Monday, January 14, 2008


I enjoy advertising in the city landscape. Advertising often offsets administration/operating costs for public amenities such as bus systems and provides passerbys with public service announcements or something interesting to look at and evokes a "city" aesthetic and feel.

However, I have noticed that Columbus has a problem with bench signs. The benches I am talking about are not the ones that are in parks or at bus stops that are routinely used by pedestrians. These benches are those placed along roads with high volumes of vehicular traffic and are placed specifically to advertise products not to create gathering spaces or comfortable waiting areas. These benches are actually just small billboards in disguise allowed to exist because they are in a bench format.

I find that these benches detract from the neighborhoods by their half-hazard placement and allow companies to take advantage of loopholes in existing sign code ordinances. I called the City of Columbus Development Dept because I had some difficulty navigating their Graphics ordinance and am waiting a call. I'll post the result.

I plan on starting a list of locations of where I feel back bench advertisements are inappropriately located.

Speaking of benches, I hope the Columbus Public Arts Commission encourages bench designs similar to these.

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