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Article 9 - Sign Standards

17.9.1 - General
17.9.1.1 - Purpose and Intent

This Article establishes the standards for the design, location, installation and maintenance of signs on private property. Signs are an important means of visual communication for organizations and businesses for location identification and way-finding. The intent of this Article is to provide standards that result in a reasonable balance between the right of an individual to identify a business or activity location and the right of the public to be protected from the visual discord that results from the unrestricted proliferation of signs. Regulations contained in this Article are a result of consideration of the compatibility of signs with adjacent land uses and the total visual environment of a particular area and the entire community.
The purpose of these sign standards is to:
A. Protect the public from hazardous conditions which result from structurally unsafe signage;
B. Ensure that signage does not obscure or distract the vision of motorists, such as signs which compete or conflict with necessary traffic signs and warning signals, and which may cause a severe traffic hazard;
C. Protect the public from profuse signage which distracts rather than facilitates identification of businesses and other land uses;
D. Provide appropriate identification in pedestrian-oriented areas as well as in vehicular-oriented areas, and
E. Provide a process for large commercial developments to propose signage that complements and is compatible with the site design and architecture; and
F. Generally, ensure that signage is appropriate to a particular use and location so that the cumulative effect is an attractive City environment, thereby reinforcing community values.
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24 § 1, 2012).

 


17.9.1.2 - Applicability

This Article shall govern and control the design, location, alteration, installation and maintenance of all signs permitted within all zone districts established by this Zoning Ordinance and any amendments thereto except where explicitly superseded by an approved official development plan or as identified in this Article.
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24
§ 1, 2012).

 


17.9.1.3 - Severability
If any standard of this Zoning Ordinance regulating signs is declared invalid by a court of competent jurisdiction, such decision shall not affect the validity of the remaining standards of this Zoning Ordinance regulating signs and all of such standards shall remain in full force and effect.
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24 § 1, 2012).

17.9.1.4 - Prohibited Signs
This Section identifies signage and devices that are determined to be a nuisance by the City and are prohibited in all zone districts. The City shall require the removal of any sign which is determined to be prohibited.
A. Pennants, streamers, lighter-than-air objects, and wind signs, except as provided for in Section 17.9.2.3:C.
B. Signs with light bulbs that have intermittent, flashing, rotating, scintillating, blinking, or strobe illumination.
C. Electronic Video Signs.
D. Off-premises advertising, except as provided for in Table 17.9.7.
E. Roof signs.
F. Search lights.
G. Signs painted on fences.
H. Portable signs, except as provided for in Section 17.9.2.3:C.
I. Signs which are located on, or projecting over the public right-of-way, that are not considered a public sign, bus bench sign or transit shelter sign as described in this Article, unless specifically approved by the City.
J. Signs painted on, or attached to, a licensed or unlicensed motor vehicle and parked adjacent to a public right-of-way and not driven off-site during any two-day period shall be considered to be primarily functioning as a sign.
K. Wheeled advertising devices, except for permanent signs on licensed, operable vehicles which are used daily for service and/or delivery purposes.
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24 § 1, 2012).

17.9.2 - Types of Signs
17.9.2.1 - Purpose and Intent
This Section identifies the types of signs allowed in the city. The Section is organized by signs that are exempt from the sign permit requirement and signs that require a sign permit. The Section also includes general standards for the signs. The specific standards by zone district on the number, size, height, location and illumination of signs are identified in Table 17.9.1 through Table 17.9.7.
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24 § 1, 2012).

