Chapter 19.60
SIGNS

Sections:

19.60.005    Title.

19.60.010    Purpose.

19.60.020    Balancing.

19.60.030    Intent.

19.60.040    Scope.

19.60.050    Standard provisions.

19.60.060    Definitions.

19.60.100    Sign area.

19.60.110    Sign height.

19.60.120    Sign illumination.

19.60.200    Support requirements.

19.60.210    Materials.

19.60.220    Construction standards.

19.60.300    Prohibited signs.

19.60.400    Sensitive zones – Basic signage allowance.

19.60.410    R-3 zone.

19.60.430    MHP zone.

19.60.450    P-C zone.

19.60.500    Sign rules – All commercial zones.

19.60.510    Commercial – Administrative and professional office (C-O) zone.

19.60.520    Central business (C-B) zone.

19.60.530    Neighborhood commercial (C-N) zone.

19.60.540    Central commercial (C-C) zone.

19.60.550    Visitor commercial (C-V) zone.

19.60.560    Commercial thoroughfare (C-T) zone.

19.60.570    Industrial research (I-R) zone.

19.60.580    Limited industrial (I-L) zone.

19.60.590    General industrial (I) zone.

19.60.595    Other zones.

19.60.600    Specialty signs.

19.60.700    Signs permits.

19.60.800    Permit applications.

19.60.810    Processing of applications.

19.60.900    Removal of certain signs.

19.60.930    Amortization of nonconforming on-site signs.

19.60.005 Title.

This chapter shall be known as the sign ordinance. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.010 Purpose.

Among the purposes and interests to be served by this chapter are the following:

A. To serve, protect and enhance the public health, safety and welfare of the city and the people who live in, work, or visit it;

B. To promote and accomplish the goals, policies and strategies of the General Plan;

C. To balance the public interests in community aesthetics against the signage needs of establishments and persons who wish to express information or a message by displaying a sign;

D. To promote the free flow of traffic and protect motorists, cyclists and pedestrians from injury and property damage which could be caused, in whole or in part, by cluttered, distracting, confusing, or illegible signage;

E. To prevent personal injury and property damage from signs which are improperly placed or constructed, or poorly maintained;

F. To prevent the depreciation of property values which could be caused by inappropriate signage;

G. To protect, preserve and enhance property values, the local economy, and the quality of life by governing the appearance of the streetscapes that affect the image of the city;

H. To prevent interference with or obstruction of the proper conduct of legitimate establishments in the city which result from the erection and placement of poorly designed signs which are unsightly, improperly located, disproportionate and disharmonious with adjacent signs or structures and therefore tend to be both economically and aesthetically undesirable;

I. To authorize and direct the zoning administrator to enhance the aesthetic appearance of the city and to promote the economic well-being of the community;

J. To promote the use of signs which positively contribute to the aesthetics of the community, are appropriate in scale to the surrounding buildings and landscape, and to advance the city’s goals of quality development;

K. To provide standards regarding the non-communicative aspects of signs, which are consistent with applicable provisions of city, county, state and federal law. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.020 Balancing.

This chapter states the policy decisions regarding display of signs, made by the city council after carefully balancing many competing factors and interests. This chapter consolidates all general provisions relating to the installation, regulation and amortization of signs on private property throughout the city of Chula Vista. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.030 Intent.

In adopting and enforcing this chapter, the city intends to:

A. Provide flexibility and encourage variety in signage, and create an incentive to relate signage to the basic principles of good design;

B. Assure that the benefits derived from the expenditure of public funds for the improvement and beautification of streets, sidewalks, public parks, public rights-of-way, and other public places and spaces, are protected by exercising reasonable controls over the physical characteristics and structural design of signs;

C. Improve the visual environment for the citizens and residents of, and visitors to the city;

D. Protect prominent viewsheds within the community;

E. Provide recovery mechanisms for the costs of administering this chapter. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.040 Scope.

This chapter regulates signs, as defined in this chapter, which are placed on private property or on property owned by public agencies other than the city of Chula Vista and over which the city has zoning authority. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.050 Standard provisions.

The policies, rules and regulations stated in this section apply to all signs within the regulatory scope of this chapter, and to all provisions of this chapter, notwithstanding any more specific provisions to the contrary.

A. Message Neutrality. It is the city’s policy to regulate signs in a constitutional manner, which is content neutral as to noncommercial signs and viewpoint neutral as to commercial signs.

B. Regulatory Interpretations. All regulatory interpretations of this chapter are to be exercised in light of the city’s message neutrality policy. Where a particular type of sign is proposed in a permit application, and the type is neither expressly allowed nor prohibited by this chapter, or whenever a sign does not qualify as a “structure” as defined in the California Building Code, then the director shall approve, conditionally approve or disapprove the application based on the most similar sign type that is expressly regulated by this chapter.

C. Substitution of Messages. Subject to the land owner’s consent, a noncommercial message of any type may be substituted for any duly permitted or allowed commercial message or any duly permitted or allowed noncommercial message; provided, that the sign structure or mounting device is legal without consideration of message content. Such substitution of message may be made without any additional approval or permitting. This provision prevails over any more specific provision to the contrary within this chapter. The purpose of this provision is to prevent any inadvertent favoring of commercial speech over noncommercial speech, or favoring of any particular noncommercial message over any other noncommercial message. This provision does not create a right to increase the total amount of signage on a parcel, nor does it affect the requirement that a sign structure or mounting device be properly permitted.

D. Rules for Noncommunicative Aspects of Signs. All rules and regulations concerning the noncommunicative aspects of signs, such as location, size, height, illumination, spacing, orientation, etc., stand enforceable independently of any permit or approval process.

E. Billboard Policy. The city completely prohibits the construction, erection or use of any billboards, other than those which legally exist in the city, or for which a valid permit has been issued and has not expired, as of the date on which this provision is first adopted. The city adopts this policy pursuant to California Government Code Section 65850, California Business and Professions Code Sections 5354(a) and 5408.3 (both effective January 1, 2003). No permit shall be issued for any billboard which violates this policy, and the city will take immediate abatement action against any billboard constructed or maintained in violation of this policy. The city council affirmatively declares that it would have adopted this billboard policy even if it were the only provision in this chapter. The city council intends for this billboard policy to be severable and separately enforceable even if other provision(s) of this chapter may be declared, by a court of competent jurisdiction, to be unconstitutional, invalid or unenforceable. This provision does not prohibit agreements to relocate presently existing, legal billboards, as encouraged by California Business and Professions Code Section 5412.

F. Multiple Use Zones. In any zone where both residential and nonresidential uses are allowed, the signage rights and responsibilities applicable to any particular use shall be determined as follows: residential uses shall be treated as if they were located in the residential use where that type of use would be allowed as a matter of right, and nonresidential uses shall be treated as if they were located in a zone where that particular use would be allowed, either as a matter of right or subject to a conditional use permit or similar discretionary process.

G. Severance. If any section, sentence, clause, phrase, word, portion or provision of this chapter is held invalid or unconstitutional, or unenforceable, by any court of competent jurisdiction, such holding shall not affect, impair, or invalidate any other section, sentence, clause, phrase, word, portion, or provision of this chapter which can be given effect without the invalid portion. In adopting this chapter, the city council affirmatively declares that it would have approved and adopted the chapter even without any portion which may be held invalid or unenforceable.

H. Land Owners’ Consent. No sign may be displayed without the consent of the legal owner of the property on which the sign is mounted or displayed. For purposes of this policy, “owner” means the holder of the legal title to the property and all parties and persons holding a present right to possession, control or use of the property.

I. Legal Nature of Signage Rights and Duties. As to all signs attached to property, real or personal, the signage rights, duties and obligations arising from this chapter attach to and travel with the land or other property on which a sign is mounted or displayed. This provision does not modify or affect the law of fixtures, sign-related provisions in private leases regarding signs (so long as they are not in conflict with this chapter), or the ownership of sign structures.

J. Sign Programs. Sign programs, voluntarily proposed for specific developments, as well as special sign districts or special sign overlay zone, when approved by the planning commission or the city council may modify the rules stated herein as to sign size, height, illumination, spacing, orientation or other noncommunicative aspects of signs, but may not override or modify any of these standard provisions. All the provisions of this section shall automatically apply to and be deemed a part of any sign program approved after the date on which this provision is initially adopted. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.060 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following words have the meanings given in this section. These definitions also apply to sign-related provisions of other chapters, unless a different definition is given for that chapter. In the case of an approved sign program, any definitions given therein shall apply within that sign program, unless such definition leads to a violation of any of the “standard provisions” stated in CVMC 19.60.050; for terms used in a sign program but not defined therein, these definitions also apply.

“Abandoned sign” means any sign remaining in place or not maintained for a period of 90 days which no longer advertises or identifies an ongoing establishment, product, or service available on the premises where the display is located.

“Accessory use,” in the context of this chapter, means a sign which is an accessory to, and clearly incidental to, the principal use on the same or adjoining parcel, lot, or property. In the context of commercial messages on signs, it means an on-site sign.

“Air activated signs” means those signs which are inflated or inflatable, as well as those which are activated by wind or forced air or gas.

“Animated sign” means any sign which is designed and constructed to call attention, or to give its message, through a sequence of progressive changes in lighting, or of parts, including flashing, rotating or revolving signs.

“Approved sign” means a sign for which a sign permit application has been received in accordance with CVMC 19.60.700 and approved by the city.

“Area,” when used in reference to the size of a sign, means the area of the sign face or display, expressed in square feet.

“Auxiliary sign” means any sign whose primary function is to direct, inform, instruct or warn by stating objective facts about which there can be no meaningful debate. Examples: accessible parking, all deliveries in back, hours of operation, danger high voltage, etc.

“Background area” means an area in one continuous plane, and not interrupted by architectural features, lines or colors, upon which a sign’s copy is applied.

“Balloon” means any rubber, plastic, Mylar or other material capable of being inflated with air or other gas.

“Banner” means a strip of cloth, fabric, nonrigid paper, plastic or similar flexible material, on which is displayed sign copy. Banners are typically hung or suspended from fences, walls, or posts or poles.

“Billboard” means a permanent structure sign, located on private property, on which is displayed off-site commercial messages, as well as any permanent structure which is a principal use (as opposed to an accessory use) of the property on which it is built, on which messages are displayed. A billboard may be freestanding or attached to other structures.

