A-frame signs to be discussed

Published 11:00 pm Monday, April 25, 2011

An A-frame sign on North Main Street advertises the lunch special at Baron’s Pub on Monday. Downtown business owners will discuss the regulations for the signs at a meeting Wednesday.

Downtown business owners will discuss city regulations for business signs on sidewalks during a meeting of the Downtown Business Association on Wednesday.

Cynthia Taylor, the assistant director of planning, will be the featured speaker at the meeting, which begins at 3 p.m. at Bank of America, 210 W. Washington St.

The meeting’s agenda centers on city code that prevents A-frame type signs on public sidewalks unless the property owner applies for an encroachment permit and meets a number of regulations.

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Andy Damiani, leader of the Downtown Business Association, is upset about the regulations.

“This is crazy,” he said. “People get upset about this every time they go up there to city hall.”

The A-frame signs are permitted only in the Central Business District, and must meet certain size requirements. They must be positioned to allow an eight-foot-wide area of clear sidewalk.

The colors on the sign must “blend with and compliment the overall color scheme of the street,” according to the regulations, and cannot contain “bright and obtrusive colors” like neon or Day-Glo. No more than half of each sign face may be a changeable material, like a chalkboard, and the signs must be weighted to withstand wind gusts and be made of “quality wood or metal.”

Applications for the signs cost $100, Damiani said, and are reviewed by the city manager.

“The process ought to be reasonable, not a bunch of hoops you’ve got to go over,” Damiani said.

For more information about the Downtown Business Association, call Damiani at 539-1216.