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March 19, 2008 VEB Minutes
Advisory Board on the Visual Environment
Village of Croton-on-Hudson

Minutes:        VEB Meeting of Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Present:        Doug Wehrle, Sandy Hardy, Kevin McManus, Tom Smith, and Building Dept. Liaison Joe Sperber.

Absent:         Trustee Liaison.

At its first full meeting in several months—a period during which there was a conspicuous lack of business before the Board—the VEB met to renew acquaintances and to review two sign applications.

1. Key Bank
Brian O’Connor of Frohling Sign Company appeared before the Board to discuss the sign application from Key Bank, which will occupy the former site of Home Entertainment Center at 420 South Riverside Avenue.  Doug Wehrle had corresponded earlier in the month with the Planning Board on behalf of the VEB regarding the Bank’s need for a variance to erect a second identifying sign on the side of the building (since it is not located on a corner lot) along with a sign above the ATM machine   Doug wrote that he found the additional signage to be “acceptable, and in my mind desirable” for purposes of information and aesthetics, and that he could see “no reason to object to this small additional sign” above the ATM machine. As presented to the VEB, the proposal calls for installing two principal signs—one facing east, the other south—with the bank’s name and key logo in vinyl lettering on an acrylic background; these would replace the existing signs for the previous tenant.  In addition, Mr. O’Connor described the plan to display the bank’s name and logo above the ATM machine, which would be installed in a dark gray stucco wall to the north of the bank’s front entrance.
VEB Discussion:
a.      Members agreed that it would be beneficial to allow the bank to erect a second sign on the side of the building in order to add some life to that area.
b.      There was discussion of the appropriate size of the sign to be located above the ATM, with members ultimately agreeing that it should fall somewhere between the two renderings presented to the Board:  the slightly smaller sign as it appeared on the East Elevation, and the slightly larger one as presented in a color printout in the packet prepared by the “Brilliant Electric Sign Co., Ltd.”   
VEB Recommendations:
a.      The VEB expressed its support for a variance to be granted by the Planning Board that would allow the additional signage.
b.      The Board approved the sign application with the recommendation that the ATM sign be adjusted as discussed.

2.  Village Custom Cuts
The Board reviewed proposed signage for a new business, Village Custom Cuts, Inc., to be located at 6 Maple Street in the Capriccio 1 strip mall.  Robert Anfiteatro presented the application on behalf of the business. As presented, the sign would measure 2 feet high x 12 feet in length and occupy the same light box utilized by other recent businesses at the same address.  The sign would feature the words  “Village Custom Cuts” in 9-inch tall red letters over the words “Barber Shop/Salon” in 6-inch tall blue letters.  Also included would be the image of a barber pole at a jaunty angle on the left side of the side and the image of scissors to the right.

VEB Discussion:
a.      The Board’s response to the sign was largely positive.  The principal suggestion was to remove the outline from the red letters in order to make them less “pudgy” and more readable.
b.      Members also emphasized that the letters should be made more compact so that they do not “crowd” the images at either side of the sign.
c.      In a general discussion of the façade, members commended the owners for their intention to upgrade its appearance through the installation of a barber pole (in consultation with Joe Sperber, to ensure that it conforms to code) along with a bench.  The Board suggested that the windows be kept uncluttered, with any signage or decals not to exceed 25 percent of the glass surface; members endorsed the idea of “dressing” the window with plants or other decorative items but again emphasized the importance of restraint, so as not to encumber views into the shop, which serve to highlight the activity taking place within.
VEB Recommendations:
a.      The Board approved the sign in keeping with adjustments suggested..

3.  Other Discussion
After reviewing the sign applications, the Board briefly discussed plans for the upcoming year and for the recruitment of a new member.

The meeting adjourned at 8:30 p.m.