Members of the Upper Arlington Board of Zoning and Planning partially approved a request by a representative of a local bank seeking to put up temporary signs advertising a summer event.

Members of the Upper Arlington Board of Zoning and Planning partially approved a request by a representative of a local bank seeking to put up temporary signs advertising a summer event.

David Hodge, an attorney representing Orange Barrel Media and Huntington National Bank, asked the board for the approval of three temporary banners that would have exceeded the permitted size, number and display duration normally allowed by the city ordinance.

Orange Barrel Media wants to place three signs on Huntington Bank's property at 1531 W. Lane Ave. The signs will advertise the upcoming Pelotonia, an annual bike race in August that will benefit The Ohio State University's James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute.

Hodge said that he took issue with the city staff's recommendation that the board reject a request that the temporary signs could stay up for 14 weeks. In its report, the staff noted that six weeks would be more appropriate and could still generate interest in the event.

Hodge said that he thought the recommendation was unacceptable and added the signs would not be posted at all if restricted to six weeks. He said more time was necessary for marketing purposes as well as the need to give potential riders more time in order to raise funds to enter the race.

Board members L. Rider Brice and Ida Copenhaver Ginter told their colleagues they were against extending the time period.

"My preference would be to shorten the time," said Copenhaver Ginter. "It's twice as long as what we allow for temporary signs. It's also a matter of precedent."

Hodge found himself in a brief debate with the board when he told them that all of the cities he's approached about the project, Upper Arlington was, in his opinion, the most difficult in terms of zoning requirements, restrictions and cooperation.

Board president Thomas J. Riley and Copenhaver Ginter told Hodge they found his assertion hard to believe especially in comparison with some other cities. However, both said they were proud of the city's tough zoning laws.

Riley told Hodge that although the board viewed Pelotonia as an admirable cause, the attorney's approach rubbed them the wrong way.

"You're asking us to bend over backwards and making us feel that we're not bending over backwards enough," said Riley, who noted that he supported the sign. "It leaves a bad taste in one's mouth."

"It's offensive to suggest we're not cooperating," added Copenhaver Ginter.

Hodge replied that he only wanted to emphasize the importance of the race and meant no offense during his remarks.

But board member T.A. Ward, who participated in the race last year, says he could understand the need for more marketing time especially for participants who wanted to raise money for the race.

"If we're the only community giving resistance, it's not something I can be proud of," he said.

In the end, most of the board, with the exception of Brice and Copenhaver Ginter, agreed to allow one sign to be posted on the bank's property from June 1 to Aug. 23, a duration of 12 weeks.