“Building frontage” means the total width of the elevation of a building that fronts on a private or public right-of-way or the building elevation along which the main entrance exits. For the purposes of calculating permitted sign area, every building has only one building frontage. For corner buildings or through lots the larger width shall be used in calculating permitted sign area. If more than one establishment or occupancy is located in a single building, then such area shall be limited to that portion which is occupied by each individual establishment or occupancy.

“Canopy sign” means visual display attached to the underside of a projecting canopy or marquee protruding over public or private sidewalks or rights-of-way.

“Changeable copy sign” means a sign or portion thereof with characters, letters or illustrations that can be changed or rearranged without altering the face or surface of the sign.

“Commercial mascot” means humans or animals used as advertising devices for commercial establishments, typically by the holding or wearing of insignia, masks or costumes associated with the commercial establishment. Includes sign twirlers, sign clowns, etc.

“Commercial sign” means any sign, wording, logo, picture, transparency, mechanical device or other representation that is intended to attract attention to a commercial or industrial business, occupancy, product, good, service or other commercial or industrial activity for a commercial or industrial purpose.

“Commercial zone” means one of the following types of zones: C-O, C-B, C-N, C-C, C-V, C-T, I-R, I-L, or I.

“Construction sign” means a sign erected and maintained within a construction project, typically used to identify those individuals or businesses directly connected with the construction project and information regarding direction, price or terms.

“Development sign” means a freestanding sign listing the architect, landscape architect, engineer, planner, contractor, or other person or firm participating in the development, construction or financing of the project on the site on which the sign is located.

“Directional sign” means a sign located adjacent to a driveway or mounted on a building designed to guide or direct pedestrian or vehicular traffic to uses on the same site.

“Director” means the city of Chula Vista director of planning and building or such director’s designee.

“Directory sign” means a sign listing the name and location of the tenants, departments or establishments of a building or shopping complex.

“Electronic message board sign” means a sign with a fixed or changing display composed of a series of lights, light emitting diodes (LED) or liquid crystal display (LCD) or functionally similar devices.

“Erect” (verb) means to build, construct, attach, hang, place, suspend or affix to or upon any surface.

“Establishment” means a legal, nonresidential use of land to conduct a commercial or noncommercial activity. By way of example and not limitation, “establishment” includes stores, offices, churches, hospitals, manufacturing facilities, etc. Does not include home-based occupations or hobbies.

“Expired sign” means a sign whose message refers to an event or a particular date, and such date or event is more than 10 days in the past.

“Flag” means a piece of cloth or bunting varying in size, color and design, used as a symbol, standard, signal or emblem.

“Flashing sign” means any sign that is designed and constructed to call attention, or to give its message, through a sequence of changes in color or intensity of illumination.

“Freestanding sign” means a sign, including a billboard or pole sign, which is self-supporting in a fixed location and not attached to a building.

“Frontage” shall be considered that side of a lot or property fronting on a public right-of-way or other circulation area open to the general public such as a dedicated street, exclusive of alleys.

“General advertising” means the business of renting or otherwise providing display space to commercial advertisers located other than the place where the advertising will be displayed.

“Governmental signs” means those signs by which a governmental entity provides notice to the public. Such signs typically indicate traffic rules, directions and distances, and notices of public hearings, etc.

“Ground or monument sign” means a low-profile freestanding sign erected with its base on the ground.

“Hand held sign” means a sign that is held by or otherwise mounted on a person or animal.

“Identification sign” means a sign which serves to identify the name, address and lawful use of the premises upon which the sign is located. Includes signs indicating the name of residents on residential uses.

“Illegal sign” means: (a) any sign originally erected or installed without first complying with all structural, locational, design, building, and electrical regulations in effect at the time of its construction or installation; (b) any sign that is not maintained, or is not used to identify or advertise an ongoing establishment, occupancy, product, good or service available on the site of the sign for more than 90 days; (c) any unsafe sign; (d) any legal nonconforming sign that has not been removed following the expiration of the 15-year amortization period provided for in this chapter; (e) any sign that is in violation of the provisions of this chapter; and (f) any sign that is in violation of Chapter 12.50 CVMC.

“Informational sign” means any sign displayed on private property, the purpose of which is to state a fact or attribute of that property which is of interest to the general public, such as the location of the restroom, the hours of operation, a security protection notice and similar facts, and which sign does not exceed an area of two square feet.

“Land owner’s consent” means the consent or permission of the owner of land for the display of a sign thereon. For purposes of this definition, land owner means the holder of the legal title to the property and all parties and persons holding a present right to possession, control or use of the property. In the case of personal property to which a sign is attached, the land owner’s consent means the permission of the owner of such personal property.

“Legal nonconforming sign” means a sign that was originally erected or installed in compliance with all structural, locational, design, building, and electrical regulations at the time of its erection or installation, but which does not conform to the provisions of this chapter.

“Legally required signs” means those signs which are required to be placed or displayed, by a body of law other than this chapter. By way of example only, such signs typically include notices of eviction or condemnation, notice of change of ownership, etc.

“Logo” means a trademark or symbol identifying the establishment, commercial or industrial service provided on the site. Logos shall be considered signs for the purposes of this chapter.

“Marquee sign” means any permanent architectural canopy projecting over the entrance to an establishment, and any signage or message display thereon.

“Monument or ground sign” means a low-profile freestanding sign erected with its base on the ground.

“Multiple establishment sign” means a sign upon which more than one establishment is displayed.

“Multisided sign” means signs constructed back-to-back, with faces in approximately parallel planes (such as on both sides of a single panel or V shape, provided the angle between the two faces does not exceed 45 degrees), which shall count as only one sign, both as to number and area, i.e., only one side need be counted. Every other sign having multiple sides or faces, including a sign constructed in the form of a cylinder or sphere or similar figure, shall be limited in total area as provided herein.

“Noncommercial sign” means a sign which does not name, advertise or call attention to a commercial or industrial establishment, commodity, product, good, service or other commercial or industrial activity for a commercial or industrial purpose.

“Noncommercial speech” or “noncommercial message” or “noncommercial sign” means a sign message which is not commercial in nature. Such messages typically relate to debatable matters of public concern, such as, by way of example and not limitation, advocacy on politics, religion, arts, science, philosophy, commentary on governmental policy, etc.

“Off-site sign” means a commercial sign not located on the site of the establishment or entity indicated or advertised by the sign, or a commercial sign advertising a commodity, good, product, service or other commercial or industrial activity which originates on a site other than where the sign is maintained. The on-site/off-site distinction applies only to commercial message signs.

“On-site sign” means any commercial sign which directs attention to a commercial or industrial occupancy, establishment, commodity, good, product, service or other commercial or industrial activity conducted, sold or offered upon the site where the sign is maintained. The on-site/off-site distinction applies only to commercial message signs. For purposes of this chapter, all signs with noncommercial speech messages shall be deemed to be “on-site,” regardless of location.

“Pennant” means any lightweight plastic, fabric, or other material, whether or not containing a message of any kind, suspended from a rope, wire, string, stick or pole whether individually or in a series, designed to move in the wind and draw attention to a sign, place, product and/or event.

“Permanent sign” means any sign which is intended to be and is so constructed as to be of lasting and enduring condition, remaining unchanged in character, condition (beyond normal wear and tear) and position and in a permanent manner affixed to the ground, wall or building.

“Pole sign” means a sign which is supported by one or more columns, uprights or braces in or upon the ground.

“Portable sign” means any sign not permanently attached to the ground or another permanent structure, or a sign capable of being transported, including, but not limited to, signs designed to be transported by means of wheels, signs converted to A- or T-frames, menu and sandwich board signs.

“Principal identification sign” means an establishment sign used to identify only the name of the establishment and the principal product or service.

“Principal use” in the context of this chapter means that a sign is a principal, as opposed to an accessory, use on the parcel or lot where it is located, or proposed to be located.

“Professional sign” means a sign indicating the name or names and occupation or occupations of a professional person or group of associated professional persons occupying the premises.

“Projecting sign” means a sign that is mounted on and at an angle to the face of the wall of the building to which it is attached.

“Real estate sign” means a sign indicating that real property is available for sale, exchange, rent or lease. Such signs typically state that real property, or any interest therein, is for sale or exchange, or for lease or rent for a period longer than one week, and the names and contact information for persons involved in such economic transaction.

“Rear wall sign” means a wall sign placed on a building wall that is parallel to the front wall of a building, but located on the opposite, furthest end of the building.

“Roof line” means the upper edge of any building wall or parapet, or ridge line. If a building has both a parapet and a ridge line, the lower of the two will be considered the “roof line.”

“Roof sign” is a sign upon, on or above the roof line of a roof or parapet of any building or structure.

“Safety codes” means those codes which have been duly adopted by the city, and which are currently in effect, which regulate matters of safe development and construction, such as, by way of example and not limitation, grading, mechanical, building, electrical and plumbing codes.

“Search lights” means focused light producers designed to project a moving beam of light into the night sky for the purpose of attracting attention to an event or location. Search lights are considered signs.

“Sensitive zones” means agricultural, residential estate, R-1, R-2, R-3 and MHP zones.

“Side wall sign” means a wall sign placed on a building wall that is generally perpendicular to the front wall of a building.

“Sign” is any device, fixture, placard or structure, including its component parts, which draws attention to an object, product, place, activity, opinion, person, institution, organization, or place of business, or which identifies or promotes the interests of any person and which is to be viewed from any public street, road, highway, right-of-way or parking area. However, the following are not within the definition of a “sign” for regulatory purposes of this chapter:

1. Public property and public use property: Signs placed on land or other property owned by the city, or in which the city holds the present right of possession or control, or land which the city holds in trust, as well as all public rights-of-way. Said signs shall be regulated by an adopted city council policy;

2. Architectural features: Decorative or architectural features of buildings (not including lettering, trademarks or moving parts);

3. Symbols embedded in architecture: Symbols of noncommercial organizations or concepts including, but not limited to, religious or political symbols, when such are permanently integrated into the structure of a permanent building which is otherwise legal;

4. Personal appearance: Items or devices of personal apparel, decoration or appearance, including tattoos, makeup, costumes (but not including commercial mascots);

5. Manufacturers’ marks: Marks on tangible products, which identify the maker, seller, provider or product, and which customarily remain attached to the product even after sale;

6. Fireworks, etc.: The legal use of fireworks, candles and artificial lighting not otherwise regulated by this chapter;

7. Certain insignia on vehicles and vessels: On-street legal vehicles and properly licensed watercraft: license plates, license plate frames, registration insignia, noncommercial messages;

8. Grave stones or grave markers;

9. Newsracks and newsstands.

“Site” means the location of a sign. In the case of legal parcels containing only one legal use, that parcel is the site. For parcels containing more than one legal use, the site is the portion of the parcel on which each use is located.

