The site of a new bridge that will span Maple Avenue at Brand Blvd. to connect the existing Mercedes Benz service center with a parking structure that is currently under construction on Thursday, August 2, 2012.

The site of a new bridge that will span Maple Avenue at Brand Blvd. to connect the existing Mercedes Benz service center with a parking structure that is currently under construction on Thursday, August 2, 2012. (Tim Berger/Staff photographer / January 11, 2013)

The Mercedes-Benz dealership on South Brand Boulevard made its case this week at a planning hearing for putting a larger-than-allowed sign on its new parking structure.

The proposed sign would be built at the northwest corner of the dealership’s new parking structure, which is currently under construction at 110 East Maple Street.

At 25 square feet in area, 11 inches thick and projecting 4 1/2 feet into the public right-of-way, the proposed sign would far exceed limits in the city’s sign regulations. Signs that project into the public right of way are not to exceed 6 square feet in area, 6 inches in thickness or project more than 3 feet, according to city rules, prompting the dealership’s application for an exception.

Representing the dealership, Lisa Black said at the hearing Wednesday that the sign would help smoothly direct customer traffic.

City Planner Robert Keisel said that staff had recommended the variance be approved because the size of the garage was so large that the sign would be proportional and wouldn’t be a detriment to the neighborhood.

“The intent of the sign regulations is to protect and enhance the physical appearance of the community and create a more attractive business climate,” said Keisel.

He added that there were no comments or concerns from the city’s traffic or engineering departments about the proposed sign.

A decision on the application will be mailed to the dealership and nearby residents, and posted on the city’s website, in the coming weeks.

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