City Council Votes 7-0 for Better Sign Code

City Council Votes 7-0 for Better Sign Code

The Tucson City Council voted 7-0 last night to adopt an improved City of Tucson sign code that is less restrictive towards businesses. The Tucson Metro Chamber, along with several partner organizations and business representatives, has been an active participant in the Sign Code Revision Project since the beginning, and our hopes were simple:

  • simplify and improve the process;
  • see language that would not hinder the ability of a business to advertise and sell;
  • have a code that encourages economic development;
  • consider the concerns of all parties involved.

Some of the positive changes that came out of this revision project are the interpretation of canopy signs, and the rate of change for electronic message signs down to one minute (it was formerly one hour.) A huge win for the business community is the Master Sign Program and the individual sign design option, which now gives sign users the potential to be more creative than what has been allowed in 35-40 years. Most importantly, the new sign code gives business owners predictability and consistency.

The Tucson Metro Chamber thanks Mayor Rothschild, Council and City staff for the commitment and time spent on understanding this issue, for meeting with members of the community and for recognizing the importance of the sign code with regards to economic development.

Even with the progress made, the Tucson Metro Chamber believes there is still more work to be done. There are important issues which need to be addressed, such as signage along Tucson’s roadways and regional corridors. The business community has proposed that the definition of freeways be modified to correspond with the Major Streets and Routes Map. Another improvement would be the creation of a multi-tier system for roadways and adding a definition for state routes and selected regional arterials to correspond with Pima Association of Government’s Regionally Significant Corridors Study. The Tucson Metro Chamber will continue to work with all invested parties following the adoption of this ordinance during the review period.