SECTION 35
SIGNS

Subsections:

35.01    Purpose and Objectives

35.02    Definitions

35.03    General Requirements

35.04    Comprehensive Sign Program

35.05    Residential and Public Facility Sign Standards

35.06    Commercial Sign Standards

35.07    Resort Sign Standards

35.08    Temporary Signage

35.09    Flagpole Requirements

35.10    Nonconforming Signs

35.11    Violation; Enforcement

35.01 Purpose and Objectives

The purpose of this section is to establish regulations for signs within the city to enable communication through signs consistent with the need to regulate aesthetics and avoid clutter and the protection of free speech, to protect safety of the traveling public and to promote economic development in commercial districts.

The objectives on which the provisions and specifications regulating signs are founded are:

a.    Preserving the city’s character, scenic appeal and uncluttered appearance.

b.    Adopting balanced regulations that represent a reasonable and defensible compromise between prohibiting signs altogether and proliferation of signs of all sizes, shapes and colors, particularly along major thoroughfares.

c.    Encouraging the use of comprehensive sign programs, where applicable, to provide flexibility that will encourage creativity and quality in signage design appropriate to the character of Litchfield Park, as well as to provide adequate identification and information, and to promote traffic safety. (Ord. 14-197 § 1 (part))

35.02 Definitions

a.    Terms Defined

A-Frame Sign A temporary sign supported by its own frame in the shape of an “A” when in use, or an upside down “T”; also referred to as a “sandwich” or “tent” sign. “A-frame sign” does not include signs not visible from streets or public rights-of-way.

Abandoned Sign A sign that pertains to a business, use, time or event which no longer exists or when the purpose for which the permit for the sign was approved has been fulfilled or no longer exists.

Awning Sign A structure often made of plastic or canvas that serves as a shelter or projection over a storefront, window, door or deck that displays the name and/or logo of a commercial business.

Banner Any sign of lightweight fabric or similar material that is permanently or temporarily mounted to a pole or a building by a permanent or temporary frame at one or more edges. “Banner” includes pennants and streamers. “Banner” does not include national flags, state or municipal flags, or the official flag of any institution or business.

Billboard Sign A sign which is intended to advertise a business, commodity, service, entertainment, product, or attraction sold, offered, or existing elsewhere than on the property where the sign is located. “Billboard sign” does not include city, church, civic organization special event signs or temporary special event signs.

Building Front Footage The maximum dimension of the building front measured on a straight line parallel to any fronting street.

Business Front Footage The lineal distance of the building space occupied by the particular business measured on a straight line parallel to the face of the building in which the main entrance into that particular business is located.

City, Church, Civic Organization Special Event Sign A temporary sign used primarily to promote a special event to be held in the city by the city, a church or civic organization.

Contractor or Subcontractor Sign A temporary sign which identifies the firm, business, person(s), or entity responsible for the work or activity in progress at the location of the sign.

Development Sign A temporary sign which identifies a development in progress, or one in prospect, and which displays the name of a development, the developer’s name and contact information, and information regarding the designer and contractor for the site to which it is placed.

Directional Sign A sign whose purpose is to indicate the route to be followed in traveling to the destination named on the sign.

Directory Sign A sign whose purpose is to indicate the route to be followed to a specific business or place within a multiple-tenant commercial building or complex.

Drive-Thru/Menu Board Reader panel sign that contains menus for a drive-thru restaurant.

Fascia A parapet-type wall (see definition for parapet) used as part of the facade of a flat-roofed building and projecting not more than six feet from the building face immediately adjacent thereto and enclosing at least three sides of the projecting flat roof.

Freestanding Sign A sign mounted or erected on its own self-supporting structure that is detached from any building, fence or wall.

Garage Sale/Yard Sale Sign A sign displayed on the date when a garage sale, yard sale, moving sale, estate sale or similar event involving the occasional sale of used goods on residential property.

Grand Opening Sign A sign introducing, promoting, and/or announcing a new business, store, shopping center, office, or an established business that has new ownership or management.

Ground Level The finished grade of existing sidewalks or where there is no sidewalk, six inches above the street grade. In native terrain, ground level is the mean level of the area immediately around the sign.

Identification Sign A sign that only includes the name of a business with no additional message.

Ideological Sign A sign other than a political sign which expresses, conveys, or advocates a noncommercial message that is not related to the advertisement of any product or service or the identification of any business.

Illegal Sign Any sign except the following:

1.    A sign allowed by this section and not requiring a permit;

2.    A sign allowed by this section for which a valid permit has been issued and is in force;

3.    A sign whose permit renewal is delinquent for fourteen days or more.

Indirect Lighting A source of external illumination, either to backlight the sign, or located a distance away from the sign, but which is, itself, not visible from any normal position of view.

Internal Lighting A source of illumination entirely within the sign which makes the contents of the sign visible at night by the light being transmitted through a translucent material but wherein the source of the illumination is not visible.

Lighting The method of illuminating a sign for visibility.

Maintenance The replacing or repairing of a part of a sign without changing the wording, location, composition, or color of said sign.

Monument Sign A visually prominent, nonmovable sign, not attached to a building, which identifies a single or multiple building development.

Multifamily Complex Sign A monument sign used to identify name of multifamily development.

Multi-Tenant Building or Complex A structure or structures which houses or is intended to house a variety of separate residential living units or commercial activities.

Nonconforming Sign A sign which does not conform to the provisions of this code but which, when first constructed, was legally established.

Open House Sign A sign inviting the public for a walk-through inspection of property which is for sale or for lease.

Parapet Wall A wall extending above the plate line of a building.

Permanent Sign A sign which is intended to be displayed for an indefinite or long-lasting period.

Plate Line The point at which any part of the main roof structure first touches or bears upon an external wall.

