Thursday, January 10, 2013

Historic District Approves LED Sign

Kent county News reports that the Chestertown Historic District Commission has approved a new LED sign for the Garfield Center for the Arts. If properly managed, which we think it will be, the sign will be a nice addition to the downtown theater.

The proposed LED display was supported Cherilyn Widdell, a historic preservation expert with the National Park Service. The benefit of the LED display is that it is easily programmable to appear just as an old letter board sign that a staff member would have to climb a ladder to reach. It is not uncommon to drive by one of those old-fashioned signs and see mismatched or broken letters, which do not look good.

Some citizens do have valid concerns about the sign being utilized in a proper manner, respectful of the Historic District's nature.Proponents testified that it would be used only for static images, rather than exploding and zooming colored images.

The matter next goes to the town's planning commission to review the outdated sign ordinance. This will be an opportunity for the town and the Garfield to work together to ensure questionable aesthetics are not allowed and the Garfield's marquee mirrors the old-fashioned letter boards.