Township of Bernards, NJ
Somerset County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Ord. #1809, 9-13-2005, adopted]
a. 
Permits for Signs. No sign shall be constructed or displayed prior to obtaining a permit approved by the Zoning Officer and, if applicable, the Construction Code Enforcement Official.
b. 
Sign Area Measurement. The area of any sign shall be computed as the product of the largest horizontal width and the largest vertical height of the lettering, illustration, display or background. This shall not be construed to include the supporting members of any sign which are used solely for such purpose. If the letters, illustration, display or background are painted, printed or attached directly to the face of the building, the height or width of the sign shall be the height or width of the largest letter, display or background, whichever is the greater. For signs with two display faces, the maximum area requirement shall be permitted on each side, provided that each display face is parallel to the other and located on a single sign structure. Signs with more than two display faces are prohibited.
c. 
Sign Replacement or Alteration. If and when any sign is moved, altered or replaced, except for purposes of minor and nonstructural maintenance and/or repairs, the sign shall thereafter conform to all requirements of this chapter.
[Ord. #1809, 9-13-2005, adopted]
a. 
Signs required by any provision of law are permitted in any zone.
b. 
Signs deemed necessary to the public welfare by the Township Committee, including parking, traffic control, directional and warning signs on private streets and driveways, are permitted in any zone.
c. 
Customary warning, no hunting or no trespassing signs not exceeding one square foot in area are permitted in any zone.
d. 
No sign shall be located so as to interfere with traffic visibility or traffic safety, or obstruct any parking space, parking aisle, driveway or pedestrian walkway.
e. 
No sign shall be designed and placed so as to interfere with or be mistaken for a traffic light or similar safety device.
f. 
No sign shall be erected on any lot or building which does not pertain to the use of the lot or building unless provided for elsewhere in this subsection. No commercial sign shall be erected on any public property or public right-of-way unless provided for elsewhere in this chapter or otherwise authorized by the Township Committee.
g. 
All illuminated signs shall be externally illuminated. No sign shall be internally illuminated or lighted by means of flashing or intermittent illumination. All lights used for the illumination of any sign, use or building, or the areas surrounding them, or for the illumination or display of merchandise or products of business establishments, shall be completely shielded from view. Lights used for illumination of any sign, whether or not such lights are attached to or are separate from a building, shall not project light above the highest elevation of the front wall of the building or more than 18 feet above the ground level, whichever is less.
[Ord. #2240, 9-24-2013, amended]
h. 
No sign shall incorporate or utilize neon lights.
i. 
Moving or rotating signs or lights as well as streamers, pennants and similar displays are prohibited in all zones, except as otherwise provided for in this chapter. Municipally owned street banners attached to approved designated utility poles may be erected by the Township in public rights-of-way without any approval from land use boards in the Township, provided approval is obtained from the Township Committee.
j. 
No sign shall be attached to or erected on the roof of any building.
k. 
All signs shall be maintained in good repair. Lack of proper maintenance shall be considered abandonment, and the sign shall be removed upon notification by the Zoning Officer.
l. 
The following design standards shall apply to all signs:
1. 
Lettering/numbering on all signs shall not be less than four inches high.
2. 
All signs shall be constructed of permanent quality materials and shall contain professionally drawn lettering/numbering.
3. 
With the exception of temporary craftsman/contractor signs and temporary signs for charitable uses, freestanding signs with wire supports and any signs constructed of cardboard or corrugated plastic are prohibited.
[Ord. #2243, 10-15-2013, amended]
[Ord. #1809, 9-13-2005, adopted]
Only the following signs shall be permitted:
a. 
Home Offices. One sign not exceeding two square feet in area and six feet in height shall be permitted. The source of any illumination shall be shielded so it is not visible from the street or any adjoining property.
b. 
Houses of Worship; Public and Private Schools. One sign not exceeding 30 square feet in area and six feet in height shall be permitted. The sign shall be located not less than 20 feet from all lot lines.
c. 
