4.15 SIGNS (New sections adopted 7-8-92 and 5-9-01; old sections repealed at the same time.)

 

4.15.1  PURPOSE AND INTENT 

 

The purpose and intent of this section 4.15 include, but are not limited to, the following:

 

                a.     The board of supervisors finds that signs are a separate and distinct use of the property upon which they are located and affect the uses and users of adjacent streets, sidewalks and other areas open to the public; and that the unregulated erection and display of signs constitute a public nuisance detrimental to the health, safety, convenience and general welfare of the public.  Therefore, the purpose of this section 4.15 is to establish reasonable regulations pertaining to the time, place and manner in which outdoor signs and window signs may be erected and maintained in order to:

 

1.     Promote the general health, safety and welfare, including the creation of an attractive and harmonious environment;

 

2.     Protect the public investment in the creation, maintenance, safety and appearance of its streets, highways and other areas open to the public;

 

3.     Improve pedestrian and vehicular safety by avoiding satura­tion and confusion in the field of vision that could otherwise result if such signs were not regulated as provided herein; and

 

4.     Protect and enhance the county's attractiveness to tourists and other visitors as sources of economic development. 

 

b.     The board of supervisors finds that the regulations in this section 4.15 advance the significant governmental interests identified herein and are the minimum amount of regulation necessary to achieve them.

 

c.     The regulations in this section 4.15 shall apply to all outdoor signs.

 

d.     Signs are classified and regulated in this section 4.15 by their purpose (e.g., anchor sign), physical type (e.g., freestanding sign), location (e.g., off-site sign) and characteristics (e.g., illuminated sign).  Each sign subject to this section 4.15 shall comply with all regulations applicable to that sign.

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.01; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

            State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.2  DEFINITIONS

 

                The following definitions shall apply in the interpretation and implementation of this section 4.15:

 

                (1)   AMENDED Advertising vehicle.  The term “advertising vehicle” means a type of portable sign that is either: (i) a motor vehicle, trailer or semi-trailer that is inoperative within the meaning of Virginia Code § 46.2-100; or (ii) a motor vehicle, trailer or semi-trailer that is not used for transportation in the daily non-advertising activities of the business at which it is parked, and is parked in the public view for the purpose of attract­ing atten­tion.  Advertising vehicles include any tem­porary or permanent signs resting on or attached to vehicles.

 

                (1.1)  ADDED  AGRICULTURAL PRODUCT SIGN

 

(2)  Anchor sign.  The term “anchor sign” means a sign that identifies any specific business within a shopping center. 

 

(3)  Animated sign.  The term “animated sign” means a sign that moves or a sign that changes light­ing by any mechanical, electrical or other device.

 

(4)  Auction sign.  The term “auction sign” means a sign that advertises an auction to be conducted. 

 

(5)  Awning.  The term “awning” means a covering attached to a structure, erected on or over a window or door, and typically supported by a metal frame.

 

(6)  Awning sign.  The term “awning sign” means a type of projecting sign that is painted or printed on, or attached to, the surface of an awning.

 

(7)  AMENDED Banner.  The term “banner” means a sign that is made of a nonrigid surface such as fabric or paper, with no enclosing framework. 

 

(8)  Billboard.  The term “billboard” means a freestanding off-site sign that exceeds thirty-two (32) square feet in sign area.

 

(9)  Bulletin board sign.  The term “bulletin board sign” means a type of directory sign that has changeable copy en­closed in a casement covered by glass, plexiglass or other transparent material.

 

(10) Canopy.  The term “canopy” means a permanent structure, or part thereof, that has a roof with support but no walls, and is intended as shelter.

 

(11) Canopy sign.  The term “canopy sign” means a type of wall sign that is attached to the fascia of a canopy.  See Figure I following this section.

 

(12)Commercial speech.  The term “commercial speech” means speech that is an expression related solely to the economic interests of the speaker and its audience, concerns lawful activity, and is not misleading.

 

(13) Construction sign.  The term “construction sign” means a sign that identifies a construction project and/or an architect, contractor, subcontractor, material supplier or lending institution participating in the construction project.

 

(14) Copy.  The term “copy” means the letters, figures, designs, devices, pictures, projected images, symbols, fixtures, colors, logos, emblems, or insignias displayed on a sign face.

 

(15) Directory sign.  The term “directory sign” means a type of freestanding or wall sign, other than a development’s primary freestanding sign, that displays the names and/or the addresses of the establishments or uses of a building or group of buildings located within the development for the sole purpose of providing direction, that is not erected at the road entrance to the development, and includes, but is not limited to, a bulletin board sign.  See Figure I following this section. 

 

(16) Electric message sign.  The term “electric message sign” means a sign on which the copy can  or altered by electric, electro-mechanical or electronic means.

 

(17) Erect.  The term “erect” means, in the appropriate context, to affix, construct, hang, install, locate, paint, place or print.

 

(18) Establishment.  The term “establishment” means a public or private institution or a place of business; for purposes of this definition, the number of franchises held by an automobile dealership shall not be relevant to the determination as to what is an establishment.

 

(19) Estate sign.  The term “estate sign” means a sign that identifies the name of a private residence.

 

(20) AMENDED  Farm sign.  The term “farm sign” means a sign that identifies the name of a property and/or its products, for property in agricultural or forestal use.

 

(21) Fascia.  The term “fascia” means one or more of the vertical faces of the roof of a canopy or structure.

 

                (22) AMENDED Flag.  The term “flag” means a piece of fabric, banner or bunting that contains a distinctive color, design, size, pattern or symbol.

 

(23) Flashing sign.  The term “flashing sign” means an illuminated sign of which all or part of the illumination is flashing or intermittent, or changing in degrees of intensity, brightness or color.

 

                (24) Freestanding sign.  The term “freestanding sign” means a sign that is supported from the ground and not attached to a structure.  See Figure I following this section.

 

(25)Home occupation Class B sign.  The term “home occupation Class B sign” means a sign on the premises of a dwelling unit that has an authorized Class B home occupation that only states the name of the person occupying the dwelling and identifies the product or service offered by the home occupation.

 

(26) Illuminated sign.  The term “illuminated sign” means a sign, or any part of a sign, that is illuminated by an external or internal light source.

 

(27) Incidental sign.  The term “incidental sign” means a sign that has a purpose secondary to the use of the lot on which it is located, such as “handicap parking,” “no parking,” “entrance,” “loading only,” “tele­phone,” and other similar directives.