Political Sign A sign designed, used or intended to induce voters to vote for either the election or defeat of a candidate for nomination or election to any public office, or which identifies or expresses a position, conveys a message concerning, or advocates a position on an issue in an upcoming election and includes without limitation banners, campaign signs, posted handbills and notice of any kind.

Portable Sign Any sign not permanently attached to the ground or other permanent structure; signs converted to A-frames; menu and sandwich board signs; balloons used as signs; umbrellas for advertising; does not include signs attached to or painted on vehicles parked and visible from the public right-of-way, unless said vehicle is used in the normal day-to-day operations of the business.

Public Right-of-Way or ROW Land which by deed, conveyance, agreement, easement, dedication, usage or process of law is reserved for or dedicated to the general public for street, highway, alley, public utility, pedestrian walkway or landscape purposes.

Quasi-Governmental An agency or business supported by the local, county, state or federal government but managed privately; an agency or business that, by general practice, possesses some of the legal characteristics of both the government and private sectors (e.g., a quasi-governmental healthcare agency).

Real Estate Sign A sign located at the property or premises advertising the sale, lease or rental of the property or premises upon which the sign is located.

Reader Panel Sign An on-site sign which is designed to permit immediate change of copy.

Setback The shortest straight line distance in feet from the nearest property or lot boundary to a main or accessory building, structure, sign, or the like located on the same property or lot.

Shingle Sign A sign which identifies a business or activity whose front is under an extended roof (e.g., an overhang), a covered walkway, a covered porch, or the like.

Sign Area Sign area is the sum of the areas of all permitted signs, except directional signs, street addresses or safety signs (e.g., stop engine, no smoking). Sign area shall be measured as follows:

1.    For sign copy mounted or painted on a background panel or area distinctively painted, textured or constructed, the sign area is the area within the outside dimensions of the background panel or surface.

Example Sign Copy Area

2.    For sign copy consisting of individual letters and/or graphics affixed to a wall or portion of a building that has not been painted, textured, or otherwise altered to provide a distinctive background for the sign copy, the sign area is the area within the smallest rectangle that will enclose the sign copy. Sign area shall not include any architectural enhancements, decorative embellishments or support structures so long as said support structures, decorative embellishments or architectural enhancements are appropriately scaled to the size of the copy as determined by the design review board and shall not extend more than two feet above the height of the measurable sign area.

Example Sign Copy Area

3.    Unless modified as part of a comprehensive sign program, for sign copy mounted or painted on an internally illuminated sign or internally illuminated element of a building, the entire internally illuminated surface or architectural element that contains sign copy will be counted as sign area.

Example Illuminated Sign Copy Area

4.    Unless modified as part of a comprehensive sign program, number of sign faces:

A.    One: Area of the single face only.

B.    Two: If the interior angle between the two sign faces is forty-five degrees or less, the sign area is the area of one face only; if the angle between the sign faces exceeds forty-five degrees, the sign area is the sum of the areas of the two faces.

C.    Three or more: For any sign containing three or more faces, the sign area shall be measured as the sum of areas of all the sign faces.

Example Sign Copy Area

5.    Unless modified as part of a comprehensive sign program, three-dimensional, sculptural or other nonplanar signs: Sign area will be the sum of the areas of the vertical faces of the smallest polyhedron that will encompass the sign structure.

6.    Unless modified as part of a comprehensive sign program, signs having more than one component (e.g., a service station identification/price sign combination mounted on a common base), the sign area is the area of the rectangle enclosing all components of the sign.

Example Dimensional Sign Copy Area

Example Fuel Price Sign Copy Area

Sign Copy

1.    Any device for visual communication that is used for the purpose of bringing the subject thereof to the attention of the public, but not including any flag, badge, or insignia of any local, state, or federal governmental agency.

2.    The term “sign” shall mean and include any display of any letter, numeral, figure, emblem, picture, outline, character, announcement or means whereby the same are made visible and for the purpose of attracting attention to make anything known, whether such display be made on, attached to, or as a part of, a structure, surface or thing including, but not limited to, the ground or any rock, tree, or other natural object, which display is visible beyond the boundaries of the lot or parcel of property on or over which the display appears.

Sign Height Sign height is defined as follows:

1.    Freestanding Sign

Sign height is the distance from the top of the measurable sign area to the top of curb of the public road nearest the sign, or to the crown of public road nearest the sign if no curb exists. Nonilluminated architectural embellishments may extend an additional eighteen inches in height from the highest point of sign copy.

Example Freestanding Maximum Sign Height

2.    Wall or Fascia Mounted Signs

Sign height is the distance measured from a point perpendicular to the top of the midpoint of the sign structure to the top of the finished floor of the ground floor level directly below the midpoint of the sign.

Example Midpoint of Sign

Structural Member A support that is a constituent part of any structure or building.

Subdivision Sign A monument sign or individual letters mounted on a wall to identify a residential subdivision.

Temporary Sign A sign displayed that is not permanently anchored to the ground, to a structure, or permanently affixed to a permanent sign that relates to an infrequent or sporadic activity or use. Temporary signs include, but are not limited to, open house signs, political signs, development signs, and yard sale signs.

Traffic Directional Sign Those signs whose purpose and placement are solely to define and streamline the flow of vehicular and pedestrian traffic so as to minimize congestion and promote safety.

Umbrella Sign A sign printed on or painted to an umbrella that identifies a business name or logo.

Wall Sign A sign attached to, painted on or erected against a wall of a building or structure with the face of the sign in the plane of the wall or on a surface parallel to the face of the wall and which may only be used to identify the business.

Window Sign A sign visible through and/or affixed in any manner to a window or exterior glass door that is intended to be viewable from the exterior (beyond the sidewalk immediately adjacent to the window), including signs located inside a building but visible primarily from the outside of the building.

