It is the intent of sign standards to enhance and protect the physical appearance and safety of the community, to protect property values and to promote the preservation of the community’s areas of natural and scenic beauty. It is further intended to reduce distractions and obstructions that may contribute to traffic accidents, reduce hazards that may be caused by signs projecting over public right-of-way, provide for a reasonable opportunity for all sign users to display signs for identification without interference from other signage, to provide for fair and equitable treatment of all sign users.
1. Types of Signs. For purposes of the implementation of the sign standards of this chapter:
A. Awning Sign. A building sign placed on the surface of an awning.
B. Banner Sign. A strip of flexible material such as cloth, paper or plastic securely fastened on all corners to a building or a structure and used to advertise a special event.
C. Building Sign. Any sign which is in any way attached to a building or an appurtenance of a building. All building signs shall be securely attached to the wall on which the sign is located. Permanent building signs shall be bolted to the sign wall.
D. Canopy Sign. A building sign attached to or in any way incorporated with the face or underside of a canopy, marquee, or any other similar building projection, and which does not extend beyond the projection more than six inches.
E. Changeable Copy Sign. A sign, such as a reader board, which has components which are easily changeable by physical and not electronic methods.
F. Construction Sign. A temporary sign identifying the architects, engineers, contractors, owners, subcontractors or other individuals involved in the construction of a building and/or announcing the future use of the construction project.
G. Development Sign. A sign designating the name and/or providing a map of a large-scale development or of a subdivision consisting of two or more acres.
H. Directional Sign. A sign designed to guide or direct pedestrian or vehicular traffic and containing no advertising message.
I. Drive-Thru Menu Sign. A sign displaying a menu or similar advertising for the purpose of allowing patrons of a restaurant to order food at a drive-thru facility.
J. Electronic Sign. A sign on which a changing message is displayed through the use of an electronically controlled and illuminated medium.
K. Fascia Sign. A single-faced building sign which is parallel to or at an angle of not more than 45 degrees from the wall of a building on which it is mounted. Such signs do not extend more than one foot out from the vertical walls nor more than one foot out at the sign’s closest point from non-vertical walls.
L. Ground Sign. A sign or grouping of signs which is supported by one or more up-rights or braces which are firmly and permanently anchored in or on the ground, and which is not attached to any building. All ground signs shall be constructed and anchored in a manner sufficient to keep the sign in place, the intent of this requirement being to prevent ground signs from constituting safety hazards via loose and/or blowing materials. Each application for a permitted temporary or permanent ground sign hereunder shall be submitted with plans and/or support documentation demonstrating that the proposed sign meets minimum design, structural and safety standards.
M. Identification Sign. A non-illuminating building sign displaying the name, address, crest, insignia or trademark, occupation or profession of an occupant(s) of a building or the name of any building on the premises.
N. Non-Commercial Sign. Any sign containing an ideological, political, religious or other message not related to the promotion of a commercial activity.
O. Off-Premises Sign. A sign which directs attention to a commercial use conducted off the lot on which the sign is located.
P. On-Premises Sign. A sign which has the primary purpose of identifying or directing attention to commercial activity on the lot on which the sign is located.
Q. Painted Sign. A sign painted directly on an exterior surface of a building, windows or wall.
R. Parapet Sign. A fascia sign erected on a parapet or a parapet wall.
S. Portable Sign. A commercial sign that is not firmly and permanently anchored or secured to either a building or the ground and is not expressly permitted under this chapter as a temporary sign.
T. Projecting Sign. A building sign which extends more than one foot out from the wall of the building on which it is mounted.
U. Real Estate Sign. A sign which advertises the sale, rental or lease of the premises or part of the premises on which the sign is located, including open house signs.
V. Roof Sign. A sign erected upon or above a roof of a building and affixed to the roof.
W. Swinging Sign. A sign which, because of its design, construction, suspension or attachment is free to swing or move noticeably because of the wind.
X. Temporary Sign. A sign intended for a period of display of not more than 30 days and in no event in excess of 90 days.
Y. Window Sign. A building sign or other sign affixed to the interior of a window, embedded in a window, painted on the interior of a window or hanging adjacent to a window or close to a window and obviously intended to be viewed in part or totally through the window by the public.
2. Permit Exempted Signs. Notwithstanding prohibitions set forth elsewhere in this section, the following signs may be erected without obtaining a permit in addition to the signage that is allowed in each zoning district with the appropriate zoning permit under subsections 3 and 4 below. These signs shall not be applied toward the maximum permitted sign allowance specified in this chapter.
