By Dan Walton
For the first time in over ten years, an exception has been made to the restrictive signage bylaws in Radium Hot Springs.
The Crystal Springs Motel is now marketing itself with Radiums only freestanding sign to have been modified in the past decade.
Deb James, co-owner of Crystal Springs Motel, said the new sign looks fresh and beautiful, compared to the eye sore, which had its name and logo peeling off.
We heard that council might be receptive to applications for variance, so we went to a [council] meeting last spring to ask, said
Crystal Springs received approval at the meeting, and then in August replaced Radiums first backlit sign in over a decade.
[That kind of bylaw] is great for Banff; not great for businesses off the highway in Radium, Ms. James said. Some of our guests used to say, You have the ugliest sign ever.
Well before Crystal Springs made its case, the Radium Hot Springs Chamber of Commerce, particularly their sign committee, has been communicating to village council the wants and needs of Radiums business community regarding signage bylaws.
Doug McIntosh, president of the Radium Chamber of Commerce, said that signage has always been an issue, and that many valid opinions have been shared.
From the point of view of the chamber and Tourism Radium, our goal is to market, advertise, and attract people to the Radium Hot Springs and provide the best services possible, Mr. McIntosh said, which is why he sees Crystal Springs new sign as a very positive step forward.
But with a municipal election looming, the communitys next step is unknown.
It will be up to the next council elected to decide [to amend existing bylaws], he said.
We hope that the direction taken will be positive.