UPDATE: Since this post went live, a follow-up piece has been posted by Mike Tomberlin at AL.com suggesting the situation might not be finished yet as Harbert must get committee approval. The original post sits unchanged below.
Folks passing through downtown or enjoying Railroad Park in recent days may have noticed that the electronic sign atop Two North Twentieth was dormant. This morning, as scaffolding was visible on the northern side of the building, Mike Tomberlin of AL.com reported that the city had granted permission to install a vinyl wrap around the existing sign.
According to his report, this is after it was determined the city’s Design Review Committee – an advisory body who’d seen the proposal at least four times in the previous 19 months during their regular business meetings – did not need to see it after all. We last heard about the proposed treatment for the building’s iconic sign last July when it was denied approval because it was considered a billboard by the committee.
While the building, built in 1962 and renovated in 1999 was sold last summer for $19 million, ownership of the sign was retained by Harbert according to Tomberlin’s report. One thing we’re interested in is the official size of the sign. The building’s entry on Bhamwiki states it’s 176′ x 26′; the late publisher of Black & White, Chuck Geiss, referenced its dimensions as 176′ x 25′ in his Naked Birmingham column for January 4, 2001 as the sign was preparing to make a return to the city’s skyline after an extended absence. This morning’s report said the signs would measure 176′ x 57′.
It’s also a great time to highlight the recent refresh of Buffalo Rock’s website. The company’s logo is in a prominent location (though you’ve got to head over to the site’s “products” section before you find information about the company’s namesake ginger ale – still available directly from the company).