New Developments. For a development for which preliminary approval has been granted by the Township, one temporary freestanding sign not exceeding 24 square feet in area and six feet in height shall be permitted. The sign shall be located not less than 20 feet from all lot lines. If the development fronts on more than one street, one sign shall be permitted along each frontage. Such sign(s) may be displayed for a period of up to six months, and may be displayed for additional six-month periods by renewal of the sign permit. The sign(s) shall be removed within five days after the execution of contract for the initial sale or lease of the last lot in the development to be sold or leased.
d. 
Sale/Lease of Buildings or Lots. One temporary sign not exceeding four square feet in area shall be permitted, provided the sign is removed within five days after the execution of contract for sale or lease.
e. 
Sale of Personal Vehicles. One temporary sign not exceeding three square feet in area mounted inside the passenger compartment of the vehicle shall be permitted, provided the vehicle is owned by a resident of the property, currently registered and inspected and parked in a driveway, and further provided the sale is an occasional sale and not part of a trade or business. For sale signs on personal property other than vehicles are prohibited.
f. 
Multifamily Housing Developments in the MH-1 Zone. For each neighborhood in the development, one main identification sign not exceeding 30 square feet in area and six feet in height shall be permitted. The sign(s) shall be located not less than 20 feet from all tract property lines. In addition, the Board may approve directional, wayfinding and building identification sign(s) which are not intended to be visible from off site, provided that each such sign shall not exceed 24 square feet in area. Notwithstanding that off-premises signs are prohibited as set forth elsewhere in this chapter, not more than two existing off-site signs located along Mountain View Boulevard may be used to identify development in the MH-1 Zone, provided that such existing signs are located on property which is either held in common ownership with the MH-1 Zone property or owned by an association of which the MH-1 Zone property owner is a member.
[Ord. #2405, 9-11-2018, added]
[Ord. #1809, 9-13-2005, adopted]
a. 
E-1, E-2, E-3, E-4, E-5 and M-1 Zones. Only the following signs shall be permitted:
1. 
Freestanding Signs. For each lot, one sign not exceeding 30 square feet in area and 10 feet in height shall be permitted. The sign shall be located not less than 20 feet from all lot lines. If the lot has more than one entrance, additional freestanding signs may be approved by the Board, provided each additional sign does not exceed 24 square feet in area and the legend is limited to the name of the business(es).
2. 
Wall-Mounted Signs. For each tenant, sign(s) not exceeding 24 square feet in total area shall be permitted. Each sign shall not exceed 12 feet in width and four feet in vertical dimension. Signs mounted perpendicular to the wall shall be permitted only if the lower edge of such sign is not less than eight feet above the ground and the sign does not exceed six square feet in area. If a sign is less than eight feet above the ground, the sign may extend no more than three inches from the wall on which it is mounted. No portion of any sign shall extend above the limits of the wall on which it is mounted or extend more than 18 feet above ground level.
b. 
B-1, B-3 and B-4 Zones. Only the following signs shall be permitted:
1. 
Freestanding Signs. For each tenant, one sign not exceeding six square feet in area and six feet in height shall be permitted. The sign shall be located not less than five feet from all lot lines and not less than 10 feet from any other freestanding sign.
2. 
Temporary Freestanding Signs. For each tenant, one sign not exceeding six square feet in area and four feet in height shall be permitted. The sign shall not be illuminated and may be displayed only at times when the tenant's business is actually "open," i.e., actively in operation.
3. 
Wall-Mounted Signs. For each tenant, sign(s) not exceeding 24 square feet in total area for each facade that faces a public right-of-way or public parking lot shall be permitted. Each sign shall not exceed 12 feet in width and four feet in vertical dimension. Signs mounted perpendicular to the wall shall be permitted only if the lower edge of such sign is not less than eight feet above the ground and the sign does not exceed six square feet in area. If a sign is less than eight feet above the ground, the sign may extend no more than three inches from the wall on which it is mounted. No portion of any sign shall extend above the limits of the wall on which it is mounted or extend more than 18 feet above ground level.
4. 
Window Signs. For each tenant, permanent and temporary signs that are not illuminated shall be permitted, provided the total area of the signs does not exceed 50% of the tenant's total window area.
c. 
B-2 Zone. Only the following signs shall be permitted:
1. 
