"Lights Out" as New Ban Takes Effect

Lights Out

In a few weeks, you’ll notice a big change in certain commercial areas of Tucker. That’s because on February 28 a ban on linear lighting goes into effect all across the City.

Your first question may be ‘what is linear lighting’? It’s a term that applies to rope lighting, neon tubes and other lighting typically seen outlining storefronts and signs.

Next you might ask ‘why does this type of lighting need to be banned’? The ban had already been applied to the Mountain Industrial Overlay District, as well as the Northlake and Downtown Tucker Overlay Districts, but an October 9 vote by the Mayor and City Council extended it to the entire City. This means all businesses in the City including the northern (Chamblee Tucker Road), eastern (Lawrenceville Highway) and western (Hugh Howell Road) commercial parts of town will be pulled into this ban.

Councilwoman Anne Lerner was one of the driving forces behind the change.

“Sign clutter is an issue along our commercial corridors. Not only is it a safety concern with distracted driving, but it began looking like a carnival as some business owners tried to outdo each other first with feather flags, then bright rope lighting and now we are seeing bright blinking rope lighting. Where does it end?” Lerner asked.

“We’ve heard from Tucker residents and business owners that they want a pleasing look that helps build a sense of place and, according to their input, that place is not the Vegas Strip.”

Much like the restrictions the City placed on feather signs last year, Code Enforcement has reached out to businesses around Tucker to proactively let them know they will need to come into compliance.

“We have personally spoken with most of our Tucker business owners to discuss their concerns and explain how this will be implemented,” says Code Enforcement Manager Maricela Perdomo.

Code Enforcement will continue to talk with businesses up to the February 28 enforcement date. Businesses utilizing linear lighting beyond that date will go through the typical Code Enforcement process: they will be given a notice of violation along with time to come into compliance. Should they refuse to remove the linear lighting, a citation will be issued to go before a judge in environmental court.

The linear lighting ban will be a fundamental change to Tucker’s commercial areas and, just like the feather sign restriction, one that should greatly enhance the aesthetics of City businesses.

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