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Chapter 28
SIGNS

Section 28.1    General Provisions

Section 28.2    Procedures and Enforcement

Section 28.3    General Sign Requirements

Section 28.4    Definitions and Sign Types

Section 28.5    Permanent Signs

Section 28.6    Temporary Signs

Section 28.7    Temporary Signs on Public Property

Section 28.8    Temporary Public and Quasi-Public Signs

Section 28.9    Prohibited Signs

Section 28.10    Exempted Signs

 

Section 28.1 General Provisions

A. Purpose

1.    The purpose of this Chapter is to establish reasonable regulations for the design, construction, location, and maintenance of all exterior signs in the Town of Oro Valley in order to:

a.    Preserve and protect the public health, safety, welfare, and convenience. Protect the general public from injury or damage which may be caused by faulty and uncontrolled construction or improper location of signs within the Town.

b.    Provide for an effective form of communication while preserving the scenic beauty of the desert environment. Ensure that the signage is clear; compatible with the character of the adjacent architecture and neighborhoods; and provides the essential identity of, and direction to, facilities in the community.

c.    Enhance the potential economic value and quality of development within the community, as well as promote and aid the tourism industry, an important part of the Town’s economy.

d.    Promote the effectiveness of signs by preventing sign over-concentration, improper placement, excessive clutter, size, and number.

e.    Safeguard and preserve the unique character of the Town and create an attractive and appealing community environment in which to live, work, and visit. Assure that the public benefits derived from the expenditure of public funds for the improvement and beautification of streets and other public structures and spaces shall be protected by exercising reasonable controls over the character and design of sign structures.

2.    It is not the purpose of this Chapter to repeal, abrogate, annul or in any way impair or interfere with existing provisions of other laws or ordinances, except those specifically repealed by this Chapter.

B. Requirement for Conformity

If any sign and/or sign structure is located, constructed, reconstructed, altered, repaired, converted or maintained in violation of this Chapter, the Town or any owner or tenant of real property aggrieved by the alleged violation, in addition to other remedies available at law, may institute appropriate injunction proceedings to correct the violation with the Oro Valley Magistrate Court.

C. Nonconforming and Discontinued Signs

1. Signs Rendered Nonconforming

a.    If, at the time of the adoption of this Chapter or amendment thereto, or of any extension of jurisdiction resulting from annexation, any permanent sign which is being used but does not conform to the provisions of this Chapter shall be deemed legal nonconforming.

b.    Any sign which becomes legally nonconforming shall be permitted to remain, provided the sign:

i.    Is not increased in area or height;

ii.    Remains structurally unchanged, except for reasonable repairs or minor alteration;

iii.    If relocated, due to no fault of the owner, is placed in the same relative position on the remaining property that it occupied prior to the relocation;

iv.    Is relocated in a manner so as to comply with applicable safety requirements; and

v.    Is not discontinued per subsection C.2 of this section.

c.    Alteration or Removal of Nonconforming Signs

i.    A nonconforming sign shall not be re-erected, relocated (except as permitted above), or replaced unless it is brought into compliance with the requirements of this Chapter.

ii.    Any nonconforming sign shall be removed or rebuilt in full conformity to the terms of this Chapter if it is damaged or allowed to deteriorate to such extent that the cost of repair or restoration is fifty percent (50%) or more of the costs and/or replacement of materials.

2. Signs Rendered Obsolete or Discontinued

a.    With the exception of Lease, Rent, and For Sale Signs, any sign which is located on a property which becomes vacant and unoccupied for a period exceeding three (3) months shall be deemed to have been discontinued.

b.    Sign structures which remain vacant, unoccupied, obsolete, devoid of any message or display a message pertaining to a time, event, or purpose that no longer applies for more than three (3) months shall be deemed discontinued.

c.    It shall be the responsibility of the owner of the premises to remove any sign deemed discontinued subject to penalty as set forth in Section 30.2.

3. Change in Business

a.    When a business establishment closes, relocates, changes names, or abandons any sign or structure, the owner of the property shall remove the sign, or cause it to be removed, within thirty (30) days of the change of business. If the sign is to be immediately re-faced with a new business name, a new sign permit shall be required and applicable fees shall be paid. A permit shall be nontransferable from one (1) owner to another.

b.    A nonconforming sign shall be brought into compliance with the requirements of this Chapter when a business establishment closes, relocates, changes names, or abandons any sign. A permit and applicable fees for the sign modifications are required.

D. Liabilities for Insurance and Damages

1.    The provisions of this code shall not be construed to relieve or to limit in any way the responsibility or liability of any person, firm, or corporation which erects or owns any sign from personal injury or property damages caused by, or attributed to, such sign. The provisions of this code shall not be construed to impose upon the Town of Oro Valley, its officers or its employees any responsibility or liability by reason of the approval of any sign under the provisions of this code.

E. Prevailing Code

In the event a provision established in this Chapter is found to be in conflict with another provision in the Oro Valley Zoning Code Revised, or any other Town Code, the more restrictive shall prevail.

In the event that a commercial, industrial, or residential development and/or subdivision should fall under a Planned Area Development (PAD), the rules and regulations of that PAD shall apply.

If the Town-adopted sign regulations/guidelines for any development project, including Planned Area Developments, do not specifically address any such sign standard, the provisions of this Chapter shall apply.

F. Signs Prohibited by Omission

In addition to those signs, or sign types, specifically prohibited by Section 28.9, any sign, or type of sign, not specifically permitted under provisions of this code shall be prohibited.

((O)11-07, Added, 03/16/11)

Section 28.2 Procedures and Enforcement

The Planning and Zoning Administrator is responsible for enforcing this Chapter pursuant to Sections 21.2.B.7 and 21.4.B.10. The Planning and Zoning Administrator is hereby authorized and empowered to ensure that all provisions of this Chapter are met in fact and intent. The Planning and Zoning Administrator may appoint a designee to assure code compliance. The procedures to be followed in exercising this authority are outlined in Sections 28.2.C through F.

Figure 28-1: Sign Criteria, Sign Package, and Master Sign Program Approval Process

A. Sign Permits, Fees, and Application Procedures

1.    A sign permit shall be required in order to erect, install, relocate, modify, or change any sign within the Town of Oro Valley.

2.    Approval of all temporary sign permits shall be at the discretion of the Planning and Zoning Administrator or his/her designee.

3.    The Planning and Zoning Administrator or his/her designee shall authorize issuance of permits for permanent signs after applications have been reviewed by staff for code compliance. Any proposed Master Sign Program, amendments thereto, or PAD exemption is subject to review by the Conceptual Design Review Board. Once sign applications have been approved, any issuance of sign permits shall meet the approved sign standards for that development.

4.    All electrical work associated with the sign installation must conform to the currently adopted versions of the National Electrical Code and must be reflected on the application.

5.    Permit Fees

a.    Upon approval of an application for the sign permit, the applicant shall be advised of the applicable fee. Permits will not be issued until all applicable fees have been collected. Fees shall be assessed according to a schedule adopted by the Town Council.

b.    Exception: The owner of a nonconforming sign shall not be required to pay a fee for a permit to bring an existing sign into conformance with this code.

6.    Application shall be in accordance with Town policy.

7.    Permit Expiration

a.    All permits issued under this Chapter, unless otherwise stipulated, shall expire by limitation and become null and void if the work authorized by such permit is not completed within one hundred eighty (180) days from the date of such permit. Prior to expiration of the permit, the applicant may request an extension of the expiration date at the discretion of the Planning and Zoning Administrator and/or his/her appointee. Once the permit has expired, before such work can recommence a new permit shall first be obtained and the fee shall be fifty percent (50%) of the amount required for a new permit for such work, provided no changes have been, or will be, made to the original plans and specifications.

b.    Any sign for which renewal fees have not been paid, and said remittance is delinquent for fourteen (14) or more days, is deemed to be an illegal sign, and said sign must be removed in accordance with the requirements of this Chapter.

B. Sign Criteria, Master Sign Program and Sign Package

Sign criteria and Master Sign Programs are official documents that regulate signage within a multi-business site or development. An approved sign criteria or Master Sign Program is required prior to issuance of a sign permit for: (1) nonresidential multiple-occupancy buildings; (2) commercial, office, resorts, and/or industrial centers.

Any development, including single-occupancy developments within and/or adjacent to an existing development that share access and/or parking with that development, must: (1) follow the approved sign criteria or Master Sign Program for the existing development; or (2) submit an approved sign criteria or Master Sign Program. If the owner elects to follow the criteria or program of the existing center, no additional approvals are required prior to review and issuance of the sign permit.

1. Sign Package

A sign package is comprised of a complete application for proposed permanent sign(s) for a single business. A sign package is required if a property does not have an approved sign criteria and/or Master Sign Program.

2. Sign Criteria

A sign criteria is a set of proposed sign standards for a development that complies with the provisions of this Chapter and Addendum A, Design Guidelines. Sign criteria for areas within a PAD (Planned Area Development) shall comply with the provisions of the PAD.