 

(28) Maintain.  The term “maintain” means the cleaning, painting, repair or re­placement of defective parts of a sign in a manner that does not alter in any way, however slight, the copy, design, or the structure of the sign.

 

(29) Marquee.  The term “marquee” means a fixed covering that projects over an entrance to a theater or other building.

 

(30) Marquee sign.  The term “marquee sign” means a type of wall sign incorporated in or attached to a marquee, and that may have changeable copy.

 

(31) Menu sign.  The term “menu sign” means a sign designed and located to be read from a drive-thru lane.

 

(32) Moving sign.  The term “moving sign” means a sign, any part of which moves by means of an electrical, mechanical or other device, or that is set in motion by wind.

 

(33) Noncommercial speech.  The term “noncommercial speech” means speech that is not commercial speech, but does not include expressions related solely to the economic interests of the speaker and its audience that do not concern lawful activity or are misleading.

 

(34) Nonconforming sign.  The term “nonconforming sign” means a lawful sign existing on the ef-fective date of this section 4.15 that does not comply with the requirements contained herein.

 

(35)Off-site sign.  The term “off-site sign” means a sign that is not located on the same lot with the use to which it pertains, but does not include a sign located in a public right-of-way.

 

(36)On-site sign.  The term “on-site sign” means a sign located on the same lot with the prin­cipal use to which it pertains, and includes every sign whose copy is exclusively noncommercial speech.

 

(37) AMENDED Pennant.  The term “pennant” means a series of two (2) or more sections of fabric, plastic or other material, whether or not containing a message of any kind, suspended from a fixed structure, rope, wire, string or cable, and designed to move in the wind and including, but not limited to, streamers and tinsel.

 

(38) Political sign.  The term “political sign” means a sign that pertains to the candidacy of one or more persons for an elective office, or pertains to one or more issues to be voted upon, in an upcoming election.

                                                               

(39) AMENDED Portable sign.  The term “portable sign” means a temporary sign that is not permanently affixed to the ground or to a permanent structure, or a sign that can be moved to another location including, but not limited to, a sign erected on a trailer, a sign with attached wheels, a sign consisting of A-shaped or T-shaped frames, or an advertising vehi­cle.  See Figure I following this section.

 

(40) Private drive sign.  The term “private drive sign” means an on-site sign that contains only the words "private drive."

 

(41) Projecting sign.  The term “projecting sign” means a sign, other than a wall sign, that is attached to a structure but which is not mounted parallel to the structure’s wall surface, and includes, but is not limited to, an awning sign.  See Figure I following this section.

 

(42) Public sign.  The term “public sign” means a sign that is erected and maintained by a town, city, county, state or federal government or an authority thereof, and any lawful road name and number sign regardless of whether it was publicly or privately erected or maintained.

 

(42.1) ADDED RARE GAS ILLUMINATION

 

(43) Real estate sign.  The term “real estate sign” means a sign that is used to advertise the sale, lease, rental, development or other use of the property on which the sign is located.

 

(44) Residence sign.  The term “residence sign” means a sign erected on a lot containing a private dwelling that identifies the name of the occupant and/or the street address of the residence.

 

(45) Residential sign.  The term “residential sign”  means a sign erected on a lot containing a private dwelling whose copy is exclusively noncommercial speech.

 

(46) Roof sign.  The term “roof sign” means a sign erected on a structure that extends, in whole or in part, above the top of the wall of the structure; except that a sign located on a fake mansard is not a roof sign, but is a wall sign.

 

(47) AMENDED Sign.  The term “sign” means any object, device or structure, or any part thereof including the sign face and the sign structure, visible from beyond the boundaries of the lot on which it is located, which exists primari­ly to advertise, identify, display, or direct or attract attention to a structure, object, person, insti­tu­tion, organiza­tion, business, product, service, event, issue or location by any means, including letters, figures, designs, devices, pictures, projected images, symbols, fixtures, colors, logos, emblems, or insignias or any part or combination thereof.  An object such as a banner, balloon, three-dimensional figure, pennant, streamer or flag is a sign for purposes of this section 4.15 if it exists for one or more of the purposes identified in this definition.  A flag whose design denotes the official symbol of a national, state or local government is not a sign.

 

(48) Sign face.  The term “sign face” means the area or display surface used to advertise, identify, display, or direct or attract attention.  See Figure I following this section.

 

(49) Sign structure.  The term “sign structure” means the supports, uprights, bracings and framework of any structure, be it single-faced, double-faced, V-type or otherwise, used to exhibit a sign. See Figure I at the end of this section.

 

(50) Subdivision sign.  The term “subdivision sign” means a type of freestanding sign erected at the entrance of a residential development that identifies the develop­ment.

 

(51) AMENDED Temporary sign.  The term “temporary sign” means a sign that is displayed for only a limited period of time authorized in section 4.15.4(D), that describes or identifies partici­pants in a seasonal, brief or particular event or activity to be or being conducted upon a lot. 

 

(52) Visible.  The term “visible” means that which is capable of being seen, whether or not legible, by a person of normal visual acuity.

 

(53) Wall sign.  The term “wall sign” means a sign, other than a projecting sign, that is painted on, printed on, or attached to, a wall of a building and parallel to the wall, is located on a fake mansard, or is a canopy sign or a marquee sign.  See Figure I following this section.

 

 (54)Warning sign.  The term “warning sign” means a sign that provides a warning or a notice to persons on, or entering upon, the premises on which the sign is located including, but not limited to, signs stating that solicitations, hunting, fishing or trespassing is prohibited, that a dog is present on the property, and that the property is protected by a security or alarm system.

 

(55) AMENDED Window sign.  The term “window sign” means a sign affixed to, or visible from the outdoors through, a window in a structure within the entrance corridor overlay district, or visible from an entrance corridor street, but does not include goods which are sold or are available for purchase on the premises.

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.03; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

                State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.3  SIGN CONTENT

 

                Each sign authorized in this section 4.15 may contain any noncommercial copy in lieu of, or in addition to, any commercial copy.

