Brookhaven City Council is preparing to update the city’s sign ordinance.
Council members Jim Eyre and Rebecca Chase Williams have been assigned by the mayor to a sign commission to explore ways the city can improve the sign ordinance that was inherited from DeKalb County.
At the council’s May 14 meeting, Williams said nearby cities like Sandy Springs, Dunwoody and Johns Creek have rules governing LED and LCD signs.
The flashy electronic signs are bright and colorful and sometimes have quickly changing text. “It’s kind of Times Square looking,” Williams said. “It can look exciting.”
But she said she would like to consider regulating where those types of signs could go. “I would personally like to clean up some of the visual pollution,” Williams said.
Sandy Springs has outlawed those types of signs on Roswell Road, Abernathy Road and Hammond Drive, citing studies that they create traffic hazards, Williams said.
Councilman Bates Mattison also expressed concern. “My preference is to stay away from LED/LCD signs, especially bright ones. But I believe technology has made LED/LCD a good way to convey information, so I don’t want to ban them,” Mattison said.
Williams said the council also should consider rules for temporary signs.
“We allow these big, giant balloons, banners, gas-filled characters,” she said. “You’ll notice all of our sister cities have banned them for a certain non-classiness.”
She said she would like to put time limits on how long balloons and banners may stay up outside of a business.
Eyre said he and Williams would like to have a draft of a new ordinance to present to the council in about a month.
“I think we just need to streamline the process a little,” Eyre said. “I don’t think you’ll see any major changes, with the exception of scaling back some of the flashy stuff.”