Queenstown signs to be cut down to size - and fewer to be put up

MARY-JO TOHILL
Last updated 05:00 19/08/2014

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A one-size-fits-all signage policy is not the way to go in the "site-sensitive" Queenstown Lakes district.

This position, illustrated in some of the 25 submissions heard or tabled at the council's plan change hearing committee in Queenstown yesterday, was reflected in the recommendations made by council town planner Tony Pickard.

As part of the proposed district plan, the council sought to absorb, amend and simplify signage laws around permitted, controlled and discretionary activities.

For instance, the type and size of ground-floor signs used at Remarkables Park would not be suitable for the town centre, with safety, the environment and the street's general character to be taken into consideration, Pickard said.

A 2012 monitoring report identified that the town centre had become of particular concern because of the number of signs that exceeded the size limit, and the allocation for multiple-tenancy buildings.

Pickard recommended that signs would be permitted in mixed-use zones such as Remarkables Park, whereas town centre signage would remain controlled.

Signs on category 1 or 2 heritage buildings or features would be at council's discretion.

He also recommended that off-site signs, of the type attached to or near a building but not advertising the goods or services at the site, should be temporary when it was not practical to display the sign on the site where the activity occurs.

This would not include signs that referred to events.

Independent planning consultant David Whitney said he would formulate a recommendation for the council to consider in the near future.

TAKE NOTICE

The Queenstown Lakes District Council has scrapped its old sign bylaw and absorbed the controls into the proposed district plan, which is currently under review. Public consultation showed that people wanted to see a more realistic application of the rules for: Signs in commercial areas, especially outside town centres. Above-ground floor signs/multi-tenanted buildings. Fewer signs in general 

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