Freestanding Signs. For each lot, one sign not exceeding 20 square feet in area and eight feet in height shall be permitted. The sign shall be located not less than five feet from all lot lines. A freestanding sign on a lot occupied by a neighborhood shopping center shall not exceed 30 square feet in area and 10 feet in height.
2. 
Wall-Mounted Signs. For each tenant, sign(s) not exceeding 24 square feet in total area shall be permitted. Each sign shall not exceed 12 feet in width and four feet in vertical dimension. Signs mounted perpendicular to the wall shall be permitted only if the lower edge of such sign is not less than eight feet above the ground and the sign does not exceed six square feet in area. If a sign is less than eight feet above the ground, the sign may extend no more than three inches from the wall on which it is mounted. No portion of any sign shall extend above the limits of the wall on which it is mounted or extend more than 18 feet above ground level.
3. 
Window Signs. For each tenant, permanent and temporary signs that are not illuminated shall be permitted, provided the total area of the signs does not exceed 24 square feet.
d. 
B-5 Zone. Only the following signs shall be permitted:
[Ord. #2384, 5-15-2018, amended]
1. 
Main Entrance Signs. Two signs not exceeding 10 feet in height shall be permitted. For a village center not containing a multifamily use, each sign shall not exceed 32 square feet in area and may identify up to four nonresidential tenants. For a village center containing a multifamily use, each sign shall not exceed 60 square feet in area and may identify up to four nonresidential tenants and the multifamily use. In addition, each sign shall be permitted to contain the words "Dewy Meadow Village" in individual letters up to nine inches high.
2. 
Tenant Directory Signs (Nonresidential Uses Only). Two signs shall be permitted. Each sign shall not exceed 60 square feet in area, 14 feet in height and 12 feet in vertical dimension, and shall be located not less than five feet from any street right-of-way.
3. 
Store and Multifamily Directional Signs. Sign(s) not exceeding 24 square feet in area for each sign shall be permitted.
4. 
Temporary Freestanding Signs (Nonresidential Uses Only). For each tenant, one sign not exceeding six square feet in area and four feet in height shall be permitted. The sign shall not be illuminated and may be displayed only at times when the business is actually "open," i.e., actively in operation.
5. 
Wall-mounted Signs (Nonresidential Uses Only).
(a) 
Building A. Two signs shall be permitted. One sign shall not exceed 24 square feet in area, 12 feet in width and two feet in vertical dimension. Any second sign shall not be located on the same building facade and shall not exceed 48 square feet in area, 12 feet in width and four feet in vertical dimension. No portion of any sign shall extend above the limits of the wall on which it is mounted or extend more than 18 feet above ground level.
(b) 
Buildings B, C, D, E, F and G. For each first floor tenant, one sign not exceeding 24 square feet on each building facade occupied by that tenant shall be permitted. Each sign shall not exceed 12 feet in width and two feet in vertical dimension, unless otherwise approved by the Board. No portion of any sign shall extend above the limits of the wall on which it is mounted or extend more than 18 feet above ground level.
6. 
Window Signs (Nonresidential Uses Only).
(a) 
First floor tenants. For each tenant, permanent and temporary signs that are not illuminated shall be permitted, provided the total area of the signs does not exceed 24 square feet on each building facade occupied by that tenant.
(b) 
Second floor tenants. For each tenant, only nonilluminated window lettering shall be permitted, not to exceed 25% of the area of the window and not to exceed one sign on each building facade occupied by that tenant.
7. 
Freestanding Signs for Multifamily Use. For a village center containing a multifamily use, one freestanding sign not exceeding 30 square feet in area, or two freestanding signs not exceeding 20 square feet in area per sign shall be permitted. Each sign shall identify only the multifamily use, shall not exceed six feet in height, and shall be located not less than 550 feet from the right-of-way of King George Road.
8. 
Parking Identification Signs for Multifamily Use. Signs designating parking spaces reserved for multifamily units shall be permitted. Such signs may be freestanding or affixed to buildings or curbs and shall not exceed 1.5 square feet in area.
e. 
Signs for Specific Uses/Purposes.
1. 