Window Sign, Neon An illuminated tubular neon sign, not larger than four square feet in area, visible through and/or affixed in any manner to a window or exterior glass door that is intended to be viewable from the exterior (beyond the sidewalk immediately adjacent to the window), including signs located inside a building but visible primarily from the outside of the building. (Ord. 14-197 § 1 (part))

35.03 General Requirements

a.    Sign Permit

A sign permit approved by the city shall be required prior to any sign, other than those specifically exempted herein, being erected, exhibited, re-erected, altered in any material way, or relocated in the city.

1.    Illuminated Signs

Signs which are to be illuminated electrically shall require a separate electrical permit in conformity with the electrical code of the city.

2.    Permit Exceptions

A permit is not required for the following signs or sign alterations, but all such signs and alterations shall be subject to the requirements of this section:

A.    Signs expressly excepted from the requirement for a permit in this section.

B.    Repainting without changing wording, composition or colors or minor nonstructural repairs except electrical repair.

C.    Relocation of sign as required by city.

D.    Window signs, nonilluminated, and having an area of four square feet or less.

E.    One real estate sign no larger than four square feet exhibited or placed by the proprietors of properties or premises on the properties or premises advertised.

3.    Permit Application and Expiration

A.    To obtain a permit, the applicant shall file an application on a form furnished by the city. The application shall contain the location by street and number of the proposed signs and the name and address of the sign contractor. All applications shall be accompanied by the written consent of the owner, lessee, agent, or trustee having charge of the property on which the sign is posted.

B.    Every permit issued under this section shall expire and become null and void if the work authorized by such permit is not completed within ninety days from the date of such permit. Before such work can be recommenced, a new permit shall be obtained and the fee for the new permit shall be one-half of the fee required for a new permit for such work, provided no changes have been or will be made in the original plans and specifications for such work.

4.    Permit Fees

Application and fees:

A.    All applications for a sign permit shall be submitted with a fee established by the council.

B.    The fee will be refunded to the applicant if the application for permit is denied.

5.    Requirement of Plans

A.    The original and one copy of plans and specifications shall be submitted with the application for each sign larger than four square feet. Such plans shall show the size of the sign, the method of attachment or support, locations and materials to be used, and the name and address of the person who designed and set the specifications for such sign. Plans for supports for any sign subject to excessive stresses, as determined by the city engineer or building inspector, shall be accompanied by structural computations. Sufficient data shall be submitted to show that supporting surfaces and other members of an existing building to which the sign is to be attached are in good condition and are adequately strong to support the load, including the proposed sign.

B.    One copy of such plans and specifications shall be returned to the applicant at the time the permit is granted and shall indicate the permit number and date of issuance.

6.    Sign Permit

The zoning administrator or designee is authorized to issue sign permits in accordance with this section.

b.    Code Limitations

Nothing contained herein shall prevent the erection, construction and maintenance of official traffic, fire or police signs, signals, devices and markings of the state of Arizona and/or the city or other public authorities or the posting of notices required by law.

c.    Conflicting Provisions

In the event a provision in this section conflicts with another provision or another code then the more restrictive provision shall apply.

d.    Procedures and Enforcement of Code

The zoning administrator is authorized to enforce this section pursuant to the procedures set forth in this section and applicable law.

e.    Design and Construction

1.    Building Code

In addition to the requirements of this section, all signs shall conform to the requirements of the building codes of the city.

2.    Permanent Sign Materials

All permanent signs shall be constructed using structural members of materials subject to approval of the zoning administrator or designee. Nonstructural trim may be of wood, metal, approved plastics or any combination thereof.

3.    Materials for Temporary Signs

Materials proposed to be used in constructing temporary signs shall be stated in the application for the sign permit. Adequacy of the material proposed from the standpoints of stability and safety and of composition and color shall be subject to approval by the zoning administrator or designee.

f.    Lighting and Movement

1.    All wall mounted signs in the neighborhood commercial zoning district shall be constructed with reverse pan channel letters and may be backlit with no visible lighting source. The reverse pan channel letters shall be constructed of metal with no translucent material on the outward face of the letter.

2.    All wall mounted signs in the community commercial zoning district shall be constructed with either pan channel letters or reverse pan channel letters. Pan channel letters must feature a translucent material on the outward face of the letter (not clear or open) so that the internal lighting source is not directly visible. Reverse pan channel letters may be backlit with no visible lighting source and constructed of metal with no translucent material on the outward face of the letter.

3.    All freestanding monument signs shall be internally illuminated with no visible lighting source unless otherwise approved by the design review board through a comprehensive sign program.

4.    No single light source element which exceeds fifteen watts (or its equivalent) shall be used in connection with a sign or to illuminate a sign in a way that exposes the face of the bulb light or lamp when viewed from a public street or adjacent residential use.

5.    Illumination resulting from all signs and lighting on any one property in a nonresidential zone shall be shielded so that the light source elements (light bulbs) are not directly visible from property in a residential zone that is adjacent to or across a street from the property in the nonresidential zone.

6.    No internally illuminated sign, other than reverse pan channel and backlit, shall be allowed on property in a residential zone. Lighting from all light sources operated for the purposes of sign illumination on property in a residential zone shall be shielded from other property in the residential zone.

7.    Other signs including ground directional signs less than four square feet may be internally illuminated or externally illuminated. Exterior illumination shall be top mounted and shielded to aim downward only.

8.    A sign or signs or any part thereof which moves or may be moved by any means shall be prohibited.

g.    Location

1.    Obstruction of Exits

No sign shall be installed so as to obstruct any door, window or fire escape of any building or to interfere in any way with a person’s moving freely through any one of them.

