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With new Smith’s Marketplace on the horizon, city council says no to 20-foot sign

Ken Lund on Flickr
The new store will sit on U.S. 40 north of downtown Heber.

A large Smith’s grocery store is under construction along U.S. 40 north of Heber. City leaders don’t want an excessively large sign.

The grocery store will open this summer at 744 North Main Street, just north of the current Smith’s location.

At a city council meeting Tuesday, May 21, councilmembers discussed how big to permit the sign for the new business.

Smith’s applied for a sign 20 feet tall that would also have room for up to six other businesses. As proposed, the overall space would be almost triple the square footage typically allowed.

The grocery store argued one large sign would be less cluttered than adding more, smaller signs in the future and said the height would help travelers passing through on U.S. 40 find their way.

Councilmember Aaron Cheatwood pointed out the height could have safety benefits for the busy road.

“More and more people come here and visit, recreate here, tourism here,” he said. “They need to see that far enough back that by the time they decided to get in that left lane and turn, they’re not cutting somebody off and causing accidents on the highway.”

But Councilmember Yvonne Barney argued a slightly smaller sign could be just as effective.

“I don’t think we need something 21 feet high – I think the height of a 15-foot structure is more than enough,” she said, adding, “I don’t want a lot of signs out there, either.”

Councilmembers agreed they liked the design and reducing the total number of signs along the highway, but they said they’d prefer a slightly smaller sign if possible.

The developer ultimately agreed to a maximum height of 16 feet.

Smith’s Marketplace is expected to open July 20.