Vital Signs: For planners and local officials who draft, debate and enforce sign ordinances
Posted on August 14, 2017

Tools to draft effective sign codes

Are you up-to-date on the latest information regarding the legal requirements, technical aspects and economic impact involved in the regulation of signs? This educational workshop, Planning for Sign Code SuccessTM, is a great way to help planners and local officials learn more about an often complex and controversial issue—the drafting and enforcement of sign codes.


Coming up with reasonable and enforceable sign codes can often be a complex and controversial process. With so many community stakeholders caring about sign codes, it is important to get the most accurate, up-to-date information and expertise as possible.

Planning for Sign Code SuccessTM

This day long workshop will present modules that educate experienced land use planners on the technology within signs, sign code issues, understanding electronic message centers and the importance of signs to business.

Workshops typically include the following educational modules:

  • Legal considerations including Reed v. Town of Gilbert
  • Economic value of signs
  • Introduction to sign construction and technology
  • Regulating electronic message centers (EMCs)
  • Process and policy considerations when drafting a sign code
  • Municipal perspectives on sign code revisions

AICP CM Credits

Attendees can earn CM credits (6 CM including 1.5 Law CM credits).

ISA does all the rest!

The Sign Research Foundation and the International Sign Association would partner with your regional APA chapter to present a day-long seminar for planners and local officials.

  • We provide the presenters, including experts from ISA's staff.
  • We host a local planner to present their experience in updating their sign codes.
  • We cover costs associated with the speakers, venue and food (breakfast and lunch).
  • We provide relevant research resources.


Click here to read more or contact at the International Sign Association for more information.


Topics: APA, Reed v. Town of Gilbert

  • Night-time Brightness Level Recommendations for On-Premise Electronic Message Centers
  • Statistical Analysis of the Relationship Between On-Premise Digital Signage and Traffic Safety
  • Executive Summary: Digital Signage and Traffic Safety
  • Finding Common Ground: Answers to Common Questions about Electronic Message Centers (EMCs)
  • Differences between On-Premise and Off-Premise Signs
  • Video Examples of EMC Hold Times
  • Model Sign Code: A Framework for On-Premise Sign Regulations
  • An Evidence Based Model Sign Code
  • Signs and Federal Laws of Protection
  • Building Stronger Communities: Working Together to Create Reasonable Sign Codes
  • Urban Wayfinding Planning and Implementation Manual
  • Best Practices in Regulating Temporary Signs
  • The State of Sign Codes after Reed v. Town of Gilbert
  • The Economic Value of On-Premise Signage (1997, San Diego)
  • The Economic Value of On-Premise Signage (2012, Cincinnati)
  • Signs and the Downtown Experience
  • Executive Summary: The Economic Value of On-Premise Signage
  • Executive Summary: Signs and the Downtown Experience
ISA Planning for Sign Code SuccessTM
David Hickey, VP Advocacy

David Hickey
VP, Advocacy

James Carpentier, AICP

James Carpentier, AICP
Director, State & Local Goverment

Kenny Peskin

Kenny Peskin
Director, Industry Programs | @signcodeguy


Sign Code Assistance Button

Sign Code Assistance, Education and Training

Is your community considering revising its sign code? Or are you looking for education and training for an upcoming APA meeting?

Contact to receive expert and complimentary sign code assistance:

  • Research on sign-related issues
  • Sign code education and training 
  • Planning, legal and technical sign code resources and advice

The International Sign Association (ISA) has helped hundreds of cities across the country develop modern, effective and enforceable sign codes.

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