2.    Traffic Hazards

No sign shall be erected in such a way as:

A.    To interfere with or to confuse traffic;

B.    To create any traffic hazard; or

C.    To obstruct the vision of motorists.

3.    Construction over Public Property

No sign shall be erected in a manner which projects over any public sidewalk, street, alley, or public place without the city’s express approval for a limited time.

h.    Maximum Size, Height, and Number of Signs, and Minimum Setbacks

The permissible areas, height, setbacks, and number of signs depend upon the type, purpose and location of the proposed sign(s) and such criteria as are defined herein in those sections and subsections pertaining to the particular sign.

i.    Signs not specifically authorized herein, temporary or permanent, are prohibited, including, but not limited to, the following:

j.    Inspections and Maintenance

1.    Inspections

Unless waived by the zoning administrator, all signs shall be subject to the following inspections:

A.    Footing inspection on all freestanding signs;

B.    Electrical inspection on all illuminated signs;

C.    Inspection of braces, anchors, supports and connections on all signs;

D.    Inspection to ensure that the sign has been constructed according to an approved application and sign permit.

2.    Inspection Markings

All signs shall be marked with the permit number. This marking shall be permanently placed by the fabricator of the sign. The permit number shall be assigned and recorded on the permit at the time the permit is issued. The permit number shall be shown on the face of the sign, preferably in the lower right-hand corner, and shall be in numbers between two and one-half and four inches high.

3.    Maintenance

Failure to maintain signage in compliance with this section or an approved sign program constitutes a violation of this section.

A.    Any sign or component of a sign which is in a damaged or deteriorated condition and constitutes a danger or hazard to public safety or a visual blight shall be promptly repaired or replaced. Surface materials and components shall be kept free of chipping, peeling, fading, cracks, holes, buckles, warps, splinters, or rusting visible from an adjacent property or street. Illuminated signs shall be maintained in good operating condition including prompt removal and replacement of all defective bulbs, light emitting diodes, fluorescent tubes, neon or other inert gas light segments, damaged or deteriorated electrical wiring, and malfunctioning control devices and related circuitry.

B.    All signs are subject to the following:

I.    Footing inspection on all freestanding signs;

II.    Electrical inspection on all illuminated signs;

III.    Inspection of braces, anchors, supports and connections on all signs;

IV.    Inspection to ensure that the sign has been constructed according to an approved application and sign permit.

C.    Abandoned Signs

Abandoned signs shall be removed. When a sign is removed, the structure behind the sign shall be restored to its original condition and color. No additional sign permits will be issued until this is completed. Any on-site sign or abandoned sign, including its supporting structure, which no longer identifies the current occupancy of the premises upon which such sign is located or otherwise fails to serve its original purpose, shall be deemed a public nuisance after a six-month lapse and shall be removed by the owner of the land or building upon which such sign is located.

k.    Sign Walkers

Sign walkers shall be permitted, subject to the following regulations:

1.    Location

Sign walkers shall be located only:

A.    At least thirty feet from a street intersection or driveway intersection measured from the back of the curb or edge of pavement if no curb exists.

B.    At least five feet from the street measured from the back of curb or edge of pavement if no curb exists.

C.    Sign walkers shall yield right-of-way to pedestrians, bicycles and all others traveling or located on the sidewalks.

D.    At grade level.

2.    Prohibited Locations

Sign walkers shall not be located:

A.    In raised or painted medians.

B.    In parking aisles or stalls.

C.    In driving lanes or driveways.

D.    On fences, boulders, planters, other signs, vehicles, utility facilities, or any structure.

E.    Within a minimum distance of twenty feet from any other sign walker.

F.    In a manner that results in sign walkers physically interacting with motorists, pedestrians, or bicyclists.

3.    Display

Signs shall be:

A.    Displayed only during the hours the business is open to conduct business.

B.    Held, worn or balanced at all times.

4.    Elements Prohibited

The following shall be prohibited:

A.    Any form of illumination, including flashing, blinking, or rotating lights;

B.    Animation on the sign itself;

C.    Mirrors or other reflective materials;

D.    Attachments, including, but not limited to, balloons, ribbons, or speakers.

l.    Requirement for Conformity

It shall be illegal for a sign to be placed or maintained in the city, except as provided in this code. (Ord. 14-197 § 1 (part))

35.04 Comprehensive Sign Program

The comprehensive sign program affords flexibility that will encourage creativity and quality in signage design appropriate to the character of Litchfield Park, as well as to provide adequate identification and information, and to promote traffic safety. All new construction or developments (residential and nonresidential) consisting of multi-tenants or multiple buildings shall be required to submit a comprehensive sign program.

a.    Consistent Themes

For all commercial projects under one ownership or controlled by a single development, a uniform standard in design and materials quality for signage apply.

b.    Flexibility

The comprehensive sign program may allow greater flexibility in sign location, number, area or proportion of sign types within the total maximum aggregate allowed, as well as height, illumination and any other standards contained herein consistent with applicable district standards, project scale, sign elements, design enhancements and visual improvements.

c.    Building Wall Mounted

Under the comprehensive sign program, wall signs may have a maximum area not to exceed 0.75 square feet for each lineal foot of the building frontage or sixty-four square feet in area, whichever is less.

d.    Approval

All comprehensive sign program submittals shall be reviewed and approved by the design review board.

e.    Evaluation Criteria

In reviewing a comprehensive sign program, the design review board evaluation shall include, but not be limited to, consideration of the following criteria: visibility and readability for sign function, location relative to traffic movement and access points, size of development, design compatibility with architectural and/or natural features of the project, context of the surrounding area and landscape enhancements. The program shall propose, and the design review board shall consider for approval, proportionate substitutions or trade-offs of signage and project enhancements.

f.    Design Elements

The comprehensive sign program shall require that certain design elements be considered and addressed. The consideration and inclusion of other design elements is encouraged to enhance the quality of the signage program and to conform to village planning concepts of the city of Litchfield Park. Comprehensive sign program preparation should include investigation of new lighting technologies and methods for incorporation, where practicable, to reduce unwanted light emission from signage.

