner County ECD will determine if the residence receive an individual number or share a common number with a unit letter.


Any resident who rents an apartment or a business renting office space, should have a secondary location indicator (apartment or suite number) assigned to their address. This is very important. If a resident has no apartment or suite number, you must contact your landlord immediately to get a secondary number assigned. The secondary number will help Emergency Services locate the apartment or suite within the building during an emergency.


Residents should post the house number on their home per your local municipality’s specific requirements. Landlords should post the proper house number on the building and a secondary apartment or suite number. Tenants should encourage their landlord to follow the suggested policy.

The house number shall be made up of numbers and/or letters which are contrasting in color with the background on which they are affixed, as near to the front entrance as possible and practical so that the number is legible from the sidewalk (if any), the road, and the opposite side of the street–day or night. Examples are listed below. Again, please check with your municipality for their specific requirements. Examples:

  • Residences, Townhouse and “In-Town” Businesses: Numbers shall be at least four (4) inches in height.
  • Apartment Building and High-Rises: Numbers shall be at least six (6) inches in height. Apartment numbers for individual units within the complex shall be displayed on or above or to the side of the doorway to each unit.
  • Industrial and Commercial Structures: Numbers shall be at least ten (10) inches in height.
  • Private Lanes and Long Driveways: A resident whose house number is not clearly visible from the street should install a post near the end of the driveway with numbers at least four (4) inches in height, and at least forty-eight (48) inches above the ground.


It is strongly recommended residents contact their post office with their new address six to eight (6-8) weeks PRIOR to moving into your new home. Residents should notify the proper businesses. Some examples are utility companies such as telephone, electric, cable; financial institutions; credit cards; insurance companies; relatives; and, any other necessary agencies. Work with your post office for mailbox placement and mail delivery.