 

(Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

                State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.4  SIGNS AUTHORIZED BY SIGN PERMIT

 

Except as provided in sections 4.15.6 (exempt signs) and 4.15.24 (nonconforming signs), a sign permit shall be required for each sign erected on the same lot with the prin­cipal use to which it pertains, prior to its erection, alteration, replacement or relocation, as provided herein:

 

                a.     Application.  An application for a sign permit shall be submitted to the department of building code and zoning services, together with payment of the fee required for the application pursuant to section 35.0 of this chapter.  A complete application shall consist of the following:

 

1.     A fully completed application form, provided to the applicant by the zoning administrator;

 

2.     A schematic legibly drawn to scale and suffi­ciently detailed showing the location and dimen­sions of the sign; and

 

 

3.     Any plans, specifications and details pertaining to, among other things, the sign materials, the methods of illumina­tion, methods of support, components, and the condition and age of the sign, as determined by the zoning administrator to be necessary for the review of the application.

 

                b.     Application review and permit issuance.  A sign permit application shall be reviewed and acted upon by the zoning administrator only as provided herein:

 

1.     Within thirty (30) days of the receipt of a complete sign permit application, or within seven (7) days of the receipt of a complete sign application for a temporary sign, the zoning administrator shall review the application and either: (i) approve the application; (ii) deny the application; (iii) refer the application to the applicant for more information as may be required by subsection (A)(3); (iv) refer the application to the board of zoning appeals because the applicant must obtain a special use permit pursuant to section 4.15.5; and/or (v) refer the application to the architectural review board because the proposed sign will be located within the entrance corridor overlay district and a certificate of appropriateness is required.  An application shall be denied only if the proposed sign is a prohibited sign or does not comply with the regulations set forth in this section 4.15.  If the application is denied, the reasons shall be specified in writing.

 

2.     If the zoning administrator fails to take one of the actions described herein within thirty (30) days of receipt of a complete sign permit application, or within seven (7) days of the receipt of a complete sign application for a temporary sign, the permit shall be deemed approved as received.

 

c.     Administration, generally.  Except for permits issued for temporary signs, which are subject to the regulations in subsection (D), the following regulations shall apply to the administration of sign permits:

 

1.     A sign permit shall become null and void if the use to which the sign permit pertains is not commenced within six (6) months after the date the sign permit or certificate of appropriateness is issued, whichever is later or, if the sign contains exclusively noncommercial copy, the sign is not erected within six (6) months after the date the sign permit is issued.  Upon written request by the permittee and upon good cause shown, the zoning administrator may grant an extension of the six (6)-month period.

 

2.     The zoning administrator shall revoke a sign permit if the sign does not comply with any applicable regulation of this section 4.15.

 

d.     Administration, permits for temporary signs.  The following regulations shall apply to the administration of sign permits issued for temporary signs:

 

1.     A temporary sign that is a portable sign shall be stabilized so as not to pose a danger to public safety.  Prior to the sign being erected, the zoning administrator shall approve the method of stabilization.

 

2.     No more than four (4) permits for temporary signs shall be issued by the zoning administrator to the same establishment in any calendar year.

 

3.     Each permit for a temporary sign shall be valid for a period not to exceed fifteen (15) consecutive days after the erection of the sign.

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, §§ 4.15.09, 4.15.09.1, 4.15.09.2, 4.15.09.3; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code §§ 15.2-2280, 15.2-2286.

               

4.15.5  SIGNS AUTHORIZED BY SPECIAL USE PERMIT

 

Except as provided in subsection (D), electric message signs, off-site signs, and signs in public rights-of-way  may be authorized only by special use permit, as provided herein:

 

a.     Circumstances under which signs may be authorized.  The signs may be authorized only under the following circumstances:

 

1.     Off-site signs.  Off-site signs may be authorized by special use permit within any zoning district.

 

2.     Electric message signs.  Electric message signs may be authorized by special use permit within any commercial or industrial zoning district, or any commercially designated areas of a planned unit development.

 

3.     Signs in public rights-of-way. Signs in public rights-of-way; provided: (1) the subdivision or planned development to which the sign pertains abuts the public right-of-way; (2) the sign is either a subdivision sign or a sign identifying a planned development authorized by sections 19.0, 20.0, 25.0, 25A, and 29.0; (3) the freestanding sign regulations, other than setback regulations, applicable to the lot with the use to which the sign pertains shall apply; and (4) if the sign is located within an entrance corridor overlay district, a certificate of appropriateness is issued by the architectural review board. 

 

b.     Authority.  The authority to issue a special use permit for off-site signs and electric message signs is hereby granted to the board of zoning appeals.

 

c.     Procedure and administration.  The application procedure, the findings and conditions to be applied by the board of zoning appeals when considering an application for a special use permit, and the authority to revoke such a permit, shall be as provided in section 31.2.4 of this chapter.  In addition to the foregoing:

 

1.     For an off-site sign, the board of zoning appeals shall also find that the issuance of a special use permit is necessary because an on-site sign would be ineffective to communicate its message off-site because of topography or vegetation. 

 

2.     For an electric message sign, the board of zoning appeals shall also find that the sign complies with all applicable state laws for such signs.

 

3.     A permit number for each special use permit issued for an off-site sign shall be affixed to the sign in a conspicuous place.

 

d.     Exception; certain off-site signs.  A special use permit shall not be required for off-site directional, political, subdivision or temporary signs.

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.05; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code §§ 15.2-2280, 15.2-2286.

 

 

4.15.6  SIGNS EXEMPT FROM THE SIGN PERMIT REQUIREMENT

 

The following signs are exempt from the sign permit requirement set forth in section

4.15.4 provided that they comply with the regulations set forth below and all other applicable regulations of this section 4.15:

 

(1)    ADDED AGRICULTURAL PRODUCT SIGN  and renumbered

 

(1)   Auction sign.  An auction sign that does not exceed four (4) square feet in sign area, and which is posted for a total of thirty (30) days or less in a calendar year.  Such an auction sign shall be removed within seven (7) days after date of the auction.

 

(2)   Commemorative plaque.  A commemorative plaque that does not to exceed four (4) square feet in sign area.

 

(3)   Construction sign.  A construction sign that does not exceed thirty-two (32) square feet in sign area.  Such a construction sign shall be removed within seven (7) days after issuance of a certificate of occupancy.

 

(4)   Estate sign.  An estate sign that does not exceed four (4) square feet in sign area.

 

(5)   Farm sign.  A farm sign that does not include commercial identification and does not exceed four (4) square feet in sign area.

 

(6)  Home occupation class B sign.  A home occupation class B sign that does not exceed four (4) square feet in sign area.

 

(7)   Incidental sign.  An incidental sign that does not exceed four (4) square feet in sign area.

 

(8)   Political sign.  One or more political signs that do not exceed the maximum sign area allowed for the physical type of the sign (e.g., freestanding, wall) within the applicable zoning district.