3. Master Sign Program

a.    A Master Sign Program is a set of proposed sign standards for a development that proposed alternatives to the provisions of this Chapter, and is intended to provide latitude in order to achieve variety and good design.

b.    Master Sign Programs shall be based on the provisions of this Chapter and shall conform to the purpose and intent of this Chapter and to the Addendum A, Design Guidelines.

c.    Master Sign Programs shall include only those sign types permitted herein and may allow adjustments to the standards of those types, provided they are justifiable.

d.    Master Sign Programs are intended to allow adjustments to the standards of multiple sign types and shall not be used for single-occupancy developments.

e.    Master Sign Programs require review by the Conceptual Design Review Board and approval by the Town Council.

f.    Compliance with these provisions does not guarantee approval by the Town Council.

4.    Review of sign criteria and/or Master Sign Program shall be guided by the following:

a.    Overall character of the entire development, including landscaping, architecture, topography, uses, and design.

b.    Compliance with the criteria specified in Addendum A, Design Guidelines A-C.4 and the purpose statements of this Chapter.

c.    Any other applicable information that may be useful in the overall presentation of the proposed criteria for the development.

5.    Consistency of typeface, illumination, and color is preferred if sign criteria or Master Sign Program have been approved, and then all requirements of that criteria or program must be utilized.

6.    Application for sign criteria and/or Master Sign Program shall be updated in accordance with subsection A.5 of this section, Application, by the Planning and Zoning Administrator.

C. PAD Exemption

In the event that a Planned Area Development District (PAD) has established its own sign requirements, the owner of lands within the PAD, as determined by the Planning and Zoning Administrator, may elect to operate under all or a portion of this Chapter 28, Signs, in accordance with the procedures set forth below:

1.    A letter requesting exemption from the specific PAD sign regulations must be submitted by the property owner within the PAD with a list of all homeowner/master associations within the affected area. The request shall be reviewed by the Conceptual Design Review Board.

2.    Not less than thirty (30) days prior to the Conceptual Design Review Board meeting, Town staff shall verify the list of homeowner associations for accuracy and completeness and shall notify them by first class mail of the Conceptual Design Review Board hearing date.

3.    The Conceptual Design Review Board shall forward a recommendation to Town Council. The Town Council shall approve, conditionally approve, or deny the request.

D. Violations

1. Revocation of Permit

The Planning and Zoning Administrator may, in writing, suspend or revoke a permit issued under provisions of this section whenever the permit is issued on the basis of a material omission or misstatement of fact, or is in violation of this Chapter or the Oro Valley Town Code.

2. Signs Placed in the Public Right-of-Way

a.    In the event that the requirements for off-site real estate signs are violated, the following procedures will be followed:

First Violation: The real estate agent will be notified of the violation, the sign will be confiscated, and the agent will be assessed a fee of twenty-five dollars ($25) per sign to recover the sign.

b.    Second Violation by the Same Agent: The agent and broker will be notified of the violation. The sign will be confiscated and the agent will be assessed a fine of fifty dollars ($50) per sign.

c.    Third Violation by the Same Agent within One Year: The real estate agent and broker will be notified of the violation. The sign will be confiscated and the agent and broker will each be assessed a fine of one hundred dollars ($100) per sign.

d.    A maximum of five hundred dollars ($500) in fines may be assessed to an agent per calendar year.

e.    Additional Violations

i.    Any additional violation by the same real estate agent or broker is subject to revocation of the sign permit.

ii.    If a sign permit is revoked due to a violation, the permit fee shall not be refunded.

f.    Model home sign violations in the public right-of-way will be enforced in accordance with real estate signs, subsection D.2.a through d of this section.

E. Abandoned, Illegal, Prohibited, or Inadequately Maintained Signs

If an abandoned, illegal, prohibited, or inadequately maintained sign is located within the Town, the Planning and Zoning Administrator shall be empowered to issue a citation. The Planning and Zoning Administrator may also require removal or repair of the sign and shall advise the owner of said sign, or as an alternative, the owner of the property where said sign has been posted, to correct whatever violation or inadequacy he/she deems to exist. All actual costs and expenses of any such removal or repair shall be borne by the property owner of such sign.

F. Emergency Removals and/or Repair

1.    The Planning and Zoning Administrator is authorized to cause the immediate removal or repair of any sign or signs found to be unsafe or defective to the extent that it creates an immediate and emergency hazard to persons or property. The Planning and Zoning Administrator shall make reasonable effort to notify the property owner and/or lessee that the unsafe or defective sign must be removed or repaired immediately. The Planning and Zoning Administrator may cause any sign or advertising structure which is an immediate peril to persons or property to be removed immediately after an attempt is made to reach the owner of the sign and the owner of the property, and without notice if the peril does not allow time for additional notice.

2.    All actual costs and expenses of any sign removal or repair shall be borne by the owner of such sign and by the owner of the premises on which the sign is located. Each of them shall be jointly and severally liable thereof, and an action for recovery thereof may be brought by the Town upon proper documentation of such cost and/or expenses by the Planning and Zoning Administrator. The Planning and Zoning Administrator shall provide written notification to the property owner prior to the Town placing a lien on the property with the PIMA County Assessor’s Office.

((O)11-07, Added, 03/16/11)

Section 28.3 General Sign Requirements

A. Construction

1. Building Code

All signs shall be designed and constructed in conformity with the current building codes of the Town of Oro Valley.

2. Electrical Code

All signs requiring an electrical permit per Section 28.2.A shall be in conformance with the current National Electrical Code adopted by the Town of Oro Valley.

3. Permanent Sign Materials

All permanent signs shall be constructed using structural members of materials subject to approval of the Building Official and/or Town Engineer. Nonstructural trim may be wood, metal, aluminum, approved plastics, and/or a combination thereof.

4. Temporary Sign Materials

Materials proposed to be used in constructing temporary signs shall be at the discretion of the fabricator but shall be stated in the application for the sign permit unless otherwise provided in this code. Adequacy of materials proposed from the standpoints of stability and safety and of composition and color shall be subject to approval by the Planning and Zoning Administrator and Building Official.

B. Illumination

1.    Illumination of signs, when permitted by this Chapter, may be accomplished only by the following methods:

a.    Halo or internal illumination, to the extent that only the sign characters and logos emit light, unless otherwise approved by the Planning and Zoning Administrator or the Conceptual Design Review Board.

b.    Area lighting provided such lighting is in accordance with the Town of Oro Valley Lighting Code.

c.    Illuminated wall signs may be turned on no earlier than 5:00 a.m. and shall be turned off no later than 11:00 p.m. or when the business closes, whichever is later, or as specified in this Chapter.

d.    Low-intensity LED lighting may be a component of a sign as specified in this Chapter.

2.    Prohibited Lighting

The following types of light sources are prohibited as means to illuminate or attract attention to any sign:

a.    Exposed neon and/or neon type tubing except for “open” and/or “closed” signs.

b.    Internal lighting other than that expressly permitted in subsection B.1 of this section.

c.    Blinking, flashing, rotating and animated light sources.

d.    Search lights.

e.    An illuminated sign placed on the interior of a business which is visible from the exterior shall not be illuminated when the business is closed, except “closed for business” signs.

C. Colors

1.    Various sign colors shall be permitted, except fluorescent or iridescent colors.

2.    All developments, including those within a Planned Area Development (PAD) that have approved sign criteria or Master Sign Program, are required to utilize only approved colors.

D. Location and Measurement Standards

1. Location Standards

a.    No sign shall be installed so as to obstruct any door, window, or fire escape of any building.

b.    No sign shall be erected in such a way as to: (i) interfere with or to confuse traffic; (ii) present any traffic hazard; or (iii) obstruct the vision of motorists.

c.    No sign shall be erected in a manner which projects over any public sidewalk, street, alley, or public place unless otherwise approved by the Town Engineer and/or Planning and Zoning Administrator or is allowed by any portion of this Chapter.

d.    No person shall place or maintain a sign in a public right-of-way, except as permitted by Sections 28.1.C, Nonconforming and Discontinued Signs; 28.6.C.6., Real Estate Lease, Rent and For Sale Signs; and 28.7, Temporary Signs on Public Property. The Planning and Zoning Administrator or Town Engineer may cause the removal of any unauthorized signs from public right-of-way.

e.    No sign shall be installed so as to obstruct another sign, as determined by the Planning and Zoning Administrator.

2. Measurement Standards

a.    The area of a sign that consists of individual letters, words and symbols, which are placed upon a building wall or freestanding wall and are not encompassed by a frame or boundary, shall be measured by the overall height of the tallest letter by the overall length of the entire sign. The Planning and Zoning Administrator may approve the calculation of signs by measuring the sum of the smallest rectangular shape needed to enclose each letter or symbol if special circumstances arise that would warrant the need to calculate differently.

b.    A sign that consists of multiple faces, such as a monument sign, shall be measured to encompass the overall height by overall length of the largest face.

c.    The sign height shall be measured as the vertical distance from the average finished grade beneath the sign to the topmost feature of the sign. If the sign is located where the average finished grade is lower than the adjoining grade of the road, the sign height may be taken from the roadway surface nearest the sign to the topmost portion of the sign.

d.    Clearance is measured as the shortest distance between the underside of the sign and the average finished grade beneath the sign.

e.    Setbacks for freestanding signs shall be measured from the edge of the sign structure closest to the property line.

