From the San Diego Union-Tribune article by Blake Nelson, Staff Reporter:
La Mesa explores digital billboards, sparking debate underway in other parts of the county
"Critics have raised concerns about 'visual pollution' while proponents highlight the opportunity to promote local events and raise extra revenue
La Mesa leaders are considering installing several digital billboards throughout the city, kicking off a debate already underway in other parts of the region about the effects those structures could have on the community. Critics have raised concerns about “visual pollution” and their potential to distract drivers, while proponents highlight the opportunity to promote local events and raise extra revenue without new taxes.
The city council created a new committee Tuesday to dig into the issue. “We want to do more for our city and we can’t do it without money,” said Councilmember Patricia Dillard. “I also see this as a positive.”
El Cajon has long considered a similar measure, and the city of San Diego may install dozens of digital kiosks throughout downtown. While the latter proposal has already been approved by one committee, it’s drawn fierce opposition from Scenic San Diego, a group that has successfully pushed back against similar advertising around the region.
Scenic San Diego’s director, Pamela Wilson, has already raised concerns about La Mesa, and she appears to have an ally in Councilmember Jack Shu. “I think there’s some real hazards involved,” Shu said Tuesday. Both Shu and Dillard were appointed to the city’s subcommittee that could help shape a development agreement with Clear Channel Outdoor, a global advertising company." Read the full article online.
Points to ponder
"The aim is to pacify the urban landscape". From Sao Paolo, Brazil to Chennai, India to France, digital billboards are increasingly seen as ugly, anti-social and environmentally hurtful. Whether it's saving electricity or reducing consumption, the policy of banning billboards is spreading.
Scenic San Diego is an all-volunteer coalition of concerned citizens and organizations who favor strong sign ordinances and oppose billboards and other advertising sign proliferation.