Streamer. See “pennant.”

“Street address sign” means a wall sign placed on the side of the building parallel to the front property line or main entrance, or parallel to the public right-of-way solely for the purpose of providing the street address for the site.

“Temporary public right-of-way sign permit” means the official self-adhesive serialized stickers, which contain the City logo and appropriate calendar year, issued by the City under Chapter 12.50 CVMC.

“Temporary sign” is any sign constructed of cloth, canvas, light fabric, cardboard, wallboard, or other light materials, with or without frames, intended to be displayed for a limited period of time not to exceed 60 days.

“Unsafe sign” means a sign posing an immediate peril or reasonably foreseeable threat of injury or damage to persons or property on account of the condition of the physical structure of the sign or its mounting mechanism.

“Wall sign” is a sign, including a painted sign, attached to, painted on, or erected against the wall of a building or structure, with the exposed face of the sign in a plane parallel to the plane of such wall.

“Window sign” means a sign that is painted on either the outside or inside surface of the glazed area (including glazed doors), and any sign that is posted or affixed to the inside surface of the glazed area, or is located in such a manner as to be visible through the glazed area. (Ord. 3083 § 1, 2007; Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.100 Sign area.

The area of a sign is calculated as follows:

A. Background Panel Signs. Sign copy which is mounted, affixed, or painted on a background panel or area distinctively painted, textured or constructed as a background for the sign copy, is measured as that area contained within the sum of the smallest rectangles, squares, triangles, parallelogram, circles or ellipses that will enclose both the sign copy and the background.

B. Background Surface Signs. The area of a sign consisting of copy mounted as individual letters or graphics against a wall, fascia, mansard, or parapet of a building surface or another surface, that has not been painted, textured, or otherwise altered to provide a distinctive background for the sign copy, is measured as the sum of the smallest rectangles, squares, triangles, parallelograms, circles or ellipses that will enclose each word, graphic or discrete visual element in the total sign.

C. Illuminated Background Signs. The area of a sign with copy mounted, affixed, or painted on an illuminated surface or illuminated element or a building or structure, is measured as the entire illuminated surface or illuminated element which contains sign copy. Such elements may include, but are not limited to, lit canopy fascia signs, spanner board signs, and/or interior lit awnings.

D. Two-Faced Signs. If a sign has two display faces, and the interior angle between the two faces is 45 degrees or less, then the sign area is one sign face only; however, if the two faces are of different sizes or shapes, then the larger is used. If the sign has two display faces, and the interior angle between the two faces is greater than 45 degrees, then the sign area is the sum of the areas of the two faces.

E. Multifaced Signs. If a sign has three or more faces, then the sign area is the 50 percent of the aggregate area of all sign faces. The area of each face shall be determined according to subsection (A) or (B) of this section, as applicable.

F. Statuary and Nonplanar Signs. The area of a spherical, free form, sculptural or other nonplanar sign is 50 percent of the sum of the areas, using only the four vertical sides of the smallest four-sided polyhedron which will completely enclose the entire sign structure. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.110 Sign height.

Sign height is the vertical distance from the average grade of the ground immediately below the uppermost point of a sign, as measured to points five feet in all directions from said point, to the topmost portion of the sign. The base or structure erected to support or adorn a monument, pole or other freestanding sign is measured as part of the sign height. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.120 Sign illumination.

A. Residential Signs. Signs on residential uses in any zone may not be separately or specially illuminated, unless otherwise specified.

B. General Rule for All Nonresidential Uses. Other than signs on residential uses, all other signs may be nonilluminated, or illuminated by internal, internal indirect (halo) illumination, or lit by external indirect illumination, unless otherwise specified. Signs may not be illuminated in a manner which leaves the illumination device exposed to public view except with the use of neon tubing as provided in subsection (E) of this section.

C. Internal Illumination. Outdoor, internally illuminated signs, including but not limited to awning/canopy signs, cabinet signs (whether freestanding or building mounted), changeable copy panels or service island signs, shall be constructed with an opaque background and translucent letters or other graphical elements, or with a colored background and lighter letters or graphics.

D. External Indirect Illumination. Externally lit signs are permitted to be illuminated only with steady, stationary, down directed and shielded light sources directed solely onto the sign. Light bulbs or tubes (excluding neon), used for illuminating a sign, shall not be visible from the adjacent public rights-of-way or residential properties.

E. Neon.

1. Exposed Neon. Exposed neon tube illumination is not permitted in residential zones, or on residential uses in any zone. It is allowed in all other places, unless otherwise specified.

2. Neon Borders. Neon illumination used as a sign copy projection, border, frame or other embellishment of sign copy shall not be included in the total size or area of the sign, provided the measured area of any such projection or detailed embellishment does not exceed 12 square feet in area, or 25 percent of the sign display face area, whichever is greater. If neon embellishments exceed these limits, then the embellishments shall be included and counted as part of the permitted sign area for the use. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.200 Support requirements.

The supporting members of all signs shall be free of any external bracing such as guy wires or cables. All supporting columns shall be designed as an integral or architectural feature of the building. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.210 Materials.

Paper or cardboard signs and cloth or plastic fabric banners may only be used in conjunction with a special event or temporary outside sale and display as provided in Chapter 19.58 CVMC (“Uses”); however, paper or cardboard signs may be used for indoor window and windshield signs, when such are allowed. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.220 Construction standards.

All signs shall be installed and constructed in a professional and workmanlike manner and shall be maintained in good and safe structural condition and good physical appearance. All exposed structural components shall be painted, coated or made of rust inhibitive material. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.300 Prohibited signs.

Unless otherwise provided, the following sign types are prohibited throughout the city:

A. Flashing. Signs which use intermittent illumination, intermittent reflection (whether from the sun or an artificial source), flashing images, scintillation or lights of varying intensity, including electronic message board signs, but not including barber poles;

B. Moving. Signs which have any visible portion in motion, either constantly or at intervals, which motion may be caused by either artificial or natural sources;

C. Air Activated. Signs which are activated by wind or moving air, including but not limited to whirligigs;

D. Lighter Than Air. Tethered blimps, tethered dirigibles, and tethered balloons used to display commercial messages or general advertising; however, certain balloons may be allowable in conjunction with special events, as regulated by CVMC 19.58.370 and 19.58.380;

E. Visibility Blocking. No sign shall be erected at the intersection of any streets in such a manner as to create a traffic hazard by obstructing vision; or at any location where the sign may interfere with, obstruct the view of, or be confused with any authorized traffic sign. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.400 Sensitive zones – Basic signage allowance.

In agricultural, residential estates, R-1, R-2, R-3 and MHP zones (“sensitive zones”), the signage described in this section is allowed, subject to permit requirements. Additional signage may be allowed, as described in the separate regulations for each particular zone, or particular uses therein.

A. Basic Signage Allowance. For each legal parcel in any of the sensitive zones, either one wall sign or one freestanding sign is allowed. The area shall not exceed one and one-half square feet. For a freestanding sign the height shall not exceed six feet, and the sign shall be set back from the property line or curbline (whichever is closer to the interior of the parcel) by a minimum of 10 feet. In the residential estates, R-1 and R-2 zones, such signs shall not display commercial messages.

B. Public and Quasi-Public Uses Within Sensitive Zones. In addition to the basic signage allowance, parcels on which are located legally operating public and quasi-public uses, including but not limited to religious uses (churches, chapels, synagogues, mosques, etc.), emergency services (fire, police, hospital, etc.) and educational uses (schools, day care centers, etc.), the following signage is allowed:

1. One permanent wall sign, the area of which shall not exceed 30 square feet. The wall sign may be illuminated.

2. One changeable copy sign, the area of which shall not exceed 50 square feet and 12 feet in height. If such sign is freestanding, then it shall be set back at least 10 feet from all streets.

C. Public and Quasi-Public Special Event Signs. Any public or quasi-public establishment in a sensitive zone may display temporary promotional signs in conjunction with a special event. Said signs may consist of A- and I-frame signs and signs on paper, cardboard, plastic or fabric.

1. The signs shall:

a. Be located on the premises of the establishment having the special event;

b. Not create a traffic hazard because of the distractive character to motorists of any sign or the cumulative effect of all the signs on the lot;

c. Not unreasonably obscure existing signs or adjacent properties;

d. Not interfere with internal circulation or eliminate required parking.

2. Only one freestanding sign shall be allowed on each street frontage. The freestanding sign shall not be more than eight feet in height or contain more than 40 square feet of sign area.

3. Not more than six permits allowing special event signage shall be issued to an establishment in any one calendar year.

4. The maximum time limit for displaying special event signs for any one special event shall not exceed 14 consecutive days.

5. Pennants may be used only for safety and precautionary purposes.

6. The applicant shall submit a statement describing the commencement and ending date of the special event. The applicant shall also submit a site plan indicating the location and area of signs. Each permit shall also be accompanied by the required filing fee(s). (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.410 R-3 zone.

In addition to the basic signage allowance in sensitive zones, the following rules apply to signs in the R-3 zone:

A. Wall Sign. One wall sign for each street frontage, a maximum of 15 square feet of sign area for buildings with a width of 30 feet or less. Buildings over 30 feet in width shall be allowed an additional one square foot for each foot over 30 feet to a maximum of 30 square feet. In cases of more than one building on the property, the area of the sign shall be based on the lineal frontage of the building on which it is placed. Only the name and address may be placed on the building;

B. Freestanding Sign. One freestanding sign may be used in lieu of one wall sign. Through lots will be allowed an additional freestanding sign if the frontage is used for access. Commercial messages on the sign may consist only of the name and address of the manager, except the vacancy status and location of the manager’s office may be placed on the sign, if designed as part of the sign. Maximum height, five feet. Maximum sign area, 12 square feet, except an additional two square feet may be added for the vacancy status;

C. Manager’s Sign. A sign designating the location of the manager’s office may be placed on or near the main entrance to the units. Maximum size: one and one-half square feet. Such sign may be attached to the dwelling or incorporated in the design of the freestanding sign. Maximum square footage of the freestanding sign shall not be increased to accommodate said sign;

D. Vacancy Sign. A separate freestanding vacancy sign, a maximum of three and one-half feet in height and two square feet in area, may be used if no other freestanding sign exists on the property; otherwise, it shall be placed on the building;

E. Screening Wall Sign. One sign may be placed on a structure used for screening of parking in lieu of a wall or freestanding sign. Only the name and address may be placed on the structure. Maximum area, 15 square feet. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.430 MHP zone.