 

(9)   Private drive sign.  A private drive sign that does not exceed four (4) square feet in sign area, limited to one such sign per entrance.

 

(10) Public sign.  A public sign.

 

(11) Residence sign.  A residence sign that does not exceed four (4) square feet in sign area.

 

(12) Residential sign.  One or more residential signs that are not illuminated signs and do not exceed thirty-two (32) square feet in cumulative sign area.

 

(13) Special decorative display.  A special decorative display used for holidays or public events, and which is displayed for a total of sixty (60) days or less in a calendar year. Such a display shall be removed within seven (7) days of said event.

 

(14) Temporary directional sign.  A temporary directional sign that is erected no closer than five (5) feet from a front lot line and does not exceed four (4) square feet in sign area.

 

(15) Real estate sign.  A real estate sign that does not exceed thirty­-two (32) square feet in sign area.  Such a real estate sign shall be removed from the site within seven (7) days of sale, lease or rental.

       

(16) Warning sign.  A warning sign that is erected by a private land­owner and does not exceed four (4) square feet in sign area.

 

(17) AMENDED Window sign.  A window sign.

 

                (18)ADDED COMMERCIAL FLAG

 

                (19)ADDED NONCOMMERCIAL FLAG

 

                (20)ADDED ADVERTISING VEHICLE

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.04; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.7  PROHIBITED SIGNS AND SIGN CHARACTERISTICS

 

Notwithstanding any other provision of this section 4.15, the following signs and sign characteristics are prohibited in all zoning districts:

 

a.     Signs that violate state or federal law.  Signs that violate state or federal law, including but not limited to:

 

1.     A sign that violates any law of the Commonwealth of Virginia related to outdoor advertising, including but not limited to Virginia Code §§ 33.1-351 to 33.1-381, inclusive, and 46.1-174.

 

2.     A sign that violates any law of the United States related to the control of outdoor advertising, including but not limited to 23 U.S.C. § 131.

 

3.     A sign that violates any state or federal law related to Virginia byways or scenic highways.

 

4.     A sign that violates the building code or the fire code.

 

b.     Signs with characteristics that create a safety hazard or are contrary to the general welfare.  Signs whose construction, design, location or other physical characteristic create a safety hazard or are contrary to the general welfare, as follows:

 

1.     Sign that is attached to another thing.  A sign, other than a public sign or a warning sign, that is nailed, tacked, painted or in any other manner attached to any tree, cliff, fence, utility pole or support, utility tower, rack, curbstone, sidewalk, lamp post, hydrant, bridge or public prop­erty of any description.

 

2.     Sign that casts illumination off-site.  A sign that casts illumination, directly or indirectly, on any street, or on any adjacent property within a resi­dential district.

 

3.     Floating sign.  A sign that is a moored balloon or other type of tethered floating sign.

 

4.     AMENDED Lighting that illuminates outline.  Lighting that outlines any structure, sign structure, sign or part thereof with neon or other light.

 

5.     Sign that imitates a traffic sign or signal or a road name sign.  A sign that imitates an official traffic sign or signal or a road name sign, or con­flicts with traffic safety needs due to its location, color, movement, shape or illumi­nation.

 

6.     AMENDED Sign with neon illumination.  A sign that uses exposed, bare, or uncovered neon illumina­tion, or uses neon illumination covered by a transparent material, including such signs installed within a building or structure within the entrance corridor overlay district and visible from an entrance corridor.

 

7.     AMENDED Sign that obstructs vision.  A sign that obstructs free or clear vision, or otherwise causes a safety hazard for vehicular, bicycle, or pedestrian traffic due to its location, shape, illumination or color.

                       

8.     Pennants, ribbons, spinners streamers.  Pennants, ribbons, spinners, streamers or similar moving devices, whether or not they are part of a sign.

 

9.     Sign erected in public right-of-way.  A sign, other than a public sign, erected on or over a public right-of-way unless the sign is authorized under section 4.15.5.

 

10.   Sign that contains or consists of searchlight, beacon or strobe light.  A sign, other than a public sign, that contains or consists of a searchlight, beacon, strobe light, or similar form of illumination.

 

11.   Sign that produces sound.  A sign that produces sound for the purpose of attracting atten­tion regard­less of whether the sign has a written message content.

 

12.   Sign that contains or consists of strings of light bulbs.  A sign that contains or consists of one (1) or more strings of light bulbs that is not part of a decorative display.

 

13.   Sign with unsafe illumination.  A sign that is illuminated so as to be unsafe to vehicular or pedestrian traffic.

 

14.   Sign erected in unsafe location.  A sign that is erected in a location so as to be unsafe to vehicular or pedestrian traffic.

 

15.   Sign determined by official to create safety hazard.  A sign whose characteristics, including but not limited to its construction, design or location, are determined by a fire official, the building official, or a law enforcement officer to create a safety hazard.

 

                        16. ADDED WINDOW SIGN ABOVE THE FIRST FLOOR, EXCEPTION 

 

c.     Certain sign types.  Signs that are:

 

1.     AMENDED Animated signs.

 

2.     AMENDED Advertising vehicles.

 

3.     Banners, except as an authorized temporary sign.

 

4.     Billboards.

 

5.     Flashing signs.

 

6.     AMENDED Moving signs.

 

7.     Roof signs.

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.06; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.7.1  (Repealed 5-9-01)

 

4.15.7.2  (Repealed 5-9-01)

 

4.15.7.3  (Repealed 5-9-01)

 

4.15.7.4  (Repealed 5-9-01)

 

4.15.7.5  (Repealed 5-9-01)

 

4.15.7.6  (Repealed 5-9-01)

 

 

4.15.8  REGULATIONS APPLICABLE IN THE RA, VR, R-1 AND R-2 ZONING DISTRICTS

 

The following regulations pertaining to the number of signs permitted per lot or

establishment, the sign area, sign height, and setback requirements shall apply to each sign for

which a sign permit is required within the Rural Areas (RA), Village Residential (VR) and Residential (R-1 and R-2) zoning districts:

 

Sign Type

Number of Signs Allowed

Sign Area

(Maximum)

Sign Height

(Maximum)

Sign Setback

(Minimum)

Directory

1 or more per establishment,

as authorized by zoning administrator

24 square feet, aggregated

6 feet

10 feet

 

Freestanding

 

1 per street frontage, or 2 per entrance, per lot with 100 or more feet of continuous street frontage,  plus 1 per lot if the lot is greater than 4 acres and has more than 1 approved entrance on its frontage