E. Inspections and Maintenance

1. Inspections

The Building Official, Planning and Zoning Administrator, and/or Town Engineer, or any such person officially designated by them, is hereby empowered to perform inspections, as deemed appropriate, to assure compliance with this code.

2. Maintenance

a.    Each sign shall be maintained in a new or like-new condition at all times so as not to constitute a danger or hazard to public safety or become an eyesore to the community.

b.    Repainting/Resurfacing of Signs. Maintenance of signage, such as repainting or resurfacing shall not require any permits as long as the sign is in no way altered, changed, or modified from its previous state.

F. Landscaping

1.    The base for all permanent freestanding signs shall be integrated into a landscaped area.

2.    The landscaped area shall conform to the Town’s landscape requirements and shall be maintained at all times.

3.    The landscape design shall not permit plants that would obstruct the visibility of the sign face from the street.

((O)11-07, Added, 03/16/11)

Section 28.4 Definitions and Sign Types

1. A-Frame Sign

A hinged sign constructed of durable materials and connected so as to maintain the “A” shape structure of the sign.

2. Abandoned Sign

A sign which advertises, identifies or gives notice of a business which is no longer in operation or an activity which has already occurred.

3. Advertising

A sign primarily listing products sold or services offered, or products manufactured on the premises.

4. Alteration

Shall mean any change, addition, or modification in construction of an existing sign.

5. Animation

The movement or optical illusion of movement of any part of a sign structure, design, or pictorial segment, including the movement of any illumination, flashing or varying of light intensity. The automatic changing of all or part of the facing of the sign. The movement of a sign set in motion by the atmosphere.

6. Awning Sign

Refer to Section 28.5.B.1.

7. Balloon Sign

An airtight bag filled with helium, hot air or other gas, causing it to rise, that is anchored to a building or structure with ropes, wires and/or string to attract attention to the public.

8. Banner

Refer to Section 28.6.B.1.

9. Billboard

An off-site sign that is pasted, painted, or fastened on in a manner to allow for periodic replacement of messages that is not located on the property where the billboard is located.

10. Building Frontage

The measurement between two (2) straight lines projecting from the outermost edges of a building or tenant space wall that are perpendicular to a straight line running along the ground level of the front of the measured wall.

11. Cabinet Sign

A three (3) dimensional structure which includes a frame, borders and sign panel face and may include internal illumination upon which the sign logos are placed or etched, and is architecturally integrated with the building.

12. Change of Copy

A replacement face(s) or material to an existing sign without changing any structural members, sizes, and/or heights.

13. Changeable Copy Sign

Refer to Section 28.5.B.2.

14. Character

Any letter, number, logo, and/or symbol as defined in this section.

15. Construction Sign

Refer to Section 28.6.B.2.

16. Development Complex

A site having common vehicular access points, which is subject to a development plan.

17. Development Sign

Refer to Section 28.6.B.2.

18. Direct Lighting

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

19. Directional Sign

Refer to Section 28.5.B.3.

20. Directory Sign

Refer to Section 28.5.B.4.

21. Display Area

Refer to Section 28.5.B.16.

22. Double-Faced Sign

A sign having two (2) display surfaces, one (1) (or more) support(s) of which is (are) shared by both surfaces. Hence, double-face signs include back-to-back signs as well as V-shaped signs.

23. Electronic Message Sign

A sign that permits the movement or frequent changing of messages by means of electronically controlled sign copy.

24. Entryway Sign

Refer to Sections 28.5.B.5 and 28.5.C.1.

25. Fascia

A parapet-type wall used as part of the facade of a flat-roofed building and projecting from the building face immediately adjacent thereto. Such a wall shall enclose at least three (3) sides of the projecting flat roof.

26. Flag

Refer to Section 28.6.B.3.

27. Freestanding

Shall mean any structure which is not attached to any other structure or portion of a structure.

28. Garage/Yard/Estate Sale Sign

An on-site or off-site, temporary sign made from paper, poster board, cardboard, or like material.

29. Government Sign

A sign installed or required by a public agency such as traffic, public transit, public information, or similar government entity.

30. Grand Opening Sign

An on-site sign advertising the opening of an establishment, expansion, or change of ownership of a commercial enterprise, new business, store, or office.

31. Ground or Monument Sign

Refer to Section 28.5.B.8.

32. Halo Illumination

Illumination produced by recessing a light source inside a hollow character with an open back or within the surface to which the sign letters are mounted. An outline glow around the characters is created by this light as it is reflected off the background to which the characters are attached.

33. Historical Marker

A sign marker locating and identifying a historical interest or site.

34. Home Occupation Sign

A sign that identifies a business or commercial activity that is conducted from the property zoned for residential use.

35. Human Signs

Any portable commercial advertisement that is held or worn by a person or persons to draw attention to or direct the public to a business or event.

36. Identification Sign

An on-site, permanent sign which identifies the premises where the sign is located.

37. Illuminated Sign

A sign whose surface is lit internally or externally.

38. Indirect Lighting

A source of external illumination located a distance away from the sign, but which is itself not visible from any normal position.

39. Internal Illumination

A source of illumination entirely within the sign wherein the source of the illumination is not visible.

40. Kiosk Sign

Refer to Sections 28.5.B.6. and C.2.

41. Logo

A graphic symbol representing a business. Logos shall be state or federally registered trademarks.

42. Maintenance

The replacing or repairing of a part of a sign made usable, unsafe, or unattractive by ordinary wear, tear or damage that is beyond the control of the owner, or the repainting of an existing sign without changing the wording, location, composition or color of the sign.

43. Marquee Sign

Any sign affixed to or constructed in a roof like structure or awning projecting over an entrance to a building, such as a theater.

44. Memorial Sign

A permanent sign, table, or plaque memorializing a person, event, structure, or site.

45. Menu Board

Refer to Section 28.5.B.8.

46. Model Home Flags

Refer to Section 28.6.C.3.

47. Modifier

A word on a sign describing uses and activities other than the business name.

48. Moving or Animated Signs

Any sign or part of a sign which changes physical position, flashes, blinks lights, rotates or conveys the illusion of movement by mechanical means, illumination, and/or air movement.

49. Neon Sign

An illuminated, commercial display made up of glass tubes, shaped to form letters and designs.

50. Nonconforming Sign

Any sign which does not conform to the provisions of this code but which, when first constructed, was legally allowed by the Town of Oro Valley or political subdivision then having control over signs.

51. Off-Site Sign

Any sign not located on the premises or site of the use identified or advertised by the sign.

52. On-Site Sign

Any sign which is located on the premises or site of the use identified or advertised by the sign.

53. On-Site Subdivision Sign

An on-site, temporary sign located at the entrance to a subdivision.

54. Open House

A dwelling or office space to which the public is invited for walk-in inspections.

55. Pan-Channel Letter

A dimensional character fabricated to form a pan (i.e., a back and sides). The pan is formed in the shape of a character. The sides are strips of the same material fastened to the back. The open end of the pan is usually capped by a character cut from translucent acrylic, and is known as the face. Neon or low-voltage lights are then installed inside the pan to illuminate the face.

56. Parapet

The top portion of the wall which extends above the roofline.

57. Pedestrian Tenant Directory

Refer to Section 28.5.B.9.

58. Pennants

Any lightweight plastic, fabric, or other material, containing multi-colors and that may contain a message of any kind, suspended from a rope, wires, or string, designed to move in the wind.

59. Permanent Sign

Letters, numerals, symbols, and/or insignia that is intended to be displayed for an indefinite or long-lasting period and the lettering or message of which is intended to remain essentially unchanged, except for the maintenance against normal effects of exposure to weather.

60. Pole Cover

Covers made from various materials which enclose or conceal a pole or other structural supports or members to the sign.

61. Political Election Sign

A sign not permanently installed in the ground or attached to a building relating to the election of a person to a public office, or relating to a public party, or relating to a matter to be voted upon at an election called by a public body.

62. Portable Sign

Any sign not permanently attached to the ground or other permanent structure, or a sign designed to be transported, including, but not limited to, signs designed to be moved by means of wheels; signs converted into A-frames; menu and sandwich board signs; balloons used as signs; and signs attached to or painted on vehicles parked and visible from the public right-of-way, unless the vehicles are used in normal day-to-day operations of the business.

63. Posters

A large printed display or picture often posted in a public place as a notice or advertisement.

64. Premises

All contiguous land used and occupied by an establishment, whether owned or leased from another. Included are all buildings, storage and service areas, and private roads or driveways which are an integral part of the establishment.

65. Prohibited Use

Shall mean a use not specifically permitted.

66. Public Service Sign

A sign which provides directions to a public or quasi-public location such as community centers, schools, Town facilities, and religious institutions.

67. Projecting Sign

An on-site sign attached to and extending more than twelve (12) inches from a structure not designed exclusively for the support of the sign and/or a sign which projects from the wall of a building or structure perpendicular to the wall surface.

68. Real Estate Sign

A sign pertaining to the sale, rent, or lease of the premises or portion of the premises on which the sign is located.

69. Reasonable Repairs

To restore an existing structure to a good or sound condition resulting from decay or damage.

70. Residential Sign

A sign on which is displayed the name and address of the occupant.