In addition to the basic signage allowance in sensitive zones, the following rules apply to signs in the MHP zone:

A. Wall or Freestanding Sign. One wall sign or single- or double-faced freestanding sign, designating the use of the premises, facing or adjacent to each street abutting the property. The height of a freestanding sign shall not exceed eight feet. The total face area of all wall and freestanding signs, excluding directional signs, shall not exceed one-tenth square foot for each linear foot of street frontage, and no sign shall exceed a maximum area of 32 square feet.

B. Directional Sign. One directional sign, not to exceed 10 square feet in area, may be placed at each entrance or exit driveway. No such sign shall exceed a height of eight feet measured vertically from the base at ground level to the apex of the sign. Directional signs may be lighted. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.450 P-C zone.

The planning commission and city council may establish sign standards and provisions for a P-C (planned community) zone concurrently with the approval of a general development plan or sectional planning area. However, such standards must comply with and incorporate all of the standard provisions of CVMC 19.60.050. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.500 Sign rules – All commercial zones.

A. Window Signs. When allowed, window signs may cover a maximum of 20 percent of the window area in all commercial and industrial zones. Other than painted window signs, no sign shall be permitted to be located on the outside surface of the glazed area.

B. Canopy Signs (Soffits). One on-site canopy sign or soffit is permitted for each establishment in a commercial zone. Minimum clearance for signs attached under the marquee is seven feet. The maximum size of a canopy sign is one foot wide by five feet long. The sign may not project beyond marquee. Larger canopy signs facing a dedicated street or interior parking area may be used in lieu of wall signs, provided the signs do not exceed the maximum area permitted in the underlying zone for wall signs.

C. Temporary Promotional Signs. Temporary promotional signs in conjunction with promotional events as regulated by CVMC 19.58.370 are allowed for any nonresidential use in a commercial zone. Commercial messages on such signs will pertain to grand openings, change of business address, change of ownership or lessee, business anniversaries and similar promotional events. Said signs may consist of A- and I-frame signs and signs on paper, cardboard, plastic or fabric. The signs shall be located on the premises of the business having the event. The number and location of the signs shall not create a traffic hazard because of the distractive character to motorists of any sign or the cumulative effect of all the signs on the lot, nor shall any sign unreasonably obscure existing signs or adjacent properties. Only one freestanding sign shall be allowed on each street frontage; such sign shall not be more than eight feet in height or contain more than 40 square feet of sign area. Pennants may be used only for safety and precautionary purposes. Price signs may be used but shall not exceed 12 by 16 inches. Excluding price signs, the total area of all promotional signage shall not exceed two square feet of lineal street frontage of the sales area.

D. Other Signs. The following signs are allowed in all commercial zones: window; temporary promotional, public and quasi-public; directional; warning; instructional; directory; real estate; signs allowed pursuant to the unclassified use approval process; signs on mansard roofs; signs on pitched roofs; and signs on architectural appendages. Service station price signs are allowed anywhere that motor fuels may be legally sold or dispensed to the public. Drive-in theater marquees may be allowed only when on-site to a legal use of drive in theater. Theater marquees are allowed only on-site to legally use as a theater. (Ord. 3256 § 1 (Exh. A), 2013; Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.510 Commercial – Administrative and professional office (C-O) zone.

The following signs are allowed in C-O zones:

A. Wall and/or Marquee. Each establishment shall be allowed a combined sign area of 20 square feet for each portion of the building facing a dedicated street or alley. Establishments facing a major or collector street shall be allowed an additional one square foot for each two feet of lineal building frontage over 20 feet facing said street, but shall not exceed a total of 50 square feet.

Each establishment shall also be allowed signs facing on-site parking areas for five or more cars and walkways, a minimum of 10 feet in width. The signs shall be allowed one-half square foot per lineal foot of building facing said area; maximum area, 20 square feet per establishment.

B. Freestanding (Pole). Each lot shall be allowed a freestanding sign with a maximum sign area of three square feet; however, if more than one establishment is located on the lot or is located in a building designed for occupancy by more than one establishment, the area of the sign may be increased an additional three square feet for each establishment displayed on the sign to a maximum area of 12 square feet and four tenant establishment signs. The sign shall not exceed eight feet in height. An establishment or business complex located on a major or collector street shall be allowed a freestanding pole sign subject to the following:

1. Maximum height, 16 feet;

2. Maximum sign area, 32 square feet;

3. Minimum ground clearance, eight feet;

4. The sign shall not be permitted to project into the public right-of-way;

5. The sign shall maintain a 10-foot setback from all interior property lines;

6. Only one establishment or the name of the commercial complex may be displayed on the sign.

C. Ground (Monument). A low-profile ground sign may be used in place of a freestanding pole sign. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. Maximum height, four feet. Establishments located on major or collector streets, six feet;

2. Maximum sign area, 12 square feet. Establishments located on major or collector streets, 25 square feet;

3. The sign shall maintain a five-foot setback from all streets and 10 feet from all interior property lines;

4. The sign structure shall be designed to be architecturally compatible with the main building and constructed with the same or similar materials.

D. Projecting. A projecting sign may be used in lieu of a freestanding (pole or ground) sign subject to the following:

1. The maximum projection from the face of the building shall be based on the clearance of the sign from the bottom of the sign to the ground as shown in the following table:

Ground Clearance

Maximum Projection

Maximum Diagonal Projection
(Corner Lot)

8' or less

1'0"

1'0"

9'

1'6"

1'8"

10'

2'0"

2'4"

11'

2'6"

3'0"

12'

3'0"

3'8"

13'

3'6"

4'4"

14'

4'0"

5'0"

2. Projecting signs less than eight feet from the ground shall not project closer than three feet to any area used for vehicular circulation and six inches to any area used for pedestrian circulation;

3. The sign shall not project above the roof, parapet or first story;

4. The maximum sign area for double-faced signs shall be 12 square feet and 24 square feet for spheres, cylinders, and multisided signs, not including the top and bottom of the sign when no copy is applied to those surfaces.

E. Signs on Screening Walls or Fences. Signs denoting the names of the occupants, principal establishment, or name of the commercial complex may be applied to a wall or fence used as screening of parking areas in lieu of a freestanding or projecting sign. Maximum sign area shall be three square feet; except, an establishment or complex located on a major or collector street shall be allowed an area of 25 square feet.

F. The design review committee may reduce sign areas and height below those authorized above based on the sign guidelines and criteria contained in the design manual, without consideration of the graphic design of the copy or message displayed on the sign. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.520 Central business (C-B) zone.

The following signs are allowed in C-B zones:

A. Wall and/or Marquee. Each establishment shall be allowed a combined sign area of one square foot per lineal foot of building frontage facing a dedicated street or alley; however, the sign area may be increased to a maximum of three square feet per lineal foot of building frontage; provided, the sign does not exceed 50 percent of the background area on which the sign is applied, mounted or displayed.

Each establishment shall also be allowed signs facing on-site parking areas for five cars or more and walkways 10 feet or more in width. Such signs may contain an area of one square foot per lineal foot of building frontage facing said area; however, the area may be increased to two square feet per lineal foot of building frontage; provided, the sign does not exceed 50 percent of the background area on which the sign is applied, mounted or displayed.

B. Ground (Monument). Each lot or commercial complex shall be allowed a low-profile ground sign, subject to the following:

1. Signs are restricted to those lots having a minimum frontage of 100 feet on a dedicated street. In the case of corner lots, only one frontage shall be counted;

2. Maximum height, six feet;

3. Maximum sign area, 25 square feet;

4. The sign shall maintain a five-foot setback from all streets and 10 feet from all interior property lines;

5. The sign structure shall be designed to be architecturally compatible with the main building and constructed with the same or similar materials.

C. Projecting. Each establishment shall be allowed a projecting sign subject to the following:

1. The maximum projection from the face of the building shall be based on the clearance of the sign from the bottom of the sign to the ground as shown in the following table:

Ground Clearance

Maximum Projection

Maximum Diagonal Projection
(Corner Lot)

8' or less

1'0"

1'0"

9'

1'6"

1'8"

10'

2'0"

2'4"

11'

2'6"

3'0"

12'

3'0"

3'8"

13'

3'6"

4'4"

14'

4'0"

5'0"

2. Projecting signs less than eight feet from the ground shall not project closer than three feet to any area used for vehicular circulation and six inches to any area used for pedestrian circulation;

3. The sign shall not project above the roof, parapet or first story;

4. The maximum sign area for double-faced signs shall be 12 square feet and 24 square feet for spheres, cylinders, and multisided signs, not including the top and bottom of the sign when no copy is applied to those surfaces.

D. Signs on Screening Walls or Fences. In lieu of a ground sign or projecting sign, a sign may be applied to a wall or fence used for screening of parking areas. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. The sign may only denote the name of the principal establishment or the name of the commercial complex;

2. Maximum sign area: 25 square feet.

E. The Planning Commission may reduce sign areas and heights below those authorized above based on the sign guidelines and criteria contained in the design manual, without consideration of the graphic design of the copy or message displayed on the sign. (Ord. 3268 § 3, 2013; Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.530 Neighborhood commercial (C-N) zone.

The following signs are allowed in C-N zones:

A. Wall and/or Marquee. Each establishment shall be allowed a combined sign area of one square foot per lineal foot of building frontage facing a dedicated street or alley; however, the sign may be increased to a maximum of one and one-half square feet per lineal foot of building frontage; provided, the sign does not exceed 50 percent of the background area on which the sign is applied, mounted or displayed.

Each establishment shall be allowed signs facing on-site parking areas for five cars or more and walkways 10 feet in width. Such signs may contain a sign area of one-half square foot per lineal foot of building frontage. The maximum sign area shall not exceed 20 square feet per establishment.

B. Freestanding (Pole). A freestanding pole sign shall be subject to the following:

1. Each neighborhood shopping center or shopping complex consisting of one parcel or contiguous parcels shall be allowed one freestanding pole sign (in existing developed shopping centers a freestanding service station sign shall be allowed to remain and will not be included in determining the total number of signs allowed);

2. Signs are restricted to those lots having a minimum frontage of 100 feet on a dedicated street. In the case of corner lots, only one frontage shall be counted;

3. Maximum height, 25 feet;

4. Maximum sign area, 100 square feet;

5. Minimum ground clearance, eight feet;

6. The sign may project a maximum of five feet into the public right-of-way;

7. The sign shall maintain a 10-foot setback from all interior property lines;

8. Freestanding pole signs less than eight feet in height are restricted to a maximum sign area of 12 square feet and shall maintain a minimum setback of five feet from all streets;

9. Commercial messages on pole signs in the C-N zone may identify only the name of the shopping center or complex and tenants therein.

