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Cultural Resources Commission may adopt new Lahaina sign guidelines at Sept. 4 meeting

By Staff | Aug 28, 2014

WAILUKU – The Maui County Cultural Resources Commission will continue its discussion of – and possibly approve – proposed revisions to design guidelines for signs in the Lahaina Historic Districts at its next meeting on Thursday, Sept. 4.

The meeting will be held at 10:30 a.m. in the Planning Department Conference Room in the Kalana Pakui building at 250 South High St. in Wailuku.

Planning staff encourage property and business owners to attend this meeting. Public testimony will be accepted in person and in writing.

To view the proposed guidelines, visit www.mauicounty.gov/Planning, then select “Draft Lahaina Sign Design Guidelines” under the “Hot Topics” header.

The draft guidelines include pictures of signs for Front Street businesses, along with descriptions of why they are improper.

According to the proposed rules, in the Lahaina Historic Districts, hanging and other suspended signs may not have multiple components or addenda to the principle sign; commercial banners are prohibited; all exterior signs should be simple in nature and may not provide a product list or a series of services; display of products, goods or services outside of the store shall be considered part of a sign and is prohibited (all sales and the display of items for sale must take place within a building or approved structure); any portable sign is prohibited, regardless of whether or not it is on public or private property; and digital and/or LED lighted or internally illuminated signs are not permitted.

The CRC held two public meetings on the proposed changes in June and July. Planning Department staff also conducted a public workshop in Lahaina on July 24. The testimony and comments received have been incorporated into a revised draft.

Planning Deputy Director Michele McLean said that if this revised draft adequately addresses concerns expressed by CRC members, as well as input received from merchants and business property owners in the Lahaina Historic Districts, the CRC could vote to approve the changes at the Sept. 4 meeting.

If outstanding concerns remain and additional work is needed, another meeting will be held in October.

“The revisions aim to make the guidelines more clear and consistent, allow a broader choice of materials and design elements, and provide easier enforcement,” McLean said.

“Commercial signs in the Lahaina Historic Districts require permits issued by the Department of Planning; exceptions can be granted by the CRC.”

For more information, call the Department of Planning at 270-7735.