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"Tighter" Cornerstone Market Basket Sign Approved

While the lettering is taller and closer together than what was originally proposed, the sign is set to become the largest on a retail building in Westford.

Barlo Signs spokesperson Tim Sullivan joked on Monday that if the new supermarket going into Cornerstone Square was called “Market Bag,” it would have been approved pretty quickly.

Still, the new Market Basket did finally get its sign request approved, if in a slightly different form that it had originally hoped.

After deliberation, the board approved a modified sign that would be six feet tall and have letters spaced more tightly together than the original request that was wider and shorter in height by two feet.

The sign was also smaller according to Sullivan, coming in at approximately 57 square feet, coming from an individual measurement of each letter.

Confusion arose among members of the board over this was the actual number or the square footage should be represented the extreme edges of the sign.

Westford town planner Chris Kluchman told the board she believed the original estimate was accurate due to the fact that these were cut out, or “channel” letters, and it would be unfair to measure space not being used in the sign itself.

Angus Jennings, the town’s director of land use management also added that if the board began treating channel letters like rectangular, or “box” signs, eventually future developers would feel forced to use box signs with all applications.

The board took into account that the new Market Basket is also set to become the largest commercial retail building in town and that the request was appropriate in scale.

“What’s being advanced here is not a radical idea,” said Planning Board member Dennis Galvin. “I don’t think it’s unreasonable.”

The measure was passed by a 4-1 margin, with Planning Board member Matt Lewin voting in opposition.

Think Twice August 10, 2012 at 02:10 PM
Wow... 57 square feet and that doesn't even count the space between the letters? That's a massive sign. I'm not objecting, I think it's fine given the size of the building. But I do think it's a shady practice to measure only the letters and not the full size of the "assembled" sign. I don't see how setting a hard limit on the max footprint for an assembled sign translates to worries of future developers only using box signs.
Paul F August 10, 2012 at 05:18 PM
The sign is way larger than 57 square feet. The sign bylaw limits for wall signs are 6 feet high by 40 feet wide, yielding a maximum of 240 square feet. The sign as approved was 6 feet high by either 57 or 59 feet wide, resulting in a total area of 342 or 354 square feet. The point was made in the public hearing that the current Market Basket sign is about the same size, so this is apparently not a record-breaking sign -- even though it exceds the bylaw limit for sign width.
Andrew Sylvia (Editor) August 10, 2012 at 05:30 PM
Hi Paul, I think you're right, I apologize for the misstatement here, I think I transposed building with sign. Fixing now.
Vincent DiRico August 11, 2012 at 02:51 AM
maybe "Think Three Times"? "it exceeds the bylaw limit for sign width" -> the light, ... it burns my eyes ;)

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