1.    The design elements that must be described and illustrated include:

A.    Type and style of lettering and numbering;

B.    Size of lettering and numbering;

C.    Size of any logotype and/or graphic representation, which shall be included in total signage area calculations;

D.    Color of sign elements, including color of sign background;

E.    Composition of sign elements;

F.    Lighting: internal, external with manufacturer specifications pertaining to lumens;

G.    Sign materials;

H.    Construction details;

I.    Placement of sign on building;

J.    Location of monument sign(s) on the site;

K.    Relation of sign to other development signage.

2.    In addition to the otherwise permitted signage, the design review board may approve a project identification monument sign at the corner of two arterial streets or principal entry into a project; such sign shall not include tenant names and shall not exceed eight feet in height or sixty-four square feet in area.

g.    Monument Signage

One monument sign, not more than eight feet in height and width with a maximum of one identification panel for each tenant, is allowed on each arterial road frontage. Where arterial street frontage is five hundred feet or more, an additional monument sign is allowed for every additional two hundred fifty linear feet of arterial street frontage. An additional ten square feet of sign area may be approved for every one foot of height below eight feet. Location of all monument signs must be approved by the city engineer as not to interfere with vehicular sight visibility along the adjacent public streets and ingress and egress to adjacent streets or private property.

h.    Major Tenant Signage (Within a Comprehensive Sign Program)

1.    Any single building tenant occupying more than ten thousand square feet gross leasable area shall be allowed a wall sign maximum area of one and one-half square feet for each linear foot of the building frontage upon which the sign is displayed, or two hundred fifty square feet in area, whichever is less.

2.    Allowable major tenant signage may include three individual franchise identification signs and two product service signs, each not exceeding thirty square feet.

i.    Program Submittal Requirements

Consideration of the comprehensive sign program includes a two-stage review process: the first conducted by staff; the second, by the design review board.

1.    Submittal of three copies of a written presentation, in a bound format, containing all the required elements.

2.    Following review and comments by staff, the applicant shall prepare a completed revised package for consideration by the design review board.

3.    A minimum of ten copies shall be submitted to the city’s planning department a minimum of two weeks before meeting will be scheduled.

4.    City staff review and transmittal, with findings, shall accompany the program submitted to the design review board for determination that the sign program has met a higher design standard.

5.    The design review board shall review the submittal and approve, approve with stipulations or deny the application.

6.    Decisions of the design review board are appealable to the city council. (Ord. 14-197 § 1 (part))

35.05 Residential and Public Facility Sign Standards

Sign regulations govern residential and public facility districts and residential and public facility uses in planned development (PD) districts unless the signs are governed by a comprehensive sign program pursuant to Section 35.04. Any new development shall be required to submit a comprehensive sign program to be reviewed and approved by the design review board.

Subdivision Signs

Single-Family

Design

Monument style or individual letters mounted on freestanding wall.

Location

Monument style signage shall be located within a landscaped area of 2 sf per 1 sf of sign area.

Size/Area

40 sf.

Height

6' maximum.

Approval

Final location approved by city zoning administrator or designee.

 

Apartments and Condominium Signs

Multifamily

Design

1 freestanding sign located within a landscaped area of 2 sf per 1 sf of sign area. Wall mounted sign permitted as an alternative.

Location

5' setback from property line.

Size/Area

40 sf for freestanding sign.
24 sf for wall mounted sign. Must be located below roofline.
60 sf with design review board approval of a comprehensive sign program.

Height

6' maximum.

Approval

Final location approved by city zoning administrator or designee.

 

Reader Panel

All Residential and Public Facility Districts

Uses

Municipal, religious, academic institution, fraternal organizations and quasi-government.

Number

1 reader panel sign permitted.

Size/Area

20 sf.

Height

4' maximum.

Lighting

External illumination is allowed. Light source must be shielded from direct view.

Prohibited Content

No advertising of daily/weekly deals is allowed.

 

Monument for Nonresidential Uses within a Residential District

All Residential And Public Facilities Districts

Uses

Municipal, religious, academic institution, fraternal organizations and quasi-government.

Number

1 per street side.

Size/Area

24 sf.

Height

6' maximum.

Content

May include name and hours, shall include address. No advertising.

Approval

New signs subject to design review board approval.

(Ord. 14-197 § 1 (part))

35.06 Commercial Sign Standards

Sign regulations govern neighborhood commercial (NC), community commercial (CS) and regional commercial (RS) districts, and those uses in planned development (PD) districts, unless the signs are governed by a comprehensive sign program pursuant to Section 35.04. Any new development shall be required to submit a comprehensive sign program to be reviewed and approved by the design review board.

 

A-Frame Signs

All Commercial Developments

General Requirements

1. Permitted with one-time zoning administrator approved permit.
2. Displayed only during posted open hours.
3. At grade and on the property of business advertised.
4. Designed and constructed to withstand 30 mph gusts of wind.
5. Must be maintained – no chipping paint, cracks, gouges, missing letters, etc.

Number

1 per business permitted with zoning administrator or designee approved permit.

Area

6 sf maximum.

Size

2' width and 3' height.

Location

Prohibited:
1. Parking aisles or stalls, driving lanes, on trails.
2. Fences, boulders, trees, planters, other signs, vehicles, utility facilities, or any structure.
3. Within a min. 20' of A-frame signs and of any access drive or street intersection.
4. Min. 3' clearance for pedestrians on all walkways.

Design

1. Min. 1/2" high density exterior grade compressed wood, i.e., Omega or medium.
2. Density overlay board.
3. Water resistant coating/impervious to adverse weather conditions.
4. Cut vinyl graphics (zip tracks may be used).
5. No attachments (balloons, ribbons, speakers, etc.).
6. Similar materials may be approved by the zoning administrator.

