(a)   No sign shall be erected on or over public property within a distance of ten feet, measured horizontally, from any fire hydrant, traffic light, fire alarm box or street light pole, nor shall any sign be erected in any location where by reason of traffic conditions, fire, explosion hazard, it would imperil public safety or interfere with the functions of the Fire Department. No sign of Types 1, 3 and 4 shall be erected with its lowest point nearer than ten feet of the sidewalk grade; provided, however, that any sign attached to a canopy erected on or over public property pursuant to the Building Code, as amended, shall be a part of the canopy and shall comply with the clearance requirements for the canopy.
   (b)   No person shall attach any notice, sign, placard, carpet or other encumbrance or any tree, fountain, post, railing, fence or other structure in or surrounding any public park ground or boulevard.
   (c)   Between the street right-of-way line and a point seven feet behind this line it is the intent of this article to provide a minimum clear vision area in the space between 36 inches above grade and ten feet above grade, no part of any sign face, sign column or other sign appurtenances, including traffic, information signs, shall encroach into this clear vision area. Exceptions to this requirement would be when the existing building setbacks are less than seven feet, such are found along some parts of Fenton Road, Lewis Street and the like.
   (d)   The provisions of the BOCA Basic Building Code, having been adopted by the City of Flint, shall remain in full force and effect and are to be read in harmony with the provisions of this article to the extent feasible; provided, however, in the event of any conflicting provisions of this article with the BOCA Basic Building Code or any other ordinance now or hereafter in effect, the more restrictive provisions of the conflicting ordinance shall apply.
   (e)   Prohibited are signs which:
      (1)   Contain or are an imitation of an official traffic sign or signal or contain words such as “Stop,” “Go Slow,” “Caution,” “Danger,” “Detour,” “Warning” or similar words, or any other words, phrases, symbols or characters, in such a manner as to interfere with, mislead or confuse traffic;
      (2)   Are of a size, location, movement, content, coloring or manner of illumination, including but not limited to, flashing lights, which may be confused with or construed as a traffic-control device which hide from view any traffic or street sign or signal;
      (3)   Advertise any activity, business, product or service once conducted or available on the premises upon which the sign is located, but which is no longer conducted or available on the premises. The owner of the premises shall have such sign removed within 30 days after termination of the activity, business, product or service which this sign advertises. If the sign is not removed by the owner of the premises the Director of Building and Safety Inspection shall undertake to have the sign removed and the charges therefor shall be assessed against the property; or
      (4)   Contain statements, words or pictures of an obscene, indecent or immoral character, as such terms are defined by the provisions of this Code of ordinances and any other ordinance of the City of Flint dealing with obscenity.
   (f)   Illumination. All light sources used to illuminate signs shall be shielded in such a manner that passersby and building occupants within view of such signs will not be able to view the bare lamps of such illuminated signs. Signs with exposed lamps shall be approved by the Division of Building and Safety Inspection as to elements of glare. No colored lights shall be used at any location or in any manner so as to be confused with or construed as traffic-control devices.
   (g)   Signs are defined as structures and are subject to height limitations set forth herein.
   (h)   A sign not in conformance with this article shall constitute a nonconforming use of property. No nonconforming sign shall be replaced, restored, reconstructed, extended or substituted except in accordance with the provisions of this article.
(Ord. 2504, passed 6-23-1975; Ord. 2726, passed 7-23-1979; Ord. 3063, passed 7-11-1988)
   Building Code, see §§ 11-1 et seq.