71. Reverse Channel Letter

A sign with dimensional character(s) fabricated from opaque material to form a pan, i.e., a front and sides. The pan is formed in the shape of a character. The sides are strips of material fastened to the front. The back remains open. Neon or low voltage lights may be installed inside the character which creates a halo illumination.

72. Roofline

The top edge of the roof or the top of the parapet, whichever forms the top line of the building silhouette.

73. Roof Sign

A sign that is mounted on, above, or over the roof of a building, so that it projects above the highest point of the roofline, parapet, or fascia of the building.

74. Seasonal Sign

Refer to Section 28.6.B.5.

75. Service Station/Fuel Sign

Refer to Section 28.5.B.10.

76. Setback

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

77. Sign

Every message, announcement, declaration, display, illustration, insignia, character, surface, or space erected, maintained or attached to any structure, surface, or thing and made visible for the purpose of attracting attention or to making something known to the public.

78. Sign Area Allotment

The permitted amount of identification sign area on ratio to the linear footage of building frontage.

79. Sign Modification

Any change to an existing sign’s copy, color, and/or supporting structures.

80. Sign Structure

A freestanding wall, pole, pedestal, or object erected for the purpose of supporting the sign.

81. Site Plan

A plan drawing of an individual site including the layout of buildings, circulation system, parking, walls, landscaping, open space, and any other appropriate information as required by the Town of Oro Valley to provide adequate review.

82. Seasonal or Event Banner

Refer to Section 28.6.B.1.c.

83. Subcontractor Sign

A temporary sign which identifies the firm, business, persons, or entity responsible for work or activity in progress at the location of the sign.

84. Symbol

A letter, figure, or other conventional mark designating an object, quantity, operation, function, or the like.

85. Temporary Sign

Any display in public view to advertise or convey information or direction which is intended to be displayed for a limited or finite period of time only. The type, quality, and materials of construction of which, although visually attractive and structurally sound, are not intended to be long lasting.

86. Theater Sign

Refer to Section 28.5.B.11.

87. Time and Temperature Sign

Refer to Section 28.5.B.12.

88. Traffic Sign

An on-site or off-site sign for which the sole purpose and placement are solely to define and streamline the flow of vehicular traffic so as to minimize congestion and promote safety.

89. Under-Canopy Sign

Refer to Section 28.5.B.13.

90. Unoccupied

A premises or structure which is not occupied or being put to those uses as authorized by the last business privilege license issued by the Town for that address and business or a premises or structure where the public utilities are not in service.

91. Vehicle Sign

A sign that is mounted, painted, or erected upon trucks, cars, boats, trailers, or other motorized vehicles or equipment that is parked for the primary purpose of functioning as a sign.

92. Wall Sign

Refer to Section 28.5.B.14.

93. Window Sign

Refer to Section 28.5.B.15.

((O)11-07, Added, 03/16/11)

Section 28.5 Permanent Signs

A. Identification Signs

1.    The following signs shall be required for the purpose of identification:

a.    Residential address.

b.    Building address for multi-building development (Refer to the current Pima County Addressing Code Regulations).

c.    Names of streets, drives, circles, complexes, condominiums, etc.

B. Permanent Signs in a Commercial/Industrial Zoning District.

The following permanent sign types shall be allowed within a Commercial, Industrial and/or Private Schools Zoning District.

1. Awning Sign

a.    Definition: A sign which is placed on, or integrated into, fabric or other material canopies, which is mounted on the exterior wall of a building. Sign copy affixed to an awning may only display the name of the business and/or address.

b.    Quantity: One (1) awning allowed per business.

c.    Area of Sign Copy: Maximum twenty (20) square feet which shall count against the business’s sign area allotment.

d.    Height: Not to exceed the roofline of a building.

e.    Illumination: Internal illumination, fluorescent lamps, provided only the copy emits light. The background material shall be opaque. An awning sign must be turned off at the close of business.

2. Changeable Copy Sign

a.    Definition: A sign or portion thereof with characters, letters, or illustrations that can be changed or re-arranged without altering the face or surface of the sign. Changeable copy signs are limited to and/or restricted to, schools, and religious institutions. Standards for changeable copy signs for theaters are in subsection B.10 of this section and for service station/fuel signs in subsection B.12 of this section. Such signs shall be integrated into monument style or wall-mounted type signs and may be illuminated. Changeable copy may not be changed electronically, except as specified in this Chapter.

b.    Quantity: One (1) allowed as part of a monument style or wall sign.

c.    Area of Sign: To be included as a component of a monument style or wall sign.

Figure 28-2: Changeable Copy Sign

3. Directional Sign

a.    Definition: A permanent on-site sign that is placed solely to define location and streamline the flow of vehicular and/or pedestrian traffic so as to minimize congestion and promote safety. A directional sign may only display written or graphic directions for traffic, name of the business and/or logo, and address and/or suite number.

b.    Quantity: One (1) single- or double-faced directional sign per individual, freestanding business that is not part of a Master Sign Program. Businesses that have drive-through lanes shall be allowed one (1) additional directional sign.

c.    Area of Sign: Six (6) square feet.

d.    Height: Not to exceed three (3) feet.

e.    Location: To be located at an access point to the property and/or interior to the property of the business.

f.    Setback: None unless otherwise required.

g.    Illumination: Internal illumination allowed; provided, that the sign is turned off at the close of business.

Figure 28-3: Directional Sign

4. Directory Sign

a.    Definition: An on-site sign interior to a development that lists only names and locations of the businesses or activities within a building or multi-tenant complex. A directory sign shall help to direct vehicular and/or pedestrian traffic.

b.    Quantity: Shall be determined and reviewed on an individual project basis by the Planning and Zoning Administrator, when applicable. The guidelines set forth under an approved sign criteria or Master Sign Program shall be followed.

c.    Area of Sign: Not to exceed forty (40) square feet, and not to exceed two (2) square feet for each business displayed on the sign.

d.    Height: Not to exceed eight (8) feet from grade.

e.    Location: Interior to the property or development, such as the parking area.

f.    Setback: Minimum forty (40) feet from the property line.

g.    Illumination: Internal illumination allowed; provided, that the sign is turned off by 11:00 p.m.

5. Entryway Sign

a.    Definition: A permanent sign identifying the entrance to a subdivision, complex, facility, or commercial development.

b.    Quantity: Maximum of two (2) per entryway with one (1) located on each side of entryway. If the linear frontage of the project exceeds six hundred (600) feet and there is more than one (1) entry point along that frontage, two (2) additional signs may be permitted at the second entryway on that frontage. For projects with multiple street frontages, entryway signs are permitted on each frontage in accordance with the quantity and spacing requirements listed above.

c.    Area of Sign: Thirty-two (32) square feet.

d.    Height: Not to exceed six (6) feet or the height of the entryway wall on which the sign is placed.

e.    Location: On private property, in a landscaped area at entryways, as described above.

f.    Setback: None unless otherwise required.

g.    Illumination: Halo illuminated letters or direct lighting that shall not project above the sign. The sign may be turned on at 5:00 a.m. and shall be turned off by 11:00 p.m.

Figure 28-4: Entryway Sign

Figure 28-5: Allowed Entryway Signs

6. Kiosk Identification Signs

a.    Definition: A sign identifying subdivisions, builders, model homes and Town facilities. The Town shall contract with an independent contractor who will coordinate a subdivision tract and apartment sign program within the Town limits. The contractor shall be responsible for the manufacture of all kiosks and tract signs. All signs shall be built in accordance with the contract and specifications of the International Building Code and Town’s Building Official.

b.    Quantity: Provided in the contract approved by the Town.

c.    Area of Sign: Each sign panel shall not exceed eight (8) inches in width by four (4) feet in length.

d.    Height and Width: Maximum five (5) feet in width and eight (8) feet in height for each kiosk.

e.    Location:

i.    Kiosks may be approved on an arterial or collector street in any zoning district.

ii.    The Town Engineer shall review all kiosk applications and confirm that kiosks do not obstruct the view of the traveling public or pose a public safety hazard.

f.    Illumination: Shall be nonilluminated.

g.    Removal: Any kiosk containing less than three (3) panels for a period of ninety (90) days shall be removed by the contractor.

h.    A right-of-way permit is required for any kiosk proposed in the public right-of-way.

7. Menu Board

a.    Definition: A monument style or wall-mounted sign providing a bill of fare for the purpose of placing orders at a drive-through, drive-in restaurant, or walk up window.

b.    Quantity: Two (2) per drive-through lane.

c.    Area of Sign: Thirty-two (32) square feet.

d.    Height: Not to exceed six (6) feet.

e.    Location: Within a designated drive-through lane so as not to be visible from adjacent streets or property, or another location approved by the Town.

f.    Setback: Must be on private property and shall not pose a safety hazard.

g.    Illumination: May be internally illuminated provided the menu board is turned off no later than one (1) hour after business is closed.

