Changes to Edmonds' sign code approved

Apr 09, 2017
Photo by: Beacon file photo

The Edmonds City Council has approved the Edmonds Planning Board’s recommendation to amend the city’s sign code, which includes eliminating or reducing the fee for certain signs.

In November, almost three months after city councilmembers voted to approve changes to Edmonds’ sign code, they unanimously decided to pass a 120-day suspension of enforcement of the new requirements for pedestrian signs.

The council’s reversal was due, in large part, to complaints by business owners impacted by the change. Many spoke up supporting the Planning Board’s recommendations during a recent council meeting.

Each ground floor storefront is now allowed six additional square feet of sign area to accommodate a pedestrian sign or some other type of permanent signage, at their choice.

This means that street-front businesses can continue to use pedestrian signs even if their wall signs max-out their allowed sign area. Ground floor businesses not choosing to use a pedestrian sign now have six more square feet of permanent sign area available to them.

Normally, pedestrian signs need to be within 10 feet of the business entry and 2 feet of the building.

However, there are now two exceptions that can be granted by the city to accommodate specific circumstances:

• When an alternative location in front of the building or on the property occupied by the business is less intrusive to pedestrian movement or accessibility; or

• When the building containing the business is set back from the property line and a location on the property can be provided such that the sign does not encroach onto a public sidewalk

Governmental signs are now defined to allow the creation of a directional signage program. The exact parameters are not specified in the code.

In addition to the code changes, council also reduced two sign fees: fees are reduced to “no cost” for blade signs and a total of $110 for pedestrian signs.

A blade sign is a small overhanging sign, generally hanging well overhead from a canopy or building facade out over the sidewalk.

Sign permits are still required for both types of signs; only the permit fees have been reduced.


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