Sign proliferation prompts Colwood to revisit bylaw

Council, staff plan a full review of sign bylaw in 2016

Sandwich boards are okay in Colwood, they just might have to move over a little.

Council moved forward with a bylaw amendment that would allow additional signage, mainly sandwich boards, for businesses in the municipality. Current rules allow for only one sign per business.

“The City has no desire to clamp down on mom-and-pop businesses and those trying to get noticed,” said Coun. Gordie Logan.

“If there’s a safety issue in terms of where it’s in place, then municipal enforcement will have a look at it. But other than that, we are going to allow them, as we have allowed them for the last number of years.”

Heatherbell Road was one area that raised concerns over signage, specifically the multiple signs drawing attention to the Pacific Landing development planned on lands that currently house the Coast Collective in Pendray House.

Logan said the developers have been co-operative, mitigating the issue in a timely manner.

Following discussions regarding the lack of enforcement of the current bylaw, council decided recently to refer the topic to protective services, after hearing feedback from local business.

Under the proposed amendment, allowable signage would increase from one to three.

The placement of signs would be subject to the satisfaction of Colwood staff, who will be expected to use their “discretion and best judgement.”

City staff would consider potential public safety issues, footpath encroachment and pedestrian or vehicular sightline encroachment.

“Like a lot of bylaws, they need to catch up with current times (and) the sign bylaw is no different,” Logan said, adding that a thorough review of the bylaw is planned for 2016, with input from business. “As the city grows and evolves, so do our bylaws, so this is normal practice.”

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