• Cyburbia is a friendly big tent, where we share our experiences and thoughts about urban planning practice, planning adjacent topics, and whatever else comes to mind. No ads, no spam, no echo chambers. Create your FREE Cyburbia ID, and join us today! You can also register through your Reddit, Facebook, Google, Twitter, or Microsoft account.

Signs / billboards New images in the Worst Case Scenario gallery - Buffalo, New York

Dan

Dear Leader
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
18,136
Points
63
From Buffalo, New York. Larger images can be downloaded in the Cyburbia gallery.

A-frame sign displayed in the Hertel Avenue public right-of-way.
1buffalo_worst_case_scenario_008-med.jpg

A large billboard with an inappropriate message is painted on the side of an otherwise attractive, possibly historic commercial structure in Buffalo's North Park neighborhood.
1buffalo_worst_case_scenario_007-med.jpg

A large, visually cluttered sign is displayed on a building in the pedestrian-oriented North park neighborhood. The use in the building does not contribute to street animation needed to keep the neighborhood business district vibrant.
1buffalo_worst_case_scenario_006-med.jpg

The facade of Kostas Restaurant was rebuilt with a Greek theme, contrasting with the typical American Mercantile style dominating Hertel Avenue. An addition to the building projects into the public right-of-way, interrupting the consistent building line of a long-established streetscape. Billboards clutter the rooftop of an adjacent commercial structure.
1buffalo_worst_case_scenario_005-med.jpg

Portable signs are long gone in most other parts of the United States, but they're still a common sight in the City of Buffalo. This sign is displayed in the public right-of-way, which the city's sign code actually allows!
1buffalo_worst_case_scenario_009-med.jpg

Cluttered, amateurish signage on an otherwise attractive commercial building in the University Heights neighborhood.
1buffalo_worst_case_scenario_004-med.jpg

Private use of the public right-of-way. Vehicles for sale are parked in the public right-of-way, on the sidewalk and next to the street.

1buffalo_worst_case_scenario_003-med.jpg

1buffalo_worst_case_scenario_002-med.jpg

A new house in Buffalo's University Heights neighborhood is adjacent to a heavy industrial use, with no buffer dividing the uses.
1buffalo_worst_case_scenario_001-med.jpg
 

DecaturHawk

Cyburbian
Messages
880
Points
22
Dan said:
Portable signs are long gone in most other parts of the United States, but they're still a common sight in the City of Buffalo.
They are still alive and well here in beautiful Decatur, IL. Our new sign ordinance says that temporary signs are allowed 30 calendar days per year, but we don't have the staff to enforce it.

A new house in Buffalo's University Heights neighborhood is adjacent to a heavy industrial use, with no buffer dividing the uses
Whaddaya call that swell vinyl fence in the back yard?
 

nerudite

Cyburbian
Messages
6,544
Points
30
That A-frame sign in the ROW doesn't bother me that much, as it leaves plenty of room for pedestrians and it is located far enough from the curb that passengers can get out of their cars. I'd take those over a free-standing sign 'lollipop' any day... especially in pedestrian-friendly areas.

I hate those signs painted on the sides of buildings... Portland has terrible problems with those, as it's a way of sneaking around the no billboard clause (since murals are exempt).

That used car display is awful! In Vancouver, we would have them put these really nice landscape buffers along the street in the auto zone district, and we had such a hard time keeping the dealerships from parking in the damn things. Auto dealers have been one of the banes of my career thus far, so these always tick me off...
 

Jeff

Cyburbian
Messages
4,161
Points
27
nerudite said:


I hate those signs painted on the sides of buildings... Portland has terrible problems with those, as it's a way of sneaking around the no billboard clause (since murals are exempt).

You still see alot of the heroin detox, whos my daddy, etcs painted on the sides of buildings in Philly.
 

ludes98

Cyburbian
Messages
1,264
Points
22
I too am not particularly offended by the "sandwich shop" A-frame signs. Municpalities here in AZ have been banning them, along with the vehicle displays (another thread), and the building painted signs. Building paintings have been resticted to art by prohibiting commercial messages. Signage restrictions along with lighting "dark sky" restrictions have become increasingly popular targets for code updates.
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,080
Points
34
I have been a strong proponent of allowing the "A-frame" signs in the public ROW, in pedestrian-oriented commercial districts. With some design and placement requirements, they can help to bring some interest to the district in the same way that outdoor seating and displays will. Look at a picture of the typical "Main Street" from the 1800's and you will see many of them. On the other hand, the rest of what you show is pretty bad, especially the car dealer.
 