8. Monument Sign

a.    Definition: A permanent sign supported by structures, columns, uprights, and/or braces that are placed on, or anchored in, the ground independent of the building or business structure. The sign may be single- or double-faced, with all supporting structures concealed. The sign may contain the name of the development and a maximum of eight (8) tenants, along with the property address. No one (1) tenant may be displayed more than once in one (1) monument sign. A theater, service station/fuel, religious institution, or school sign may display their name and/or logo along with changeable copy panels.

b.    Quantity: One (1) per street frontage. If frontage is greater than six hundred (600) feet and there is more than one (1) entrance to the development, a second sign is permitted. For frontages greater than eight hundred (800) feet, additional signs may be approved by the Town. A corner sign with frontage on both streets may be utilized as an additional allowable sign.

c.    Area of Sign: Fifty (50) square feet for a single tenant or the development name and seventy-two (72) square feet for a multiple-tenant sign with tenant panels.

d.    Height: Not to exceed eight (8) feet from grade. An architectural element of the sign, such as an arch or column, may exceed the height of the monument sign by twenty-five percent (25%); provided, that all text and logos are less than eight (8) feet in height from grade.

e.    Location: To be placed near the entrance or along a street frontage on private property.

f.    Setback: None unless otherwise required.

g.    Illumination: Illumination may be halo, internal, or a combination thereof. Individual panels shall be opaque with copy that may be lit. Unused tenant panels shall be opaque and designed to match the rest of the sign. The sign may be turned on at 5:00 a.m. and shall be turned off no later than 11:00 p.m.

h.    Blank tenant panels shall not be white.

9. Pedestrian Tenant Directory

a.    Definition: An exterior, wall-mounted, or freestanding sign that lists only the names and locations of tenants of a complex or development for the sole purpose of directing pedestrians. The sign shall have a uniform background color and letter style.

b.    Quantity: One (1) per building entrance, or as approved by the Town. If applicable, applicant shall follow the guidelines set forth under a Master Sign Program, Section 28.2.B.

c.    Area of Sign: Maximum four (4) square foot panel for the name of the complex and maximum two (2) square foot panel for each business or resident within the complex.

d.    Height: Shall be at eye level for pedestrian traffic and not exceed the roofline of a building.

e.    Location: May be wall-mounted or freestanding at pedestrian entrance points to the complex and/or along pedestrian walkways.

f.    Illumination: Sign shall be nonilluminated.

Figure 28-6: Pedestrian Tenant Directory

10. Service Station/Fuel Sign

a.    Definition: A permanent, two (2) component, monument style sign displaying the changeable fuel prices, fuel types, name of station, and/or logos.

b.    Quantity: One (1) per street frontage.

c.    Area of Sign: Thirty-two (32) square feet.

d.    Height: Not to exceed six (6) feet from grade.

e.    Location: On private property adjacent to an arterial or collector street only.

f.    Setback: None unless otherwise required.

g.    Illumination: Name and logo of the business may be internally illuminated. Current fuel prices and fuel types may be internally or electronically illuminated by means of LED, provided the light is low intensity. Any constant movement, blinking, flashing, high intensity, or animation caused by an LED is prohibited.

Figure 28-7: Service Station/Fuel Sign

11. Theater Signs

a.    Definition: A monument style or wall sign with changeable copy panels used to display the current movies and times they are playing within the theater.

b.    Quantity: One (1) wall sign and (1) monument style sign allowed.

c.    Area of Sign: Fifty (50) square feet for a monument style sign and sixty-four (64) square feet for a wall sign.

d.    Height: Eight (8) feet for a monument style sign. A wall sign shall not extend above the roofline of a building.

e.    Location: A monument style sign shall be located on private property and a wall sign shall be displayed at the main entrance to the building.

f.    Setback: None unless otherwise required.

g.    Illumination: The sign may be internally illuminated or the copy may be electronically illuminated by means of an LED. The sign may only display the current listing of movies and their times. No other advertising message is allowed. Any constant movement, blinking, flashing, or animation is strictly prohibited. The sign shall be turned off one (1) hour after closing of theater.

Figure 28-8: Theater Sign

12. Time and Temperature Signs

a.    Definition: An electronically controlled sign that provides the current time and/or temperature.

b.    Quantity: One (1) per development project.

c.    Area of Sign: A time and temperature sign may be a component of a monument style sign. Wall signs shall not exceed twenty (20) square feet.

d.    Height: Not to exceed the roofline of a building.

e.    Location: On private property and shall not be located within six hundred (600) feet of another time and temperature sign, not including an analog mounted on a wall.

f.    Illumination: May be illuminated by means of a low-intensity LED or other internal light source.

13. Under-Canopy Sign

a.    Definition: A wall-mounted or hanging sign which identifies the business name and/or logo. Under-canopy signs shall be consistent in color, shape, design, and materials, if the development has an approved sign criteria or master sign program. An under-canopy sign shall be located entirely under a covered porch, walkway, extended roof or similar structure and is solely for directing pedestrian traffic.

b.    Quantity: One (1) per tenant space.

c.    Area of Sign: Four (4) square feet.

d.    Height: A minimum clearance of seven (7) feet shall be maintained beneath the sign and shall not extend above a roofline of the building.

e.    Location: The sign shall be in front of the tenant space it is identifying and shall be suspended from a roof overhang above a walkway or porch, or may be perpendicular to the street and attached to the fascia of the building.

f.    Illumination: Shall be nonilluminated.

14. Wall Sign

a.    Definition: Any sign which is fastened, attached, connected, or supported in whole or in part by a building or structure other than a sign structure which is supported wholly by the ground with the exposed face of the sign in a plane parallel to the plane of the wall. A wall sign shall consist of individual character letters (pan channel or reverse pan channel). Only individual logos may utilize cabinet sign type with a translucent sign face. Wall signs may include the name of the business, a trademarked logo, and modifiers, if needed, to further clarify the goods or services available on the premises.

b.    Quantity: No more than two (2) elevations may contain a wall sign. If a single tenant occupies an end unit or entire freestanding building, there may be signs on three (3) elevations, but only two (2) elevations may have illuminated wall signs. “End unit” refers to the end unit of a building in the final phase of a development.

c.    Area of Sign: For building elevations containing wall signs, a sign may be twenty-four (24) square feet, with no single wall sign containing more than one (1) square foot of sign for each linear foot of building frontage, for a maximum sign area of one hundred fifty (150) square feet. Wall signs for building elevations further than three hundred (300) feet from the street may contain no more than one and one-half (1-1/2) square feet of sign area for each linear foot of frontage, for a maximum sign area of two hundred (200) square feet. Where businesses do not possess individual frontages, each may maintain an individual sign; however, the maximum wall sign square footage shall not be exceeded.

d.    Height: No wall sign shall extend above the roofline of a building.

e.    Location: Shall only be placed on the building elevations or at the main entrance of a business which the sign identifies, and may not project more than eight (8) inches from the wall on which the sign is mounted.

f.    Illumination: Individual letters may be nonilluminated, halo illuminated or internally illuminated for cabinet- type signs in which only the logo emits light. The sign may be turned on at 5:00 a.m. and shall be turned off at 11:00 p.m. or when the business closes, whichever is later.

Figure 28-9: Wall Sign

15. Window Signs

a.    Definition: Any form of advertisement and/or identification associated with the business that is affixed to the interior or exterior of a window, or placed immediately behind a window so as to inform or attract attention to the public outside of the building and/or tenant space. Window signs are divided into four (4) types of signs:

i.    Business Name: Signs that identify the name of the business.

a)    Area of sign: Maximum two (2) square feet.

b)    Quantity: Maximum of one (1) sign for any one (1) business and/or tenant space. For businesses that are corner tenants or individual properties having two (2) street frontages, the same shall apply on both sides.

c)    Location: The business name sign shall be located on the entrance door to the establishment. If an entrance door cannot be utilized, then the sign may be located where it will not interfere with any other sign types, under this provision.

ii.    Business Hours of Operation: Signs that identify the business is open and/or closed for operation.

a)    Area of Sign: Hours of operation shall not exceed a maximum of one (1) square foot.

b)    Quantity: Maximum of one (1) sign for any one (1) business and/or tenant space. For businesses that are corner tenants or individual properties having two (2) street frontages, the same shall apply on both sides.

c)    Location: The hours of operation shall be located on the entrance door to the establishment. If an entrance door cannot be utilized, then the sign may be located within another area that will not interfere with any other sign types, under this provision.

iii.    Sign Band: A thin band which stretches the overall length of the windows of a building front and/or tenant space and displays either the name of the business or logo in multiple successions.

a)    Area of Sign: A sign band shall not exceed a maximum of one (1) foot in height by the overall length of the building frontage and/or tenant space.

b)    Quantity: A maximum of one (1) sign band per window.

c)    Height: The sign band shall be no higher than the midpoint of the overall height of the windows from grade.

d)    Additional Requirements:

i)    The band may include additional text, logos, or graphics that relate to the business within.

ii)    Copy may not exceed fifty percent (50%) of the total band length.

iv.    Display Area: Shall be defined as an area for the purpose of displaying miscellaneous items such as posters, menus, promotional items or the like which pertain to the business itself, in a defined location. Window displays such as mannequins, three (3) dimensional figures, clothing and the like, which do not contain advertisement, shall not be considered a window type sign as described above.

a)    Area of Sign: Maximum of six (6) square feet.

b)    Quantity: Maximum of one (1) sign type each for any one (1) business and/or tenant space. For businesses that are corner tenants or individual properties with two (2) street frontages, may have one (1) display area per frontage. Businesses and/or tenants with building frontage in excess of forty (40) feet may have one (1) additional display area.

c)    Location: The display area shall be located on the first immediate window to the right or left of the entrance door. For tenants having a corner space, the display area shall be located so as to not interfere with visibility pertaining to safety issues or interfere with any other sign types under this provision.

b.    Illumination: Window signs shall contain no illumination except for an open/closed sign.

c.    Color: All window signs shall utilize colors that are compatible with the architectural design of the building. Fluorescent or iridescent colors shall not be allowed.

d.    Additional Requirements:

i.    Permits are required for all window signs.

ii.    Business name/hours of operation and open/closed signs shall be exempt from obtaining a permit.

iii.    No additional permits will be required to continually change the display area as long as the location of the original permitted area did not change.

iv.    Any off-site advertisement displayed in a window is strictly prohibited unless otherwise specified in this Chapter.

