Our Northwest

Yakima planners want ban on new billboards

Thursday, March 6, 2014by  Jon Osterberg

Yakima will ban new billboards, if the city’s planning commission has its way, but existing billboards would be grandfathered in – for now.
   Residents have voiced concern about billboards being aesthetically displeasing. Most of Yakima’s 119 billboards are located around the city core, east of 16th Avenue.
   The city council may decide to replace the current moratorium with a permanent ban as soon as March 18.
   The commission’s chairman said, “It’s not the most welcoming thing when visitors come into our community and see row after row of billboards.”
   Other Northwest cities have taken similar steps. Spokane’s busy Division Street has long been cited as an example of a billboard oasis. In 2009, Spokane updated its city code to prohibit new off-premises billboards. Existing billboards can be maintained.

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