Saturday’s Waukesha Freeman reported that developers of the Walmart Supercenter on Greenfield Avenue in New Berlin were proposing to install a monument sign that greatly exceeds the maximum square footage allowed in New Berlin’s zoning code.
Sure enough, Walmart’s request for the sign/waiver was on the agenda of last night’s New Berlin Plan Commission Meeting.
The zoning code states: “Monument signs shall not exceed 32 square feet in face area per side. The face area includes all surface area of the signage box and sign face but excludes the surface area of the signage base described.”
Walmart's request was for a 95 square foot “internally lit” monument sign! The sign dimensions: 20 ft. by 4.75 ft.
The reaction at the Plan Commission Meeting?
“This sign is way too big,” remarked one of the Commission members.
“Internally lit—so it’s going to glow big time,” said another.
Click here to hear the rest of the discussion.
There was one privilege of the floor speech: A community resident objected to Walmart’s request to install a sign “three times the current size” allowed by the city. She contended it was like giving the middle finger to the people who’d opposed the Walmart Supercenter.
Mayor Ament recused himself from discussion and voting on the Walmart sign waiver request, claiming conflict of interest.
But if you are wondering how the other Commissioners voted-----
Alderwoman Laura Karvala made the motion to approve Walmart’s request for a new monument sign/ waiver for a 95 sq. foot sign. Motion failed 2 to 4. (Karvala and Commissioner Brian Felda voted yes, Commissioners Broge, Mattes, Biller, and Rafel voted no)
After Walmart’s waiver request (for 95 sq. ft. sign) was voted down......
Ald. Karvala made the motion to approve Walmart’s request for a new monument sign, keeping the sign internally lit, but reducing the size to up to 80 sq. ft. Motion failed 2 to 4 (Karvala and Felda voted yes)
Next, Commissioner Mattes made a motion to approve Walmart’s request for a monument sign, reducing the size to up to 75 sq. feet with letters and face of the sign in proportion, externally lit with diecut as an acceptable option. Final approval of lighting and lettering to be approved by the Architectural Review Committee. Motion passed 6 to 0.