Digital billboards coming to a Florida beach near you? “Okaloosa focuses on beach safety”

Digital billboards coming to a Florida beach near you? “Okaloosa focuses on beach safety”

Photo: Wikipedia

“Okaloosa County officials hope a new public beach safety campaign will help educate visitors about the beach flag warning system, Gulf of Mexico currents and marine life…

On Tuesday, the County Commission unanimously approved spending up to $200,000 in TDD promotional reserve funds for the new beach safety campaign.

The funding includes $119,217.50 that will be paid to St. Petersburg-based Aqua Marketing & Communications for billboard advertising.

Digital and vinyl billboards containing information about the beach flag system, currents and marine life are planned to be installed at various locations…

Adams said the exact locations of the billboards are being negotiated…

In addition, the campaign will feature location-based, digital beach safety alerts that will appear on smartphones once drivers enter a ‘geo-fence,’ which is a virtual boundary around a real-world geographic area…

Such push notifications could include ‘Welcome to Destin-Fort Walton Beach. Red flags are flying,’ Adams said.”

— Tony Judnich,
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Digital Billboard Safety: New research included in Verdian Group Compendium

Verdian group has just published an up-to-date Compendium of billboard traffic safety research which includes information on 22 studies conducted worldwide between 2008-2018.

The most recent study from Belgium (2018) adds to the growing body of evidence that roadside digital billboards do distract motorists from the task of driving.

Download Compendium via Scenic America

Visit Verdian Group

“Digital billboards coming to Gainesville; deal came after Fairway threatened lawsuit”

“Digital billboards coming to Gainesville; deal came after Fairway threatened lawsuit”

Photo: Scott Rogers, Gainsville Times

“Gainesville officials have reached a compromise to allow digital billboards within the city limits after nearly three years of negotiations and threats of a lawsuit.

Close to 70 billboards are located in Gainesville, with the vast majority owned by Fairway Outdoor Advertising.

Fairway owns an additional 32 billboards across Hall County, where digital billboards are allowed…

Limits on brightness, transition time between advertisements and the distance between billboards were major considerations for city officials.

City officials also wanted to reduce the number of billboards altogether…

Fairway had previously submitted 15 applications for permits to convert existing “static” billboards into digital displays, all of which were denied.

Fairway then threatened to file a lawsuit.

‘We had been negotiating for quite some time,’ City Manager Bryan Lackey said. ‘I thought things were progressing well. Before they dropped the threat of litigation, they didn’t want any restrictions on timing.’

City officials were willing to give Fairway several years to make the conversions…

The agreement, which City Council approved this week, requires that Fairway must remove two existing billboards for every digital billboard it converts within the first two years.

That means, according to the terms obtained by The Times, that Fairway will remove 14 “static” billboards and convert another seven to digital displays.

After the second year, Fairway has an indefinite amount of time to remove 18 existing billboards and convert just five.

The digital displays cannot exceed 300 square feet in size and their height is limited to 35 feet; must use brick or stone around base poles to a height of 10 feet to improve aesthetic; and must be placed on or within 50 feet of an existing spot.

Moreover, displays must last at least 10 seconds and the transition between messages can be no more than two seconds. There can be no flashing or scrolling advertisements, and there are limits on brightness, as well…”

— Joshua Silavent, Gainesville Times

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Legal: In Kenya, county “pulls down billboards of firms that illegally fell or poison trees”

Legal: In Kenya, county “pulls down billboards of firms that illegally fell or poison trees”

Photo: Collins Langat, The Star, Kenya
“The county says it will pull down billboards owned by at least five advertising firms, which it says are notorious for illegally felling trees on major roads. It plans to start this week.

Some trees even have been poisoned by toxic chemicals poured on the soil, county officials said…

The county said it will start pulling down all board standing near felled trees to ‘discipline’ companies for the illegal act.

‘This can start anytime. We cannot tolerate this,’ Agriculture executive Danvas Makori said.

‘We are going to arrest anybody cutting down trees for billboards and bring down those billboards. We’re not going to permit billboards if it means a tree or even a branch has to be cut off to put up a billboard,” he said…

‘They are now pouring chemicals under trees and after a short time, trees start withering and die. This is a new trick’ he said.

Agriculture committee chairman John Mwangi called the tree felling regrettable and said he would demand a comprehensive report.

He said the Finance sector is auditing to establish the number of billboards that are not permitted and for which companies have not paid taxes.

Ex-Governor Evans Kidero issued a similar caution following rampant felling of trees. He ordered the removal of billboards interfering with trees.’

— Julius Otieno,The Star, Kenya

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Legal: Illegal billboards are simply removed in Pakistan

Legal: Illegal billboards are simply removed in Pakistan

Photo: Pakastan Today

“National Highways Authority (NHA) and district administration on Tuesday jointly started a drive against illegal billboards around motorway near Charsadda interchange and pulled them down.

In the presence law enforcement personnel, the staff of NHA and the district administration led by Charsadda Assistant Commissioner Talat Fahad used heavy machinery to pull down the illegal billboards, raised around the Charsadda interchange and retrieved millions worth of government land from the occupants.

Talking to media, the AC said that no one would be allowed to take law into his own hands and the operation against illegal structures would continue indiscriminately…”

— Pakistan Today

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Legal: “Pasco considering easing sign restrictions”

Legal: “Pasco considering easing sign restrictions”

Photo:Orlando Sentinel

“Pasco County, which prohibits digital signs for commercial uses, is poised to ease that restriction.

Kind of. Sort of.

If you own 200 acres or have a 35,000-square-foot building with 2,000 seats or 450 parking spots, you can have a digital sign.

So far, that would be the Pasco County Fairgrounds outside Dade City and the Florida Hospital Center Ice complex in Wesley Chapel.

The county commission is considering amending its sign rules to allow the LED signs that rotate messages for so-called regional attractions, defined as tourist destinations that play host to at least 50 events throughout the year.

The proposed change comes 18 months after the Pasco County Fair Association asked for permission to install a digital sign and a year after the grand opening of the ice center, which used a mobile LED sign company to tout the new complex…

Currently, the county’s land development code bans digital signs that change messages. The rules aren’t applicable to government agencies using a flashing message for a public purpose.

That’s why a few public schools and the Pasco Hernando State College campuses have the brightly lit LED signs.

Commissioner Mike Moore said he wanted the commission to carve out a similar exemption for community development districts as part of the ongoing rewrite of the land development code.

The signs also are visible on businesses in some Pasco cities, including Dade City and Port Richey, which allow the digital signs.

‘I’m good with it,’ said Commissioner Kathryn Starkey, who founded Scenic Pasco and advocated for better sign controls in the county in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

Allowing LED signs for regional attractions is the second time the commission has eased its previous hard-line stance on aesthetic controls. Last year, commissioners lifted their ban on all new billboards to allow outdoor advertising companies to swap new LED billboards for traditional signs with static messages…”

— C.T. Bowen, Tampa Bay Times

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