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Dillon hopes new signs help ‘inconspicuous’ businesses

Kathryn Corazzelli
Summit Daily News

The Town of Dillon is exploring a solution for businesses hidden on its side streets: directional signs.

“We want to help the businesses that aren’t visible from Lake Dillon Drive, but also become the town center with the beautiful signage,” Dillon town planner Beverly Kaiser told council at a worksession Tuesday afternoon.

Last year, council directed staff to investigate the costs of “attractive” signs for Lake Dillon Drive after businesses on Dillon’s side streets were putting up sandwich boards to attract customers.

“The visibility of businesses was tough,” Kaiser said.

Staff is exploring the concept of building town-owned directory signs, and then leasing space out to individual businesses. Kaiser said black steel posts – to match town street lights – with three double-sided panels for directory listings are being considered for the corners of Lake Dillon Drive and LaBonte Street, Village Place and Main Street. The steel posts would be 10-feet tall, with the steel support framework measuring 3-by-4-feet.

Town manager Devin Granbery said town would like to secure contracts – a two-year contract is being considered – with local businesses before moving ahead with the projects. Kaiser said she has received “very positive responses” from local businesses queried about interest. A leasing price has not yet been determined, but Kaiser estimates with a $200 a year space charge, the cost of the structures could be paid off in four to six years.

Mark Lipman, owner of Kula’s Cafe on LaBonte, said he thinks the signs are a great idea to help the more obscure businesses in Dillon, like his own, be more noticeable.

“We are inconspicuous,” he said.

Over the course of a week, Lipman says he gets numerous calls from customers wondering where the cafe is located.

Ken Orlin, owner of A Furniture Find on LaBonte, said the initiative would be an obvious move to help point people in the direction of local businesses, as well as helping the town create a shopping identity.

Current cost estimates place one sign structure at $2,100 to $2,750 with town staff installation and no lighting. With lighting, the structures would range from $2,900 to $3,550. Staff is recommending the signs be lit.

Granbery told council the structures are “an unbudgeted capital expense,” and if they decide to move forward with the initiative, would have to decide where to take the funds from. He said staff will further investigate business interest before moving forward with the project.


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