C. Ground (Monument). A low-profile ground sign may be used in lieu of a freestanding pole sign. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. Maximum height, eight feet;

2. Maximum sign area, 50 square feet;

3. The sign shall maintain a minimum setback of five feet from all streets and 10 feet from all interior property lines;

4. The sign structure shall be designed to be architecturally compatible with the main building and constructed with the same or similar materials.

D. Signs on Screening Walls or Fences. In lieu of a freestanding sign, a sign may be applied to a wall or fence used for screening of parking areas. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. The sign may only denote the name of the principal establishment or the name of the commercial complex;

2. Maximum sign area, 25 square feet.

E. The design review committee may reduce sign areas below those authorized above based on the sign guidelines and criteria contained in the design manual, without consideration of the graphic design of the copy or message displayed on the sign. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.540 Central commercial (C-C) zone.

The following signs are allowed in C-C zones:

A. Wall and/or Marquee. Each establishment shall be allowed a combined sign area of one square foot per lineal foot of building frontage facing a dedicated street or alley; however, the sign area may be increased to a maximum of three square feet per lineal foot of building frontage; provided, the sign does not exceed 50 percent of the background area on which the sign is applied, mounted or displayed.

Each establishment shall also be allowed signs facing on-site parking areas for five cars or more and walkways 10 feet or more in width. Such signs may contain an area of one square foot per lineal foot of building frontage facing said area; however, the area may be increased to two square feet per lineal foot of building frontage; provided, the sign does not exceed 50 percent of the background area on which the sign is applied, mounted or displayed. The maximum sign area shall not exceed 100 square feet.

B. Freestanding (Pole). Each lot shall be allowed one freestanding sign subject to the following:

1. Signs are restricted to those lots having a minimum frontage of 100 feet on a dedicated street. In the case of corner lots or through lots, only one frontage shall be counted;

2. The sign may contain one square foot of area for each lineal foot of street frontage but shall not exceed 150 square feet. In the case of corner lots or through lots, only the frontage the sign is oriented to shall be counted toward the allowable sign area;

3. Maximum height, 35 feet;

4. Minimum ground clearance, eight feet;

5. The sign may project a maximum of five feet into the public right-of-way;

6. The sign shall maintain a 10-foot setback from all interior property lines;

7. Corner parcels containing five acres or more shall be allowed one freestanding sign on each street frontage on a major or collector street and shall be spaced at intervals of not less than 500 feet apart. Such signs shall not face the side of any adjoining lot in an R district;

8. Commercial messages on pole signs in the C-C zone may identify only the name of the shopping center or complex and tenants therein;

9. Freestanding pole signs less than eight feet in height are restricted to a maximum sign area of 15 square feet and shall maintain a minimum setback of five feet from all streets.

C. Ground (Monument). A low-profile ground sign may be used in lieu of a freestanding pole sign. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. Maximum height, eight feet;

2. Maximum sign area, 50 square feet;

3. The sign shall maintain a minimum setback of five feet from all streets and 10 feet from all interior property lines;

4. The sign structure shall be designed to be architecturally compatible with the main building and constructed with the same or similar materials.

D. Signs on Screening Walls or Fences. In lieu of a freestanding sign, a sign may be applied to a wall or fence used for screening of parking areas. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. The sign may only denote the name of the principal business or the name of the commercial complex;

2. Maximum sign area, 25 square feet.

E. The design review committee may reduce sign areas below those authorized above based on the sign guidelines and criteria contained in the design manual, without consideration of the graphic design of the copy or message displayed on the sign. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.550 Visitor commercial (C-V) zone.

The following signs are allowed in C-V zones:

A. Wall and/or Marquee. Each establishment shall be allowed a combined sign area of one square foot per lineal foot of building frontage facing a dedicated street or alley; however, the sign area may be increased to a maximum of three square feet per lineal foot of building frontage; provided, the sign does not exceed 50 percent of the background area on which the sign is applied.

Each establishment shall also be allowed signs facing on-site parking areas for five cars or more and walkways 10 feet or more in width. Such signs may contain an area of one square foot per lineal foot of building frontage facing said area; however, the area may be increased to two square feet per lineal foot of building frontage; provided, the sign does not exceed 50 percent of the background area on which the sign is applied, mounted or displayed. The maximum sign area shall not exceed 100 square feet.

B. Freestanding (Pole). Each lot shall be allowed one freestanding sign subject to the following:

1. Signs are restricted to those lots having a minimum frontage of 100 feet on a dedicated street. In the case of corner lots or through lots, only one frontage shall be counted;

2. The sign may contain one square foot of area for each lineal foot of street frontage but shall not exceed 150 square feet. In the case of corner lots or through lots, only the frontage the sign is oriented to shall be counted toward the allowable sign area;

3. Maximum height, 35 feet;

4. Minimum ground clearance, eight feet;

5. The sign may project a maximum of five feet into the public right-of-way;

6. The sign shall maintain a 10-foot setback from all interior property lines;

7. Corner parcels containing five acres or more shall be allowed one freestanding sign on each street frontage on a major or collector street and shall be spaced at intervals of not less than 500 feet apart. Such signs shall not face the side of any adjoining lot in an R district;

8. Commercial messages on pole signs in the C-V zone may identify only the name of the shopping center or complex and tenants therein;

9. Freestanding pole signs less than eight feet in height are restricted to a maximum sign area of 15 square feet and shall maintain a minimum setback of five feet from all streets.

C. Ground (Monument). A low-profile ground sign may be used in lieu of a freestanding pole sign. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. Maximum height, eight feet;

2. Maximum sign area, 50 square feet;

3. The sign shall maintain a minimum setback of five feet from all streets and 10 feet from all interior property lines;

4. The sign structure shall be designed to be architecturally compatible with the main building and constructed with the same or similar materials.

D. Signs on Screening Walls or Fences. In lieu of a freestanding sign, a sign may be applied to a wall or fence used for screening of parking areas. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. The sign may only denote the name of the principal establishment or the name of the commercial complex;

2. Maximum sign area, 25 square feet.

E. The design review committee may reduce sign areas below those authorized based on the sign guidelines and criteria contained in the design manual, without consideration of the graphic design of the copy or message displayed on the sign. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.560 Commercial thoroughfare (C-T) zone.

The following signs are allowed in C-T zones:

A. Wall and/or Marquee. Each establishment shall be allowed a combined sign area of one square foot per lineal foot of building frontage facing a dedicated street or alley; however, the sign area may be increased to a maximum of three square feet per lineal foot of building frontage; provided, the sign does not exceed 50 percent of the background area on which the sign is applied, mounted or displayed.

Each establishment shall also be allowed signs facing on-site parking areas for five cars or more and walkways 10 feet or more in width. Such signs may contain an area of one square foot per lineal foot of building frontage facing said area; however, the area may be increased to two square feet per lineal foot of building frontage; provided, the sign does not exceed 50 percent of the background area on which the sign is applied, mounted or displayed. The maximum sign area shall not exceed 100 square feet.

B. Freestanding (Pole). Each lot shall be allowed one freestanding sign subject to the following:

1. Signs are restricted to those lots having a minimum frontage of 50 feet on a dedicated street. In the case of corner lots, only one frontage shall be counted;

2. The sign may contain one square foot of area for each lineal foot of street frontage, but shall not exceed 150 square feet. In the case of corner lots or through lots, only the frontage the sign is oriented to shall be counted toward the allowable sign area;

3. Maximum height, 35 feet;

4. Minimum ground clearance, eight feet;

5. The sign may project a maximum of five feet into the public right-of-way;

6. The sign shall maintain a 10-foot setback from all interior property lines;

7. Corner parcels containing five acres or more shall be allowed one freestanding sign on each street frontage on a major or collector street and shall be spaced at intervals of not less than 500 feet apart. Such signs shall not face the side of any adjoining lot in the R district;

8. Commercial messages on pole signs in the C-T zone may identify only the name of the shopping center or complex and tenants therein;

9. Freestanding pole signs less than eight feet in height are restricted to a maximum sign area of 15 square feet and shall maintain a minimum setback of five feet from all streets.

C. Ground (Monument). A low-profile ground sign may be used in lieu of a freestanding pole sign. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. Maximum height, eight feet;

2. Maximum sign area, 50 square feet;

3. The sign shall maintain a minimum setback of five feet from all streets and 10 feet from all interior property lines;

4. The sign structure shall be designed to be architecturally compatible with the main building and constructed with the same or similar materials.

D. Projecting. A projecting sign may be used in place of a freestanding (pole or ground) sign subject to the following:

1. The maximum projection from the face of the building shall be based on the clearance of the sign from the bottom of the sign to the ground as shown in the following table:

Ground Clearance

Maximum Projection

Maximum Diagonal (45°) Projection (Corner Lot)

8' or less

1'0"

1'0"

9'

1'6"

1'8"

10'

2'0"

2'4"

11'

2'6"

3'0"

12'

3'0"

3'8"

13'

3'6"

4'4"

14'

4'0"

5'0"

15'

4'6"

5'8"

16' or more

5'0"

6'4"

2. Projecting signs less than eight feet from the ground shall not project closer than three feet to any area used for vehicular circulation and six inches to any area used for pedestrian circulation;

3. The sign shall not project above the roof, parapet, or first story;

4. The maximum sign area shall be 60 square feet for spheres, cylinders and multisided signs, not including the top and bottom of the sign where no copy is applied to those surfaces.

E. Rooftop. Each lot shall be allowed a rooftop sign in lieu of a freestanding or projecting sign in accordance with the following:

1. Such signs are restricted to those establishments having a minimum street frontage of 100 feet on a dedicated street and a minimum building frontage of 50 feet. In the case of corner lots, only one frontage shall be counted;

2. The height of the rooftop sign above the building on which it is located shall not exceed the height of the building measured from the ground level to the top of a parapet wall, a ridge line or the highest point of the roof. But in no case shall the height exceed 35 feet above the ground level;

3. The maximum area of the sign shall not exceed 50 square feet for buildings having 50 feet of frontage. Buildings with frontages of more than 50 feet may increase the area of the sign two square feet per lineal foot over 50 feet but shall not exceed 150 square feet.

Building Frontage

Sign Area (Sq. Ft.)

