Our Campaign Sign Policy and Why We’re Not in the Sign War

The Brendan Van Alstine campaign employs a very conservative policy when it comes to election sign placement on public land, based on the city’s strict guidelines. If you are concerned about the placement of one of our signs, please contact our campaign. If a campaign continues to maintain an illegal sign, you can call the Community Standards Branch on 311 – or 780-496-3095 (traffic control) or 780-496-3100 (compliance).

First, all sign locations are checked against a provincial database to ensure that the land is included in the road right-of-way. This limits the number of false positives: locations that may look public but are very much not (e.g. setbacks). Unfortunately, based on our signs disappearing instantly, we have found that certain businesses consider the right-of-way between their property and the curb to be part of their property. We respectfully disagree, but will not replace these signs.

Second, based on the Parkland bylaw and other guidelines, all land adjacent to parks, cemeteries, schools, and other facilities is off-limits. Centre medians and traffic islands are also off-limits; we conservatively include all islands (no matter how wide) between major roads and their service roads in this definition, especially since these are where the most obnoxious sign wars occur.

Third, we adhere strictly to spacing requirements. If you have wondered why our signs are often on the far side of trees and light poles, it’s because we use a measuring tape to ensure we are three metres from the curb. Clearly, narrow median strips fail this rule as well. We also take the 20 metre rule between signs to apply to different candidates based on our conversations with bylaw.

Finally, we stay out of the few remaining sign wars we could legally enter simply because they reach ludicrous heights of waste and clutter.

Frankly, we would rather concentrate on signs on lawns and in windows, and very much appreciate your offering up your home as a location for one of our signs. We’re not in the sign war because we find it just as aesthetically offensive as many of you do. For better or worse, however, our conversations on the steps have confirmed that many people do indeed rely on this type of signage to inform them of who is running in the area, and we hope that this strikes an appropriate compromise.

Thanks so much for your understanding and support,
BulletBrian Gould, Online & Print Coordinator

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