Village of Allouez, WI
Brown County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Amended 9-6-2016 by Ord. No. 2016-19]
The purpose of the sign regulations in this chapter is as follows:
A. 
To regulate the size, type, construction standards, maintenance, and placement of signs situated within the boundaries of the Village of Allouez, Wisconsin.
B. 
To promote the public health, safety and welfare of the general public by:
(1) 
Reducing distractions and obstructions from signs which would adversely affect traffic safety and alleviating hazards caused by signs projecting over or encroaching upon the public right-of-way;
(2) 
Discouraging excessive visual competition in signage and ensuring that signs aid orientation and adequately identify uses and activities to the public;
(3) 
Preserving or enhancing the natural beauty and unique physical characteristics of the Village of Allouez as a community in which to live and work by requiring new and replacement signage which is:
(a) 
Creative and distinctive;
(b) 
Harmonious with the building, surrounding neighborhood aesthetics and other signs in the area; and
(c) 
Expressive of the Village's identity in a manner which will not diminish property values;
(4) 
Promoting a healthy and properly designed business environment; and
(5) 
Protecting property values with the Village.
A. 
A sign may be erected, placed, established, painted, created, or maintained in the Village only in conformance within the standards, procedures, exemptions, and other requirements of this article.
B. 
All sign-related activity must be done based on this article.
A. 
Words and phrases used in this article shall have the meanings set forth in this section. Words and phrases not defined in this section but defined in other ordinances of the Village or by state statute shall be given the meanings set forth in such ordinance or statute. For the purpose of this article, in the event of any conflict in definitions of any word or phrase as defined in this article and as defined in any other ordinance or any statute, the definition in this article shall take precedence and be used. Principles for computing sign areas and sign heights are contained in § 475-74. All other words and phrases shall be given their common, ordinary meaning unless the context clearly requires otherwise. Words used in the present tense include the future; words in the singular number include the plural, and words in the plural number include the singular; and the word "shall" is mandatory and not directory.
B. 
For the purpose of this article certain terms and words are herewith defined as follows:
ABANDONED SIGN
A sign which no longer correctly directs or exhorts any person or advertises a bona fide business, lessor, lessee, owner, product, service or activity, conduct or product available on the premises where such sign is displayed or when a rental, sale or compensation is no longer provided.
ATM STRUCTURE
Any structure that houses an automated teller machine (ATM).
AWNING SIGN
Any sign that is part of or attached to an awning, canopy, or other fabric, plastic, or structural protective cover over a door, entrance, window, or outdoor service area. A marquee is not a canopy.
BANNER
Any sign of lightweight fabric or similar material that is mounted to a pole or building at one or more edges. National flags, state or municipal flags, or the official flag of any institution or business shall not be considered banners.
BEACON
A stationary or revolving light which flashes or projects illumination, single color or multi-colored, in any manner which is intended to attract or divert attention; except, however, that this term does not include lights required or necessary under the safety regulations prescribed by the Federal Aviation Administration or similar agencies.[1]
BUILDING
Includes, but is not limited to, any man-made structure for human habitation, for housing or keeping any living organism, or for any profession, trade, business or activity, any part appurtenant thereto, and any structure whether permanent or temporary.
BUILDING INSPECTOR
The agent of the Village of Allouez authorized to permit, inspect, approve or deny construction within the Village and who is the authorized government representative on sign issues.
BUILDING MARKER
Any sign indicating the name of a building, date, and incidental information about construction, or any such information, which sign is cut into a masonry surface or is a mounted or embedded plaque made of bronze or other permanent material.
BUILDING SIGN
Any sign attached to any part of a building, as contrasted to a freestanding ground sign.
CANOPY
Includes, but is not limited to, a freestanding structure typically associated with auto ingress and egress, attached or unattached to a building.
CHANGEABLE COPY/READER BOARD SIGN
A sign on which the message changes more than once a day shall be considered an LED message center and not a changeable copy sign for purposes of this article. A sign on which the only copy that changes is an electronic or mechanical indication of time or temperature shall be considered a "time and temperature" portion of a sign and not a changeable copy sign for purposes of this article. Such sign shall be freestanding, not attached to any building face or existing pylon sign, and cannot contain more than two faces, each of which shall be on a different side of the sign. Each face shall not exceed 32 square feet in area and the total area of both faces shall not exceed 64 square feet. Such sign shall be mounted upon a permanent base. Each face of the sign shall be encased and locked. Maximum height of such sign shall not exceed eight feet from grade, including the base upon which the sign is mounted.
COMMERCIAL MESSAGE
Any sign wording, logo, or other representation that, directly or indirectly, names, advertises, or calls attention to a business, product, service, sale or sales event or other commercial activity.
DIRECTIONAL SIGN
A sign of noncommercial nature which directs the reader to the location of public or educational institutions, or to the location of historic structures or areas, or to the location of public parks or buildings.
DISPLAY SURFACE AREA
The net geometric area enclosed by the outer extremities of all letters, characters, symbols, logos, trademarks and delineations; provided, however, that "display surface area" shall not include the structural supports for freestanding signs.
DISTRICT or ZONING DISTRICT
A section or sections of the incorporated area of the Village of Allouez for which the then effective Zoning Ordinance governing the use of buildings and land is uniform for each class of use permitted therein.
ERECT
To build, construct, attach, hang, place, suspend, or affix anything, and to paint a wall sign.
FLAG
Any fabric, banner or bunting containing distinctive colors, patterns, or symbols used as a symbol of a government, political subdivision, or other entity.
FLASHING SIGN
An illuminated sign on which artificial or reflected light is not maintained stationary and constant in intensity and color at all times when in use.
FREESTANDING GROUND SIGN
A sign which is attached to or a part of a completely self-supporting structure. The supporting structure shall be set firmly in or below the ground surface and shall not be attached to any building or any other structure, whether portable or stationary.
GARAGE/YARD/RUMMAGE SALE SIGN
A sign advertising the private sale of personal property used to dispose of personal household possessions. Not for the use of any commercial venture.[2]
IDENTIFICATION AND INFORMATIONAL SIGN
Signs of identification or of informational nature bearing no advertising.