Lighting

Prohibited: Any form of illumination – including flashing, blinking, rotating lights, no animation or reflective materials.

 

Awning Signs

Neighborhood Commercial

Community and Regional Commercial

Size/Area

20% maximum of front awning face.

20% maximum of front awning face.

Content

Name and/or logo. Shall not include any additional advertising.

Name and/or logo. Shall not include any additional advertising.

Sign Calculations

50% of awning sign area shall be included in aggregate sign calculations.

 

Directional Signs

Neighborhood Commercial

Community and Regional Commercial

Size/Area

6 sf.

6 sf.

Height

4'.

4'.

Maximum

25% of total center allowable sign area. Does not count against site’s allowable aggregate signage.

25% of total center allowable sign area. Does not count against site’s allowable aggregate signage.

Location

Outside of visibility triangles.

Outside of visibility triangles.

Lighting

Internal or external illumination allowed. All lighting sources must be shielded from view.

Internal or external illumination allowed. All lighting sources must be shielded from view.

Allowances

Use, number, and location approved only through comprehensive sign program and comply with other requirements.

Use, number, and location approved only through comprehensive sign program and comply with other requirements.

 

Directory Signs

Neighborhood Commercial

Community and Regional Commercial

Size/Area

24 sf max (does not count toward site’s total aggregate allowable signage).

24 sf max (does not count toward site’s total aggregate allowable signage).

Height

6'.

6'.

Lighting

May be illuminated subject to Section 35.03(f).

May be illuminated subject to Section 35.03(f).

Purpose

Used to identify the location of buildings, offices or businesses within a complex.

Used to identify the location of buildings, offices or businesses within a complex.

Allowances

Use, number, and location approved only through comprehensive sign program and comply with other requirements.

Use, number, and location approved only through comprehensive sign program and comply with other requirements.

 

Drive-Thru Restaurant Menu Boards

Neighborhood Commercial

Community and Regional Commercial

Number

NA

1 review and 1 ordering/menu board per vehicle queuing lane.

Setback

NA

45' from street side.

Visibility

NA

Front of the boards shall not be visible from any public street.

Size/Area

NA

24 sf (does not count toward site’s total allowable aggregate signage).

Height

NA

6'.

Design

NA

Freestanding menu boards shall have a monument style base matching the architecture and construction materials of the building.

Landscaping

NA

2 sf for each sf of sign area.

Lighting

NA

Internal and/or external illumination is allowed. Light sources must be shielded from view.

 

Monument

Neighborhood Commercial

Community and Regional Commercial

Number

One monument per development, except as permitted otherwise.
For multiple building developments or commercial centers 1 additional sign.

One monument per development, except as permitted otherwise.
1 per arterial frontage for multiple building developments or commercial centers.

Size/Area

24 sf for single building/tenant.
24 sf for multi-tenant/building.

24 sf for single building/tenant.
60 sf for multiple building commercial center, approved by the design review board.

Separation

Additional freestanding signs may be placed along street frontage with a comprehensive sign program. Minimum 300' between signs, max 24 sf in area and may be either a center ID sign or a multi-tenant ID sign.

Height

Max of 6'.

Max of 6' or 24 sf for single building or single tenant.

Content

Name and/or logo of business and shall include address.

Name and/or logo of business and shall include address.

Exceptions

Individual buildings/pads shall not be considered separate developments for signage purposes.

Individual buildings/pads shall not be considered separate developments for signage purposes.

Signage Calculations

Monument sign(s) for multi-tenant, multi-building or commercial center developments shall not count toward individual businesses/major tenants if their name is not part of center ID.

Monument sign(s) for multi-tenant, multi-building or commercial center developments shall not count toward individual businesses/major tenants if their name is not part of center ID.

 

Reader Panel Signs

Neighborhood Commercial

Community and Regional Commercial

Additional Uses Permitted

Municipal, religious, academic institutions, fraternal organizations or quasi-government uses.

Municipal, religious, academic institutions, fraternal organizations or quasi-government uses.

Number

1 freestanding reader panel.

1 freestanding reader panel.

Size/Area

20 sf.

32 sf.

Height

4'.

6'.

Lighting

No scrolling or flashing.

No scrolling or flashing.

Sign Area

Sign area will be included in the total site aggregate signage calculation.

Sign area will be included in the total site aggregate signage calculation.

Sign Design

Change panel and marquee signs and service station price signs shall be allowed.

Change panel and marquee signs and service station price signs shall be allowed.

 

Shingle Signs

Neighborhood Commercial

Community and Regional Commercial

Number

1 shingle sign per business.

1 shingle sign per business.

Height

8' clearance minimum.

8' clearance minimum.

Size/Area

3 sf maximum.

4 sf maximum.

Content

Name and/or logo of business. No additional advertising allowed.

Name and/or logo of business. No additional advertising allowed.

Placement

Placed perpendicular to the building immediately adjacent to the business.

Placed perpendicular to the building immediately adjacent to the business.

 

Umbrella Signs

Neighborhood Commercial

Community and Regional Commercial

Number

1 per outdoor table or service bar.

1 per outdoor table or service bar.

Height

8' clearance maximum.

10' clearance maximum.

Size/Area

3 sf maximum per umbrella.

4 sf maximum per umbrella.

Content

Name and/or logo of business. No additional advertising allowed.

Name and/or logo of business. No additional advertising allowed.

Placement

Outdoor patio and service areas, as approved by the design review board.

Outdoor patio and service areas, as approved by the design review board.

 

Wall Mounted Signs

Neighborhood Commercial

Community and Regional Commercial

Size/Area

0.67 sf / 1 linear foot.
32 sf maximum each.

0.67 sf / 1 linear foot.
50 sf maximum.

Location

May be placed on any side of the building business is located.

May be placed on any side of the building business is located.

Setback

If > 300' from arterial, 1.5 sf / 1 linear foot permitted with a maximum 160 sf.