24 square feet, aggregated; if more than 1 sign, no single sign shall exceed 12 square feet

10 feet

10 feet

Subdivision

2 per entrance per subdivision

24 square feet, aggregated, per entrance

6 feet

5 feet

Temporary

1 per street

frontage per establishment

24 square feet

10 feet, if freestanding sign; 20 feet, if wall sign, but not to exceed the top of the fascia or mansard

10 feet

 

Wall

 

As calculated pursuant to section 4.15.20

40 square feet, aggregated in the RA zoning district; 20 square feet, aggregated, in other zoning districts

20 feet

Same as that applicable to structure

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.12.1; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.9  REGULATIONS APPLICABLE IN THE R-4 AND R-6 ZONING DISTRICTS

 

The following regulations pertaining to the number of signs permitted per lot or establishment, the sign area, sign height, and setback requirements shall apply to each sign for which a sign permit is required within the Residential (R-4 and R-6) zoning districts:

 

Sign Type

Number of Signs Allowed

Sign Area

(Maximum)

Sign Height

(Maximum)

Sign Setback

(Minimum)

Directory

1 or more per establishment,

as authorized by zoning administrator

24 square feet, aggregated

6 feet

10 feet

 

Freestanding

 

1 per street frontage, or 2 per entrance, per lot with 100 or more feet of continuous street frontage plus 1 per lot if the lot is greater than 4 acres and has more than 1 approved entrance on its frontage

24 square feet, aggregated; if more than 1 sign, no single sign shall exceed 12 square feet

10 feet

10 feet

Projecting

1 per street frontage

24 square feet

20 feet, but not to exceed the top of the fascia or mansard

Not applicable

Subdivision

2 per entrance per subdivision

24 square feet, aggregated, per entrance

6 feet

5 feet

Temporary

1 per street

frontage per establishment

24 square feet

10 feet, if freestanding sign; 20 feet, if wall sign, but not to exceed the top of the fascia or mansard

10 feet

Wall

As calculated pursuant to section 4.15.20

20 square feet, aggregated

20 feet

Same as that applicable to structure

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.12.2; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.9.1  (Repealed 5-9-01)

 

4.15.9.2  (Repealed 5-9-01)

 

4.15.9.3  (Repealed 5-9-01)

 

4.15.9.4  (Repealed 5-9-01)

 

4.15.9.5  (Repealed 5-9-01)

 

4.15.10  REGULATIONS APPLICABLE IN THE R-10, R-15 AND PRD ZONING DISTRICTS 

 

The following regulations pertaining to the number of signs permitted per lot or establishment, the sign area, sign height, and setback requirements shall apply to each sign for which a sign permit is required within the Residential (R-10 and R-15) and Planned Residential Development (PRD) zoning districts:

 

Sign Type

Number of Signs Allowed

Sign Area

(Maximum)

Sign Height

(Maximum)

Sign Setback

(Minimum)

Directory

1 or more per establishment,

as authorized by zoning administrator

24 square feet, aggregated

6 feet

5 feet

 

Freestanding

 

1 per street frontage, or 2 per entrance, per lot with 100 or more feet of continuous street frontage plus 1 per lot if the lot is greater than 4 acres and has more than 1 approved entrance on its frontage

24 square feet, aggregated; if more than 1 sign, no single sign shall exceed 12 square feet

12 feet

5 feet

Projecting

1 per street frontage

24 square feet

20 feet, but not to exceed the top of the fascia or mansard

Not applicable

Subdivision

2 per entrance per subdivision

24 square feet, aggregated, per entrance

6 feet

5 feet

Temporary

1 per street

frontage per establishment

24 square feet

12 feet, if freestanding sign; 20 feet, if wall sign, but not to exceed the top of the fascia or mansard

5 feet

Wall

As calculated pursuant to section 4.15.20

1 square foot per 1 linear foot of establishment structure frontage, not to exceed 32 square feet

20 feet

Same as that applicable to structure

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.12.3; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.11  REGULATIONS APPLICABLE IN THE PUD AND NMD ZONING DISTRICTS

 

The following regulations pertaining to the number of signs permitted per lot or establishment, the sign area, sign height, and setback requirements shall apply to each sign for which a sign permit is required within the Planned Unit Development (PUD) and Neighborhood Model (NMD) zoning districts:

 

Sign Type

Number of Signs Allowed

Sign Area

(Maximum)

Sign Height

(Maximum)

Sign Setback

(Minimum)

Directory

1 or more per establishment,

as authorized by zoning administrator

24 square feet, aggregated

6 feet

5 feet

 

Freestanding

 

1 per street frontage, or 2 per entrance, per lot with 100 or more feet of continuous street frontage plus 1 per lot if the lot is greater than 4 acres and has more than 1 approved entrance on its frontage

24 square feet, aggregated; if more than 1 sign, no single sign shall exceed 12 square feet

12 feet

5 feet

Projecting

1 per street frontage

24 square feet

30 feet, but not to exceed the top of the fascia or mansard

Not applicable

Subdivision

2 per entrance per subdivision

24 square feet, aggregated, per entrance

6 feet

5 feet

Temporary

1 per street

frontage per establishment

24 square feet

12 feet, if freestanding sign; 20 feet, if residential wall sign or 30 feet if nonresidential wall sign, but not to exceed the top of the fascia or mansard

5 feet

 

Wall

 

As calculated pursuant to section 4.15.20

1 square foot per 1 linear foot of establishment structure frontage, not to exceed 32 square feet if residential wall sign, or 100 square feet if nonresidential wall sign

20 feet, if residential wall sign or 30 feet if nonresidential wall sign

Same as that applicable to structure

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.12.4; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01; Ord. 03-18(2), 3-19-03)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.12  REGULATIONS APPLICABLE IN THE C-1 AND CO ZONING DISTRICTS

 

The following regulations pertaining to the number of signs permitted per lot or establishment, the sign area, sign height, and setback requirements shall apply to each sign for which a sign permit is required within the Commercial (C-1) and Commercial Office (CO) zoning districts:

 

Sign Type

Number of Signs Allowed

Sign Area

(Maximum)

Sign Height

(Maximum)

Sign Setback

(Minimum)

Directory

1 or more per establishment,

as authorized by zoning administrator

24 square feet, aggregated

6 feet

5 feet

 

Freestanding

 

1 per street frontage, or 2 per entrance, per lot with 100 or more feet of continuous street frontage plus 1 per lot if the lot is greater than 4 acres and has more than 1 approved entrance on its frontage

32 square feet, aggregated; if more than 1 sign at an entrance, no single sign shall exceed 16 square feet

12 feet

5 feet

Projecting*

1 per street frontage

32 square feet

30 feet, but not to exceed the top of the fascia or mansard

Not applicable

Temporary

1 per street

frontage per establishment

32 square feet

12 feet, if freestanding sign;  30 feet if  wall sign, but not to exceed the top of the fascia or mansard

5 feet

Wall*

As calculated pursuant to section 4.15.20 

1 square foot per 1 linear foot of establishment structure frontage, not to exceed 100 square feet 

30 feet

Same as that applicable to structure

 

*Each establishment may have both a projecting sign and a wall sign.  If the establishment has both such signs, the allowed sign area of the wall sign shall be reduced by the sign area of the projecting sign (which may not exceed thirty-two (32) square feet).

