VEB Minutes January 17, 2007
Advisory Board on the Visual Environment
Village of Croton-on-Hudson

Minutes:        VEB Meeting of Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Present:        Sandy Hardy, Kevin McManus, Tom Smith, Trustee Liaison Leo Wiegman, and Building Dept. Liaison Joe Sperber.

Absent:         Doug Wehrle and Nancy Kennedy.

Sandy Hardy filled in as chair for Doug Wehrle for the VEB’s first meeting of 2007.  The Board reviewed one sign application.

1. Chase Bank
The Board conducted its preliminary review of signage for the Chase branch prior to the arrival of a representative from Frohling Sign Company; he subsequently arrived in time to answer the few questions that had arisen.  Chase will replace the Bank of New York in the Croton Commons strip mall.  As presented, the plan calls for a number of signs to be installed.  These would include the principal sign consisting of the bank’s name and logo in non-illuminated, 8-inch high plate letters over the front entrance.  Blue awnings bearing the name and logo would be installed above the windows flanking the entrance.  On the side of the building facing west toward South Riverside Avenue, the plan calls for the name and logo to be mounted in illuminated, 30-inch tall channel letters.  This side of the building would also feature a wall-mounted plaque measuring 18 inches x 18 inches to mark the secondary entrance to the building.  Finally, the plan calls for the existing walk-up ATM to be repainted in grey, and for the Chase name to be mounted on two sides in 12-inch high, illuminated channel letters.
VEB Discussion:
a.      Members noted that the color of the walk-up ATM as shown in the proposal was closer to tan than to the grey mentioned in the accompanying legend.  On his arrival, the sign company representative was able to refer to the bank’s corporate palette to assure that Board that the paint will be an attractive silver/nickel color.
b.      The Board expressed dismay at the location of a tow-away zone sign affixed to the side of the building, immediately below the illuminated Chase sign.  Joe Sperber reported that he had reviewed earlier site approvals and had found no indication that the Village required such a sign.  Accordingly, the bank will consult with the landlord about removing it.  In this context, the Board urged that the surface of the drive-thru teller and drive-up ATM lanes should be repainted to make the traffic patterns clear.   
c.      The Board queried the plan for the wall-mounted plaque to be mounted near the secondary entrance on the building’s side.  As presented in the proposal, it would be located below an existing sign that reads “Bank Entrance.”  They were relieved to learn that this was a mistake in the presentation, and that the new sign would replace the old one.
d.      Trustee Liaison Wiegman noted that the lighting mounted above the walk-up ATM is very bright and distracts passing drivers.  The Frohling representative promised to look into New York State regulations concerning lighting for an ATM and to redirect the lights toward the ground as much as possible.

VEB Recommendations
a.      The Board commended the high quality of the application.
b.      Having had its questions answered, the VEB approved the signage plan as presented, with the suggestions that the tow-away zone on the west-facing side be removed and the striping on the asphalt surface repainted for greater clarity in guiding cars through the drive-thru teller and ATM lanes.

2. Additional Discussion
The Board briefly discussed its plans for the coming six months, including its desire to formulate the criteria in awarding the Visual Excellence Award.  This will help to inform property owners as to how they can contribute to raising the overall visual quality of the Village while also serving a general educational function.  A tentative timetable would be to publicize the criteria in the spring in order to encourage improvement efforts over the course of the summer, with the next award to be presented in the fall.

The Meeting adjourned at 8:40 p.m.