ILLUMINATED, DIRECT
Illumination which backlights the display area.
ILLUMINATED, INDIRECT
Illumination that reflects from the sign to the eyes of the viewer.
ILLUMINATED SIGN
Any sign which has characters, letters, figures, designs or outline illuminated by electric lights or luminous tube which is located within the interior of the sign as part of the sign's proper structure.
INCIDENTAL SIGN
A sign, generally informational or directional, that has a purpose secondary to the use of the premises on which it is located, such as no parking, entrance, exit only, loading only, telephone, ATM, and other similar messages. No sign with a commercial message legible from a position off the premises on which the sign is located shall be considered an incidental sign.
JOINT IDENTIFICATION SIGN
A sign which serves as a common or collective identification for a group of persons or businesses operating on the same zone lot (e.g., shopping center, office complex, etc.). Such sign may name the persons or businesses included but shall carry no other advertising matter.
LEASE
An agreement by which a property owner grants, either for consideration or for no consideration, to other persons permission to erect and maintain an advertising sign upon the property.
LED MESSAGE CENTER
A sign or portion thereof with characters, letters, or illustrations that can be changed or rearranged without altering the face of the surface of the sign.
LED SIGN
Light-emitting diode. A diode that converts electrical energy into light with almost no heat. The diode uses crystalline layers that convert electricity into an optical output. Color is determined by the composition of the material.
LOT
Any parcel of land or a portion of a subdivision, the boundaries of which have been established by some legal instrument which is of public record, that is recognized as a separate unit for the purpose of a recordable transfer of ownership.
MALL
Any concentration of retail stores and/or service establishments which share customer parking areas and are located within an enclosure having public walkways whereby a customer in one store or establishment may walk to another store or establishment without leaving the enclosure.
MANSARD ROOF
Any roof that has an angle greater than 45° and which derives part of its support from the building wall and is attached to (but permitted to be not necessarily a part of) a low-slope roof, and which extends along the full length of the front building wall or at least 3/4 of the length of a side building wall. For purposes of this definition, a low-slope roof shall mean any roof with a pitch of less than three inches rise per 12 inches horizontal.
MARQUEE
Any permanent roof-like structure projecting beyond a building or extending along and projecting beyond the wall of the building, generally designed and constructed to provide protection of persons from the weather.
MARQUEE SIGN
Any sign attached to in any manner, or made a part of, a marquee.
MEMORIAL SIGN
A sign which serves as a remembrance of a person, event or place.
MONUMENT SIGN
A sign fully supported by a solid base and which is not more than eight feet in height.
NEON SIGN
Any sign which uses neon tubing and is composed of a colorless, odorless, inert gaseous element used in electric lamps.
NONCONFORMING SIGN
A sign existing at the effective date of the adoption of this article and which could not be built under the terms of this article.
OFF-SITE SIGN
A sign which directs attention to a business, commodity, service, entertainment or attraction sold, offered, or existing elsewhere than upon the same premises where such sign is displayed. The term "off-site sign" shall include an outdoor advertising sign on which space is leased or rented by the owner thereof to others for the purpose of conveying a commercial or noncommercial message.
ON-SITE SIGN
A sign which directs attention to a business, commodity, service, entertainment or attraction sold, offered or existing on the same lot or premises where such sign is displayed, provided that an on-site sign may also display a noncommercial message.
OUTDOOR MENU BOARD
An outdoor sign, associated with restaurants with drive-through windows, which gives a detailed list of foods served that are available at a restaurant.
PENNANT
Any lightweight plastic, fabric, or other material, whether or not containing a message of any kind, suspended from a rope, wire, or string, usually in series, designed to move in the wind.
PERSON
Any natural person, and any firm, partnership, association, corporation, company or organization, singular or plural, of any kind or nature.
POLITICAL OR CAMPAIGN SIGN
A sign which promotes a candidate for public office, a particular position on a referendum or for public office, or other matter on an election ballot or a particular party.
PORTABLE SIGN
Any sign not permanently attached to the ground or any permanent structure, or a sign designed to be transported, including but not limited to signs designed with wheels; signs converted to A- or T-frames; menu and sandwich boards; umbrellas used for advertising; and signs attached to or painted on vehicles parked and visible from the public right-of-way, unless said vehicle is used in the normal day-to-day operations of business.
PORTABLE SWINGER SIGN and A-FRAME OR SANDWICH SIGN
An advertising device which is ordinarily in the shape of an "A" or some variation thereof, located on the ground, easily movable, not permanently attached thereto, and which is usually two-sided.
PORTABLE TEMPORARY ATTRACTION SIGN BOARD
A single- or double-surface painted or poster-panel-type sign or some variation thereof which is temporary in nature, usually mounted on wheels, easily movable, and not permanently attached to the ground.
PREMISES
The lot or lots, parcel or parcels of land, together with the associated buildings and structures, to which the sign is appurtenant.
PRINCIPAL BUILDING
The building in which is conducted the principal use of the zone lot on which it is located. Zone lots with multiple principal uses may have multiple principal buildings, but storage buildings, garages, and other clearly accessory uses shall not be considered principal buildings.
PROJECTING SIGN
Any sign that shall be affixed to extend from and at any angle to the wall of any building in such manner to read at an angle to the wall on which it is mounted.
PUBLIC EVENT
Any event that is authorized by the Village of Allouez, regardless of whether it is funded either in whole, in part, or not at all by the Village.
PUBLIC FACILITY
Any publicly owned property, whether municipal, county, state or federal.
PUBLIC STREET
A street, alley or way that is open and maintained for ingress and egress by the public, regardless of ownership.
READER BOARD
See definition for "changeable copy."
REAL ESTATE SIGN
A temporary sign placed upon property for the purpose of advertising to the public the sale or lease of said property.
RESIDENTIAL SIGN
Any sign located in a district zoned for residential uses that contains no commercial message except advertisements for goods or services legally offered on the premises where the sign is located, if offering such service at such location conforms to all requirements of the Village of Allouez.
ROOF SIGN
Any sign erected and constructed wholly on and over the roof of a building, supported by the roof structure, and/or extending vertically above the highest portion of the roof.
