CROWN POINT | Billboards could move significantly closer to residential districts along the Interstate 65 corridor under a plan the City Council is considering.
Proponents have said the plan offers various revisions to modernize the city's approach to billboards and brings it more in line with state standards for outdoor advertising.
One change would reduce the permitted distance between billboards and residential areas.
Currently, a billboard anywhere in the city can be no closer than 1,320 feet to any residential district. Permitted spacing would change to 300 feet between a billboard and a residential district within the I-65 corridor. The 1,320-foot separation between billboard and residential district still would apply outside the I-65 corridor.
The measure was approved earlier this month on first reading by the council. The council's ordinance committee will take it up again at Thursday's meeting before sending it back to the full council for a final vote.
Also in the proposal, billboards along I-65 in Crown Point would fall under separate rules, permitting them to be closer together than currently allowed.
Permitted spacing between billboards would be reduced to 1,250 feet, from 2,500 feet.
Along Main Street, Broadway and other permitted areas, billboards still would be required to be at least 2,500 feet from one another.
Currently, sign companies are required to go before city officials for a special billboard permit no matter where they are located in the city. That requirement would be lifted in the revised rules.
Not all the proposed changes apply to billboards.
Revised rules would, among other changes, require flags, pennants and banners to be fastened to a building.
Banners and flags staked to the ground have become a growing concern in the city because of instances where they fly into private property and the roadway, officials said.
The revisions have been under consideration since April after businesses increasingly asked the city to permit more signs, larger signs and signs set closer to the road or to one another than currently allowed.