Company wants court to overturn Beavercreek decision on electronic billboard

A rendering of a proposed electronic billboard at the corner of North Fairfield and New Germany-Trebein Roads. FILE
Caption
A rendering of a proposed electronic billboard at the corner of North Fairfield and New Germany-Trebein Roads. FILE

BEAVERCREEK — Lamar Advertising of Dayton has filed a court appeal asking Greene County Common Pleas Court to overturn the city of Beavercreek’s decision denying it a permit to build a 55-foot tall electronic billboard in the Beavercreek Towne Center.

The proposed billboard would be 55 feet tall and 42 feet wide, with a 10½ by 36 feet electronic face on either side. The proposed billboard is comparable in size to the electronic billboard located at the intersection of Factory Road and US-35. On Sept. 27, the city denied Lamar a permit to construct the billboard at the corner of North Fairfield and New Germany-Trebein Roads, on the grounds that the sign is far too large and does not comply with city ordinances.

Beavercreek’s zoning code allows for only two signs permitted in that subdivision, both of which have already been built. Additionally, the billboard well exceeded the size and scale permitted for those signs, and was “inconsistent with surrounding developments.”

Lamar’s lawyers argued during a Sept. 13 public hearing that the subdivision only governs pylon signs, and electronic billboards are not governed, nor accounted for, in ordinances defining the subdivision. The city allows for four electronic billboards around the entire city of Beavercreek, as long as they are far apart and along a “major highway.” Until 2016, this meant exclusively US-35 or I-675, when the code was amended to include major roadways like North Fairfield Road.

The company in the appeal argued that the billboard would benefit the economic health of the city by advertising area businesses.

“Retail has been hurt in Beavercreek due to COVID and other circumstances,” said R. Guy Taft, who represents Lamar in the lawsuit. “It’s necessary and incumbent on this council to do things to revitalize it.”

Lamar owns a second digital billboard along US-35 inside Miami Valley Research Park, and owns or leases over 4,000 billboard sites across Ohio.

The city of Beavercreek declined to comment on the lawsuit.

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