State Halts Construction of 78-Foot Sign

Times Staff Writer

Construction of a controversial 78-foot sign in a residential neighborhood came to a halt last week after state transportation officials announced that a construction permit for the sign had been issued erroneously.

Residents who live near the proposed sign, at 6th Street and Ramona Road, just south of the San Bernardino Freeway, have been fighting construction of the sign because they say it is a “monstrosity” inappropriate for a residential neighborhood.

In a Jan. 18 letter to Alhambra city officials and operators of Almansor Court Inc., which wants to build the sign, a state transportation official revoked a construction permit and ordered any display at the site be removed. The sign would advertise the Almansor Court restaurant operated by the company in the city. Officials from the company could not be reached for comment.

So far, only two poles for the sign have been installed on the site.


Stan Lancaster, chief of outdoor advertising for the California Department of Transportation, said in the letter that contrary to state regulations, the free-standing sign would not be within 1,000 feet of a commercial or industrial building or activity.

Lancaster based his decision on a licensed land surveyor’s report submitted by residents who have incorporated themselves as Residents Against the Sign.

At a meeting Monday night, the City Council decided to put the sign issue on its Feb. 13 agenda.

On the same night, the Monterey Park City Council discussed potential impacts of the sign on its residents. The sign would sit near the border between the two cities. Monterey Park officials have asked Alhambra for environmental assessment reports.

Monterey Park Mayor Barry L. Hatch has asked the city manager to meet with Alhambra’s city manager to discuss the sign.

Saying that the fight still is not over, Alhambra sign opponents met Tuesday night and decided to start a letter-writing campaign to solicit support from county and state officials.