50'

50

55'

60

60'

70

65'

80

70'

90

75'

100

80'

110

85'

120

90'

130

95'

140

100' and over

150

4. The sign shall be placed perpendicular to the street it is oriented to and shall maintain a minimum setback of 10 feet from the sides of the building;

5. The sign shall not be permitted to project beyond the building face.

F. Signs on Screening Walls or Fences. In lieu of a freestanding sign, a sign may be applied to a wall or fence used for screening of a parking area. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. The sign may only denote the name of the principal establishment or the name of the commercial complex;

2. Maximum sign area, 25 square feet.

G. The design review committee may reduce sign areas below those authorized above based on the sign guidelines and criteria contained in the design manual, without consideration of the graphic design of the copy or message displayed on the sign. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.570 Industrial research (I-R) zone.

The following signs are allowed in I-R zones:

A. Wall and/or Marquee. Each establishment shall be allowed a combined sign area of one square foot for each lineal foot of building frontage facing a dedicated street or alley, to a maximum of 100 square feet.

Each establishment shall also be allowed signs facing on-site parking areas for five cars or more and walkways 10 feet or more in width. They shall be allowed a sign area of one square foot per lineal foot of building frontage facing said area, to a maximum of 50 square feet.

B. Freestanding (Pole). Each lot shall be allowed one freestanding pole sign subject to the following:

1. Signs are restricted to those lots having a minimum frontage of 75 feet on a dedicated street. In the case of corner lots, only one frontage shall be counted;

2. Maximum sign area, 75 square feet;

3. Maximum height, 20 feet;

4. Minimum ground clearance, eight feet;

5. The sign shall not be permitted to project into the public right-of-way;

6. The sign shall maintain a 10-foot setback from all interior property lines;

7. Freestanding pole signs less than eight feet in height are restricted to a maximum sign area of 12 square feet and shall maintain a five-foot setback from all streets;

8. Commercial messages on pole signs in the I-R zone may identify only the name of the complex and tenants therein.

C. Ground (Monument). A low-profile ground sign may be used in lieu of a freestanding pole sign. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. Maximum height, eight feet;

2. Maximum sign area, 50 square feet;

3. The sign shall maintain a minimum setback of five feet from all streets and 10 feet from all interior property lines;

4. The sign structure shall be designed to be architecturally compatible with the main building and constructed with the same or similar materials.

D. Signs on Screening Walls or Fences. In lieu of a freestanding sign, a sign may be applied to a wall or fence used for screening of parking areas. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. The sign may only denote the name of the principal establishment or the name of the commercial complex;

2. Maximum sign area, 25 square feet.

E. The design review committee may reduce sign areas below those authorized above based on the sign guidelines and criteria contained in the design manual, without consideration of the graphic design of the copy or message displayed on the sign. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.580 Limited industrial (I-L) zone.

The following signs are allowed in I-L zones:

A. Wall and/or Marquee. Each establishment shall be allowed a combined sign area of one square foot per lineal foot of building frontage facing a dedicated street or alley; however, the sign area may be increased to a maximum of three square feet per lineal foot of building frontage; provided, that the sign does not exceed 50 percent of the background area on which the sign is applied, mounted or displayed.

Each establishment shall also be allowed signs facing on-site parking areas for five cars or more and walkways 10 feet or more in width. Such signs shall be allowed an area of one square foot per lineal foot of building frontage facing said area; however, the area may be increased to two square feet per lineal foot of building frontage; provided, that the sign does not exceed 50 percent of the background area on which the sign is applied, mounted or displayed. The maximum sign area shall not exceed 100 square feet.

B. Freestanding (Pole). Each lot shall be allowed one freestanding sign subject to the following:

1. Signs are restricted to those lots having a minimum frontage of 100 feet on a dedicated street. In the case of corner lots, only one frontage shall be counted;

2. The sign may contain one square foot of area for each lineal foot of street frontage but shall not exceed 150 square feet. In the case of corner lots or through lots, only the frontage the sign is oriented to shall be counted toward the allowable sign area;

3. Maximum height, 35 feet;

4. Minimum ground clearance, eight feet;

5. The sign shall not be permitted to project into the public right-of-way;

6. The sign shall maintain a 20-foot setback from all interior property lines;

7. Freestanding pole signs less than eight feet in height are restricted to a maximum sign area of 12 square feet and shall maintain a minimum setback of five feet from all streets;

8. Commercial messages on pole signs in the I-L zone may identify only the name of the complex and tenants therein.

C. Ground (Monument). A low-profile ground sign may be used in lieu of a freestanding pole sign. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. Maximum height, eight feet;

2. Maximum sign area, 50 square feet;

3. The sign shall maintain a minimum setback of five feet from all streets and 10 feet from all interior property lines;

4. The sign structure shall be designed to be architecturally compatible with the main building and constructed with the same or similar materials.

D. Signs on Screening Walls or Fences. In lieu of a freestanding sign, a sign may be applied to a wall or fence used for screening of parking areas. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. The sign may only denote the name of the principal establishment or the name of the commercial complex;

2. Maximum sign area, 25 square feet.

E. The design review committee may reduce sign areas below those authorized above based on the sign guidelines and criteria contained in the design manual, without consideration of the graphic design of the copy or message displayed on the sign. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.590 General industrial (I) zone.

The following signs are allowed in I zones:

A. Wall and/or Marquee. Each establishment shall be allowed a combined sign area of one square foot per lineal foot of building frontage facing a dedicated street or alley; however, the sign area may be increased to a maximum of three square feet per lineal foot of building frontage; provided, the sign does not exceed 50 percent of the background area on which the sign is applied, mounted or displayed.

Each establishment shall also be allowed signs facing on-site parking areas for five cars or more and walkways 10 feet or more in width. Such signs shall be allowed an area of one square foot per lineal foot of building frontage facing said area; however, the area may be increased to two square feet per lineal foot of building frontage; provided, the sign does not exceed 50 percent of the background area on which the sign is applied, mounted or displayed. The maximum sign area shall not exceed 100 square feet.

B. Freestanding (Pole). Each lot shall be allowed one freestanding sign subject to the following:

1. Signs are restricted to those lots having a minimum frontage of 100 feet on a dedicated street. In the case of corner lots, only one frontage shall be counted;

2. The sign may contain one square foot of area for each lineal foot of street frontage but shall not exceed 150 square feet. In the case of corner lots or through lots, only the frontage the sign is oriented to shall be counted toward the allowable sign area;

3. Maximum height, 35 feet;

4. Minimum ground clearance, eight feet;

5. The sign shall not be permitted to project into the public right-of-way;

6. The sign shall maintain a 20-foot setback from all interior property lines;

7. Freestanding pole signs less than eight feet in height are restricted to a maximum sign area of 12 square feet and shall maintain a minimum setback of five feet from all streets;

8. Commercial messages on pole signs in the I zone may identify only the name of the complex and tenants therein.

C. Ground (Monument). A low-profile ground sign may be used in lieu of a freestanding pole sign. The sign shall be subject to the following:

1. Maximum height, eight feet;

2. Maximum sign area, 50 square feet;

3. The sign shall maintain a minimum setback of five feet from all streets and 10 feet from all interior property lines;

4. The sign structure shall be designed to be architecturally compatible with the main building and constructed with the same or similar materials.

D. The design review committee may reduce sign areas below those authorized consideration of the graphic design of the copy or message displayed on the sign. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.595 Other zones.

Whenever sign standards or provisions have not been established for an unclassified use requiring the issuance of a conditional use permit, the planning commission may establish sign standards and provisions concurrently with the request for the conditional use permit. However, such standards must comply with and incorporate all of the standard provisions of this chapter.

There are no general sign provisions in the public and quasi-public, floodway, or tidelands zones. The planning commission and city council shall establish sign standards and provisions for a particular use in these zones concurrently with the approval of the use’s conditional use permit. However, such standards must comply with and incorporate all of the standard provisions of CVMC 19.60.050. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.600 Specialty signs.

The signs described in this section are based on the legal use of the land on a particular parcel.

A. Theater Marquees. When allowed as an accessory to a legal use as a drive-in theater, a freestanding drive-in theater marquee sign shall not exceed 250 square feet in area or 25 feet in height. The sign shall maintain a 20-foot setback from all property lines. Each theater, drive-in or non-drive-in, shall be allowed to use changeable copy signs in addition to the signs permitted in the underlying zone. The area of the signs shall not exceed 60 square feet facing in any one direction, nor shall the total aggregate sign area exceed 150 square feet.

B. Service Station Price Signs. On each legally operating station selling fuels for motor vehicles, one service station price sign is allowed on each street frontage, subject to:

1. The maximum sign area shall be 15 square feet, and the sign shall not exceed five feet in any dimension. Such sign shall not be in conflict with the provisions of the city’s traffic code relating to visual clearance. The sign shall satisfy the requirements of California Business and Professions Code Section 13531, and be posted with the correct prices at all times. The signs shall be designed as a permanent structure, rigidly attached to a building, wall, or adequately anchored in the ground to resist wind pressure as specified in CVMC Title 15 in the currently adopted uniform building code. A freestanding structure shall be architecturally compatible with the building and shall not exceed a maximum height of six feet.

2. A sign may be attached to a freestanding sign if designed to be architecturally part of the sign.

3. Price signs may be displayed on the main body of a pole sign but shall not exceed 25 percent of the main sign area or 15 square feet, whichever is the least amount.

4. Notwithstanding the above provisions, no price signs otherwise required by the provisions of Business and Professions Code Section 13531 shall be placed along the following areas which have been designated on the city’s general plan as scenic corridors or historic preservation areas: that area along East “H” Street between its intersection with Interstate 805 and its intersection with Ridgeback Road.

C. Real Estate Signs. On any parcel or separately rentable portion thereof, a sign(s) pertaining to economic transactions regarding the property (such as sale, rental, lease, exchange, etc.) is allowed, subject to the land owner’s consent and:

1. Maximum Sign Area. Commercial and industrial zones, 32 square feet; agricultural zones, 32 square feet for undeveloped acreage of one acre or more, otherwise 4.5 square feet; residential zones, 4.5 square feet.

2. Height, If Freestanding. No freestanding sign shall exceed 10 feet in height in any commercial or industrial zone or in the agricultural zone for undeveloped acreage of one acre or more. In all other zones, the maximum height shall be limited to six feet.

3. Number of Signs. Through lots shall be allowed one sign on each street. Corner lots shall be permitted one sign only.

4. Setback. Freestanding signs shall not violate the vision clearance – intersection requirements in CVMC 12.12.120 and/or the vision clearance – driveway requirements in CVMC 12.12.130.

