Local News

Cary To Consider Town's Future In Neon Lights

Posted September 22, 2004

— The Cary Town Council is expected to reconsider the use of neon lights. However, before the town council settles the matter, they want to hear from Cary.

At first, the town said no to neon, and councilman Jack Smith called them "honky-tonk," but before Wednesday's meeting, he said he may support the change because so many people have worked hard to find a compromise.

"Now, we need to enlarge perhaps on the signage to give smaller merchants, the smaller people who have a tough time a little more visibility, shopowner Ralph Ashworth said.

"A lot of people here are barely breaking even or losing money," shopowner Crash Gregg said. "I think they don't understand, as business owners, there are certain small things that really should be allowed that would help us attract people here. As they're driving by, there's a lot of traffic and they may not look. It's just something to attract their attention."

"There's not enough that they're doing to help us," Gregg said.

If the ordinance change is approved, businesses would be limited to one sign, There would also be size and time-of-use restrictions.

Cary is certainly no stranger to controversy. Two years ago, the town sued the owner of Gypsy's Shiny Diner. The town said the lights violated a sign ordinance.

Last year, the town reached an agreement with a store owner over the color of her shop. Cary leaders ordered Kimberly Perry to lighten a pink store. After a brief fight, Perry finally gave in.

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