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.12.5; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.12.1  (Repealed 5-19-01)

 

4.15.12.2  (Repealed 5-19-01)

 

4.15.12.3  (Repealed 5-19-01)

 

4.15.12.4  (Repealed 5-19-01)

 

4.15.12.5  (Repealed 5-19-01)

 

4.15.12.6  (Repealed 5-19-01)

 

4.15.12.7  (Repealed 5-19-01)

 

4.15.12.8  (Repealed 5-19-01)

 

4.15.13  REGULATIONS APPLICABLE IN THE HC, PD-SC AND PD-MC ZONING DISTRICTS 

 

The following regulations pertaining to the number of signs permitted per lot or establishment, the sign area, sign height, and setback requirements shall apply to each sign for which a sign permit is required within the Highway Commercial (HC), Planned Development-Shopping Center (PD-SC) and Planned Development-Mixed Commercial (PD-MC) zoning districts:

 

Sign Type

Number of Signs Allowed

Sign Area

(Maximum)

Sign Height

(Maximum)

Sign Setback

(Minimum)

Directory

1 or more per establishment,

as authorized by zoning administrator

24 square feet, aggregated

6 feet

5 feet

Freestanding

1 per street frontage, or 2 per entrance, per lot with 100 or more feet of continuous street frontage plus 1 per lot if the lot is greater than 4 acres and has more than 1 approved entrance on its frontage

32 square feet, aggregated; if more than 1 sign at an entrance, no single sign shall exceed 16 square feet

12 feet

5 feet

Projecting*

1 per street frontage

32 square feet

30 feet, but not to exceed the top of the fascia or mansard

 

Not applicable

Temporary

1 per street

frontage per establishment

32 square feet

12 feet, if freestanding sign;  30 feet if  wall sign, but not to exceed the top of the fascia or mansard

5 feet

Wall*

As calculated pursuant to section 4.15.20

1.5 square feet per 1 linear foot of establishment structure frontage, not to exceed 200 square feet

30 feet

Same as that applicable to structure

 

*Each establishment may have both a projecting sign and a wall sign.  If the establishment has both such signs, the allowed sign area of the wall sign shall be reduced by the sign area of the projecting sign (which may not exceed thirty-two (32) square feet).

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.12.6; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.13.1  (Repealed 5-19-01)

 

4.15.13.2  (Repealed 5-19-01)

 

4.15.14  REGULATIONS APPLICABLE IN THE HI, LI AND PD-IP ZONING DISTRICTS  

 

The following regulations pertaining to the number of signs permitted per lot or establishment, the sign area, sign height, and setback requirements shall apply to each sign for which a sign permit is required within the Heavy Industry (HI), Light Industry (LI) and Planned Development-Industrial Park (PD-IP) zoning districts.

 

 

Sign Type

Number of Signs Allowed

Sign Area

(Maximum)

Sign Height

(Maximum)

Sign Setback

(Minimum)

Directory

 

1 or more per establishment,

as authorized by zoning administrator

24 square feet, aggregated

6 feet

5 feet

 

Freestanding

 

1 per street frontage, or 2 per entrance, per lot with 100 or more feet of continuous street frontage plus 1 per lot if the lot is greater than 4 acres and has more than 1 approved entrance on its frontage

32 square feet, aggregated; if more than 1 sign at an entrance, no single sign shall exceed 16 square feet

12 feet

5 feet

Projecting*

1 per street frontage

32 square feet

30 feet, but not to exceed the top of the fascia or mansard

5 feet

Temporary

1 per street

frontage per establishment

32 square feet

12 feet, if freestanding sign; 30 feet if  wall sign, but not to exceed the top of the fascia or mansard

5 feet

Wall*

As calculated pursuant to section 4.15.20

1.5 square feet per 1 linear foot of establishment structure frontage, not to exceed 200 square feet

30 feet

Same as that applicable to structure

 

*Each establishment may have both a projecting sign and a wall sign.  If the establishment has both such signs, the allowed sign area of the wall sign shall be reduced by the sign area of the projecting sign (which may not exceed thirty-two (32) square feet).

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.12.7; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.14.1  (Repealed 5-19-01)

 

4.15.14.2  (Repealed 5-19-01)

 

4.15.15  REGULATIONS APPLICABLE IN THE ENTRANCE CORRIDOR OVERLAY DISTRICT

 

In addition to all other regulations set forth in this section 4.15, the following regulations shall apply within the entrance corridor overlay zoning district:

 

a.     Certificate of appropriateness required.  Prior to the erection of a sign that would be visible from an entrance corridor street, including a sign erected on or visible through a window on a structure, the owner or lessee of the lot on which the sign will be located shall obtain a certificate of appropriateness for that sign.

 

b.     Authority and procedure for acting upon application for certificate of appropriateness.  The authority and procedure for acting upon an application for a certificate of appropriateness for a sign shall be as set forth in sections 30.6.4, 30.6.7 and 30.6.8 of this chapter, and as follows:

 

1.     The agent is authorized to review and act upon an application for a certificate of appropriateness for a sign if the sign will not require a variance and the sign: (i) will either not be internally illuminated or will be internally illuminated with an opaque background; (ii) will replace an existing sign that will be substantially the same as the existing sign; or (iii) will be in a multi-business complex or shopping center, the architectural review board has completed its comprehensive sign review therefor, and the sign will meet all of the requirements established by the architectural review board during its review.  The agent may require that a sign otherwise eligible for review by the agent be reviewed by the architectural review board.

