City of Spokane

Spokane Municipal Code

Title 17C
Chapter 17C.240
Section 17C.240.290

Title 17C Land Use Standards

Chapter 17C.240 Signs

Section 17C.240.290 Bonus Allowance for Outstanding Design
  1. General.
    1. Procedures.
      Land use reviews of signs are administered under the provisions of Title 17 SMC, Unified Development Code, as modified by this chapter.
    2. Content-neutral Administration of Land Use Reviews.
      Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter or of related standards referenced in this chapter, applications will be reviewed only with respect to sign structure or placement, or with reference to copy only to the extent of color or typeface and excluding any reference to message, category, subject, topic, or viewpoint.
  2. Review.
    1. Purpose.
      A bonus allowance for outstanding design is intended to allow flexibility to the sign regulations while still fulfilling the purpose of the regulations. The specific approval criteria allow signs that enhance the overall character of an area.
    2. Procedures.
      A request for a bonus allowance for outstanding design shall follow the procedures of chapter 17G.060 SMC, Land Use Application Procedures, for a type II permit application. However, the approval criteria of this section are used, rather than of those of SMC 17G.060.170. In accordance with SMC 17G.060.210(B), appeal or request for reconsideration of the director’s decision on a type II project permit application is to the hearing examiner as an open record appeal.
    3. Approval Criteria.
      A bonus allowance for outstanding design sign will be approved if the planning director finds that the applicant has shown that the criteria below are met.
      1. Sign Area Bonus.
        A sign area bonus may be granted if the applicant meets the criteria subsections (B)(3)(a)(i), (ii), and (iii) of this section.
        1. The adjustment for the proposed sign will not significantly increase or lead to street level sign clutter, to signs adversely dominating the visual image of the area, or to a sign that will be inconsistent with the objectives of an overlay zone or adopted sub-area plan; and
        2. The sign will not create a traffic or safety hazard; and
        3. The adjustment will allow a unique sign of exceptional design or style that will:


          achieve a positive and tasteful image;


          have good legibility;


          exhibit technical competence and quality in design, construction, durability, and have standard details uncluttered by wires, angles, or other elements that detract from the appearance;


          relate to architectural features rather than obscure or disregard building planes;


          present a harmonious relationship to other graphics and street furniture in the vicinity;


          be of a size that is in scale with the setting, building, or structure where located; and


          avoid glare.

      2. Other Code Adjustments.
        Through the bonus allowance for outstanding design procedure, the planning director may allow roof signs, adjustment to maximum sign height standards of the underlying zone and electronic message center sign features. Approval of an adjustment to these standards may be granted if the applicant meets the approval criteria of subsection (B)(3)(a)(i), (ii), and (iii) of this section.

    Date Passed: Monday, July 23, 2012

    Effective Date: Thursday, August 30, 2012

    ORD C34888 Section 19