Signage plan heads to BMA for approval
By Kristen Swing
The town’s Historic Zoning Commission and Tree and Townscape Board each voted to send the final draft along to the BMA during separate meetings held last week.
A subcommittee of the Tree and Townscape Board has been working for months on the project, which addresses the best use and placement of signs in downtown for visitors and residents.
The plan includes the improvement of vehicular and pedestrian signs as well as the addition of kiosks to help tourists see all that is available to them in the historic district. It also includes the creation of two new business districts, one along Spring Street and the other at Parson’s Square on along Fox Street and Woodrow Avenue.
At meetings held last week, subcommittee leader John Browning recommended the group add one more issue to the overall plan — that of boundary signs for the historic district.
“It’s a good idea to have the boundaries marked,” Browning said during the HZC meeting on June 28. “It gives visitors and residents a sense of the value we place on the historic district.”
On main thoroughfares, larger signs will be used to tell motorists they are entering into the historic district while smaller versions will be used on side streets within the district.
In all, approximately a dozen signs will be needed, Browning said.
Both town boards voted unanimously to include the historic district signs in the wayfinding signage plan for the BMA to consider.
In passing along the project, Browning said he also planned to talk with the recently created committee tasked with creating a tourism logo for the town.
“I want to show the people evaluating this what it needs to look like in order for it to be effective,” Browning said.
During the Tree and Townscape Board meeting on June 27, Browning held up versions of the two previously proposed logos to explain how using words in the design is not effective.
While the first design, which depicts a storyteller but uses no words, was heavily criticized and sparked the ensuing debate over how the town logo should look, Browning said it was much more visible and useful than the second idea.
The second concept, which is serving as a jumping off point for the new committee, focuses on utilizing the word, “Jonesborough” as the anchor of the design with a catch phrase yet to be determined placed under the town name.
Browning cautioned against such a design, saying it would be impossible for motorists to read as they drove past vehicular signage.
Alderman Terry Countermine supported Browning’s plans to talk with the committee, saying there are plenty of designs that don’t use words, but still manage to get their message across.
“When you see it, you know what it means without any words,” Terry Countermine said of logos such as the University of Tennessee’s “power T” logo.