If > 300' from arterial, 1.5 sf / 1 linear foot permitted with a maximum 250 sf.

Maximum Aggregate

Single tenant = 120 sf.
Multi-tenant = 240 sf.

Single tenant = 250 sf.
Multi-tenant = 1 sf / 1 linear foot on arterials.

Placement Requirements

Horizontal length < 50% of width of building.
36+ in. between top of sign and top of building.

Horizontal length < 50% of width of building.
36+ in. between top of sign and top of building.

Lighting

Subject to lighting standards in Section 35.03(f).

Subject to lighting standards in Section 35.03(f).

 

Window Signage

Neighborhood Commercial

Community and Regional Commercial

Size/Area

20% of total window area through which sign will be visible.

25% of total window area through which sign will be visible.

Location

Signs may be displayed within 3' behind the window. Sign copy shall be limited to business identification and a graphic symbol or any combination thereof. In no case shall product signs be allowed.

Signs may be displayed within 3' behind the window. Sign copy shall be limited to business identification and a graphic symbol or any combination thereof. In no case shall product signs be allowed.

(Ord. 14-197 § 1 (part))

35.07 Resort Sign Standards

Sign regulations govern resort districts and resort uses in planned development (PD) districts. Any new development shall be required to submit a comprehensive sign program to be reviewed and approved by the design review board.

Location and Size/Area

1. Resort identification signs may be located at each primary entrance to the resort from a major or minor arterial or collector street. The maximum height shall be 8' and the maximum sign area shall be 70 sf, aggregate per entry. Dual entrance monuments are permitted if total sign area does not exceed 70 sf.
2. Use identification monuments for businesses that are located within the resort shall be allowed smaller monument signs not to exceed 4' in height and 8 sf in area per sign face. These business identification monuments may be 4-sided or 3-dimensional (3D).
3. Wall signs are permitted for individual uses within the resort not to exceed 60 sf in area.

Lighting

Signs shall be illuminated by backlit or indirect lighting.

General Requirements

1. No moving or animated signs shall be permitted. Changeable copy is permitted within the allowable sign area.
2. Traffic and directional signs within the site shall not exceed 8 sf in area, aggregate, and shall not exceed 5' in height.
3. Signs mounted on an exterior wall of any structure that are not identification signs shall contain only building identification (i.e., numbers or letters) as necessary for emergency access with a maximum area of 24 sf.
4. Signs placed at resort pedestrian gate entrances and exits shall be allowed and shall contain directions for entrance/exit, deliveries, and any restrictions and shall not exceed 4 sf in area maximum.
5. Resorts may also obtain temporary special event banners as defined within the temporary sign section below.
6. Total quantity and aggregate size of internal direction and identification signs shall be approved by the design review board as part of the comprehensive sign package.

(Ord. 14-197 § 1 (part))

35.08 Temporary Signage

Temporary signs located in any zoning district shall comply with the following regulations:

a.    Signs alerting motorists or pedestrians to potential hazards such as road construction, work in progress, open excavation, detours and the like are required; flashing light signs required during periods of low visibility.

b.    Permits for temporary signs may be issued or renewed by the zoning administrator or designee for a period not to exceed one year (except subdivision signs until last residence is sold) in all zones unless otherwise specified.

c.    “No Trespassing” signs are permitted in all districts without permit, may be freestanding, and not to exceed four square feet not in R‑O-W or within one hundred feet of similar sign on same parcel.

d.    Rights-of-way (R-O-W or ROW) as used in this section means those lands or easements, whether improved or unimproved, dedicated to or owned by the city, state or other government entity for use by the public for public access or transportation.

e.    Prohibited Temporary Signs

Same as prohibited permanent signs and vehicle-mounted or transported (other than bumper sticker or mounted on taxi, buses or other public transportation); attached to utility poles.

f.    No temporary sign shall block a public right-of-way or sidewalk, nor be placed in a location to be a hazard or obstruct visibility.

Sign Type

Temporary signs are permitted subject to the following regulations:

 

Number

Area

Setbacks

Height

General Requirements

City, Church, Civic Organization Signs

On premises:
1 per abutting street (max of 2).

Off premises:
1 at each change of direction (max of 4).

On premises: 16 sf.

Off premises: 4 sf.

On premises: not in ROW.

Off premises: in ROW as approved by zoning administrator.

6'.

No illumination.

Erected 2 weeks prior and removed 2 days after event.

Single or double faced.

Not between utility poles, vehicles, or other ways that create hazards or nuisance.

Permit required – no permit fee.

Development, Contractor, or Subcontractor Signs (Developer, Contractor, and Subcontractor Identification)

1 sign is permitted per abutting street to the development.

The sign shall not exceed 32 sf.

Minimum setback for the sign shall be 5'.

Sign shall not exceed 6' in height to the top of the placard or framing.

On-premises only. Removed 10 days after development completed.

May be single or double faced.

Political Signs on Private Property

6 signs per candidate; 6 signs per issue for each property address.

2' 2'; 2-sided.

Not allowed in a location where it would be a hazard or obstructs vision.

4'.

May not be placed more than 60 days prior to election. Must be removed within 15 days after election. No permit required.

Political Signs in ROW

Maximum 50 signs per candidate, maximum 50 signs per issue.

10 sf.

Not allowed in a location where it would be a hazard or obstructs vision.

3'.

May not be placed more than 60 days before election and must be removed within 30 days after election.

Not allowed in a commercial tourism, commercial resort and hotel political sign free zone adopted by city council resolution.

Temporary Special Event

Zoning administrator or designee may approve signs for special events on a temporary basis. The zoning administrator or designee has the authority to approve design standards including number of signs, size, height and setback. The temporary special use signs may be approved for a time frame of 30 days and under special circumstances may be renewable once for an additional 30 days.

