Sign Ordinance Addresses Temporary Signs
Officially adopted in January, 2009, Ordinance No. 1603 establishes sign regulations. The ordinance addresses both permanent signs, such as those attached to most commercial sites and businesses, and temporary signs, such as political signs, real estate and garage sale signs. The purpose for the new code is to:
- establish standards for businesses to identify themselves.
- preserve and promote civic beauty by not allowing signs of unusual size, shape, height, location and illumination.
- ensure that signs would not create a safety hazard.
- preserve the value of land and buildings. ensure the design of signs is proportional to the property, its neighbors and architectural elements.
For most residents, the new sign ordinance will mainly affect the size and placement of temporary signs, such as those for garage sales or receptions. These types of signs, although permitted to be placed on private property, do have placement and size specifications that must be adhered to.
A public right-of-way is publicly owned land that contains both the street and a strip of land on either side of the street that holds public facilities (sidewalks, sewers, storm drains, etc.).
The most important aspect of the sign placement is to keep it out of the public right-of-way. This includes the grassy area between the street and sidewalk. Signs must be placed, at a minimum, six feet from the inner edge (closest to the house) of the sidewalk and set back a minimum of six feet from any adjoining property. The maximum size is six square feet and the maximum height is six feet off the ground. All signs must be maintained in good condition, the areas around them kept free from debris and contain current information (address, phone, etc.)
In addition to placement and size, there are specific clauses for the specific type or message in the sign.
The major arterial intersections
within the city limits of Ankeny are located where the following streets intersect:
- Ankeny Blvd
- State Street (from NW 18th St south to Oralabor Rd)
- Highway 415
- Oralabor Road (from the east
city limits to highway 415)
- First Street
- 36th Street
- Delaware Avenue
be placed within 300 feet of these intersections. This is approximately the distance of a football field.
be placed along these roads as long as they are not in the public right-of-way and are 300 ft. from any major arterial intersection. Signs placed on private property require permission from the property owner.
Click here for a map that identifies the major arterial intersections (PDF).
For non-commercial signs (presents a political, philosophical, social or personal message and does not advertise or sell a service or product): One sign is allowed per lot, however, it can be in addition to any real estate signs.
For political signs:
Temporary signs may be placed prior to an election outside the right-of-way and must then be removed within ten days after the election for which they were applicable. If signs are not removed within the time limit or after notice has been given from the city, the city can remove the sign and the cost of removal will be charged to the person named on the sign.
For Garage Sale Signs:
Signs advertising garage sales shall be limited to a maximum of three days for each sale. Signs shall not exceed three square feet in area and shall not be placed within public rights-of-way, any sidewalk, street or driveway median. Signs may be placed within 1/2 mile of the garage sale location; but not within 300' of a major arterial intersection.
For questions, contact Planning & Building at 963-3550.
Download or print a copy of the complete ordinance (PDF).