17.9.2.2 - Signs Exempt from the Sign Permit Process
The following types of signage are determined to have minimal impact on the public, do not create traffic, safety or other hazards, are temporary in nature, and constitute a unique medium and, therefore, are exempt from the sign permit process. The following signage may be erected as described below in all zone districts without a sign permit. This signage is in addition to other allowed signs.
A. Construction Signs:
1. Construction signs are allowed as temporary signage to display the name of the project, names of design and engineering team, and telephone number for information on leasing or hiring.
2. Construction signs may be installed no earlier than issuance of a grading permit, or at issuance of a building permit if a grading permit is not required, and shall be removed when a certificate of occupancy is issued.
3. Construction signs must be affixed to a structure or fence located on the property.
B. Cornerstone Signs:
1. Cornerstone signs or tablets, giving the name of the building and date of erection, when cut into any masonry surface or attached or inlaid so as to be part of the building. Cornerstone signs shall not exceed 12 square feet.
2. Cornerstone signs greater than 12 square feet shall be considered wall signs and regulated according to this Article.
C. Directional Signs:
1. Directional signs for way-finding shall not exceed 6 square feet in size and 3 feet in height, and shall not advertise or identify a product or business. Directional signs shall not extend outside the property line and shall not be placed in any right-of-way.
2. Directional signs that do not meet the standards listed above shall be considered freestanding signs and regulated according to this Article.
D. Election Signs:
1. Election signs shall be limited to wall, window, fence and freestanding signs and shall not exceed 8 square feet in size and 42 inches in height when freestanding or the height of the fence when located on a fence.
2. Election signs shall not extend outside the property line and shall not be in any public right-of-way.
3. Election signs shall not be paper or cloth, except where banners are otherwise allowed as temporary signs.
4. Election signs shall be removed within five days after the election to which they relate.
5. Election signs that do not meet standards listed above are prohibited.
E. Flags:
1. Flags of nations, states or cities or an organization of nations, states or cities shall be allowed.
2. A maximum of three flagpoles shall be allowed per property.
3. Flagpoles shall not exceed 35 feet in height.
F. Holiday Signs and Lights:
1. Signs and lights in the nature of decorations, clearly incidental and commonly associated with any national, local or religious holiday shall be allowed.
2. Holiday signs and lights shall not advertise or identify a product or a business.
3. Holiday signs and lights shall be located so as not to conflict with traffic regulatory devices.
4. Holiday signs shall comply with the size limitation of banners as identified in Table 17.9.7.
5. Within M, C, and LI districts, holiday signs and lights shall be removed within 10 days following the holiday.
G. Ideological Signs:
1. Signs expressing ideological views shall be limited to wall, window, and freestanding signs not to exceed 12 square feet and 42 inches in height.
2. Ideological signs shall be limited to two per property and shall not advertise or identify a product or business.
3. Ideological signs shall not extend outside the property line and shall not be in any public right-of-way.
4. Ideological signs shall not be a paper or cloth banner.
H. Internal Signs:
1. Signs not visible from a public right-of-way or any adjacent property.
2. Indoor signs located within buildings shall not be located closer than 12 inches from a window.
I. Public Signs:
Public signs required or authorized for a public purpose by any law, statute or ordinance.
J. Real Estate Signs:
1. Real estate signs shall advertise only the sale or lease of real property.
2. Real estate signs shall be limited to one sign per street frontage.
3. Real estate signs on property within the R districts shall not exceed 6 square feet per face in size and 6 feet in height.
4. Real estate signs on property within the M, C, and LI districts shall not exceed 32 square feet in size if single sided or 16 square feet per face in size if double sided, and 8 feet in height.
5. Existing sign cabinets, monument or pole signs on property within the M, C and LI districts may contain temporary real estate signs. The signs shall not exceed 16 square feet per face.
6. Real estate signs shall be located a minimum of 2 feet from the back of the adjacent sidewalk and outside of the right-of-way.
7. Real estate signs shall be removed from a property within three days of the sale of the property or the move in date for rental properties.
K. Scoreboards:
1. Scoreboards shall be located adjacent to athletic fields or courts.
L. Symbols:
1. Symbols or crests of national, state, religious, fraternal and civic organizations shall be allowed.
M. Bus Bench, Transit Shelter and Other Similar Signs:
1. Bus bench signs shall be attached to a bus bench that is legally installed and maintained along a major transportation corridor in accordance with all requirements of an executed and approved agreement between the City and the provider of the bus bench.
2. Transit shelter signs shall be attached to a transit shelter that is legally installed and maintained along a major transportation corridor in accordance with all requirements of an executed and approved agreement between the City and the provider of the transit shelter stop.
3. Other off-premise signs attached to trash and recycling receptacles or other similar uses shall be in accordance with all requirements of an executed and approved agreement between the City and the provider of the item to which the sign is attached.
N. Window Signs:
1. Window sign(s) shall not exceed 25 percent of the area of first floor windows on which it is located, unless otherwise approved by the Director.
2. Window signage is not allowed in windows above the first floor of the building.
3. Illumination directed at window signs shall not be allowed.
O. Works of Art, Architectural Features and Building Decoration:
1. Architectural features or building decoration which are integral to the design of a building or provide an artistic accent shall be allowed.
2. Works of art which in no way identify a specific business, business activity, or product are not considered a sign and shall be allowed. Works of art which contain text or logos that portray a commercial message suggestive of the on-site business shall be interpreted to constitute a sign, shall be counted toward the number and size of signs permitted for the premises and shall comply with building height limits and setback requirements applicable to the property on which they are located.
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24 § 1, 2012).