Figure 28-10: Sample illustration showing placement of window signs for business or tenant with more than 40 feet of building frontage.

C. Permanent Signs within a Residential Zoning District

The following permanent signs shall be allowed within a Residential District:

1. Entryway Signs

Refer to subsection B.5 of this section.

2. Kiosk Signs

Refer to subsection B.6 of this section.

3.    Changeable copy, monument, and wall signs for churches, schools, and public institutions are permitted in residential districts subject to Town approval.

((O)11-07, Added, 03/16/11)

Section 28.6 Temporary Signs

A. Requirements for All Temporary Signs

1.    Any sign that penetrates the ground is subject to blue stake requirements.

2.    Temporary signs shall not obscure, be attached to or mimic public traffic control devices, signage, or appurtenances.

3.    Any damage to public or private property caused by signs placed within the right-of-way shall be the sole responsibility of the sign owner.

4.    Standards for temporary sign materials are provided in Section 28.3.A.4, General Sign Requirements.

B. Temporary Signs in a Commercial/Industrial Zoning District

The following temporary sign types shall be allowed within a Commercial and/or Industrial District:

1. Banner
a. Requirements for All Banners

i.    Definition: Any sign of light-weight fabric or similar material that is temporarily mounted to a building or is freestanding.

ii.    Design Standards

a)    Installation: All banners shall be securely anchored to the wall and/or parapet wall of the building where the business is located or, if freestanding, attached to a solid perimeter frame that matches the banner color. The frame shall be anchored by posts with eyelets fastening the banner to the frame at two (2) foot maximum spacing, or in such a manner that the banner is taut and does not fold over. Banners shall not be hung from another sign structure, landscaping, utility pole, or similar structure.

b)    Materials: Banners must be made of durable mylar, nylon fabric, or similar material.

c)    Banner lettering, images and background colors may be any color, including black or white, except fluorescent or iridescent colors.

d)    Lettering shall be neat and legible copy.

b. New Business Banner

i.    A banner may be utilized for the purpose of a new business opening or change of ownership to promote a new business. For seasonal or special event banner signs, see subsections B.1.c and d of this section.

ii.    Quantity: One (1) banner per street frontage, per business. No more than two (2) banners shall be issued to any one (1) new business.

iii.    Area of Sign: Maximum sixty-four (64) square feet.

iv.    Height: Not to exceed the roofline of a building.

v.    Location: Must be installed on the site and/or tenant space of the business.

vi.    Duration: Banners are allowed for a period of thirty (30) days. One (1) extension for an additional thirty (30) days may be granted by the Planning and Zoning Administrator, due to extenuating circumstances. A written request must be submitted prior to the first thirty (30) day expiration. No more than one (1) extension may be granted in a calendar year.

vii.    Removal: A banner must be removed after thirty (30) days or if permanent signage has been installed prior to the expiration of a new business banner.

c. Seasonal or Event Banner

i.    Definition: A seasonal or event banner may be used to advertise a seasonal or special event in any Commercial/Industrial Zoning District.

ii.    Quantity: One (1) freestanding sign per street frontage and/or one (1) wall sign. A business is allowed a maximum of four (4) permits per calendar year.

iii.    Area of Sign: Maximum sixteen (16) square feet for a freestanding sign and maximum twenty-four (24) square feet for a wall-mounted banner.

iv.    Height: Not to exceed four (4) feet from grade for a freestanding sign. Wall-mounted signs shall not exceed the roofline of a building.

v.    Location: On private property where the event is taking place and/or the merchandise is being sold.

vi.    Setback: None unless otherwise required.

vii.    Duration: Each permit shall not exceed thirty (30) days.

d. Three-Day Special Event Banner

i.    Definition: A banner may be permitted on the day(s) of a special event, but shall not be used to advertise any event that exceeds three (3) days in duration.

ii.    Quantity: One (1) per street frontage. Not to exceed four (4) permits per calendar year.

iii.    Area of Sign: Maximum sixty-four (64) square feet.

iv.    Height: Maximum four (4) feet from grade for a freestanding sign. Wall-mounted signs shall not exceed the building roofline.

v.    Location: On private property where the event is taking place and/or the merchandise is being sold.

vi.    Setback: None unless otherwise required for public safety purposes.

2. Construction/Development Sign

a.    Definition: A construction sign may only contain the names of the architects, engineers, contractors, or similar artisans, as well as the owners, financial supporters and similar individuals or firms associated with the project.

b.    Quantity: One (1) per street frontage. No one (1) development may have more than one (1) construction sign on a single street frontage.

c.    Area of Sign: Maximum thirty-two (32) square feet.

d.    Height: Not to exceed eight (8) feet from grade.

e.    Location: On the property that is being developed.

f.    Setback: None unless otherwise required for public safety purposes.

g.    Removal: All signs must be removed upon the completion of ninety-five percent (95%) of the development, or within three (3) years from date of permit issuance, whichever comes first.

3. Flags

a.    Definition: Any flag containing distinctive colors, patterns, or symbols, used as a symbol of government or a political entity. All national and state flags shall be allowed.

b.    Quantity: Two (2) flag poles for each development and/or individual property.

c.    Flag Size: The length of the flag shall be no greater than one-quarter (1/4) of the height of the flag pole.

d.    Flag Pole Height: No greater than 1.25 times the height of the nearest primary building.

e.    Location: Permitted in any zoning district and only on private property.

f.    Setback: Located so that the flag does not overhang public right-of-way or create a public safety hazard.

g.    Additional Requirements:

i.    A building permit for the flag pole shall be obtained.

ii.    A site plan shall be submitted for review of location and adequate setbacks.

iii.    The use of flags for the purpose of advertising or with intent to advertise is strictly prohibited unless otherwise specified by this Chapter.

4. Real Estate, Lease, Rent and For Sale Signs

a.    Definition: Any sign pertaining to the sale, rent, or lease of the premises or portion of a premises. The sign may be freestanding or wall-mounted, single- and/or double-faced.

b.    Quantity: One (1) sign per street frontage.

c.    Area of Sign: Maximum sixteen (16) square feet.

d.    Height: Not to exceed eight (8) feet from grade.

e.    Location: Upon the property that is being sold, rented or leased.

f.    Setback: None unless otherwise required.

g.    Permit: Sign permits for real estate, lease, rent, and for sale signs are valid for one (1) year. The permit may be re-issued in one (1) year increments.

h.    Removal: Must be removed within seven (7) days upon the sale, rent, or lease of the property or expiration of the sign permit.

5. Seasonal Signs

a.    Definition: Seasonal signs may include decorations, holiday lights, garland, or similar treatment oriented toward a holiday event. Holiday banners are allowed in accordance with subsection B.1.c of this section, Seasonal Banners. Seasonal signs and decorations shall be temporarily displayed for traditionally accepted civic, patriotic, or religious holidays.

b.    Location: On private property and shall not be displayed in such a manner as to constitute a traffic hazard.

c.    Removal: Must be removed within ten (10) days of the subject holiday.

d.    Additional Requirements: A permit is required for all event-related signage under this Chapter. A permit is not required for any other seasonal decoration.

C. Temporary Signs in a Residential Zoning District

The following temporary signs shall be allowed within a residential zoning district.

1. Flags (Refer to subsection B.3 of this section, Flags)
2. Model Home Banners

a.    Definition: Banners for a model home may be utilized for the sole purpose of a sales event or to identify a new model home. Three (3) day, seasonal or event banners are permitted at model homes in accordance with subsections B.1.c and d of this section.

b.    Quantity: One (1) banner per model home.

c.    Area of Banner: Maximum thirty-two (32) square feet.

d.    Location: Shall be on private property where the model home complex is located. The banner may be wall-mounted or freestanding.

e.    Height: A banner attached to the model home shall not extend above the roofline. A freestanding banner shall not exceed five (5) feet from grade.

f.    Setback: None for a freestanding banner unless otherwise specified for public safety purposes.

g.    Duration: The banner shall be mounted only on Saturdays and Sundays for one hundred four (104) days. The banner may be permitted for an additional sixteen (16) days for the purpose of opening the model home or model home complex.

h.    Removal: The banner may be placed not more than one (1) day before the advertised event, and must be removed within one (1) day after the event.

