Once again beating the drum that Lacey is a business-friendly town, the City Council on Thursday night unanimously approved an updated sign ordinance that improves visibility of many kinds of business signs.
Among the key changes to the sign ordinance, Planning Manager Ryan Andrews told the council, was to improve storefront and business recognition, and improve visibility for those storefronts set back from the street.
The updates to the ordinance were the first major rewrite of the city’s sign regulations in nearly 20 years, Andrews told the council.
Some examples of the updated sign code:
• Perpendicular signs will be allowed on the outside of buildings; signs previously had to be mounted flush on the exterior wall.
• For a standalone business, half the sign can be digital.
• Current and proposed shopping centers along the freeway in Lacey — South Sound Center, Martin Village and Lacey Gateway — will have greater flexibility in freeway-oriented signs.
• Greater flexibility for the use of sandwich boards.
The updated sign code won praise from the council.
“It gives business the ability to do what they need to do to promote business, while still controlling it enough that we’re not going to have sign clutter,” Councilman Lenny Greenstein said. “We’re not going to look like some of the places that I know we don’t want our city to look like. I’m really happy to have this before us tonight.”
Also Thursday night:
The council unanimously approved an interlocal agreement with the city, Thurston County, Tumwater and Olympia to study alternatives to incarceration.
The study, which is estimated to cost $15,000, will focus on the benefits of increasing programs such as work release, electronic home monitoring, day reporting and work crews, according to Thursday’s city council agenda.
The cost to Lacey for the study is $1,500.