17.9.2.3 - Signs Requiring a Sign Permit

A. Building Signs:
1. Awning Signs:
a. Awning signs shall be parallel to the face of the awning upon which such signs are displayed.
b. Awning signs shall not project above or below the vertical face of the awning and shall not occupy more than 75 percent of the width of the awning.
c. Graphical logos shall be allowed on a maximum of 50 percent of the sloped awning panel area.

9.1 Awning Sign
2. Major Tenant Identification Signs:
a. Major tenant identification signs shall be allowed on buildings containing three or more floors.
b. Major tenant identification signs shall be located at the top of the building below the parapet.
c. Major tenant identification signs shall not occupy more than 75 percent of the width of the building façade on which it is located.9.2 Major Tenant Identification Sign
3. Projecting Signs:
a. Projecting signs shall be attached to the building façade and must not obscure major architectural details or extend above the roof line.
b. Projecting signs shall have a clearance of 10 feet from grade level to the bottom of the sign. Maximum projection shall be 36 inches from the building to which it is attached. A license agreement may be required for projecting signs.
c. The maximum height shall be 20 feet.9.3 Projecting Sign
4. Wall Signs:
a. Wall signs shall be placed only in signable areas of a building façade, as defined in b through i, below.
b. Wall signs shall not occupy more than 75 percent of the width of the building façade of the storefront or tenant space on which it is located.
c. Wall signs shall not project more than 18 inches from the supporting wall.
d. Wall signs shall not extend above the roof line or parapet wall of a building up to two stories in height. However, no wall sign shall be located more than 25 feet above grade.
e. Each tenant is allowed to have a minimum of 30 square feet of wall signage so long as it complies with all other sign standards.
f. For tenants in multi-tenant buildings the permitted signage may be allocated to any wall on the building provided the tenants meet all other sign criteria and receive permission from the property owner or authorized manager of the multi-tenant building.
g. In the Urban and Transit contexts, flat two-dimensional cabinet signs are prohibited.
h. Tenants in the Suburban, Urban, and Transit contexts and the, Commercial and Light Industrial zone districts that are between 70,000 and 100,000 square feet in size may have additional wall signage beyond the zone district maximum up to a total of 300 square feet. No individual wall sign shall exceed the maximum wall sign allowed in the zone district as identified in Table 17.9.2 through Table 17.9.4.
i. Tenants in the Suburban, Urban, and Transit contexts and the, Commercial and Light Industrial zone districts that are over 100,000 square feet in size may have additional wall signage beyond the zone district maximum up to a total of 400 square feet. No individual wall sign shall exceed the maximum wall sign allowed in the zone district as identified in Table 17.9.2 through Table 17.9.4.

9.4 Wall Sign
B. B. Freestanding Signs:
1. Pole and Monument Signs:
a. No portion of a sign cabinet shall extend into the adjacent right-of-way and must be a minimum of 2 feet from the back of a sidewalk.
b. The pole structure and base of a freestanding sign shall be architecturally compatible with the building to which it is associated.9.5 Pole Sign and Monument Sign
2. Electronic Message Signs:
a. Electronic Message signs shall be incorporated into a freestanding or wall sign and shall not constitute more than 50 percent of the sign size.
b. The text display of the message shall not change more frequently than once per eight seconds. Each message shall transition to the next message instantaneously.
c. Electronic Message signs shall not flash, rotate, scintillate, blink, or strobe illumination when transitioning between messages. 9.6 Electronic Message Sign
3. Menu Boards:
a. Menu boards are allowed in the area adjacent to an order station for a drive through.
b. Signage or advertising contained on a menu board shall not be readable from an adjacent street.9.7 Menu Board Sign
C. Temporary Signs:
1. Banners and Banner Flags
a. Permits for banners and banner flags shall be issued for any time frame not to exceed a cumulative 90 days in a one calendar year period per tenant. Only one banner or banner flag shall be allowed at any time.
b. In addition to a banner or banner flag, a special event sign shall be issued for any time frame not to exceed a cumulative 120 days in a one calendar year period per business.
c. Banner signs shall be attached flat against the side of the building or fence. However, no more than one banner can be located on a fence at any time.
d. Banner flags shall only be allowed with the written consent of the property owner or the property owner’s management company. Banner flags shall be located a minimum of four feet from the back of sidewalk and shall not be placed in any public right-of-way.9.8 Banner Sign
2. Portable A-Frame Signs:
a. Only one portable A-frame sign shall be allowed per business.
b. A-frame signs shall be displayed during business hours only.
c. A-frame signs shall be located within 10 linear feet parallel to the front entrance to the business that the sign advertises.
d. A-frame signs shall be located so as not to create a traffic safety hazard by obstructing the vision of motorists on private property or public right-of-way.
e. A-frame signs shall be located as to allow a 5-foot clear passageway for pedestrians.
f. A-frame signs may be located within the public right-of-way, if specifically approved by the City. Portable signs may also be located on the private property where the use the sign is advertising is located.9.9 A Frame Sign
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24 § 1, 2012).


