Photo: Orlando Sentinel

Orlando commissioners Monday OK’d a plan that aims to remove billboards from the city’s neighborhood streets by allowing them to be swapped out for digital signs along major roadways.

The Digital Billboard Exchange Program, approved unanimously by the City Council, will allow companies to build digital billboards along Colonial Drive, Orange Blossom Trail and International Drive, among other main arteries, in exchange for tearing down several traditional billboards in other areas.

The city is specifically targeting 16 billboards in its main street districts such as Mills 50 and College Park. Chief Planner Jason Burton said the program’s goal is to cut back on “visual clutter” and encourage development.

Anti-billboard advocates argued the city could have required the removal of more standard billboards in exchange for each new digital sign, and that digital billboards are distracting to drivers…

‘As we move this city forward into a true metropolitan city my hope is that we do complete exchanges, and the whole city is full of digital boards,’ said Commissioner Regina Hill, who called standard billboards ‘outdated.’

— Orlando Sentinel

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