Specialty Food Stores, Health Clubs, Restaurants, Retail Outlet Stores, Retail Sales and Services (collectively, a "retail center") in the E-2 Zone. Only the following signs shall be permitted, except as otherwise approved by the Board as part of a retail center signage program:
(a) 
Main Entrance Sign. One sign not exceeding 30 square feet in area shall be permitted, provided the sign shall be consistent with the common architectural and landscaping theme for the retail center. Only one sign located in either the Township or Warren Township shall be permitted, and if the sign is located in Warren Township, the sign shall comply with the provisions of this section.
(b) 
Wall-Mounted Signs. For each tenant, one sign not exceeding 24 square feet in area, 12 feet in width and two feet in vertical dimension shall be permitted. No sign shall be mounted above the first floor, and all signs shall be of a uniform design and color scheme and be compatible with the retail center architecture.
(c) 
Window Signs. For each first floor tenant, permanent and temporary signs that are not illuminated shall be permitted, provided the total area of the signs does not exceed 24 square feet.
2. 
Specialty Food Stores, Restaurants, Retail Outlet Stores, Retail Sales and Services (collectively, a "retail center") in the E-3 Zone. Only the following signs shall be permitted, except as otherwise approved by the Board as part of a retail center signage program:
(a) 
Freestanding Main Entrance Sign. One sign not exceeding 60 square feet in area, 10 feet in vertical dimension, and 13 feet in height, shall be permitted, provided the sign shall be consistent with the common architectural and landscaping theme for the retail center and substantially in accordance with Figure V of this chapter.[1] For a retail center located on a corner lot, a second freestanding main entrance sign not exceeding 30 square feet in area may be approved by the Board.
[Ord. #2129, § 1, 10-12-2010, amended]
[1]
Editor's Note: Figure V is included as an attachment to this chapter.
(b) 
Wall-Mounted Signs. For each tenant, one sign not exceeding 24 square feet in area shall be permitted, provided all signs shall be of a coordinated design and color scheme and be compatible with the retail center architecture.
(c) 
Window Signs. For each first floor tenant, permanent and temporary signs that are not illuminated shall be permitted, provided the total area of the signs does not exceed 24 square feet.
3. 
Automotive Service Stations. For any approved or existing automotive service station, only the following signs shall be permitted:
(a) 
Freestanding Sign. One sign not exceeding 30 square feet in area and ten feet in height shall be permitted. The sign shall be located not less than five feet from all lot lines.
(b) 
Wall-Mounted Signs.
(1) 
Sign(s) not exceeding 24 square feet in total area shall be permitted. Each sign shall not exceed 12 feet in width and four feet in vertical dimension. Signs mounted perpendicular to the wall shall be permitted only if the lower edge of such sign is not less than eight feet above the ground and the sign does not exceed six square feet in area. If a sign is less than eight feet above the ground, the sign may extend no more than three inches from the wall on which it is mounted. No portion of any sign shall extend above the limits of the wall on which it is mounted or extend more than 18 feet above ground level.
(2) 
For each service bay, one sign displayed over the entrance door or bay shall be permitted. Each sign shall consist only of a single line of lettering using the words "washing," "lubrication," "repairs," "mechanic on duty" or other similar words, and shall not exceed eight feet in width and 12 inches in vertical dimension.
(c) 
Fuel Pump Signs. For each pump, customary lettering or other insignia that is not illuminated and is a structural part of the pump shall be permitted. The sign(s) on each pump shall consist only of the brand name and price of the fuel sold and other information required by law, and shall not exceed three square feet in total area.
4. 
Commercial Farms. Signs advertising a farm, farm market, pick-your-own operation or other permitted farm activity are permitted as follows. These signs shall be permitted in addition to any off-premises signs authorized by the Township Committee.
(a) 
Permanent Signs. For each lot, four signs shall be permitted. Each sign shall not exceed 20 square feet in area and eight feet in height.
(b) 
Temporary (Seasonal) Signs. For each lot, six signs shall be permitted. Each sign shall not exceed 32 square feet in area and eight feet in height, and the total area of all temporary signs shall not exceed 128 square feet. Temporary (seasonal) signs may be displayed only during the season when the advertised farm activity is open for business.
5. 