A. Commercial signs in all residential districts provided they are not illuminated beyond the sign perimeter and the total area of utilized sign face or faces does not exceed 8 square feet or 4 square feet per sign face. Such signs shall be displayed no earlier than 24 hours before the discrete event advertised by the sign and shall be removed immediately upon completion of the event and no later than 24 hours thereafter. Ground signs erected under this section shall not exceed five feet in height. A discrete event advertised with signage that is exempted under this section shall be no longer than 48 hours in duration.
B. Identification signs not exceeding two square feet in all zoning districts.
C. Informational window signs displaying information about the operation of the businesses located on the premises, such as days and hours of operation, telephone number and credit cards accepted, in all commercial and industrial districts Such signs shall not exceed a maximum area of two square feet.
D. Non-commercial signs in all zoning districts provided they are not illuminated beyond the sign perimeter and the total area of utilized sign face or faces of the sign or signs on a parcel does not exceed thirty-two square feet. Such signs shall not be displayed for a period of more than 60 consecutive days. Ground signs erected under this section shall not exceed five feet in height in residential zoning districts. A sign erected under this section shall not be re-erected after removal for a period of one year from the date of the initial erection of the sign without first obtaining a permit for a temporary or permanent sign, as applicable. Once a sign erected under this section has been removed, a new sign may be erected and displayed for a period of not more than 60 consecutive days. Any such new sign must be erected in compliance with the requirements of this section. It is the intent of this provision to require long-term and permanent signage to meet established minimum design, structural and safety standards without regard to the content or subject matter of such long-term or permanent signage.
3. Sign Permit Required. A sign permit is required for the erection of all signs allowed by this chapter other than those specifically exempted in subsection 2 of this section.
4. Permitted Signs. The following signs are allowed as provided below when all conditions are satisfied and the required zoning permit has been approved.
A. Building Signs. Building signs are permitted in commercial and industrial districts only. In these permitted districts, on-premises building signs shall be allowed with a maximum building sign area per sign wall equal to 15% of the sign wall on which the signs are located. Building signs shall include awning signs, canopy signs, fascia signs, parapet signs, painted signs and window signs. No single building sign shall exceed 400 square feet. Identification signs are governed by subsection 2(A) above and not this section.
B. Changeable Copy Signs. Changeable copy signs are permitted in all commercial and industrial zoning districts. Changeable copy signs are also permitted in all residential zoning districts for any non-residential use that is allowed as either a permitted, conditional, provisional or special exception use in the district.
C. Construction Signs. Construction signs are allowed in all zoning districts provided they are not illuminated and do not exceed 64 square feet or 32 square feet per sign face per lot. Such signs shall not exceed a height of five feet in residential zoning districts or ten feet in non-residential zoning districts. Construction signs shall be removed prior to occupancy and use of the building.
D. Ground Signs.
(1) Residential Districts. Ground signs are permitted in all residential zoning districts for any non-residential use that is allowed as either a permitted, conditional, provisional or special exception use in the zoning district as follows:
(a) 1 permanent on-premises ground sign per lot.
(b) Total sign area not in excess of 24 square feet.
(c) Height not in excess of 8 feet.
(d) Permanent non-commercial signage is prohibited in all residential districts.
(2) Commercial and Industrial Districts. Ground signs are permitted in all commercial and industrial districts as follows:
(a) One permanent on-premises ground sign per street frontage.
(b) Two square feet of sign area per one lineal foot of lot frontage for the frontage abutting the required front yard.
(c) One square foot of sign area per one lineal foot of lot frontage for other, secondary frontages.
These allowances shall not be transferred from one frontage to another. The maximum sign face area per side shall be 100 square feet in Convenience Commercial Districts and two hundred twenty square feet in other Commercial and all Industrial Districts, except Commercial District properties adjacent to an Interstate Highway shall be a maximum of four hundred square feet per side. The maximum height shall be 25 feet in all districts.
E. Drive-Thru Menu Sign. Drive-thru menu signs are permitted in commercial zoning districts only, and only one drive-thru menu sign is permitted on a parcel, said sign not to exceed thirty-two square feet on one face.
F. Development Signs. Permanent development signs are allowed in all zoning districts upon approval of a conditional use permit as required by Section 165.50, submittal and approval of a site plan in compliance with Section 165.52, submittal and approval of a plan for sign maintenance that includes a designation of the party responsible for maintenance of the sign, and the following design standards are met:
(1) Permanent Development Signs:
(a) The sign shall be a ground sign.
(b) The sign may be divided into two signs located on both sides of a street provided the sum of the two signs complies with these requirements.
(c) The sign shall be no larger than 40 square feet.
(d) The sign and other appurtenances shall be no higher than six (6) feet.
(e) The sign only includes the name of the subdivision or development and includes no advertising or the name of any commercial enterprise of any type.