ROOF SIGN, INTEGRAL
Any sign erected or constructed as an integral or essentially integral part of a normal roof structure of any design, such that no part of the sign extends vertically above the highest portion of the roof and such that no part of the sign is separated from the rest of the roof by a space of more than six inches.
SETBACK
The distance from the property line to the nearest part of the applicable building, structure, or sign, measured perpendicularly to the property line.
SHOPPING CENTER
Two or more retail stores and/or service establishments, or one retail store and one service establishment, sharing customer parking areas, regardless of whether said stores and/or establishments occupy separate structures or are under separate ownerships.
SIGHT TRIANGLE
As defined in § 229-9 of this Code.
SIGN
Every device, frame, letter, figure, character, mark, neon, plane, point, design, picture, logo, stroke, stripe, trademark, trade dress, or reading matter which is used or intended to be used to attract attention or convey information when the same is placed out of doors in view of the general public; in addition, any of the above which is not placed out of doors but which is illuminated with artificial or reflected light. Also, the above, when near the inside surface of a window in such a way as to be in view of the general public and used or intended to be used to attract attention or convey information to motorists. Signs on vending machines or ATMs will be counted in the allowable sign area. If located against the building facade, they will not be counted as a freestanding sign. Newspaper vending machines are not included.
SPOTLIGHT ILLUMINATION
Illumination which comes from lamps, lenses or devices designed to focus or concentrate the light rays of the source.
STREET FRONTAGE
The distance for which a lot line of a zone lot adjoins a public street, from one lot line intersecting said street to the furthest distant lot line intersecting the same street.
STREETS AND SIDEWALKS
A strip of land or accessway subject to vehicular traffic and/or pedestrian traffic that provides direct or indirect access to property, including but not limited to alleys, avenues, boulevards, courts, drives, highways, lanes, places, roads, sidewalks, terraces, trails, or other thoroughfares.
STRUCTURE
Includes, but is not limited to, any part of a premises, either man-made or natural, or permanent or temporary, regardless of its height, shape, size or use.
SUSPENDED SIGN
A sign that is suspended from the underside of a horizontal plane surface and is supported by such surface.
TEMPORARY SIGN
Any sign that is used only temporarily and is not permanently mounted.
WALL SIGN
Any sign that shall be affixed parallel to the wall or painted on the wall of any building in such a manner as to read parallel to the wall on which it is mounted; provided, however, that said wall sign shall not project above the top of the wall or beyond the end of the building. For the purpose of this article, any sign display surface that is affixed flat against the sloping surface of a mansard roof shall be considered wall signage. Any sign that is affixed to a building marquee, building awning, or a building canopy shall be considered a wall sign.
WINDOW SIGN
Any sign, pictures, symbol, or combination thereof designed to communicate information about an activity, business, commodity, event, sale or service that is placed inside a window or upon the window.
ZONE LOT
A parcel of land in single ownership that is of sufficient size to meet minimum zoning requirements for area, coverage, and use and that can provide such yards and other open spaces as required by the zoning regulations.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
[2]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
The Building Inspector of the Village of Allouez is charged with issuance of permits and enforcement of this article. His/her interpretation of the application of this article to a particular fact situation will be presumed to be valid.
A. 
Authority. It shall be unlawful for any person to erect, repair, alter, relocate, or possess any sign or other advertising structure as defined in this article without first obtaining a sign permit from the Village of Allouez and making payment of established fees.
B. 
Application for permit. Application for a sign permit shall be made to the Village of Allouez and shall contain or have attached thereto the following information:
(1) 
Name, address, and telephone number of the applicant.
(2) 
Location of building, structure, or lot to which or upon which the sign is to be attached or erected.
(3) 
Name of person, firm, corporation, or association erecting the sign.
(4) 
Written consent of the owner of the building, structure, or land to which or upon which the sign is to be fixed.
(5) 
A scale drawing of such sign indicating the dimensions, materials to be used, color scheme, type of illumination, if any, and the method of construction and attachment.
(6) 
A scale drawing indicating the location and position of such sign in relation to nearby buildings and structures.
(7) 
Copies of any other permit required and issued for said sign, including the written recommendation by the Village Plan Commission where required by this chapter.
(8) 
Additional information as may be required by the Village.
C. 
Exceptions. In the event a property owner or applicant is denied a sign permit because of the strict interpretation of the requirements in this article by the Building Inspector and the property owner or applicant believes to have a unique condition that meets the standards for an exception from this article as identified in Subsection C(1), an exception from requirements may be applied for, accompanied with such fee as set forth in the Village Fee Schedule. The process for an exception shall follow the requirements in Subsection C(4) below.
(1) 
Standards for exceptions. The Village Board shall not vary the regulations of this article as authorized in Subsection C above unless a sign is locally designated or listed on the state or national historic register as a historic structure, as determined by Chapter 248, Historic Preservation, of the Village Code, or it shall make findings based upon the evidence presented to it in each specific case that all the following conditions are present. All exceptions made to a sign under the historic structure condition must first obtain a certificate of appropriateness as determined by Chapter 248 of the Village Code.
(a) 
The particular physical surroundings, shape or topographical conditions of the specific property involved would result in a particular hardship upon the owner as distinguished from a mere inconvenience if the strict letter of the regulations were to be carried out.
(b) 
The conditions upon which the application for an exception is based would not be applicable generally to other property within the same zoning classification.
(c) 
The purpose of the exception is not based exclusively upon a desire for economic or other material gain by the applicant or owner.
(d) 
The alleged difficulty or hardship is caused by this article and has not been created by any person presently having an interest in the property.
(e) 
The granting of the exception will not be detrimental to the public welfare or injurious to other property or improvements in the neighborhood in which the property is located.
(f) 
The proposed exception will not impair an adequate supply of light and air to adjacent property, or substantially increase the congestion in the public streets, or increase the danger of fire, or endanger the public safety, or substantially diminish or impair property values within the neighborhood.
(2) 
The Village Board may impose conditions and restrictions upon the premises benefited by an exception as may be necessary to comply with the above standards to reduce or minimize the injurious effect of such exception upon other property in the neighborhood, and to better carry out the general intent of this article.
