Council urged to reconsider decision on heritage signage
The Town of Didsbury’s heritage sign project met opposition with its design during a recent council meeting.
Resident Linda Plewis, who had taken to the streets to collect community feedback on the signs, presented her survey results to council.
The final design proposed, which was approved for purchase and installation, was an iron sign with directions and locations cut out, and the Town of Didsbury text logo.
Originally the image logo of the town was also going to be cast into the tops of the signs, but it has since been removed.
Plewis argued that the current design did not coincide with the “heritage” feel they were supposed to express, and that the majority of those she surveyed had agreed.
“There was an overwhelming response of ‘no’,” Plewis said. “It’s industrial-looking, it does not feel historic.”
Forty-nine out of 49 people Plewis surveyed had additional comments on the proposed signage, such as it being too large, too contemporary, and not a place for the town to be spending money.
“Many residents said ‘stop spending, or have no new directional signs at this time’,” Plewis told council.
In addition to collecting feedback on the proposed signs, Plewis had shown two other example designs to people to compare and contrast.
One sign was a small, single-point directional sign, which Plewis said most people seemed to like.
“The overwhelming response was that a small directional sign was best,” said Plewis.
Coun. Ray Anderson, who had previously asked individuals in the community how they felt about the signage, had received only negative responses as well.
“After so many years [of working on this], you’re never going to make everyone happy,” said Anderson. “On the street, there were no positive comments.”
At this time, council has not made any announcements to reconsider the signage project, and the project’s proposed three-year phase completion is still in effect.
Plewis said the next action, then, is to petition the town.
“Anyone coming in off the street are not going to get a historical feeling,” said Plewis. “It does not feel historic, and people like public input.”
The signage project was a result of the First Impression Community Exchange program that Didsbury took part in with Cardston.
It was determined through the program that Didsbury did not have any heritage signage that could direct visitors to the community to important sites, such as the museum, library, hospital and more.