There is no real value to having a sign bylaw unless the district is prepared to enforce it. I find it hard to believe that the bylaw officer can’t find two or three hours a week to administer this bylaw, considering the issues are almost entirely along Hwy. 14.
I think it is shameful to force the residents and business people of Sooke to be ‘rats’ in order to enforce bylaws.
The district has to make a commitment to facilitate the installation of sign trees at the intersections along Hwy. 14. These businesses should share the cost of the installation and yearly rental. All businesses have to consider their advertising needs but I don’t think trashing up our community with sandwich boards should be an option.
Communities have sign regulations as a means of controlling the ‘visuals.’ No other community I know of allows sandwich boards other than as information on the property in question. Wouldn’t it look great if all the businesses in the downtown core had sandwich boards lining the highway?
Another issue is the proliferation of garage sale posters and advertising tacked on telephone poles in our downtown core. We could establish one area or sign board where garage sales could be posted, somewhere off Sooke Road like SEAPARC or the community hall. It wouldn’t take long for garage sale hunters to find the information. The other method would be the local newspaper.
The aim is to make improvements in our community. Anything and everything we can do to present Sooke at it’s best at any particular time will help encourage residents to do business here in Sooke, as well as entice visitors to consider relocating to and investing in Sooke. In surveys I personally conducted the vast majority of comments about downtown Sooke were about the negative ‘look’ we presented; not enough sidewalks, sandwich boards, weeds and uncut road borders.
It should be noted that three Sooke Road businesses have upgraded their visuals with professionally designed and well made signs. In fact one business used to put out a sandwich board, right in the middle of the walking path, now they have an attractive sign that catches the attention of passers-by. Good on you!