3. Model Home Complex or Custom Home Lot Sales Office Signs

In addition to model home banners (subsection B.2 of this section), the following types of signs are permitted for model home complexes or custom home lot sales offices:

a. Model Home On-Site Signs

i.    Definition: Individual model units may have a single model identification sign and/or an informational sign for the model home complex or custom home lot sales office, and a directional sign to direct people to available parking at, or near, the model home/custom home sales office. Seasonal event and model home banners are permitted for model home complexes or home lot sales offices in accordance with subsection B.2.c of this section, Construction/Development Signs, subject to the standards of subsection A.4 of this section.

ii.    Quantity: One (1) identification sign for model home units, one (1) construction/development sign, and one (1) parking lot directional sign.

iii.    Area of Signs: Individual model units maximum four (4) square feet. Model home complex/custom home lot sales office maximum sixteen (16) square feet. Parking lot directional sign maximum six (6) square feet.

iv.    Height: Individual model units maximum three (3) feet; informational model home complex/custom home lot sales office maximum five (5) feet; parking directional sign maximum three (3) feet from grade.

v.    Location: Within the model home complex/custom home lot sales office and shall be located so as to not interfere with the flow of traffic or within a sight visibility triangle. The parking directional sign shall be located at the driveway entrance to the designated parking area. Signs may be freestanding, wall-mounted, or integrated into an awning type structure.

vi.    Removal: All signs must be removed within seven (7) days after the closing of the sales office or model home office.

b. Model Home Off-Site Signs (Interior and Exterior to the Subdivision)

The following off-site signs are allowed interior to a subdivision:

i.    Off-Site within the Subdivision

a)    Definition: Signs within a subdivision which direct traffic to the model home complex or custom home lot sales office.

b)    Quantity: The number of signs allowed is based on the number of intersections or changes of direction of subdivision streets, as approved and deemed necessary by the Planning and Zoning Administrator or Town Engineer.

c)    Area of Sign: Maximum one and one-half (1-1/2) feet by two (2) feet, or three (3) square feet.

d)    Height: Maximum allowable height thirty (30) inches.

e)    Location: An interior, off-site sign shall be located along streets within the subdivision. Such signs shall be located on private property with the permission of the property owner. Proposed placement in the public right-of-way is subject to Town Engineer approval and shall comply with Section 28.7.A.3.e.

f)    Setback: None unless otherwise required.

g)    Removal: All signs shall be removed within seven (7) days of the closure of the sales office or model home office.

ii.    See Section 28.7.A.3 for model home complex or sales office signs allowed in public right-of-way.

4. Model Home Complex Flags

a.    Definition: Individual flags, attached to freestanding poles that may be multi-colored and/or contain the corporate logo for a model home complex sales office.

b.    Quantity: Maximum of four (4) poles/flags.

c.    Area of Flag: Maximum fifteen (15) square feet.

d.    Height: Flag poles shall not exceed twenty (20) feet from grade.

e.    Location: Flag poles may be located within the model home complex or parking area, subject to Town Engineer approval.

f.    Setback: Minimum five (5) feet from the property line or determined by the Town Engineer.

g.    Removal: All flags and flag poles must be removed within seven (7) days after the closing of the model home office.

h.    Additional Requirements

i.    A building permit must be obtained for flag poles.

ii.    Flag poles may not be illuminated.

5. On-Site Subdivision Signs

a.    Definition: The sign shall identify a development in progress and may include: the name of the development and/or subdivision; the name and phone number of the developer or agent; price range, residential type, and number of units to be available and essential contact information for the developer or agent. All other associated agencies or firms may be displayed on the sign, such as the engineer, architects, or firms providing financing, and principal contracting firms.

b.    Quantity: One (1) freestanding sign per subdivision. The Planning and Zoning Administrator may approve a second on-site subdivision sign if deemed necessary.

c.    Area of Sign: Maximum forty (40) square feet.

d.    Height: Maximum of ten (10) feet. The height may be increased to twelve (12) feet by approval of the Planning and Zoning Administrator if visibility of the sign is obstructed.

e.    Location: Must be located at the access point on private property with the permission from the property owner.

f.    Setback: None unless otherwise required for public safety purposes.

g.    Removal: Within seven (7) days of the sale of one hundred percent (100%) of the lots of the subdivision or one hundred eighty (180) days after closure of sales office, whichever comes first. Signs may remain on unsold lots in accordance with subsection C.6 of this section.

6. Real Estate, Lease, Rent, and For Sale Signs
a. On-Site Signs

i.    Definition: Signs to advertise existing individual single-family residences for sale, lease, or rent. The sign may be a single or double-faced, freestanding sign.

ii.    Quantity: One (1) for each street frontage which abuts the property.

iii.    Area of Sign: Four (4) square feet.

iv.    Height: Maximum of six (6) feet from grade. The Planning and Zoning Administrator may approve heights up to ten (10) feet, if warranted.

v.    Location: Only on the lot or site of the dwelling offered for sale, lease, or rent.

vi.    Setback: None unless otherwise required.

vii.    Permit: Sign permits for real estate, lease, rent, and for sale signs are valid for one (1) year. The permit may be re-issued.

viii.    Removal: Within seven (7) days upon the sale, lease, or rent of the property.

b. Off-Site Signs.

See Section 28.7.A.3, Off-Site Real Estate Signs.

((O)12-04, Amended, 03/07/12; (O)11-24, Amended, 10/5/11; (O)11-07, Added, 3/16/11)

Section 28.7 Temporary Signs on Public Property

A. Permitted Temporary Signs on Public Property

1. Noncommercial Temporary Signs in Sign Zones

a.    Definition: A temporary sign not intended for commercial purposes such as a campaign sign, and not permanently installed in the ground or attached to a building.

b.    Quantity: Maximum one (1) single- or double-faced sign per temporary sign zone.

c.    Area of Sign: Maximum nine (9) square feet within a temporary sign zone or if placed with the appropriate right-of-way permit shall not exceed a maximum of four (4) square feet.

d.    Height: Maximum of three (3) feet, six (6) inches from grade within temporary sign zones or thirty (30) inches if placed with an authorized right-of-way permit.

e.    Location: Temporary sign zones are established by Town Council for placement of noncommercial, temporary signs. Within the public right-of-way, zones of three hundred (300) to five hundred (500) square feet in size may be established, and, in the event that the zones are established at an intersection, no more than two (2) zones may be located at or near the intersection.

i.    Within the Town Hall Complex: Such zone shall be no greater than two hundred (200) square feet. Moreover, temporary sign zones shall not be located within one hundred fifty (150 feet) of any entrance to the Town Hall Complex.

ii.    At or Near Town Parks: Temporary sign zones shall not be located within one hundred fifty (150) feet of any entrance to Town parks.

iii.    Approved temporary sign zones are depicted on the “temporary sign zone map.”

f.    Commercial signage within a temporary sign zone is prohibited.

2. Noncommercial Temporary Signs in Right-of-Way

a.    Definition: Temporary signs which may be located in the Town’s right-of-way.

b.    Quantity: As approved by the Planning and Zoning Administrator.

c.    Area of Sign: Maximum of four (4) square feet.

d.    Height: The sign shall not exceed thirty (30) inches in height.

e.    Location: No sign shall be placed within a median in any area that may cause or create a traffic hazard or obscure any site distances and must maintain the required “clear zone” as approved by the Town Engineer.

f.    Setback: Signs shall be placed a minimum of ten (10) feet from the paved surface of the roadway.

g.    Duration: Signs shall be displayed during the hours of 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

h.    Additional Requirements: All commercial signage shall be prohibited unless otherwise specified within this Chapter. In addition, all right-of-way permits are subject to blue stake requirements for any sign that penetrates the ground. Any sign that would require installation by the Public Works Department is also subject to installation fees.

i.    Permit: With an approved annual or one hundred twenty (120) day right-of-way permit.