(3) 
Authorized exceptions. Exceptions shall be granted by the Village Board only in accordance with the standards set forth in Subsection C above. Authorized exceptions shall be considered a unique request and shall not be construed as precedent for any other authorized exceptions.
(4) 
Sign exception procedure.
(a) 
The applicant submits a complete sign exception application and relevant fees to the Building Inspector.
(b) 
The proposed sign is reviewed by the Building Inspector and referred to the Plan Commission for any exception(s).
(c) 
The Plan Commission shall make a recommendation on an exception within 60 days of receipt of the exception application or the same shall be deemed denied. Any exception granted shall be entered in the minutes of the Plan Commission, setting forth the reasons which justified the recommendation for modification.
(d) 
The Village Board shall make final determination on an exception request after a recommendation is made by the Plan Commission. Any variance granted shall be entered in the minutes of the Village Board, setting forth the reasons which justified the modification.
(e) 
The Building Inspector shall comply with and enforce the decision.
Administrative fees for sign permits shall be in accordance with the Village's established Fee Schedule.
The Building Inspector is hereby authorized and empowered to revoke any permit issued by him/her upon failure of the holder thereof to comply with any provision of this chapter.
A. 
Total area of signs. The permitted total area of signs on a parcel of record shall be the cumulative total of the area of all signs located on the parcel; a maximum of 300 square feet of signage will be allowed.
B. 
Computations. The following principles shall control the computation of sign area and sign height:
(1) 
Computation of area of individual signs. The area of a sign face (which is also the sign area of a wall sign or other sign with only one face) shall be computed by means of the smallest square, circle, rectangle, triangle, or combination thereof that will encompass the extreme limits of all of the writings, representations, emblems, colors, or other displays, together with any material or color forming an integral part of the background of the display used to differentiate the sign from the backdrop or structure against which it is placed, but not including any supporting framework, bracing, or decorative fence or wall when such fence or wall otherwise meets these or other ordinances and is clearly incidental to the display itself.
(2) 
Computation of height. The height of a sign shall be computed as the distance from the natural or curb grade, whichever is higher, at or below the base of the sign, to the top of the highest attached component of the sign. Natural grade shall be construed to be the lower of existing grade prior to construction or the newly established grade after construction, exclusive of any filling, berming, mounding, or excavating solely for the purpose of locating the sign. In cases in which the natural grade cannot reasonably be determined, sign height shall be computed on the assumption that the elevation of the natural grade at the base of the sign is equal to the elevation of the nearest point of the crown of a public street or the grade of the land at the principal entrance to the principal structure on the zone lot, whichever is lower.
(3) 
Computation of maximum total permitted sign area for a zone lot. The permitted sum of the area of all individual signs on a zone lot shall be computed by applying the formula in the appropriate section of this article.
C. 
Number of signs. All signs or sign structures shall be properly maintained and kept in a neat and proper state of repair and appearance.
D. 
Wind pressure. All signs shall be erected and maintained so as to withstand a wind pressure of not less than 30 pounds to the square foot, and when a sign is erected or maintained on any wall of a building it shall be securely fastened or anchored to such wall or building, and all fasteners or anchors used shall be metal and be maintained free from rust or defects of any kind.
E. 
Electrified and illuminated signs. All signs powered electrically for illumination and movement shall comply with the International Electric Code.
F. 
Placing signs on public property or in the public right-of-way. No signs other than signs approved by the Village Board or exempted by the Village Board in Subsection F(7) may be erected on any public property or in the public right away, provided that directional signs may be erected upon Village streets under the following conditions, once approval has been obtained:
(1) 
The signs direct the reader to the location of a public facility attended principally by out-of-town patrons, to a facility operated by a nonprofit entity and attended principally by out-of-town patrons, to a facility relating to the public health, safety or welfare, to scenic or historic trails, or to general business or industrial districts;
(2) 
The signs are fabricated, erected and maintained by the entity requesting the sign;
(3) 
The entire cost of the signs is borne by the entity requesting the signs;
(4) 
The signs are installed at locations in the public right-of-way where they would not constitute a traffic hazard;
(5) 
The signs conform to the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices;
(6) 
The maximum number of directional signs permitted under this section shall be three for each entity, except for signs directing the reader thereof to scenic, historic or public recreational and off-street bicycle-pedestrian transportation trails; and
(7) 
All permanent park signs, park facilities naming signs, and general locations for temporary advertising signs shall be approved by the Village Board.
(a) 
Temporary advertising signs installed in public parks may be approved by the Parks Department, provided that each individual sign does not exceed 32 square feet.
(b) 
The Parks Department shall prepare temporary advertising sign guidelines to establish consistency of appearance and ensure signs present no hazard to users of the facilities which shall be presented to and approved by the Village Board.
G. 
Placing signs on private property. No sign shall be placed on any private property without the owner's consent.
H. 
LED message center. Signs of this nature are permitted only as an ancillary part of a permanent monument sign as defined in this article, making up not more than 40% of such signs, with a maximum of 19.2 square feet per side. LED message centers may contain static text, graphic displays, and pictorial representations which may change no less than once every three seconds, except for LED message centers located on a lot where 40% or more of the direct adjacent lots are "A" Residence or "B" Residence. LED message centers located on a lot with 40% or more of the direct adjacent lots being "A" Residence or "B" Residence may contain static text, graphic displays, and pictorial representations which may change no less than once every 15 minutes on the quarter hour. LED message centers may not flash, scroll or otherwise depict movement. On-premises LED message centers shall be subject to applicable county, state or federal regulations. This sign shall be included in the calculation for the total allowable square footage of signage on the building site.
A. 
No sign shall be suspended by chains or other devices that will allow the sign to swing due to wind actions.
B. 
No sign or other advertising media shall be erected or continued to be displayed at the intersection of any street or any public right-of-way in such a manner as to obstruct free and clear vision; or at any location where, by reason of the position, shape, or color, it may interfere with, obstruct the view of, or be confused with any authorized traffic control sign, signal or device; or which makes use of the word "stop," "look," "drive-in," "danger" or any other word, phrase, symbol or character in such manner as to interfere with, mislead, or confuse drivers of vehicles.