Yard Sale

6 yard sale signs shall be permitted.

Sign area shall not exceed 4 sf per sign.

Signs shall be placed a minimum of 2 feet from any curb.

Maximum height for each sign shall be 2.5 feet.

 

Off-Premises Open House Directional Signage

1 sign for each change of direction, plus 1 sign per mile of arterial/collector roadway, not to exceed 5 signs total.

Sign area shall not exceed 4 sf per sign.

Signs shall be placed a minimum of 2 feet from any curb.

 

Signs shall only be displayed while the salesperson is attending the open house and shall be removed at the end of the day.

Real Estate Signs

1 sign on premises of property advertised per listing agent, property owner, or management company.

Sign area shall not exceed 4 sf per sign.

Signs shall be placed a minimum of 2 feet from any curb.

 

 

(Ord. 14-197 § 1 (part))

35.09 Flagpole Requirements

a.    Flagpoles shall not exceed the maximum building height allowed in each zoning district and shall be located and constructed that if it should collapse, its reclining length would be contained on the property for which it was installed.

b.    Unless specifically permitted by the zoning administrator or designee, no more than one flag may be flown or hung on any one site, structure, or pole; provided, however, that one state of Arizona and one foreign national flag may be flown in addition to the one permitted flag on such site, structure, or pole.

c.    The maximum size of any corporate flags shall not exceed fifteen square feet, with no single dimension to exceed six feet.

d.    A sign permit is required to display any corporate flag and must be included as part of the total aggregate sign area.

e.    Display of the United States flag must meet all requirements of the United States Flag Code, including national and local lighting standards.

f.    A model home complex may use flags in addition to the United States flag and state of Arizona flag, in the following manner:

1.    There can be no more than two flags on the lot of one model home and one flag on each additional lot with a model home located upon it, not to exceed five total flags.

2.    The maximum size of any model home flag shall not exceed eight square feet.

3.    Model home flags shall not be illuminated.

4.    Flagpole shall not exceed twenty-five feet in height.

g.    Permits are required for sign poles. No sign permits are required for flags unless otherwise noted.

h.    The maximum size of a United States flag, state of Arizona flag or foreign national flag shall be sixty square feet. This limit does not apply to a United States flag or state of Arizona flag flown on a national or state holiday. (Ord. 14-197 § 1 (part))

35.10 Nonconforming Signs

Nonconforming signs are any signs which do not conform to the provisions of this code, but which, when first constructed, were legally allowed by the political subdivision then having control over signs.

a.    Reasonable repairs and alterations may be made to nonconforming signs. However, in the event any such sign is damaged after January 1, 1989, the cost of repair of which exceeds fifty percent of the cost to replace it, such cost to be determined by a competent appraiser, or in the event such sign is removed by any means, including an act of God, such sign may be restored, reconstructed, altered or repaired only to conform with the provisions of this code. (Ord. 14-197 § 1 (part))

35.11 Violation; Enforcement

a.    The procedures and penalties set forth in Section 8, Violations, Enforcement and Penalties, for violations of the zoning code, a zoning ordinance, a use permit, a variance or a design review approval shall apply to violations of this section except as modified in this subsection.

b.    Time Periods; Removal of Sign.

The time periods provided for correction of the violation of this section shall be:

1.    Permanent Signs

A ten-calendar-day written notice shall be provided.

2.    Temporary Signs

A two-calendar-day written notice shall be provided.

3.    Portable Signs

A two-calendar-day written notice shall be provided, except for portable signs within the right-of-way, which may be removed by the code enforcement officer pursuant to subsection (b)(4)(B) of this section.

4.    Signs in Right-of-Way

A.    Political signs in the right-of-way that are hazardous to public safety, obstruct clear vision in the area or interfere with the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act may be removed by the code enforcement officer without prior notice; provided, that the candidate or campaign committee that placed the sign shall be notified within twenty-four hours after removal. If the political sign is placed in violation of A.R.S § 16-1019 and the placement is not hazardous to public safety, does not obstruct clear vision in the area and does not interfere with the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the code enforcement officer shall notify the candidate or campaign committee that placed the sign and, if the sign remains in violation at least twenty-four hours after such notification, the code enforcement officer may remove the sign. The code enforcement officer shall contact the candidate or campaign committee and shall retain the sign for at least ten business days to allow the candidate or campaign committee to retrieve the sign without penalty.

B.    Nonpolitical signs in the right-of-way may be removed without notice. The owner of the sign shall be notified of the removal if contact information is available. The owner shall pay city (I) the cost to the city of removing and impounding the sign; (II) a recovery fee set by the city; and (III) a daily storage charge set by the city. Upon payment of such costs, the city shall return the sign to the owner.

5.    Signs without Permits

When a permit is required for a sign and no permit was issued, the sign may be removed by the code enforcement officer without notice. The owner shall pay city (I) the cost to the city of removing and impounding the sign; (II) a recovery fee set by the city; and (III) a daily storage charge set by the city. Upon payment of such costs, the city shall return the sign to the owner.

6.    Safety Hazard

A sign that presents a safety hazard may be removed by the code enforcement officer without notice. The code enforcement officer shall make a reasonable effort to notify the owner of the sign that it will be removed immediately. The owner shall pay city (I) the cost to the city of removing and impounding the sign; (II) a recovery fee set by the city; and (III) a daily storage charge set by the city. Upon payment of such costs, the city shall return the sign to the owner.

c.    Abatement of Nuisance

A violation of this section shall constitute a public nuisance. In addition to issuance of a civil citation or criminal citation pursuant to Section 8, the code enforcement officer is authorized to abate the nuisance and charge the cost to the property owner following the procedures set forth in Article 9-5 of the city code if the owner of the sign fails to remove a sign after any notice required by subsection (b)(4)(B) of this section is given. (Ord. 14-197 § 1 (part))