Equivalent of 74 Full-Size Billboards On L.A. Convention Center!

The L.A. Times reported this morning that the advertising signage the city proposes to allow on the outside of the convention center adds up to more than 50,000 sq. ft.  Firm seeks massive complex of signs.

That’s the equivalent of 74 full-sized conventional billboards!  The city is already on shaky legal ground in trying to enforce its 2002 ban on new billboards, with courts agreeing with sign company arguments that repeated exceptions to this ban, such as the “street furniture” program with its bus shelter and kiosk advertising, and the digital billboards on the MTA lot beside the 10 freeway, undermine the city’s contention that the ban was instituted to address aesthetic and traffic safety concerns.  If the city council later today approves the convention center signage, it could well be the final gasp for any effective sign control.

Also, here’s an L.A. Times op-ed on the subject, L.A.’s Billboard Blight, and audio of a radio interview yesterday with city councilwoman Jan Perry and Coalition to Ban Billboard Blight president Dennis Hathaway on KPCC. Billboards on the Convention Center. When you listen, notice Perry’s disingenous claim that the signs will have no effect on residential areas, when people living in the Pico/Union area have repeated complained about the lights from the Staples/Convention Center, some of the complaints being made to Perry’s own office. Disturbing as well is Perry’s suggestion that the Wilshire corridor should be considered for the same kind of glitzy, Times Square-style signage.

Dennis Hathaway

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