5. Vacancy Signs. Real estate signs reflecting the vacancy status and availability of commercial or industrial space within a structure designed for multiple occupancy, whether through rental, sale or lease, shall be limited to a maximum sign area of 16 square feet. Not more than one sign may be used facing a dedicated street. The sign may be attached flat against the building or be part of a permitted freestanding sign if designed to be part of said sign and providing the total sign area does not exceed the area permitted for the freestanding sign.

6. Location. On the property to which the sign pertains, or on other private property with the consent of that property owner or as permitted in Chapter 12.50 CVMC.

7. Open House Signs – Special Rules. Off-premises temporary real estate open house signs are allowed within all residential zones subject to:

a. No more than five off-premises open house signs shall be allowed for each residential open house which occurs, except as permitted in Chapter 12.50 CVMC.

b. No more than one sign shall be allowed to be placed on any interior parcel and no more than two on a corner lot (one per street frontage).

c. Off-premises open house signs shall only be displayed during daylight hours except as permitted in Chapter 12.50 CVMC.

d. Signs shall be no larger than four square feet and shall be located at minimum of three feet from the sidewalk or 10 feet from the curb or edge of pavement, where no sidewalk exists, except as permitted in Chapter 12.50 CVMC.

e. An off-premises temporary real estate open house sign shall only be permitted in conjunction with an open house held for the resale of one single-family residence.

f. Off-premises signs advertising the sale of more than one lot or more than two dwellings constitutes a subdivision directional sign subject to the regulations outlined in subsection (E)(3) of this section.

g. Off-premises open house signs are prohibited within the public right-of-way except as permitted in Chapter 12.50 CVMC.

D. Residential Neighborhood Identification Signs. Permanent residential identification signs designating the name of the residential area may be located at an entrance to the residential area when homeowners’ association or maintenance district is formed to ensure the maintenance of the signs. The copy area of the sign shall not exceed 15 square feet. The sign structure shall be designed to be architecturally harmonious with the residential area. This provision does not authorize the mounting of such signs on city owned property or on public rights-of-way.

E. Tract Housing. Tract housing signs shall be allowed in any zone of the city as follows:

1. Model Homes. For each model home, signage not exceeding 12 square feet in area, eight feet in height, and two in number is allowed. Commercial speech thereon shall relate to the model on the same parcel. All such signage shall be permanently removed within 10 days of when the model home ceases to be used as a model.

2. Temporary Tract Signs. For each subdivision there may be one sign at each principal entrance to the subdivision; such sign may be indirectly illuminated, and any commercial message thereon shall relate only to the dwelling units or lots on the same premises as subdivision on which the sign is maintained. For subdivisions with five or more lots, the total combined area of all temporary tract signs may not exceed 200 square feet or 20 feet in height. For subdivisions with four or fewer lots, the total combined area of all temporary tract signs may not exceed 32 square feet, and no such sign may exceed eight feet in height. All such signs shall be permanently removed not later than 10 calendar days after the first sale of all the homes in the subdivision.

3. Subdivision Directional Signage. Signs indicating a change of direction which travelers must make to reach a subdivision located within the city may be placed on private property, with the owner’s consent, at each place where such change of direction is needed, within five miles of the subdivision. Individual signs may not exceed four and one-half square feet in area or three and one-half feet in height, and may not be illuminated. Individual signs may be single- or double-faced, or V-shaped if the angle between the two faces does not exceed 45 degrees. Commercial messages thereon shall be limited to the name of the subdivision and directional information. The zoning administrator may require written evidence of owner’s consent. Permits for all such signs shall expire not later than six months after issuance, but the zoning administrator may grant a maximum of two extensions of up to one year each, without renotification or hearing. Such signs may be displayed only until the developer has completed the sale of each unit in the development.

F. Signs for Unclassified Uses. Whenever sign standards or provisions have not been established for an unclassified use requiring the issuance of a conditional use permit, the planning commission may establish sign standards and provisions concurrently with the approval of the conditional use permit. However, such standards must comply with and incorporate all of the standard provisions of CVMC 19.60.050.

G. Mansard Roofs. A principal identification or multiple copy wall sign may be placed on a mansard roof subject to the following:

1. The sign shall not exceed one-half the length and width of the mansard on which it is placed;

2. The area on which the sign is placed shall be designed to accommodate the sign except when cut-out letters are used.

H. Pitched Roofs. A principal identification or multiple-copy wall sign may be placed on a pitched roof subject to:

1. The sign shall be placed on a pitched roof that slopes toward the street the establishment is oriented to;

2. No sign may be placed on the ridge of the roof;

3. No sign may project above a line drawn from the center of the street to the ridge of the roof;

4. The sign shall set back a minimum horizontal distance of three feet from the front edge of the roof;

5. The length of the sign shall not exceed one-half of the length of the roof and shall be horizontally centered;

6. The area shall not exceed two square feet per lineal foot of roof on which the sign is placed;

7. The ends of the sign shall extend back to the roof to form an enclosure.

I. Agricultural Uses. Signs for agricultural uses are allowed in any zone, subject to the following:

1. Multiple wall signs facing a dedicated street are allowed, but the total sign area of all wall signs shall not exceed one square foot for each lineal foot of building frontage; in addition

2. One freestanding sign not exceeding eight square feet in sign area and 10 feet in height shall be allowed.

J. Architectural Appendages. In lieu of a freestanding or projecting sign which is otherwise allowed, a sign may be placed on an architectural appendage. Such sign may not exceed the area or alter the appearance of an appendage on which it is placed, and may not exceed the allowable area of the freestanding or projecting sign which it is replacing.

K. Temporary Noncommercial Signs During Certain Periods. In addition to signage otherwise allowed in any zone, during the period of four calendar months preceding any scheduled election and up to and including 10 calendar days following such election, temporary signs bearing noncommercial messages (including but not limited to messages on the topics of politics, religion, science, arts, philosophy, etc.) may be displayed on private property (not including private property which is also public right-of-way), without permit, subject to the owner’s consent, and also subject to:

1. In agricultural and residential zones:

a. No sign may exceed five square feet in area.

b. Double-faced signs as defined in this chapter are permitted.

c. No sign shall be posted in such a manner that any portion of said sign is within five feet of the house side of the sidewalk and, if there is no sidewalk within 15 feet of said sign, then 15 feet from the house side of the street curb. Said signs must be placed at least five feet from the house side of intersecting sidewalks or if there are no sidewalks, then 15 feet from the house or back sides of intersecting curbs. Unless a further setback is required by the foregoing rules (as in the case of corner lots adjacent to intersecting streets), said signs shall be located at least five feet from side property lines except for lots located at intersections.

d. No sign shall exceed three and one-half feet in height in the front setback area, and such signs shall not exceed six feet in height in any area unless said sign is attached flush to any building. The measurement shall be taken from the ground level to the top of said sign.

e. No sign may be affixed to an already existing sign.

f. Nothing in this section shall be construed to render a property owner liable for the posting of a sign on his or her property.

2. In commercial and industrial zones:

a. No sign may exceed 12 square feet in area. Double-faced signs as defined in this chapter may be permitted.

b. No sign may be affixed to an already existing sign.

3. Removal. The procedure for the removal of temporary noncommercial signs is as follows:

a. Notice. The director shall give 24 hours’ notice to the owner of the sign (if known), of the city’s intent to remove any unauthorized temporary sign bearing a noncommercial message. The notice shall specify the provision of the sign ordinance being violated, and shall inform the owner that removal charges will be assessed. The owner may, within 24 hours of receiving notice, request a hearing before the director to appeal the decision to remove the sign. If the owner so requests, the sign shall not be removed until the hearing has been held and a final decision rendered. If the owner cannot be identified or located after reasonable effort, the sign may be treated as abandoned property and removed.

b. Appeal and Removal. In the absence of an appeal of the removal decision, the sign may be removed by the city and the reasonable cost thereof charged to the sign owner and/or persons responsible for placing the illegal sign. Such cost shall be set by resolution of city council.

L. Informational Signs. The signs allowed by this subsection fulfill informational and directional needs.

1. Directory Signs. On buildings wherein are located several different establishments, directory signs may be located on an exterior elevation of a building if the directory is placed flat against the building at or near a building entrance or area restricted to pedestrian traffic only. The sign shall be no more than 10 square feet in area and five feet in height.

2. Directional Signs. Signs containing directional information for pedestrian and vehicular traffic may be used subject to the following:

a. Maximum sign area is 10 square feet;

b. No sign may exceed 10 feet in height;

c. Directional rooftop signs are prohibited except when incorporated into the design of an approved rooftop sign designed to accommodate the sign;

d. The signs shall not be attached to any light standard, flag pole, or onto any other sign except as provided herein;

e. The number and location of all directional signs shall be limited to the least number to provide ample notification.

3. Warning and Instructional Signs. Warning and instructional signs, such as “beware of dog,” “danger high voltage,” “no trespassing,” “no dumping,” etc., are allowed subject to:

a. Area: Maximum three square feet;

b. Height: If freestanding, maximum six feet;

c. Attachment: May not be attached to any light standard, flag pole, or any other freestanding sign. (Ord. 3083 § 1, 2007; Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.700 Signs permits.

A. Permits – When Required. No person except a public officer or public employee in the performance of an official duty shall paste, post, paint, print, nail, tack, erect, place or otherwise fasten, or maintain or permit any sign, pennant or notice of any kind, facing or visible from a public street, public or private right-of-way in the city except as provided herein. To ensure compliance with this section, a sign permit shall be required for any sign, except as provided herein. The procedure regarding application for and processing of sign permits, as well as the procedures for the appeal of decisions thereon, is set forth beginning with CVMC 19.60.800.

B. Purpose of Permitting. All permitting and approval processes required by this chapter are intended to ensure compliance with this chapter and various safety codes, as well as to prevent the loss of time, effort and materials which might otherwise be invested in an illegal sign.

C. Exempt Signs. The signs described in this subsection are not subject to the permit requirement, and do not count towards the total signage which is otherwise allowable.

1. Signs described in other sections of this chapter as not requiring or being subject to the permit requirement.

2. Street address signs not exceeding three square feet in area total per parcel.

3. Symbols or insignia which are an integral part of a doormat or welcome mat, or embedded directly into the sidewalk or entrance surface, so long as such device is otherwise legal and is located entirely on private property and on the ground or sidewalk.