 

2.     The architectural review board shall review and act upon an application for a certificate of appropriateness for each sign that is not eligible for review by the agent as provided in subsection (B)(1), or that is referred to the architectural review board by the agent.

 

3.     Each application for a certificate of appropriateness shall be accompanied by a site plan that shows the location of all signs proposed to be erected on the lot or lots subject to the site plan.

 

c.     Scope of review and authority to impose conditions.  Each application for a certificate of appropriateness for a sign shall be reviewed for consistency with the purposes and requirements of this section 4.15 and the architectural review board’s design guidelines, and conditions may be imposed upon the certificate of appropriateness to assure such consistency, including but not limited to conditions minimizing window signs.

 

d.     Comprehensive sign review.  For each proposed new multi-business complex or shopping center, the architectural review board shall conduct a comprehensive sign review prior to issuing a certificate of appropriateness.  The review shall include, but not be limited to, a review and determination of the appropriate style, size, colors, materials, illumination and location of all proposed signs, and any other provisions of the architectural review board’s design guidelines.

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.12.8; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

                State law reference – Va. Code §§ 15.2-2280, 15.2-2286.

 

4.15.16  REGULATIONS APPLICABLE TO CERTAIN SIGN TYPES

 

In addition to all other regulations set forth in this section 4.15, the following regulations apply to the sign types identified herein:

 

a.     All sign types.  The following regulations shall apply to all signs, including exempt signs: (i) no sign shall be erected within the applicable minimum setback area or within the sight distance triangle; and (ii) the area of the sign face shall not exceed two hundred (200) percent of the sign area. 

 

b.     Anchor signs.  In each shopping center exceeding one hundred thousand (100,000) square feet in gross floor area: (i) one (1) freestanding anchor sign shall be permitted for each one hundred thousand (100,000) square feet in gross floor area, not to exceed four (4) anchor signs at the shopping center; and (ii) each anchor sign shall not exceed six (6) square feet in sign area.

 

c.     Canopy signs.  A canopy sign shall not extend above or below the edge of the canopy’s fascia.

 

d.     Freestanding signs. The following regulations shall apply to freestanding signs: (i) the maximum combined size of a free­stand­ing sign and its support struc­ture shall not exceed two and one-half (2.5) times the maximum allow­able sign size; and (ii) a lot with less than one hundred (100) feet of frontage, on which there is erected a freestanding sign on the date of the adoption of this regulation, shall be permitted one (1) free­standing sign.

 

e.     Gasoline service station fuel price signs. Gasoline service stations shall be permitted additional sign area for the exclusive purpose of displaying fuel prices.  This sign area shall be calculated at a maximum of fifty (50) percent of the principal sign area to which it is attached or sixteen (16) square feet, whichever is less.

 

f.      Menu signs.  An outdoor menu sign shall be permitted as a directory sign only on a lot with a permitted drive-through use and shall not be visible from any street.

g.     Off-site signs.  An off-site sign shall count toward the signage allowed on the lot on which the sign is located.

 

h.     Projecting signs.  A projecting sign shall not be mounted on the fascia of a canopy and shall not be mounted such that the projecting sign extends, in whole or in part, above the top of the wall structure.

 

i.      Wall signs.  In order to be eligible to have a wall sign, the establishment shall have an exterior wall.

 

j.      ADDED SIGNS USING RARE GAS ILLUMINATION

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.12; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.17  DETERMINING SIGN AREA

 

                The sign area shall be measured as provided herein:

 

a.     Measurement.  The sign area shall be measured as the area of a sign face within the smallest square, cir­cle, rectan­gle, triangle or combi­na­tion thereof, that encom­passes the extreme limits of the letters, figures, designs, devices, pictures, projected images, symbols, fixtures, logos, emblems or insignias, or any part or combination thereof, together with any materials or colors forming an inte­gral part of the background of the sign face or used to differenti­ate the sign from the backdrop or struc­ture against which it is placed.  Two-sided sign faces shall be counted as single sign face provided the angle separating them does not exceed forty-five (45) degrees.  See Figure II following this section.

 

b.     Area not included.  The sign area shall not include any supporting framework, bracing or decorative fence or wall when such feature otherwise complies with the regulations of this section 4.15 and is clearly incidental to the sign itself.

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.07.1; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

                State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

 

4.15.18  DETERMINING SIGN HEIGHT

 

                The sign height shall be measured as provided herein:

 

a.     Measurement.  The sign height shall be measured as the vertical distance from the normal grade directly below the sign to the highest point of the sign or sign structure, whichever is higher, and shall include the sign base, regardless of material, including earth used primarily to elevate the sign.  See Figure III following this section.

 

b.     Determining the highest point.  In determining the highest point of the sign or sign struc­ture in subsection (A), the normal grade from which to measure the bottom of the sign height shall be that which is either existing prior to construction, or newly established after construction, depending on which grade is more consis­tent with the surround­ing elevation of the lot on which the sign is located.  Any fill or excavation that serves primarily to elevate the sign shall be included in the height of the sign.

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.07.2; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.19  Determining sight distance triangle

 

The sight distance triangle shall be measured as provided herein:

 

a.     Measurement.  The sight distance triangle is that triangular area on a property between the two lines created by the existing or proposed right-of-way lines of intersecting exterior streets and/or street commer­cial entrances, and the straight line connecting them at points ten (10) feet distant from where the right-of-way lines intersect.  See Figure IV following  this section.

 

b.     Area not included.  The driveway for a single-family or two-family residence shall not be included in this calculation.

c.     Extension of sight distance triangle.  The sight distance triangle may be extended to conform to minimum Virginia Depart­ment of Transportation sight distance standards.

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.07.3; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

 

 

4.15.20  Determining structure frontage

 

The structure frontage shall be measured to calculate the permitted wall signage as provided herein.

 

a.     Measurement.  The structure frontage is the horizontal length of the outside structure wall of the establishment, in one plane, adjacent to a street.

 

b.     Two or more walls adjacent to a street.  If an establishment has two (2) or more walls adjacent to a street, at least one of which is an exterior wall, one (1) of these addi­tional walls may be used to calculate additional wall signage at one-third (1/3) the rate as allowed on the structure frontage.  The total permitted wall signage may then be divided to be used on any walls of the structure and/or canopy, provided that no one wall sign shall exceed the applicable maximum allowable sign area.

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.07.5; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.21  Determining sign setback

 

For all signs other than a sign within a public right-of-way, the sign setback shall be measured from the property line or, in the case of an access easement, from the edge of the easement, to the closest point of the sign.  The setback for a sign within a public right-of-way shall be measured from the edge of the travelway to the closest point of the sign.  See Figure V following this section.