3. Off-Site Real Estate Signs

a.    Definition: Temporary signs located in the public right-of-way providing direction to a dwelling for sale or rent including a model home.

b.    Quantity: No more than one (1) sign per change of road direction.

c.    Area of Sign: Maximum four (4) square feet.

d.    Height: Maximum thirty (30) inches.

e.    Location

i.    An off-site sign in the right-of-way shall not be located:

a)    Within a median.

b)    In any area that may cause or create a hazard on a sidewalk, multi-use path or pedestrian access ramp.

c)    Where any sight distances or Town approved “clear zones” are obscured, as determined by the Town Engineer.

ii.    Signs located in public right-of-way shall be placed as follows, or as directed by Town Engineer:

a)    Streets with a posted speed limit of greater than twenty-five (25) miles per hour:

i)    Where no sidewalk or multi-use path exists along the street, a minimum of ten (10) feet from the paved surface of roadway.

ii)    For locations with sidewalk or multi-use path along the street, sign shall be placed no closer to the street than the edge of the walk/path farthest from the street unless there is adequate distance between the street and walk/path to maintain a ten (10) foot setback for the sign from the edge of roadway pavement.

iii)    Closer placement to pavement requires pre-approval by Town Engineer based on sign construction type and stability of sign in windy and inclement weather. A-frame signs do not qualify for closer placement.

iv)    No signs may be placed in the right-of-way of Oracle Road or the eastern portion of Tangerine Road within one thousand (1,000) feet west of the intersection of Rancho Vistoso Boulevard and First Avenue without approval from the Arizona Department of Transportation.

iii.    Streets with posted speed of twenty-five (25) miles per hour or less:

a)    Where no sidewalk or multi-use path exists along street, signs shall be placed a minimum of five (5) feet from paved surface of roadway.

b)    For locations with sidewalk or multi-use path along street, sign shall be placed no closer to the street than the edge of said walk/path farthest from the street.

c)    Closer placement to the pavement than listed above requires pre-approval by Town Engineer based on site conditions.

f.    Duration: Signs may be displayed only between the hours of 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

4. Special Event Signs

a.    Definition: A temporary sign that publicizes civic, public, religious, arts, philanthropic or educational events that are sponsored or sanctioned by the Town of Oro Valley. Each application is subject to approval and interpretation by the Town Manager and/or designee in regards to the type of event being held.

b.    Quantity: Four (4) event signs maximum for any one (1) event.

c.    Area of Sign: A maximum of sixteen (16) square feet per sign.

d.    Height: Shall not exceed five (5) feet from grade to top of sign.

e.    Location: Town right-of-way in accordance with subsection A.3.e of this section and with approval of the Town Engineer. No sign may be placed within a median or in any area that may create a public safety hazard.

f.    Duration: The sign may be installed two (2) weeks prior to the event and must be removed within forty-eight (48) hours after the event.

5. Sign Walker/Human Signs

a.    Definition: A commercial sign that is held, worn or balanced by an individual.

b.    Quantity: No more than two (2) human signs permitted per business/organization. Only one (1) permit shall be allowed within a ninety (90) day period.

c.    Area of Sign. Maximum twenty (20) square feet and minimum four (4) square feet.

d.    Location

i.    No human or freestanding sign shall be held within a median or in the intersection sight triangle in a manner that obstructs the required clear space view for drivers and cyclists.

ii.    Human signs are prohibited within construction zones.

iii.    No more than two (2) human signs per street corner.

iv.    May not be located within twenty (20) feet of another human sign.

v.    Must be located no farther than the nearest arterial intersection from the business advertised by the sign.

e.    Duration: Signs may be displayed during the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

f.    Setback: Signs shall be held a minimum of ten (10) feet from the paved surface of a roadway.

g.    Additional Requirements

i.    A right-of-way permit is required, with a fee as specified in the current development fee schedule.

ii.    Sign holders shall hold the signs relatively still at all times.

h.    Sign walkers for noncommercial purposes are exempt from this subsection A.5.

6. Community Event Sign

a.    Definition: A sign displayed by a community association to advertise a community event within that community. “Community event” shall mean an event, activity, or meeting conducted by a homeowners’ association, community association or majority of residents within a subdivision or defined geographical area.

b.    Community associations, for the purpose of this subsection shall be limited to homeowners’ associations, neighborhood associations, or property owner(s) which formally represent a majority of the property owners within a subdivision or defined geographical area.

c.    Quantity: The number of signs allowed is based on the number of intersections or changes of direction of subdivision streets, as approved and deemed necessary by the Planning and Zoning Administrator and Town Engineer.

d.    Area of Sign: A maximum of five (5) square feet per sign.

e.    Height: A maximum of thirty (30) inches above grade.

f.    Location: Signs are permitted on HOA or other private property. Signs are permitted in the town right-of-way in accordance with the provisions of subsection A.3.e of this section and with the approval of the Town Engineer. No sign may be placed in a location that creates a public safety hazard as determined by the Town Engineer. Signs may be placed within the development, or the immediately adjacent right-of-way.

g.    Duration: No more than twelve (12) events per community per calendar year; five (5) continuous days per event.

h.    Signs shall not be hand drawn and shall be professional.

((O)12-04, Amended, 03/07/12; (O)11-07, Added, 03/16/11)

Section 28.8 Temporary Public and Quasi-Public Signs

A. Definition

Announcement signs, along with special event type signs, shall be allowed for religious institutions, schools, community centers and any other public or institutional buildings within a commercial or residential district. Signs may be freestanding and/or wall-mounted, made of paper, cardboard, plastic, or fabric. Banners used for public and quasi-public purposes shall comply with Sections 28.6.B.1.a and c, Banners. All copy, color, and design shall not adversely affect the order, amenity, or residential enjoyment of the neighborhood.

B. Quantity

Each institution is allowed one (1) wall sign and one (1) announcement sign per street frontage. Each institution may also apply for one (1) wall and one (1) freestanding, special event sign per street frontage.

C. Area of Sign

A religious institution wall-mounted temporary sign shall not exceed thirty (30) square feet. A religious institution announcement sign shall not exceed twenty-four (24) square feet. Other public institutions shall be allowed a temporary wall sign of thirty (30) square feet and an announcement sign of twenty-four (24) square feet. Institutional special event signs shall not exceed thirty (30) square feet.

D. Height

All wall-mounted signs shall not exceed the roofline of a building. All freestanding signs shall not exceed eight (8) feet from grade. All special event signs shall not exceed a maximum height of six (6) feet from grade.

E. Location

All signs shall be placed on private property. Special event signs shall be located on the premises of the institution or organization having the event.

F. Setback

None unless otherwise specified.

G. Additional Requirements

1.    Any sign may be single- or double-faced.

2.    No sign shall be allowed to illuminate.

3.    All signs shall be soundly constructed and neat in appearance.

4.    The application for a public or quasi-public sign shall include a statement and diagram noting the nature of the special event and shall indicate the location, size, copy, and colors of the proposed sign.

5.    A permit for a public or quasi-public sign shall be valid for no more than two (2) weeks. No more than three (3) permits shall be issued to any institution or organization in a calendar year.

H. Removal

Any signs announcing a special event shall be removed within one (1) day after the event is completed.

((O)11-07, Added, 03/16/11)

Section 28.9 Prohibited Signs

A. Prohibited Permanent and Temporary Signs

The following permanent and temporary signs shall not be allowed on any property or public right-of-way and are prohibited unless otherwise specified within this Chapter.

1.    A-frame signs, other than as specified in Section 28.7.A.3 and Section 28.7.A.6;

2.    Balloon signs, balloons;

3.    Billboards;

4.    Electronic message centers;

5.    Exposed neon signs;

6.    Flashing lights;

7.    Garage sale signs, except as provided by Section 28.7.A.6;

8.    Marquee signs;

9.    Moving/animated signs; except barber-type animated signs are allowed for barbershops during business hours only;

10.    Obscene signs;

11.    Off-site advertising on public property;

12.    Off-site signs;

13.    Pennant signs;

14.    Portable signs (sandwich board, etc.);

15.    Projecting signs;

16.    Roof signs;

17.    Search lights;

18.    Signs attached to any physical public property;

19.    Signs in the median;

20.    Vehicle signs.

((O)12-04, Amended, 03/07/12; (O)11-07, Added, 03/16/11)

Section 28.10 Exempted Signs

A. Code Limitations

1.    Nothing contained herein shall prevent the erection, construction and maintenance of the following:

a.    Official traffic, street identification, or roadway improvement signs.

b.    Fire or police signs, signals, or devices to alert the public of safety hazards.

c.    Markings of the State of Arizona and/or Town of Oro Valley or other authorized agency.

d.    Official notices as required by law.

B. Exempted Permanent and Temporary Signs

1.    The following signs shall be exempt from the application and permit regulations of this Chapter, although an electrical or building permit may be required:

a.    Address Identification Signs: Signs which display numerals, street names, drives, circles, or similar information which gives direction to residents, buildings, complexes, apartments, commercial sites, tenants spaces or other locations.

b.    Governmental signs for identification of public agencies such as traffic, public transit, and public information.

c.    Historical Marker: A sign locating and identifying a historical interest or site.

d.    Informational/service signs including official notices of court; public office and legal notices posted for Town meetings; as well as safety-related informational signs located on service station pumps.

e.    Interior Signs: Signs which are displayed within a concealed area such as a tenant space or building and cannot be seen from the exterior by the public.

f.    Memorial Sign: A sign, table, or plaque memorializing a person, event, or site.

g.    Noncommercial signs on private property that are not related to business or commerce and are no more than nine (9) square feet in area and three (3) feet in height.

h.    Residential Signs: Name and address of occupants.

i.    Temporary Signs on Public Property: Per Section 28.7.A.1 and Section 28.9.A.

j.    Traffic Sign: A sign used solely to define and streamline the flow of vehicular or pedestrian traffic so as to minimize congestion and promote safety.

k.    Warning Signs: Warning and instructional signs such as “No Trespassing” shall be exempt from permits and shall not be installed on utility poles or similar structures.

((O)11-07, Added, 03/16/11)

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The Oro Valley Town Code is current through Ordinance (O)14-09, passed September 3, 2014.

Disclaimer: The Town Clerk's Office has the official version of the Oro Valley Town Code. Users should contact the Town Clerk's Office for ordinances passed subsequent to the ordinance cited above.

Town Website: http://www.orovalleyaz.gov/
Town Telephone: (520) 229-4740

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