New Businesses. Temporary signs advertising the opening of a new business shall be permitted for a period not to exceed 30 days. All such signs shall be maintained in an orderly manner at all times, and, excepting number and size, shall conform to all other applicable portions of this section.
6. 
Charitable Uses. Temporary signs shall be permitted as follows:
[Ord. #2243, 10-15-2013, amended]
(a) 
Off-Premises Signs. Freestanding signs not exceeding 2 1/2 feet in width and four feet in height shall be permitted, provided the signs comply with all other applicable provisions of this section and a permit is obtained from the Zoning Officer. Signs on Township property shall be permitted only on those Township properties listed on the permit form obtained from the Zoning Officer. Signs located on any other Township property shall be prohibited.
(b) 
Street Banners. Street banners shall be governed pursuant to the Municipal Banner System Policy adopted by the Township Committee pursuant to Resolution #070491.
7. 
Sale/Lease of Buildings or Lots. One temporary sign advertising the sale or lease of a building or lot in a nonresidential zone shall be permitted, provided the sign does not exceed six square feet in area and the sign is removed within five days after the execution of contract for sale or lease. A sale/lease sign on a lot of five acres or more with frontage of 500 feet or more shall not exceed 24 square feet in area.
8. 
Craftsman/Contractor Signs. One temporary sign advertising the business of a craftsman or contractor performing work on a lot shall be permitted in any zone, provided the sign does not exceed four square feet in area and the sign is not less than five feet from any lot line. Such signs may be displayed for a period extending from the start of work on the lot until five days after the work has been completed, or for 30 days, whichever is the shorter period.
[Ord. #1809, 9-13-2005, adopted]
a. 
Signs within the PUD-Mt. Laurel Option development shall be governed by the following regulations:
1. 
A sign plan shall be submitted to the Planning Board for approval. Such sign plan shall include details on:
(a) 
Letter style and size;
(b) 
Lighting;
(c) 
Color;
(d) 
Construction material;
(e) 
Height of sign;
(f) 
Location of sign; and
(g) 
Sign base and standards.
2. 
The sign plan shall be based on an integrated design theme to include all elements in Paragraph a1 above. The lighting, color and construction material of each sign shall be coordinated with the architecture and construction materials of principal structures and landscaping.
3. 
Residential Neighborhood Signs.
(a) 
Entry Signs. Identification signs shall be limited to the entry areas of each neighborhood. A maximum of two such entry signs are permitted per neighborhood. The sign face (area occupied by lettering) shall be limited to 20 square feet, six-foot maximum height measured from average grade and not be located within any road right-of-way line or sight triangle.
(b) 
Overall Development Identification Sign. Not more than one permanent overall identification sign with a sign face not to exceed 30 square feet, six-foot height and located 20 feet from curbline shall be permitted at the entry to the PUD. The Planning Board may, at its discretion, permit one additional sign of the same size at a major entry point to the PUD.
4. 
Village Center Signage. The applicant for a village center shall provide a complete signage program which shall provide a coordinated signage theme for all tenants for Board approval, including main entrance signs, tenant directory signs and building signs, which shall be of a uniform design and color scheme and compatible with the project architecture. Only the following signs shall be permitted:
(a) 
Main Entrance Signs. Two signs shall be permitted. Each sign shall not exceed 40 square feet in area or 10 feet in height.
(b) 
Tenant Directory Signs. At each building, one sign not exceeding 24 square feet in area and six feet in height shall be permitted.
(c) 
Wall Signs. For each tenant, one sign not exceeding 24 square feet in area on each building facade occupied by that tenant shall be permitted.
(d) 
Window Signs. For each tenant, permanent and temporary signs that are not illuminated shall be permitted, provided the total area of the signs does not exceed 24 square feet on each building facade occupied by that tenant.
5. 
Roadway Direction Signs. Roadway direction signs shall be placed at appropriate locations in accordance with the plan. The sign face of such signs shall not exceed eight square feet and shall be no greater than six feet in height.
6. 
Waivers. Waivers from standards governing size and location of signs shall be available upon satisfactory proof to the Planning Board that overall design and aesthetics will be improved due to the requested waiver.