17.9.3 - Sign Design Standards
17.9.3.1 - Design, Materials and Landscaping
A. Sign design shall be complementary to the architectural style of the main building or buildings upon the site through the use of materials, colors and detailing.
B. A two dimensional sign with backing or where the logo and/or lettering are flush with the background panel is considered a cabinet sign.
C. A sign without backing includes individual letters mounted on a building wall or raceway or panel where the letters protrude and are three-dimensional.
D. Landscaping:
Each freestanding sign shall be located in a landscaped area at least two times the size of the area of the sign, unless the Director determines that landscaping is inappropriate for the sign context.9.10 X sq ft
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24 § 1, 2012).

17.9.3.2 - Sign Lighting
This Section establishes the general standards for sign lighting. The specific standards for sign illumination by zone district are identified in Table 17.9.1 through Table 17.9.7. Sign illumination shall complement, not overpower, the overall composition of the site.
A. The light source of signs shall not be visible from adjacent properties.
B. The light reading at 10 feet from the property line on an adjacent property shall be 1-foot candle of light or less.
C. Permanent signs within residential zone districts may be illuminated if they meet the following criteria:
1. The sign is at least 100 feet away from the closest building occupied as a residence, provided however that the Director may authorize a smaller distance if it is determined that the orientation and character of the sign and nearby residence is such that the sign will not adversely impact the residence.
2. The sign identifies a use which lawfully exists in a residential zone district as a permitted or nonconforming use.
3. The source of illumination is within the sign cabinet or mounted on the ground. Illumination by means of neon tubing is not allowed except where indicated in Table 17.9.1 through Table 17.9.7.
4. The use which is identified by the sign has frontage on an arterial or collector street.
5. Illumination ceases between the hours of 9:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m., except signs permitted for medical services and public services such as police and fire, which are provided on a 24-hour basis, and signs for other traffic safety purposes.
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24 § 1, 2012).

17.9.3.3 - Measuring Signs

The area of a sign shall be measured in conformance with the regulations identified in this Section. The structure or bracing of a sign shall be omitted from measurement, unless such structure or bracing is made part of the message or face of the sign.
A. Area Measurements of Signs:
1. Each area of a sign face that can be enclosed by a line or an imaginary line shall be considered one sign.

9.11 Sign with star
2. The area measurement of a sign contained within a cabinet or frame shall include the total area of the cabinet or frame.

 9.12 Sign Contained by frames
3. The area measurement of a sign that displays individual letters on a wall, awning or canopy or as pan channel letters shall be determined by encompassing all the letters in a geometric form of no more than 12 rectilinear lines at right angles to each other.9.13 Signs Individual letters on wall
4. The total surface area of multiple unit signs includes vertical and horizontal spacing between signs.

9.14 Sign 1 Sign 2 Sign 3 
5. The area measurement of freestanding and projecting signs that have two parallel faces shall be measured by the area of one sign face.
6. The area measurement of freestanding and projecting signs that have two faces that are not parallel, such as a V-shaped, triangles or cubes, and the angles where the sides meet is greater than 90 degrees shall be determined by the smallest circle, square or rectangle that could enclose the shape as viewed by a viewer.9.15 Sign 90
7. Spherical, Free-form, Sculptural and other Non-Planar Signs:
The sign area shall be the sum of the areas of the vertical faces of the smallest six-sided polyhedron that will encompass the sign structure and which may be seen at the same time from a viewer’s perspective.9.16 Mug
B. Height Determination:
The height of a freestanding sign shall be measured from the higher of either:
1. The top of the sign to the lowest adjacent grade; or
2. The top of the sign to the adjacent street, access drive, or sidewalk grade.