4. Signs used in conjunction with “special events” as defined and regulated by CVMC 19.58.370 and 19.58.380.

5. Any public or legal notice required by a court or public agency.

6. Signs authorized or required by another body of law.

7. Flags displaying noncommercial images; provided, that the total area (one side only) does not exceed one percent of the square feet of surface area of the parcel, the number of flag poles on a parcel does not exceed one per 100 linear feet of street frontage, and the height of any flag pole does not exceed 30 feet.

8. Construction signs which meet these requirements: maximum number per project under construction: one; maximum area: 150 square feet; maximum height (if freestanding): 25 feet; minimum setback: 10 feet from all interior property lines; maximum display time: from the time a grading or building permit is issued and remains valid and unexpired, until the construction project is completed or abandoned.

9. Hand held and portable signs that do not display a commercial message and are otherwise legal or allowed under this chapter.

10. Mass Transit Signage. Advertisements or banners mounted on trains or duly licensed mass transit vehicles that legally pass through the city.

11. On-site informational signs not viewable from the public right-of-way or adjacent properties.

12. Off-site directional signs located wholly on private property.

13. Professional signs not exceeding one square foot in area and located wholly on an appurtenant commercial building.

14. Window signs which otherwise comply with all applicable regulations.

15. Temporary noncommercial signs which otherwise comply with all applicable regulations.

16. Real estate and open house signs which otherwise comply with all applicable regulations.

17. Garage sale signs that comply with CVMC 5.32.050.

18. Messages relating to the business of which the vehicle or vessel is an instrument or tool (not including general advertising) and messages relating to the proposed sale, lease or exchange of the vehicle or vessel.

19. Interior Signs. Signs or other visual communicative devices that are located entirely within a building or other enclosed structure and are not visible from the exterior thereof, provided the building or enclosed structure is otherwise legal. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.800 Permit applications.

The application for a sign permit shall be made in writing on the form provided by the planning department and shall be accompanied by any fee established by city council resolution. Such application shall set forth and contain the following information and items:

A. A drawing to scale showing the design of the sign, including dimensions, sign size, colors (applies to commercial message signs only), materials, method of attachment, source of illumination and showing the relationship to any building or structure to which it is proposed to be installed or affixed or to which it relates.

B. A site plan, including all dimensions, drawn to scale indicating the location of the sign relative to the property line, rights-of-way, streets, sidewalks, vehicular access points and existing buildings or structures and off-street parking areas located on the premises.

C. The number, size, type and location of all existing signs on the same building, site or premises.

D. Any structural information and plans necessary to ensure compliance with the latest adopted building standards.

E. Such other information as the planning department may reasonably request to determine that the proposed application is in full compliance with the provisions of this chapter, the city code and any other applicable law. The message proposed to be displayed on the sign is not required.

F. Proof of the consent of the property owner or other person in control or possession of the property. For example, if the subject property is leased and the applicant is the lessee, the lessee must demonstrate that the sign complies with all provisions of the lease related to signage, or submit a written landlord’s consent. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.810 Processing of applications.

A. Time. Unless otherwise stated, all time periods in this section are calendar days.

B. Completeness. The zoning administrator shall determine whether the application contains all the information and items required by this chapter. If it is determined that the application is not complete, the applicant shall be notified in person or in writing within 30 days of the date of receipt of the application that the application is not complete and the reasons therefor, including any additional information necessary to render the application complete. The applicant shall then have 30 calendar days to submit additional information to render the application complete; failure to do so within the 30-day period shall render the application void. Within 30 days following the receipt of an amended application or supplemental information, the planning director shall again determine whether the application is complete in accordance with the procedures set forth in this subsection. Evaluation and notification shall occur as provided above until such time as the application is found to be complete (the “application date”).

C. Disqualification. No sign application will be approved if:

1. The applicant has installed a sign in violation of the provisions of this chapter and, at the time of submission of the application, each illegal sign has not been legalized, removed or included in the application;

2. There is any other existing code violation located on the site of the proposed sign(s) (other than an illegal or nonconforming sign that is not owned or controlled by the applicant and is located at a different business location on the site from that for which the approval is sought) which has not been cured at the time of the application;

3. The sign approval application is substantially the same as an application previously denied, unless: (a) 12 months have elapsed since the date of the last application, or (b) new evidence or proof of changed conditions is furnished in the new application; or

4. The applicant has not obtained any applicable required use permit or conditional use permit.

D. Method of Review. The method of review is standard compliance review. The zoning administrator, or the design review committee, planning commission or city council on appeal, shall determine whether approval shall be granted for any sign based on its conformance with the regulations and design standards set forth herein and in the city design manual, without consideration of the graphic design of the copy or message displayed on the sign.

E. Certain Signs Calling for Design Review. Decisions under this standard shall be guided by the following principles and shall not be based on the graphic design of the copy or message displayed on the signs:

1. Fluorescent paints shall be avoided;

2. Sign copy should not extend beyond the edges of the background area on which it is applied;

3. The copy area of signs, including logos, emblems, crests and pictorial representations, should not exceed 50 percent of the background area on which it is applied;

4. The height of a pole sign should not be less than twice its width;

5. The height of the bottom of the signboard of a pole sign should be less than three times but more than twice the width of the signboard;

6. The two sides of a rectangular pole sign should have a ratio of three to five;

7. The base of each freestanding sign shall be landscaped in accordance with the landscaping manual of Chula Vista, without consideration of the graphic design of the copy or message displayed on the sign.

F. Decisions. Where an application is denied by the zoning administrator, or the design review committee, planning commission or city council on appeal, the applicant shall be informed in writing of the changes necessary in order to approve the application. If the applicant chooses to amend the application to reflect said changes, the zoning administrator shall grant the permit within 30 days of when a complete and conforming application is submitted.

The zoning administrator shall render a decision on a sign permit within 30 days of the date of application.

G. Appeals. All sign permit applications shall be initially reviewed by the zoning administrator. The applicant or any concerned person may appeal any sign related decision in this order: design review committee, planning commission and city council. In each case, written notice of appeal must be filed with the City Clerk within 10 days of when the decision was delivered or sent to applicant and all known concerned persons, or the last day on which a decision could have been timely rendered. In each case, the appellate body must conduct a hearing and consider evidence, and render a written decision within 30 days. In the cases of appeal to the planning commission and the city council, the hearing must follow normal procedures for agendizing and giving public notice. Unless time is waived by the applicant, any permit or approval on which the city does not render a definite decision within the required time shall be deemed denied, and the time for appeal or filing judicial review shall commence on the last date on which the city could have issued a decision.

H. Judicial Review. Following final decision by the city council, any concerned person may seek judicial review of the final decision on a sign permit application pursuant to California Code of Civil Procedure Section 1094.8.

I. Multiple Sign Applications. When an application proposes two or more signs, the application may be granted either in whole or in part, with separate decisions as to each proposed sign. When an application is denied in whole or in part, the director’s written notice of determination shall specify the grounds for such denial.

J. Revocation or Cancellation. The director shall revoke any approval upon refusal of the holder thereof to comply with the provisions of this chapter after written notice of noncompliance and at least 15 days’ opportunity to cure.

K. Permits Issued in Error. Any approval or permit issued in error may be summarily revoked by the city upon written notice to the holder of the reason for the revocation. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.900 Removal of certain signs.

A. Obsolete and Abandoned Signs. All signs relating to a product no longer available for purchase by the public and all signs relating to an establishment which has closed or moved away shall be removed, together with any supporting structures and bracing not considered an integral part of the building. Painted wall signs shall be painted over with a color that closely resembles or matches the color of the wall. If the owner of, or persons responsible for, the sign, or the tenant closing the establishment, fails to remove or paint over the sign, the owner of the premises shall be responsible and the work shall be done within 90 days following the date of obsolescence.

B. Charges for Moving, Removal, Correction of Sign. The fees for the city moving, removing, correcting, storing, or doing work on a sign or sign structure shall be the required fee(s). The city may charge the fees against any of the following, each of whom shall be jointly and severally liable for said charge:

1. The permittee;

2. The owner of the sign;

3. The owner of the premises on which the sign is located;

4. The occupant of the premises on which the sign is located.

C. Storage of Removed Signs – Time Limit – Recovery Procedure. A removed sign shall be held not less than 30 days by the city during which period it may be recovered by the owner upon payment to the city of the required fee(s) as set by resolution of city council. If not recovered within the 30-day period, the sign and supporting structures shall be declared abandoned and title thereto shall vest in the city. The fees may be in addition to any penalty for the violation, and recovery of sign does not necessarily abrogate the penalty. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).

19.60.930 Amortization of nonconforming on-site signs.

All on-site signs in any zone constructed and erected prior to the effective date of the ordinance codified herein, or any prior ordinance under which they were also nonconforming (considering only the noncommunicative aspects of the sign) pursuant to the issuance of a valid building permit issued by the city, which do not conform to the requirements of the provisions of this title for the particular zone in which they are located or in regard to design review requirements, shall be allowed an amortization period of 15 years from the effective date of the earliest ordinance under which they were nonconforming, and shall thereafter be subject to abatement and removal as provided.

A. Notice. Any owner of a nonconforming sign at the expiration of 15 years from the effective date of the ordinance codified herein shall be noticed of the nonconformity of the display. Ownership shall be determined by the ownership of the property as shown by the most recent assessor’s tax roll. Should any owner wish to appeal the removal of any nonconforming sign based upon the reasonableness of the 15-year amortization period, such appeal shall be done in accordance with subsection (D) of this section. Removal of the sign shall be stayed until such time as an appeal is finally decided by the city council.

B. Appeals Procedure. Any appeal from an order to remove a nonconforming sign which has used up its amortization allowance may be appealed through the same procedure as an appeal of a sign permit application. In the case of fully amortized nonconforming signs subject to a removal order, the appeal shall state and provide evidence of:

1. A detailed description of the sign or structure, the method of its construction, its measurements and the message contained thereon;

2. The name of the owner or owners of the property upon which the sign or structure is located;

3. A definition and term of the appellant’s right to locate and/or maintain the sign or structure on said property. Include amount paid, if any, for the right to locate and/or maintain the sign or structure;

4. The date and cost of original construction of the sign or structure;

5. The date and cost of appellant’s purchase of the sign or structure;

6. The date or dates and cost of major repairs to the sign or structure;

7. The average monthly gross income derived from the proceeds generated from the sign or structure, measured over the period of existence or ownership;

8. The current net value of the sign or structure as carried on the books of the company, as well as any estimate of current fair market value (including the qualifications of persons making such estimate, and the basis therefor);

9. Each application on appeal shall be verified. (Ord. 2924 § 2, 2003).