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.07.4; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

 

4.15.22  Sign maintenance

 

AMENDED Each sign, including the sign structure, shall be maintained at all times in a safe structural condition, in a neat and clean condition, and shall be kept free from defective or missing parts.

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.09.4 (part); Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.23  Sign alteration, repair or removal; when required

 

A sign shall be altered, repaired or removed in any of the following cases:

 

a.     Alteration, repair or removal; unsafe or endangering condition.  If a sign becomes structurally unsafe, as determined by the building official, so as to become a danger to the public health or safety, the zoning administrator may order the owner or lessee of the property on which the sign is located to alter, repair or remove the sign within a time period determined by the zoning administrator to be appropriate under the circumstances.  If the owner or lessee fails to comply with the order, the zoning administra­tor may cause the sign to be removed or initiate such other action as may be necessary to compel the alteration, repair or removal of the sign.

 

b.     Removal; unlawful erection of sign.  If a sign is erected on private property in violation of this section 4.15, the zoning administrator shall order the owner or lessee of the property on which the sign is located to remove the sign within a time period determined by the zoning administrator to be appropriate under the circumstances.  If the owner or lessee fails to comply with the order, the zoning administra­tor may cause the sign to be removed or initiate such other action as may be necessary to compel compliance with the provi­sions of this section 4.15.  If a sign is erected on public property, including a public right-of-way in violation of this section 4.15, any county employee may immediately remove the sign without prior notice to the owner of the sign.

 

 c.    Removal of copy on sign face; discontinuance of pertinent use.  If the use of a structure or property is discontinued, the copy on each sign face pertaining to that use shall be removed by the owner or lessee of the property on which the sign is located within two (2) years from the date of the discontinu­ance of the use.  If the owner or lessee fails to remove the copy, the zoning administra­tor may cause the copy to be removed or initiate such other action as may be necessary to compel compliance with the provi­sions of this section 4.15.

 

d.     Liability for cost of removal by county.  If the zoning administrator causes a sign or copy on a sign face to be removed under the provisions of this section, the cost of such removal shall be chargeable to the owner of the sign or the owner or lessee of the property on which the sign is located.

 

e.     Custody and destruction of removed signs.  Cardboard and paper signs that have been removed by the county pursuant to this section shall be destroyed upon removal.  All other signs which have been removed by the county shall be held for a period of thirty (30) days and may be reclaimed by the sign owner within that time by reimbursing the county for the costs of removal.  If such a sign is not reclaimed within the thirty (30)-day period, it shall be deemed to have been forfeited by the owner and shall be destroyed.

 

(12-10-80; 7-8-92, § 4.15.09.4 (part); Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.

 

4.15.24  Nonconforming signs

 

A nonconforming sign may continue, subject to the provisions, conditions and prohibitions set forth herein:

 

a.     Alteration of copy.  The copy of a nonconforming sign may be altered by refacing  the sign by or for the current owner of the establishment to which the sign pertains.

 

b.     Alteration of sign structure.  A nonconforming sign shall not be structurally altered; provided that the zoning administrator may authorize a nonconforming sign to be structurally altered so that it is less nonconforming and further provided that each time the nonconforming sign is structurally altered, the sign area and sign height shall be reduced by at least twenty-five (25) percent of its current area and height until the sign area and the sign height are conforming.

 

c.     Consolidation.  Two or more nonconforming signs on a lot may be consolidated into a single sign; provided that the resulting sign area and sign height shall be reduced by at least twenty-five (25) percent of its current area and height until the sign area and the sign height are conforming, and further provided that each time the resulting nonconforming sign is thereafter consolidated with another nonconforming sign on the lot, the resulting sign area and sign height shall be reduced by at least twenty-five (25) percent of its current area and height, until the sign area and the sign height are conforming.  A sign resulting from the consolidation of nonconforming signs shall not have greater sign height than any of the signs that were consolidated.

 

d.     Discontinuance of copy on sign face.  A nonconforming sign without copy on its sign face for a continuous period of two (2) years shall lose its nonconforming status and be removed by the owner of the property on which the sign is located.  

 

e.     Discontinuance of use or structure to which sign pertains.  A nonconforming sign shall lose its nonconforming status and be removed by the owner of the property on which the sign is located if the use to which the sign pertains is discontinued for more than two (2) years.

 

f.      Enlargement or extension.  A nonconforming sign shall not be enlarged or extended.

 

g.     Maintenance.  A nonconforming sign shall be maintained in good repair and condition.

 

h.     Relocation.  A nonconforming sign shall not be moved to another location on the same lot or to any other lot; provided that the zoning administrator may authorize a nonconforming sign to be moved to a location that is more in compliance with the purpose and intent of this section 4.15.

 

i.      Replacement or restoration.  A nonconforming sign may be replaced or restored only as provided below:

 

1.     A nonconforming sign that is destroyed or damaged by the owner of the sign or the owner of the lot on which the sign is located shall not be replaced or restored unless it complies with this section 4.15.

 

2.     A nonconforming sign that is destroyed or damaged as a result of factors beyond the control of the owner of the sign and the owner of the lot on which the sign is located, to an extent the destruction or damage exceed­s fifty (50) percent of its appraised value, shall not be replaced or restored unless it complies with this section 4.15.

 

3.     A nonconforming sign that is destroyed or damaged as a result of factors beyond the control of the owner of the sign and the owner of the lot on which the sign is located, to an extent the destruction or damage is fifty (50) percent or less of the appraised value, may be replaced or restored provided that the replacement or restoration is completed within two (2) years after the date of the destruction or damage, and the sign is not enlarged or extended.

 

j.      Removal if in unsafe condition.  A nonconforming sign declared to be unsafe by a public safety official because of the physical condition of the sign, including an unsafe physical condition arising from the failure of the sign to be maintained, shall be removed.

 

k.     Registry of nonconforming signs.  The owner of any property on which there is erected a nonconforming sign shall, upon notice from the zoning administrator, submit verification within sixty (60) days that the sign was lawfully in existence at the time of adoption of these sign regula­tions.  The zoning administrator shall maintain a registry of such nonconforming signs.

 

 (12-10-80; 7-8-92, §§ 4.15.09.5, 4.15.10; Ord. 01-18(3), 5-9-01)

 

State law reference – Va. Code § 15.2-2280.


Return to executive summary