DRAFT Ordinance with edits after Planning Commission Meeting

LED PC Edits

Here is the draft ordinance, including edits made by Planning Commissioners in their recommendation at the July 11, 2013 meeting. It may not be exactly what is sent up to the City Commission for their August 5, 2013 meeting, but it is close.


Next Meeting

The next meeting will be on Monday, May 20th from 12-2 PM at the Stockbridge Offices of the City of Kalamazoo.


Hello all!

We’ve started working on some of the distance separations mapping that we talked about at the last meeting.  

For reference, here is a map showing all of the state controlled roads within the city limits (in dark blue) with most of the billboards pinpointed to actual location.  There are a few missing, due to technical glitches, but it does give you a sense of where billboards are located.

Map-Existing Locations

These next set of maps show what a distance buffer would look like.  We have restricted the area where digital conversion would be allowed based on a distance separation from residentiall zoned parcels, at 100, 300, 500, and 700 feet, as options.  These were just arbitrary numbers to show a range of options.  There is certainly an option to use other numbers, but this can get us started.

Map-100 foot buffer

Map-300 foot buffer

Map-500 foot buffer

Map-700 foot buffer

We are still working on the linear restriction, as that one has to be hand drawn.  It should be up by the end of the week, along with the initial draft of the ordinance based on the direction staff received at the last stakeholder committee meeting.  As a reminder, we will be meeting Monday, May 6th from 12-2 here at the Stockbridge Office.

One last follow up before Monday’s meeting

Kevin Green from Adams asked that I pass along this information related to ambient light.  Looking forward to seeing everyone on Monday!


Brightness – Digtal Signs vs Other Illuminations


As promised, here is a map showing the billboard locations, with zoning.  We are having some technical difficulties (and by technical difficulties, let us be clear that we mean that our resident mapmaker, Andrea, does not know how to do what she’s trying to do), and this isn’t as illustrative as it could be.  Ideally, there would be a pinpoint where each billboard is, but instead the entire parcel is highlighted, which can distort the scaling of the billboard.  We will have a better, more accurate map in the near future, but this should get everyone started.  Thanks for the patience!


Billboard Locations

Documents for Monday’s Meeting– Illumination

Attached to this post is information to review ahead of Monday’s meeting.  The first three documents are from the guest speaker, Michael Woznicki.  Michael was recommended by industry folks, though he does not work for Adams or anyone in Kalamazoo directly, and was used by other municipalities in understanding how the industry measures illumination.  Here is his description of the information from Michael:

“I’ve attached a couple of documents that give examples of typical light levels for different areas, as well as the Illumination Engineering Society’s standard for acceptable light trespass in an urban setting. I’ve also included a study I did last year that depicts the addition of illuminance from a proposed billboard onto both the expressway and adjacent residential area, relative to existing roadway lighting.

Basically these documents will help give a framework of the type of lighting levels we’re looking at.”

Here are the documents:


AssocChart ofMinStandardsLetterhead


And I spoke with some board members from Scenic Michigan to get a point-counterpoint idea about illumination as it relates to the surrounding environment, and they passed along this study:

Digital Billboard Illumination Study

And finally, Kevin Green from Adams asked that this information be passed along:


Photometric units

Please let me know if you have any questions, and we look forward to seeing you on Monday!

Agenda for the 4-8-2013 Meeting

Here is the agenda for Monday’s meeting. I will be putting up information on lighting in a separate post shortly.

Kalamazoo Billboards Stakeholder Committee
April 8, 2013
3:30 PM



I. Welcome and Brief Recap (5 minutes: Andrea)

II. Illumination (40 minutes: Michael Woznicki, Engineer, Lumecon)

III. Other illumination documents (20 minutes: All, please see website)

IV. Discussion and Next Steps (25 minutes: All)

V. Adjournment


For reference, here is a bio for our guest speaker:

Michael Woznicki is a Project Engineer at Lumecon LLC, and performs their photometric analyses. He has completed multiple training programs in AGi32 photometric software and participated in a wide variety of LED projects which required scope clarification, and field-specific solutions. Michael is a graduate of the University of Michigan with a Master’s degree in Landscape Architecture from the School of Natural Resources & Environment, and has been with Lumecon LLC for the past four years.”


Follow Up From Last Meeting

There are a couple of loose ends from the March 25th meeting to address.  The first is a request for the Philadelphia study which talks about traffic safety that Brian Peterson referenced.

Philadelphia Study (provided by Brian Peterson)

The second is the full text of the AASHTO ( American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials) guide to digital advertising:

AASHTO Digital Outdoor Advertising (provided by Jim Hoekstra)

And finally, there was discussion about the Highway Beautification Act.  It was very difficult to find a discrete PDF of the act itself, but I found this site very helpful, with a lot of great links:  Federal Highway Administration Overview of the HBA

Additionally, here is a PDF of the agreement between the federal government and Michigan, related to enforcement of the HBA:

1965 Agreement HBA

We will update this site tomorrow with an agenda for the meeting on Monday, April 8th with information about illumination.

Agenda for 3-25-13 Meeting

We are planning on our next Stakeholder Committee meeting on Monday, March 25th at 3:30 PM.  The meeting is going to be dedicated to discussions of traffic safety and propetry values.  Here is the agenda:


Kalamazoo Billboards Stakeholder Committee

March 25, 2013

3:30 PM


  1. Welcome and Brief Recap (5 minutes: Andrea)

2. Property Values (20 minutes: Aaron Powers, Kalamazoo City Assessor)

3. Traffic Safety (20 minutes: Jim Hoekstra, Kalamazoo City Traffic Engineer)

4. Discussion (30 minutes: All)

5. Sign Regulation Workshop (10 minutes: Kevin, Natalie)

6. Next Meeting/Process Check In (5 minutes: All)

7. Adjournment


For reference, here is a link to the agenda in document form:  Committee Agenda 3-25-13


Traffic Safety Information for Monday

Monday, March 25th at 3:30, the Stakeholder Committee is going to be meeting to discuss Traffic Safety and Property Values, as it relates to Digital Billboards.  Aaron Powers, our contract City Assessor, will be discussing Property Values.  We have not received any information ahead of time related to property values, but if we receive documents at the meeting, we will add them to this website after the fact.  The agenda for the meeting will be going up in a separate post.

In advance of our Monday meeting, here is some information related to Traffic Safety.  Additionally, our Traffic Engineer, Jim Hoekstra, will be speaking to us.

FHWA Literature Review  (This item was supplied by Greg Milliken)

DigitalSignsStudies213 (This item was created by city of Kalamazoo Planning staff)

FHWA Internal Memo ‘below safety concerns’ (This item was supplied by Kevin Green)

FHWA study summary of conclusions March 2012 (This item was supplied by Kevin Green)

As a side note, there are several items here that were added at the request of a Stakeholder Committee member.  We are always happy to share information from other sources, but will always note where that information comes from.