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Alderman Promises Flashing Signs Won't Turn Mag Mile Into Times Square

By Samantha Abernethy in News on Jul 11, 2012 9:30PM

Ald. Brendan Reilly (42nd) says his proposal to allow flashing signs on malls on the Magnificent Mile won't turn the stretch of Michigan Avenue into a Times Square knockoff. The proposal would allow image-changing and flashing lights on just three malls to attract shoppers into the struggling commerce centers.

The malls included in Reilly's proposal are Water Tower Place, 900 North Michigan Shops and Chicago Place Mall. He says this is supposed to be "a creative approach that takes advantage of new technology to help these tenants and mall owners without sacrificing the aesthetic of Michigan Avenue."

The Tribune writes:

In late June, Reilly submitted a proposal to the Committee on Zoning, Landmarks and Building Standards. The proposed ordinance says, in part, that "no flashing or changing-image sign" is allowed on the outside of any Michigan Avenue building, "except upon multi-tenanted shopping centers with a minimum of 300,000 square feet of contiguous leasable retail area" and at least 10 tenants. In that case, the proposal says that changing-image signs "shall be permitted with a transition time of no less than 20 minutes per image."

Reilly says the ordinance isn't intended to set a precedent for other buildings or other areas of the city.