The Canal Winchester Times

Medical center hoping for new, larger signs


Complaints about signs for the Diley Ridge Medical Center remain unresolved after the Canal Winchester Planning and Zoning Commission tabled action last week on proposed changes.

During the Oct. 8 meeting, commission members were unable to agree on whether to allow more signs in front of the more than 50-acre campus to increase visibility.

"While we've been very successful at this location over the past two years, we have had a surprising number of people tell us we could improve our signage," center Administrator Jodi Wilson said. "It's amazing how many people have said they didn't know we were there, so we hope that the third sign would more clearly indicate our campus at that location."

The medical center building sits several hundred feet back from the road, behind a tree-lined park and pond. Presently, there are two 42-square-foot signs, one each at the south and north entries to the campus.

The medical center asked for a variance to replace the south sign with a 45-square-foot design, replace the north sign with a 22-square-foot design, add a third, central sign of 120 square feet and add the word "Emergency" in red letters to the side of the building itself.

Planning commission member Mike Vasko said the location of the property along Diley Road plus the emergency services offered could warrant adding a third, central sign midway between the current signage.

"Normally, I'd be very reluctant to add a third sign but given the 900 feet of frontage and the issues at hand I think this is a good idea," Vasko said.

Commissioner Dan Konold said the Meijer store, located directly across the road, has the same amount of frontage without as many signs.

"I'm fine with the directional sign changes and the wall sign. I just don't think people pay much attention to signs and especially if it doesn't provide any new information so I don't see the need for it," Konold said. "If we approve this, is Meijer going to get more signs, too?"

Vasko and commission member Bill Christensen said Meijer had already received a variance for a larger monument sign that is clearly visible from Diley Road.

"If when this was first built they'd said they want the big monument, we'd have said sure, but instead, they went with the directional signs. Now they want the monument sign, too," Konold said. "So I feel like this is sneaking it in the back door. I wouldn't have approved three signs at the outset."

Commissioner Jim Knowlton agreed.

"I just feel that if people can't find it with the two signs already there, they won't find it," Knowlton said.

Because James Wynkoop and Jennifer Solomon were absent from the meeting, the remaining planning commission members agreed that a full majority could not be reached to decide the matter. They chose to table the issue, which gives the medical center the opportunity to adjust its plan prior to the next meeting on Nov. 12.

That meeting is scheduled to start at 7 p.m. at Town Hall, 10 N. High St.