C. 
No motor vehicle displaying a sign containing the name of any business, product, service or event, or a sign advertising that the vehicle is for sale, or a phone number or address, shall be parked in a nondesignated or not Village-approved parking stall in a business parking lot or area fronting on a public street or alley.
D. 
No sign shall be placed on any utility pole, light pole, telephone pole and traffic control sign pole, except for utility identification, governmental or similar purposes.
E. 
No signs shall be erected, allowed or permitted in the public right-of-way, except for permanent signs, including signs erected by a governmental agency, or a franchised public utility company, or a temporary sign of a contractor doing authorized or permitted work within the public right-of-way and providing safety alert or warning.
F. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to place in operation, erect or maintain any attraction device or sign which contains a beacon of any type.
G. 
It shall be unlawful to use a vehicle or trailer as a sign in circumvention of this article, except that magnetic signs only may be allowed on the roof or the sides of vehicles as long as no other structural support is added to the vehicle.
H. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to erect or maintain an attraction device or sign, or to continue in operation an attraction device or sign, which revolves, rotates, or otherwise moves.
I. 
Stretched and guyed fabric signs, pennants and flags may not be used. (See § 475-76A.)
J. 
No person, firm, or corporation shall erect or display any form of temporary advertising device or temporary sign for commercial or business purposes without first obtaining a sign permit from the Building Inspector.
(1) 
Applications for a temporary advertising device or sign shall be made on a form provided by the Building Inspector and shall be accompanied by a permit fee as set forth in Chapter 225, Fees and Charges, of this Code.
(2) 
The term of a temporary sign permit shall not exceed 30 consecutive days from the date of issuance and must be wholly within any one calendar year, at the end of which term such permit shall expire and any sign or advertising device allowed by said permit shall be removed.
(3) 
No person, firm, or corporation shall erect or display more than one temporary advertising device or temporary sign in any one calendar year. Each tenant within a multi-tenant property shall be allowed one temporary sign per calendar year. Multi-tenant businesses are properties with more than one tenant leasing or owning a portion of a building or operating from that location.
(4) 
Each face of a temporary advertising device or temporary sign shall not exceed 32 square feet in area, and the total area of such device or sign shall not exceed 64 square feet. The maximum height of a freestanding temporary sign is restricted to eight feet.
(5) 
The failure to remove a sign or advertising device upon expiration of the sign permit shall be a violation of this article, and each day of violation thereafter shall be considered a separate offense.
(6) 
Any such sign or device shall not contain more than two faces, each of which shall be on a different side of the sign or device.
(7) 
All signs not expressly permitted under this article or exempt from regulations hereunder in accordance with the previous sections are prohibited in the Village. Such signs include, but are not limited to, billboards, inflatable signs, tethered balloons, pennants except those exempt per § 475-76A below, portable signs, and home occupation signs.
A. 
Pennants are permitted only as follows:
(1) 
To designate a residential open house for a property contracted to a licensed real estate agent for sale or for a residential property for sale by the occupant owner of such property, on the day of such event only, and provided that such event does not exceed 12 continuous hours and the pennant is removed on the day of the event;
(2) 
To control ingress and egress to undeveloped property or to designate restricted areas thereon; or
(3) 
To designate area (not buildings) under construction or repair, access to which is restricted for purposes of public safety.
B. 
A temporary sign used by or for a religious or charitable organization to advertise a function or event which provides an economic benefit solely to such an organization is subject to the provisions of § 475-75J above, except as follows:
(1) 
Such sign shall not contain more than two faces, each of which shall be on a different side of the sign;
(2) 
Each face of such sign shall not exceed 32 square feet in area, and the total area of such sign shall not exceed 64 square feet;
(3) 
No more than one sign shall be on any one lot or parcel, and shall not be present for more than 30 consecutive days, and no one organization shall have more than one sign on the same lot or parcel during any one calendar year where the fee is waived. If the organization wishes to place more than one sign in any calendar year, the organization must pay the standard temporary sign fee; and
(4) 
Before any such sign is erected or placed, the organization shall register its intention to place such signs within the Village with the Building Inspector and obtain the rules and regulations for sign placement.
C. 
Signs allowed on private property without permits. The following signs are allowed on private property without the need for a permit, if such a sign does not advertise a business, service or product, unless it is a current building contractor on the site, or is a realtor advertising the premises for sale or lease:
(1) 
House or building identification, such as street address as defined in § 175-19 of this Code, and any building marker having an area of no more than four square feet and which is attached to the reference building.
(2) 
Personal message, such as the announcing of births, anniversaries, birthdays, and yards of the month, which shall have an area not exceeding 20 square feet, which shall not be displayed longer than seven consecutive days, and where a personal message sign is displayed on the lot not more often than 90 days after the last display of the sign.
(3) 
Flags of the United States, the state, the Village, foreign nations having diplomatic relations with the United States, sports teams, seasonal/decorative flags, and other flags adopted or sanctioned by an elected legislative body of competent jurisdiction, provided that such a flag shall not exceed 24 square feet in area in any residential zone and shall not be flown from a pole the top of which is more than 25 feet in height in any residential zone or 40 feet in height in any commercial or industrial zone. Flags must be flown in accordance with protocol established by the Congress of the United States of the Stars and Stripes. Any flag not meeting any one or more of these conditions shall be considered a banner sign and shall be subject to regulation as such.
(4) 
Construction signs. On-site building construction signs shall have a total combined maximum display surface area not to exceed six square feet for "A" and "B" residential lots and 16 square feet for the other zone districts. All such signs on any one lot shall be attached to a single or double post, or may be collectively grouped together to form a single freestanding sign. The height of any one sign, or any group of signs, shall not exceed three feet from grade in "A" and "B" Residence Districts and 10 feet from grade in other districts. Signs listing multiple contractors, subcontractors and design professionals in other than "A" and "B" Residence Districts may have an area not exceeding 32 square feet.
