Commonwealth court case sustaining a zoning hearing board's decision to require the removal of off-site signs due to the landowner’s voluntary request for a change in the land use. An appeal to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court was denied.
This model sign code is intended for smaller municipalities and discusses the framework for formulating sign regulations as well as legal considerations and provides model regulatory guidelines.
This article discusses a number of land use regulations related to the First Amendment among them signage and billboards.
An example of sign ordinance design guidelines.
An example of a sign ordinance.
This publication provides an overview of sign regulation, discusses legal issues, safety, aesthetics, and provides some national case study examples of the process for adopting sign ordinances.
CD-ROM with educational materials on how communities decide on the right level and type of control, case studies of how signs have been created to blend visually with other aspects of design, legal requirements of a constitutionally sound sign ordinance, opportunities and limitations that communities face when they regulate signage, and the valuable roles signs play in a community and why you cannot do without them.
Two programs explore how to create effective and defensible sign regulations. Keep your community beautiful and safe from legal challenges to your sign ordinance. The CD-ROM Includes program #1 "Issues in Sign Regulation" and program #2, "Context-Sensitive Signs". The CD-ROM can be found in the American Planning Association, Pennsylvania Chapter, lending library.
This model sign code was drafted for Monroe County municipalities and was written based upon local municipal ordinances.
Examples of state model sign ordinances:
Included on this website is a general sign ordinance, and billboard prohibition. Please note that special consideration will have to be made to mold these models to conform to Pennsylvania’s statutes and case law.
Excerpts from the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code, Act of 1968, P.L. 805, No. 247, as reenacted and amended regarding adopting sign ordinances. Nineteenth Edition, September 2009.
This website provides information on proposed legislation, state statutes, and land use case law rulings.
In Radnor Township in Delaware County, billboards are regulated as a part of the sign ordinance within the zoning ordinance. Radnor’s billboard provisions prohibit digital billboards and have specific requirements for the location, number, size, and height of billboards.
This report shows planners, citizens, and officials how they can successfully advocate for sensitive and contextual corporate franchise design that can respect and even enhance community character and local economic development.
A national organization and website devoted to scenic conservation. Their website is a wealth of information, model documents, and court cases, along with many other categories to help you develop a sign ordinance/strategy for your community
An excellent document to start your research on crafting a sign ordinance. This document provides a basic understanding of sign ordinances, permissible and prohibited actions of sign ordinance committees, definitions of various sign terminology, and a brief discussion on design review and design review committees.
This document can be useful in developing your own sign permit application.
This provides good examples of the documents you will need in creating a sign ordinance. Included is the application for sign placement, guidelines for approval of different sign types, requirements for electrical signs, and an insurance requirement form.
An example of a sign ordinance that can be used as a model document.
Perhaps the best example of a municipal sign ordinance and one that has achieved the desired results. This ordinance is extremely thorough and includes definitions to help identify permitted and non-permitted sign usage.
Developed by the county and the Monroe County Chamber of Commerce, this model sign ordinance is proposed for adoption by all municipalities in Monroe County. The ordinance is based on a number of local municipality sign ordinances and includes other significant refinements gleaned from other counties’ ordinances. The goal of this effort is to have all county municipalities adopt an effective, standardized, sign ordinance.
An example of a sign ordinance that can be used as a model document. This is a thorough ordinance with definitions.
A beginners look at the major court cases that have shaped the sign ordinance/free speech debate.
A good example of a sign ordinance that can be used to create a model document.
Commonwealth Court case affirming a township’s authority to require a sign be removed because it violated the township’s size and placement restrictions. The significance of this case is that the defendant argued that the removal of the sign violated his 1st Amendment rights to free speech because the message was religious in nature.
This report outlines a street-graphics system that ensures on-premise signs are expressive, appropriate, and compatible with the character of the community. The system is a legally enforceable regulatory framework that makes good design possible. The CD-ROM includes a model ordinance, links to a community sign ordinance and samples of signs based on the street graphics principles, and more. Fourth Edition, 2015
Commonwealth Court case which held that a standard billboard size in the sign industry cannot control a township’s sign ordinance limitation of a billboard’s size, and the fact that industry standard signs are far larger than the size allowed by a sign ordinance does not establish a de facto exclusion of billboards
A PA Supreme Court ruling overturning the township’s argument that the construction of billboards falls within the Municipal Planning Code’s definition of land development, therefore requiring a land development permit from the township.
Commonwealth Court case upholding the lower court's finding that a land development plan and approval (in this instance) was required for the construction of billboards in the township, due to the subdivision of the subject property.