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Sign Language: Community Groups Will Have Their Say

By Joe McNulty

Neighborhood civic groups like the Central Delaware Advocacy Group (CDAG) and the Old City Civic Association (OCCA) have serious concerns regarding the proposed changes to the sign-control bill to be heard by City Council in their fall session. Before disbanding, the Zoning Code Commission recognized the labyrinthine complexity inherent in the process of permitting and regulating signage in Philadelphia, so they made a special recommendation that the city address this as a separate issue. The Planning Commission has since introduced a complex rewrite of the sign bill, for which CDAG and other civic groups have a list of complex recommendations—y'know to simplify things.

Among the recommendations were calls to limit the number of signs per business—rather than regulating the total area of signage based on a formula accounting for the frontage of the building—and the establishment of a civic design review that would judge each application by a set of criteria introduced by OCCA.

No word yet on the applicability of "long-haired, freaky people" or the right of property owners to keep trespassers out or Mother Nature in.

Photo taken by Joe McNulty near the Harrisburg State Capitol

· Civic groups hope for changes to sign-control bill before City Council [PlanPhilly]