(5) 
Real estate signs. One unanimated real estate sign on an inside lot, and two such signs on a corner lot provided only one sign faces each street, and further provided such signs shall be limited to wall and freestanding signs whose permitted illumination and maximum display surface area shall be as follows:
(a) 
Residential: six nonilluminated square feet.
(b) 
Nonresidential: 16 nonilluminated square feet.
(c) 
Open land: 32 square feet with limited floodlight illumination permitted.
(d) 
Pending or executed real estate action signs/stickers. Such sign of a size not greater than 25% of the sign on which it is placed may be placed at a rate of one per lot or tract per company. All real estate signs and stickers shall be removed from the property within 30 days of the date of executed sale. Pending action signs/stickers shall be changed to reflect current status or action within five days after the pending action has advanced or reverted.
(6) 
Political or campaign signs.[1]
(a) 
The Village may regulate the size, shape or placement of any sign if such regulation is necessary to ensure traffic or pedestrian safety.
(b) 
Duration and placement of signs shall be further governed by Wisconsin Statutes and Wisconsin Department of Transportation rules and regulations.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
(7) 
Official signs. An official sign authorized and erected by the state, county, or municipality, such as for traffic control, parking restrictions, information and notices.
(8) 
Memorial signs or plaques. A memorial sign or tablet, the name of a building and/or the date or erection, which is cut into the masonry surface or inlaid so as to be part of a building, or monument stone or other permanent surface which is constructed of bronze or other noncombustible material and which is not more than four square feet in area.
(9) 
Historical signs. An informational sign placed near a historical site or building. Can be freestanding with a maximum height of seven feet from grade and not more than nine square feet in area.
(10) 
Neighborhood and park identification signs. In any zone, a sign, masonry wall, landscaping or other similar material and feature may be combined to form a display for neighborhood or tract identification at all entrances, provided the legend of each sign or display shall consist only of the neighborhood or tract name. Neighborhood identification signs shall be limited to ground signs not exceeding eight feet in height or 32 square feet per sign face.
(11) 
No trespassing or no dumping signs. A sign stating "no trespassing" or "no dumping" and which does not exceed 1 1/2 square feet in area.
(12) 
No wake area on the Fox River. A control buoy or sign placed so that nautical traffic is alerted to or informed of the "no wake" speed areas designated in Chapter 169, Article I, of this Code.
(13) 
Public notices. An official notice posted by a public officer or employer in the performance of his/her duties.
(14) 
Temporary window signs. A sign attached to the inside surface of a ground floor window in a business, commercial or industrial district. The total area of all such signs on any one lot or parcel shall not exceed 50% of the total window area of the window to which they are attached, and they shall not be placed on a door window or any other window needed to be clear for pedestrian passage. Temporary window signs may not face other private or public off-street property or be on the backyard face of any building except as necessary for public, personnel or resident safety.
(15) 
On-premises temporary signs. A temporary sign may not exceed four square feet in area and must pertain to a fund drive or event of a civic, philanthropic, educational, or religious organization. Any such sign may be posted not more than 30 days before said event and must be removed within seven days after the event. Such a sign may not be displayed more often than 90 days after the last display of such a sign.
For the purpose of this article, a nonconforming sign shall be defined as a sign existing at the effective date of this article but which could not now be built or erected under the terms of this article or any other Village ordinance. All on-site and off-site nonconforming signs not otherwise prohibited by the provisions of this article shall be removed or shall be altered to conform to the provisions of this article when the nature of the business conducted on the premises changes, the lifetime cost of repair, maintenance, and alterations, either structural or cosmetic, exceeds 50% of the replacement cost of a new sign the same or nearly identical to the existing nonconforming sign, or the sign is changed or modified either in shape, size, or type. No nonconforming sign may be enlarged or altered in a way which would increase its nonconformity.
A. 
"A" and "B" Residence District zones. No signage is allowed in "A" and "B" Residence District zones except as follows and only for those services if properly allowed or legally offered on the premises. Exceptions shall not be construed as relieving the owner of such signs from the responsibility of complying with other applicable provisions of this article. The exemptions shall apply to the requirement for a sign permit only, and no sign permit shall be required for the erection of the following signs, unless otherwise required:
(1) 
All types of signs listed in § 475-76.
(2) 
Home improvement signs. On-site home improvement signs may be placed in the yard where and when said improvements are being made. No sign shall be placed on any tree or rock. Home improvement signs shall be a freestanding sign not exceeding six nonilluminated square feet and may be placed during construction but must be removed no later than 14 calendar days after construction is completed.
(3) 
Garage/yard/rummage sale signs. The following regulations shall control garage, yard and rummage sale signs:[1]
(a) 
Size and type. All signs shall be no larger than six square feet, placed on a single or double stake or other freestanding manner.
(b) 
Location. No garage, yard, or rummage sale sign shall be placed, affixed, stapled, or taped to any utility pole, street sign, tree, stop sign, or fence, and such sign shall not be placed in any public right-of-way.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II). See also § 475-12, Garage sales.
(4) 
Identity signs. A nameplate sign not to exceed one square foot in area may be located on the premises. Corner lots shall be permitted two such signs, one facing each street.
(5) 
Uses other than residential which are located in the "A" and "B" Districts. Signs of this type are subject to the requirements as set forth in § 475-71.
(6) 
Changeable copy/reader board signs are allowed for churches and schools in the "A" and "B" Residence Districts as defined in § 475-70, Definitions.
(7) 
LED message center signs are allowed for churches and schools in the "A" and "B" Residence Districts as defined in § 475-70, Definitions.
B. 
"C" Professional Office and Residence, High-Density and High-Rise Districts. No signage is allowed except as follows and only for those services if properly allowed or legally offered on the premises. Exceptions shall not be construed as relieving the owner of such signs from the responsibility of complying with other applicable provisions of this article. The exemptions shall apply to the requirement for a sign permit only, and no sign permit shall be required for the erection of the following signs unless so indicated.
(1) 
All types of signs listed in § 475-76.
(2) 
One freestanding or wall-mounted identity or directory sign not exceeding 32 square feet in area per side with a maximum of two sides. Corner lots shall be permitted two such signs, one facing each street. Maximum height of a freestanding sign is eight feet from grade. The sign must be set back from property line a distance equal to or greater than height.
