Atrocity of the Month

Sign Litter

Mobile signs are ugly, tacky, and distracting to motorists. The current by-law is not the problem; enforcement is.

By Trey Shaughnessy
Published December 14, 2005

Mobile sign at Longwood and Main
Mobile sign at Longwood and Main

Let's hope the City's revised sign by-law is effective in cleaning up our streetscapes. Not only are these signs horribly tacky, but also, drivers need to concentrate on driving, not being persuaded to buy something.

With 21 motor vehicle deaths so far this year in Hamilton, we should be looking to mitigate accidents wherever possible. These signs also obstruct sightlines endangering pedestrians and cyclists.

Some give no consideration to this hazard, as indicated by the double mobile sign at a busy intersection used by Westdale students.

The current by-law is not the problem; enforcement is. If all the mobile signs in the city currently in violation (like the sign above) were removed, we would see an instant removal of many mobile signs.

The by-law (section 14 A, B) states that mobile signs can only be on certain properties for a maximum of 60 days per year. This sign at Longwood and Main has been there for over a year straight.

I sent an email to the Clerks Office on July 13, informing them of a certain other violation. As of December 13, the sign is still there.

Unfortunately, the current situation is from a lack of enforcement and abuse from the industry, and it has now come to the point where the city hopes to hire two full-time people dedicated to sight pollution.

So, Mobile Sign People, does 'self inflicted' mean anything to you?

Read more information on the city's website.

Trey lives in Williamsville NY via Hamilton. He is a Marketing Manager for Tourism and Destination Marketing in the Buffalo-Niagara Metro.

His essays have appeared in The Energy Bulletin, Post Carbon Institute, Peak Oil Survival, and Tree Hugger.

And can't wait for the day he stops hearing "on facebook".

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By gmt99 (anonymous) | Posted March 13, 2008 at 22:42:51

i agree that looks bad. However i have used these signs in the past and it is by far the best means of advertising your business super cheap and super effective. just enforce them i don't want them gone becuase its cheap. your eyes should be on the road not the signs. unless your parked. does a bus ad or billboard distract you as well or maybe a garbage ad? come on to try to put blame on the signs for poor driving is lame

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