OfficialPlanner

Cyburbian
Messages
930
Points
23
Cardinal said:
I have been a strong proponent of allowing the "A-frame" signs in the public ROW, in pedestrian-oriented commercial districts. With some design and placement requirements, they can help to bring some interest to the district in the same way that outdoor seating and displays will. Look at a picture of the typical "Main Street" from the 1800's and you will see many of them. On the other hand, the rest of what you show is pretty bad, especially the car dealer.
I agree - It's not the worse case-senario IMO and from a pedestrian prespective it's actually pleseant. Plus if planners got their way all the time, life would be pretty boring ;)
 

Kathie_WE

Cyburbian
Messages
34
Points
2
Dan -- great pics!!

Place me in the "Pro A- Frame Sign" Camp in walkable neighborhoods they provide life & vibrancy to the street. Also let's not forget it is a business district. This is same reasoning is why the Olympic builders sign is so obnoxious -- so much for being pedestrian / neighborhood friendly!!!
 

Jeff

Cyburbian
Messages
4,161
Points
27
As far as illegal signs go, Philly has been so overwhelmed by them (A-frames, on utility poles, etc) the city is giving community groups $0.10 for every sign they turn into the street department.

I haven't noticed a difference yet :(
 

tsc

Cyburbian
Messages
1,905
Points
23
Dan, great pics,,, but you're dredging up 9 years of bad memories of working in Binghamton, NY
 

Gedunker

Moderating
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
11,208
Points
36
A previous mayor of this fine mid-western city was a used car salesman. Man, it was open season for car displays in the public rights-of-way during his non-sequential THREE terms. It went so far as the Street Department painting stripes on the sidewalks to indicate the pedestrian portion of the walks. It has taken us twelve years to undo his recklessness. No wonder nobody wants to visit downtown.

I like the small (4 sq. ft sign face area max) A-Frame signs in business districts, but the portable signs are horrific.
 

BKM

Cyburbian
Messages
6,464
Points
29
One more voice for the "pedestrian-oriented" A-frames.

And Dan, you forget that in "The Town Next Door," tacky signs on wheels with flashing bulbs are part of the culture, just like jello mold salads and caseroles made with canned mushroom soup. :)
 

Seabishop

Cyburbian
Messages
3,838
Points
25
Cluttered, amateurish signage on an otherwise attractive commercial building in the University Heights neighborhood.
Just Pizza needs to clutter up their building to compensate for a stupid name by advertising that they don't have just pizza.
 

Rumpy Tunanator

Cyburbian
Messages
4,473
Points
25
-They still have those types of signs on sidewalks (and on buildings) in other cities that I've been to and I'd have to say that in the suburbs they are a lot worse than in N.Buffalo. As for worse case scenario, I think Niagara Falls is a lot worse.
 

Dan

Dear Leader
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
18,136
Points
63
A few more for tonight:

Let's kill the streetscape! Almost all the ground level windows of this building on Clinton Street in the blue collar Kaisertown neighborhood have been sealed. 1buffalo_worst_case_scenario_014-med.jpg

Here's a beat up fence along Clinton Street in Kaisertown that us covered with signs adertising beer, cigarettes, and other goodies.
1buffalo_worst_case_scenario_013-med.jpg

More from the world of portable signs! Ths beauty in Kaisertown is IN THE STREET.
1buffalo_worst_case_scenario_012-med.jpg

Back to University Heights. This is a problem throughout Buffalo; retail districts with storefronts containing offices and other uses that don't generate pedestrian traffic or contribute to street animation. Here's a social services agency in a storefront in what could be a more vibrant college neighborhood.
1buffalo_worst_case_scenario_011-med.jpg
 

Wannaplan?

Galactic Superstar
Messages
3,164
Points
28
Dan said:
From Buffalo, New York. Larger images can be downloaded in the Cyburbia gallery.
Dan, those are wonderful pics. Great job! But I'm curious: How exactly are those scenes conseidered Worst Case Scenarios? I mean, have you ever been through the Detroit neighborhoods? Some of the issues you point out seem trivial - the autos within the public ROW (yet still plenty of sidewalk for pedestrians) and "amateurish" signage. In Detroit, some people live next to abondoned homes with heaping piles of garbage in the front yard or shop at stores next to empty buildings that have their own resident flora and fauna. Compared to that, your scenes of Buffalo represent the American Dream idealized.
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,080
Points
34
Dan said:
A few more for tonight:

Let's kill the streetscape! Almost all the ground level windows of this building on Clinton Street in the blue collar Kaisertown neighborhood have been sealed.
1buffalo_worst_case_scenario_014-med.jpg
Is the glass half empty or is it half full. The owner would probably say "all of the ground level windows on this building face the street."
 

SkeLeton

Cyburbian
Messages
4,853
Points
26
Lovely bunker house Dan!, the only thing missing is a barb wire perimeter fence and anti-personal mines laid in the front yard...oh and an automatic gun turret on the roof...
 
Top