(3) 
Changeable copy/reader board signs are allowed as defined in § 475-70, Definitions.
(4) 
LED message center signs are allowed as defined in § 475-70, Definitions.
C. 
Commercial, Highway Business Use and Light Industrial District zones. All signs are prohibited except for the following:
(1) 
All signs permitted in § 475-76, under the conditions specified.
(2) 
Advertising and business signs. Advertising and business signs having as their sole purpose the advertisement of a business being conducted on the same premises, but only if the size, type and location of such signs first shall have been reviewed by the Building Inspector and found to be in compliance with this article and all other provisions contained in this chapter. Any application for such sign shall be filed in writing with the Building Inspector for the Village of Allouez and shall set forth the name and the post office address of the applicant, the type of sign, the dimensions, the location and the type of illumination or lighting, if any. Sign types and requirements are as follows:
(a) 
Roof signs. Any sign erected or maintained upon the roof or coping of any building shall not extend above the topmost surface of the roof or coping upon which the sign is erected or maintained. If a sign exceeds six square feet in dimension and contains, or is proposed to contain, open space of at least 1/2 of its front area through which wind may pass and space underneath as above provided, the Building Inspector shall permit said sign to be erected if he/she shall find upon examination that the building or coping of any building upon which the sign is or is proposed to be built will safely support a structure twice the weight of the sign, and if the applicant otherwise complies with this article. No roof sign shall be constructed or maintained on a frame building unless the building is structurally capable of carrying the same. Total square footage of all roof, canopy and wall signs on a lot shall not exceed a ratio of 72 square inches of sign area for each linear foot of lot frontage.
(b) 
Wall signs. Wall signs shall not project more than 18 inches from the surface upon which they are mounted. Wall signs shall be limited in number to one wall sign per business, with the exception of lots directly abutting a recreational trail. Lots abutting a recreational trail may have an additional ancillary wall sign that shall not be illuminated, shall not be visible from the primary wall sign, and shall meet any Village, county, state, or federal requirements. Total square footage of all wall, canopy and roof signs on a lot shall not exceed 15% of the frontage of the building. In multi-tenant buildings each tenant is allowed 15% of their frontage. Wall signs facing a recreational trail, as noted above, are allowed 10% of their trail frontage.
(c) 
Monument sign/freestanding sign.
[1] 
One monument sign shall be allowed per lot, with the exception of lots directly abutting a recreational trail. Lots abutting a recreational trail may have an additional ancillary monument sign that shall not be visible from the primary monument sign and shall meet any Village, county, state, or federal requirements.
[2] 
All monument signs shall meet the area and height requirements set forth in Table 1 below. Area and height computations shall be calculated based on the formulas set forth in § 475-74B of this article.
Table 1: Monument Sign Area and Height Requirements
Building Type/Area and Number of Tenants
Maximum Sign Area
(square feet)
Maximum Sign Height
(feet)
1 to 2 tenants and building less than 25,000 square feet
32 per side (64 total)
8
3 + tenants and building less than 25,000 square feet
48 per side (96 total)
8
3 + tenants or building 25,000 to 50,000 square feet
48 per side (96 total)
8
3 + tenants or building 50,000 to 100,000 square feet
64 per side (128 total)
10
3 + tenants or building greater than 100,000 square feet
64 per side (128 total)
10
Trail ancillary signs
6 per side (12 total)
5 1/2
[3] 
Every sign shall be set back from the right-of-way a distance at least equal to the height of the sign, with the requirement being not less than eight feet.
[4] 
Signs located on lots that abut a trail shall have the sign located so that installation and maintenance of the sign does not require crossing the trail right-of-way or easement.
[5] 
When possible, every sign shall be set back a minimum of 50 feet from any residential district.
[6] 
Any sign within 30 feet of an intersection or 15 feet of a driveway must be designed and installed so as comply with clear vision requirements for vehicular traffic required elsewhere in this chapter.
[7] 
All single-tenant monument signs shall include the street address for the property mounted on the base of the sign (minimum five-inch numbering).
[8] 
All monument signs shall be mounted on a decorative base at least two feet high and constructed of the same or similar materials as the principal building, e.g., stone or decorative block.
[9] 
A landscape area shall extend a minimum of two feet from the face of the sign and shall fully cover the base that contacts the ground.
[10] 
Where any sign is proposed to be externally illuminated using ground-mounted fixtures (i.e., floodlight), landscape plantings or other natural obstructions shall be installed in such a manner so as to entirely shield the light source from the surrounding view. Landscape plantings shall be of the type that will ensure effective yearlong screening. Signs located on lots that abut a trail shall not be illuminated either internally or externally.
(d) 
Outdoor menu board. Outdoor menu boards are only allowed on zone lots which have previously been approved for restaurants or car washes with drive-through windows and under the following conditions:
[1] 
Only one outdoor menu board shall be permitted, per order window or wash bay, on a lot.
[2] 
Display surface area shall not exceed 24 square feet.
[3] 
If the sign is lighted it may be lighted by internal illumination only.
[4] 
The outdoor menu board lettering may not be legible from any distance off the zoned lot for which it is approved.
(e) 
Changeable copy/reader board signs are allowed as defined in § 475-70, Definitions.
(f) 
LED message center signs are allowed as defined in § 475-70, Definitions.
D. 
Off-premises signage. Off premises advertising and business signs which advertise goods, products, facilities, or services not necessarily on the premises where the sign is located, or directing persons to a different location from where the sign is located. In addition to meeting all other applicable sections of this article, the installation of off-premises signs in the Village of Allouez shall meet the following requirements:
(1) 
The maximum size is 32 square feet and the maximum height is eight feet.
(2) 
This should be considered for directional purposes only.
(3) 
The installation of an off-premises sign shall require prior approval of the Village Board. The Village Board shall hold a public hearing on an application within 40 days from receipt of an application by the Village Clerk-Treasurer. Written notice of the time, place, and purpose of the hearing shall be mailed by regular United States mail, postage pre-paid, at least 10 days before the hearing, to the applicant, to property owners abutting on the street in the block opposite the block in which the proposed advertising sign is to be located, and if the location is on a corner, to the property owners of the other corner.