9.17 Fresh Fruit Co Signs
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24 § 1, 2012).


17.9.4 - Signs on Nonconforming Buildings
17.9.4.1 - Purpose and Intent
The purpose of providing sign standards for nonconforming buildings is to allow flexibility in regard to the location and size of wall signs for existing buildings that do not currently meet the dimensional standards of the zone district.
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24 § 1, 2012).

17.9.4.2 - Process
The Director may modify the sign standards for wall signs on nonconforming buildings that are setback from the public street greater than the maximum setback for the zone district, as defined in Article 5. The Director shall evaluate, and may approve or approve with conditions, the request based on the following:
A. The existing site context and whether the proposed wall signs achieve a comparable result as the required sign standards; and
B. The amount of signage currently displayed or displayed by the previous tenant on the building; and
C. The impact of the proposed sign on other tenants on the property and adjacent property owners.
The maximum square footage allowed by the Director shall not exceed two times the signage allowed by this Article for signs on conforming buildings.
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24 § 1, 2012).

17.9.5 - Maintenance of Signs
17.9.5.1 - Purpose and Intent
This Section is intended to provide regulations and procedures to address signs that are in disrepair or become a hazard.
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24 § 1, 2012).

17.9.5.2 - Maintenance of Signs
A. Every sign shall be maintained in good condition at all times, as determined by the Director. Signs shall be kept neatly painted, including all metal parts and supports that are not galvanized or of rust-resistant metals. Banners and banner flags shall not be torn or in disrepair.
B. The Director shall have the authority to inspect signs to ensure they are adequately maintained and in compliance with this Zoning Ordinance.
C. If upon inspection, the Director determines a sign to be in violation of this Zoning Ordinance or a safety hazard, the Director may order the sign to be painted, maintained or removed by the property owner.
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24 § 1, 2012).

17.9.5.3 - Abandoned On-Premise Signs

A sign is determined to be abandoned at the time the business identified by the sign discontinues the business or vacates the premises.
A. Signs abandoned for a period of 30 days are hereby declared a nuisance. The Director shall require the abandoned sign be replaced or removed based on the following circumstances:
1. Signs that will likely be used by a new business re-occupying the structure may remain, but the sign face must be replaced by a blank panel until the new business occupies the premises.
2. Signs that do not meet the requirements of this ordinance for that type of sign, or for the zone district where they are located, or on sites which will be or have been cleared for redevelopment, must be removed from the property.

Table 17.9.1 - Residential Zone District Sign Standards 1

Table 17.9.1 - Residential Zone District Sign Standard 2Table 17.9.2 - Mixed Use Zone Districts-Suburban Context Sign Standards 1

Table 17.9.2 - Mixed Use Zone Districts Suburban Context Sign Standards 2

Table 17.9.2 - Mixed Use Zone Districts Suburban Context Sign Standards 3

 Table 17.9.3 Mixed Use Zone Districts - Urban Content Sign Standards - 1

Table 17.9.3 Mixed Use Zone Districts Urban Context Sign Standards 2

Table 17.9.3 Mixed Use Zone Districts Urban Context Sign Standards 3

Table 17.9.3 Mixed Use Zone Districts Urban Context Sign Standards 4

Table 17.9.4 Mixed Use Zone Districts Transit Context Sign Standards 1

Table 17.9.4 Mixed Use Zone Districts Transit Context Sign Standards 2

Table 17.9.4 Mixed Use Zone Districts Transit Context Sign Standards 3

Table 17.9.5 Commercial and Light Industrial Zone District Sign Standards 1

 17.9.5 Commercial and Light Industrial Zone Districts Sign Standards 2

Table 17.9.5 Commercial and Light Industrial Zone Districts Sign Standards 3

Table 17.9.6 Public Civic Institutional Uses 1

Table 17.9.7 Temporary Sign Standards 1
(Ord. O-2016-17 § 3, 2016; Ord. O-2015-1 § 1, 2015; Ord. O-2014-4 § 4, 2014; Ord. O-2012-24 § 1, 2012).


17.9.6 - Sign Standards by Zone District