(2) Long-Term Development Signs:
(a) The sign shall be a ground sign.
(b) The sign shall be no larger than 45 square feet.
(c) The sign and other appurtenances shall be no higher than six (6) feet.
(d) The sign may include the name of the subdivision or development, a map of the subdivision or development, the name and telephone number of the entity marketing the sale of the subdivision, and the name of the financial institution which is financing the subdivision or development improvements.
(e) The sign shall be removed upon the earlier of (i) sale of 70% of the lots or property in the subdivision or development, or (ii) three years from the erection of the sign.
G. Electronic Signs. Electronic signs stating only the time and temperature are allowed in the C-2 and C-3 zoning districts only.
H. Non-Commercial Signs. Non-commercial signs not otherwise expressly provided for under subsection 2(D) shall be permitted in any zoning district provided that they comply with size, structure and placement requirements for the applicable zoning district. These signs shall be applied toward the maximum permitted sign allowance specified in this chapter.
I. Real Estate Signs. Real estate signs are allowed in all zoning districts provided they are not illuminated and do not exceed 8 square feet or 4 square feet per sign face per lot in residential zoning districts or 64 square feet or 32 square feet per sign face per lot in nonresidential zoning districts. Such signs shall not exceed a height of five feet in residential zoning districts or 10 feet in nonresidential zoning districts. Such signs shall be removed within 24 hours after the sale or lease of the property. In the event that an applicant under this subsection intends to temporarily place real estate signs at multiple locations, each such real estate sign shall be deemed permitted if, prior to the placement of any such signage, the applicant receives a permit for a master real estate sign. All signs displayed under such a permit must be of identical design and dimensions and made of identical construction materials as the approved master sign.
J. Temporary Signs. Temporary signs are permitted in all zoning districts. Temporary sign permits may be renewed for up to two additional, consecutive 30-day periods, for a total display period not to exceed 90 days. Signs initially displayed as exempted non-commercial signs under subsection 2(D) above shall not be issued permits or extensions that would result in a total display period in excess of 90 days. It is the intent of this provision to require long-term and permanent signage to meet established minimum design, structural and safety standards without regard to the content or subject matter of such long-term or permanent signage.
5. Minimum Design, Structural and Safety Standards for Temporary and Permanent Signs. All signs, regardless of whether they require a permit under subsections 3 and 4 above or are exempted from the permit requirement under subsection 2 above, shall be constructed to meet minimum industry design standards for structural integrity and safety. All signs shall also be erected in compliance with the applicable traffic visibility zone requirements set forth in Section 165.37(2). Any sign that does not meet the minimum design, structural and safety standards set forth in this section, including sign location in accordance with City traffic visibility zone requirements, shall be altered, repaired, removed or relocated, as applicable, by the individual responsible for the sign within a reasonable time period after receiving written notice from the Zoning Official that the sign violates this subsection. Such written notice shall set forth a description of the violation, the location of the improper signage, the steps necessary to remedy the violation, a reasonable time period within which to complete the required remediation, a statement that if the violation is not corrected the costs of removing the sign by the City may be assessed to the responsible individual or property, and the recipient’s right to appeal the notice pursuant to Section 165.55. Failure to comply with the notice may result in removal of the sign by the City and the assessment of the costs of such removal against the responsible individual or the property on which the sign was located. If it is determined that an emergency exists by reason of improperly constructed or located signage, the City may remove the sign under this section without prior notice. The City shall assess the costs of any such emergency remedial measure to the responsible party or property after providing written notice of the actions taken, the amount of the costs to be assessed, and the recipient’s right to appeal the action under Section 165.55 of this chapter.
6. Prohibited Signs, Placements and Practices. The following signs, sign placements and sign practices are prohibited unless otherwise specifically allowed elsewhere in this chapter.
A. No sign shall project over property lines or over public property, and in no event closer than ten feet to the curb line of a public street or alley.
B. No sign shall have any revolving, flashing or intermittent lighting or changing color lighting except for electronic signs permitted elsewhere in this chapter.
C. No banners, pennants, twirling signs, balloons or other similar devices shall be permitted except as permitted elsewhere in this chapter for temporary purpose.
D. No portable signs are permitted in any zoning district.
E. No portion or part of a sign shall revolve, nor shall the entire sign revolve.
F. No roof signs are permitted in any zoning district.
G. No projecting signs are permitted in any zoning district.
H. No swinging signs are permitted in any zoning district.
I. No off-premises ground signs are permitted in any zoning district.
J. No off-premises building signs are permitted in any zoning district.
7. Abandoned Sign Removal. Abandoned signs shall be removed within sixty (60) days.