(4) 
The Village Board may approve a proposed off-premises sign if such sign in contents and appearance conforms to the general Comprehensive Plan of orderly growth and development of the Village, the special characteristics of the Village, and the locality where such advertising signs have been proposed, and the federal requirements for signs provided in § 475-74D and E of this article. In making its decision the Village Board shall also be guided by the evidence and testimony presented at the public hearing.
E. 
Planned Development Districts. In the Planned Development Districts, all exterior signs are prohibited except for the following, but only if the Planned Development District, including such signage, has received the final approval of the Village Board:
(1) 
Signs which are permitted in the underlying zoning as defined in § 475-3 of this chapter.
(2) 
Signs which are permitted in a district (other than a Planned Development District) which permits the use which is the principal and/or primary intended use of the Planned Development District in which the sign is to be placed.
(3) 
Signs which are not permitted in a district in accordance with this article may be allowed through the Planned Development District process, if the sign is part of a larger development plan going through the process, and not the sole reason for the Planned Development District, and if the Plan Commission agrees and recommends to the Village Board that the sign is consistent with unique intended use proposed for the development and the sign does not negatively affect the safety and well-being of the neighboring properties, is consistent with the purpose and spirit of the Comprehensive Plan, and follows all the guidelines for a Planned Development District defined in Article VI of this chapter.
A. 
In addition to complying with the provisions of this article, all signs in which electrical wiring and connections are to be used shall be subject to the applicable provisions of the Village Electrical Code.[1] No person may erect a sign with exposed electrical wires.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 210, Electrical Standards.
B. 
The use of unshielded lighting, including exposed incandescent light bulbs hung or strung on poles, wires or any other type of support, intended to illuminate a sign or other advertising device is expressly prohibited.
C. 
No sign shall be illuminated, either internally or externally, between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and sunrise, except that an on-site sign may be illuminated during those hours that the business to which it pertains is open and operating.
D. 
All sign lighting shall be so designed, located, shielded or hooded as to prevent the casting of glare or direct light upon adjacent roadways, upon surrounding properties, and into the sky.
E. 
Except for displays on LED message centers, in no case shall the lighting intensity of any sign, whether resulting from internal or external illumination, exceed 60 footcandles at two feet away from the geometric center of the sign.
F. 
All LED message centers shall be equipped with photosensitive equipment which automatically adjusts the brightness and contrast of the sign in direct relation to the ambient outdoor illumination. The sign must not exceed a maximum illumination of 8,000 nits (candelas per square meter) during daylight hours and a maximum illumination of 500 nits (candelas per square meter) between dusk and dawn as measured from the sign's face at maximum brightness. No such sign shall be illuminated that is greater than necessary for adequate visibility. Message center signs that are found to be too bright shall be modified with the order of the Village.
G. 
Neon tubing or strands of lighting exposed to view or not covered with an opaque cover of plexiglass or other similar material, other than seasonal decorations, are prohibited.
Follow requirements as stipulated in Article X, Site Plan Design and Review, of this chapter (§ 475-95).
A. 
Location in paved areas. No signage may cause a reduction in required or previously existing off-street parking spaces or in any manner interfere with the use of such off-street parking spaces.
A. 
All signs and sign structures shall be properly maintained and kept in a neat and proper state of repair and appearance.
B. 
Duty of Village Building Inspector to enforce.
(1) 
The Village Building Inspector shall have the power and duty to enforce the provisions hereof.
(2) 
The remedies and sanctions in this section for a violation of, or for failure to comply with, the provisions of this article, whether civil or criminal, or for sign removal, shall be cumulative and shall be in addition to any and all other remedies provided by law.
C. 
Other signs forfeited. Any sign installed or placed on public property, except in conformance with the requirements hereof, shall be forfeited to the public and subject to confiscation. In addition to other remedies hereunder, the Village shall have the right to recover from the owner or person placing the sign the full costs of removal and disposal for such sign.
D. 
Removal of certain signs. In the event a business ceases operation for a period of time in excess of 30 days, the sign owner, lessee, or the property owner shall immediately remove any sign identifying or advertising said business or any product sold thereby; provided, however, that this requirement shall not apply where under the provisions of this article an existing conforming sign may be altered to advertise a new business or product sold thereby and there is evidence that a new business will be in operation on the premises within 30 days. Upon failure of the sign owner, lessee or property owner to comply with this subsection, the Building Inspector shall issue a written notice to the sign owner and any lessee, and to the property owner, which notice shall state that such sign shall be removed within 10 days. If the sign owner, lessee, or property owner fails to comply with such written notice to remove, the Building Inspector is hereby authorized to cause the removal of such sign, and any expense incidental to such removal shall be charged to the owner of the property upon which sign is located and shall constitute a lien upon the property. For the purpose of this subsection, the word "remove" shall mean:
(1) 
The sign face, along with posts and columns, and the supports of freestanding signs, shall be taken down and removed from the property.
(2) 
The sign face and supporting structures of projecting, roof, and wall signs shall be taken down and removed from the property.
(3) 
The sign face of painted wall signs shall be removed by painting over the wall sign in such a manner as to completely cover up and hide from sight the sign in question.
E. 
Destruction of signs. It shall be unlawful for any person to:
(1) 
Injure, deface or remove any sign, signal, flare, red light or marker placed for the warning, instruction or information of the public.
(2) 
Carve or paint on any rock, sign, wall or structure on public park grounds or other public property.
(3) 
Injure or deface in any manner any public building, facility, sign, fence, table or other Village property on public park grounds or other public property.
Any person who violates any provision of this article shall pay a forfeiture of not less than $10 nor more than $1,000 for each violation. Each day a violation occurs or continues shall constitute a separate offense.
The provisions of this article shall not be construed to relieve or to limit in any way the responsibility or liability of any person, firm, or corporation who or which erects or owns any sign for personal injury or property damage caused by the sign, nor shall the provisions of this article be construed to impose upon the Village, its officers, or its employees any responsibility or liability by reason of the approval of any sign under the provisions of this article.