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Mailbag: No new signs for The Triangle

November 13, 2012

Re: "Triangle Square seeks OK for new signage (Nov. 19): Several years ago, then-Triangle Square's new owners/property management determined that T.S. couldn't make it as a retail center and decided to turn it into a "destination center," which includes a 24 Hour Fitness, a soon-to-be bowling alley and a plethora of bars and restaurants.

For better or worse, "The Triangle" has transformed itself into party central in Costa Mesa. On any weekend night (and some weeknights) you'll see patrons staggering back to their cars in the Fresh & Easy shopping center across Newport Boulevard to cars parked front of residents homes, a block or two away.

Many Eastside residents now have to contend with incredibly loud noise well after midnight coming from Sutra and the open area upstairs. Go to any of the six or more Eastside streets which abut Newport Boulevard or the residents on the other side of T.S. on a Friday night to get a real appreciation for what these poor residents have to deal with, despite the fact that many have lived in their homes for decades.

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Now, we're told that the property owners still can't turn a profit and want to use the building as a giant billboard. They tried to get approval for off-premise advertising, along with 1,000 square feet of LEDs, in 2010. At the time, it was agreed "no-off premise advertising" would be allowed and the LED request was subsequently withdrawn.

The proposed off-premise advertising at The Triangle would not "attract greater customer attention for the center and downtown Costa Mesa businesses," as the developers claim. Quite the opposite! Study after study has shown billboards degrade communities, both visually and economically. Property values surrounding this location would be negatively impacted if we allowed this to happen.

"More than 700 communities nationwide prohibit the construction of new billboards. Why? Because billboard control improves community character and quality of life — both of which directly impact local economies. In fact, despite billboard industry claims to the contrary, communities and states that enact tough billboard controls enjoy strong economic growth." Source: ScenicAmerica.org

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