Residents' complaints prompt changes to Hobart YMCA sign

2013-07-16T18:30:00Z 2013-11-26T18:26:24Z Residents' complaints prompt changes to Hobart YMCA signDeborah Laverty, (219) 762-1397, ext. 2223

HOBART | Residents living next to a digital sign installed by the Hobart Family YMCA told city officials last week the flashing lights created a nightmare for them.

However, city officials said the YMCA has worked diligently to remedy the situation.

Candice Rodriguez, whose house is southeast of the sign, said the flashing lights awakened family members at 2 a.m. and caused her husband to move from the bedroom.

"Sometimes he had to sleep in the basement because the flickering of the lights bothered him," Rodriguez said.

Earlier this week, the YMCA made changes to the sign, including removal of electronic animation, after phone call by city officials explaining ordinance violations, interim City Planner Carroll Lewis said.

"They (the YMCA) are being good neighbors," Lewis said.

Dale Polomchak, executive director at the Hobart Family YMCA, could not be reached for comment.

Candice and Daniel Rodriguez and neighbor Gary France sought answers about the sign at the Board of Zoning Appeals meeting last Thursday.

"No one was notified when the new sign was going up. We've tolerated this for about a year," France said.

Lewis said the sign's location, at the corner of Wisconsin Street and 40th Place, is not in violation of any city codes.

The sign, which was placed in a city easement, was approved by the Board of Works last year.

The YMCA, which earlier this week made changes as requested by city officials, had been in violation in regard to brightness, color, blinking and animation, city officials said.

"All the motion has been removed from the sign, and the frequency has been reduced," Lewis said.

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