Township of Montclair, NJ
Essex County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Amended 1-4-1983 by Ord. No. 82-54; 10-1-1991 by Ord. No. 91-44; 7-13-1993 by Ord. No. 93-27; 7-12-2005 by Ord. No. 05-34; 2-20-2007 by Ord. No. 07-8; 12-18-2007 by Ord. No. 07-56; 1-6-2009 by Ord. No. 08-47; 1-6-2009 by Ord. No. 08-49; 2-17-2009 by Ord. No. O-002-09; 3-12-2013 by Ord. No. O-13-09; 6-18-2013 by Ord. No. O-13-21]
It is the intent of this article to prescribe measurable criteria and a procedure for reviewing signs with the purpose of:
A. 
Controlling the size, location, character and other pertinent features of all publicly visible signage.
B. 
Bringing improved quality and order to the signs located throughout the Township to assure the continuation of a high level of attractiveness and historic character, thereby protecting residential and commercial property values.
C. 
Providing each commercial property with equal visibility by promoting signs which:
(1) 
Encourage compatibility with surroundings and express the identity of individual properties and the character of the community while being compatible with the architectural style of the building and the neighborhood in materials, construction and color.
(2) 
Make signage orderly, readable and appropriate to the activity to which it pertains.
(3) 
Require signs that are not distracting to motorists so as to assure traffic and pedestrian safety.
(4) 
Promote signage that is properly located, well-constructed and well-maintained.
D. 
Structuring a regulatory system which will facilitate administration and enforcement.
As used in this article and elsewhere throughout this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
ADVERTISING SIGN
A billboard or other sign which directs attention to a business commodity, service or entertainment not conducted, provided or sold on the premises on which such sign is located.
AWNING SIGN
A sign painted on an awning.
BANNER
Any lightweight plastic, fabric or other material, whether or not containing a message of any kind, suspended from a rope, wire or string, or otherwise affixed to the structure.
BARE-BULB ILLUMINATION
A series of light bulbs, whether flashing or nonflashing, which frame any part of a building front or window area, not including holiday decorative lighting.
BEACON
Any light with one or more beams directed into the atmosphere or directed at one or more points not on the same lot as the light source.
BUILDING SIGN
The main business sign affixed parallel to but projecting not further than six inches from the building face.
BUILDING SIGN LOCATION BAND
The space on the building face within which the building sign text and sign field must be placed.
BUSINESS SIGN
A sign which directs attention exclusively to a permitted business or industry conducted upon the premises on which the sign is located or to a product, service or commodity sold or provided by such business or industry.
CANOPY SIGN
A sign painted on a canopy.
CONSTRUCTION SIGN
A temporary sign which identifies architects, builders or contractors on the premises on which a principal or accessory building is being constructed, altered, repaired, refurbished or demolished.
DIRECTIONAL SIGN
A sign which regulates pedestrian or vehicular traffic within the boundaries of a property, such as enter, exit and reserved-parking signs.
DIRECTORY SIGN
A sign attached to the facade of a building listing the tenants or occupants thereof and their professions or business activities.
FLAG
Any fabric containing distinctive colors, patterns or symbols which does not deliver a commercial message or advertisement. Flags of any country, state, county, municipal or governmental agency are not included.
FLASHING OR MOVING SIGN
A sign with movement or appearance of movement, with changing illumination or color, or with a changeable message.
FREESTANDING SIGN
Any sign supported by structures that are placed on or anchored in the ground and that are independent from any building or other structure.
LOGO
Any symbol, graphic or lettering which represents or stands for a business name, service or product.
MARQUEE SIGN
A business sign on a marquee with no more than two sides designed for interchangeable panels or letters directing attention to a theater and theater events.
MOON TUBING
Illuminated tubes which frame any portion of a glass front of a building.
NEON SIGN
Illuminated tubes formed to serve as a sign.
PAPER FRAMING
Paper devices which adhere to the window surface to frame it.
PENNANT
Any lightweight plastic, fabric or other material suspended from a rope, wire or string, or otherwise affixed to a structure, designed to move in the wind.
POLE SIGN
A sign mounted on a pole.
POLITICAL SIGN
A sign which directs attention to a political organization, party, individual or group for the purpose of announcing or inviting attention to the candidacy or candidates for nomination, election, referendum or political platform, or a sign which advances, advocates or calls attention to a cause subject to political judgment.
PRICE SIGN
A sign indicating the price of any item sold in the business establishment.
PROJECTING SIGN
Any sign affixed perpendicular to the wall of a building in such a manner that its leading edge extends more than six inches beyond the surface of such building or wall.
REAL ESTATE SIGN
A temporary sign announcing that the premises on which it is located is available for sale or rent, specifically excluding "sold" and "under contract" signs.
ROOF SIGN
Any sign erected and constructed wholly on and over the roof of a building and extending vertically above the highest portion of the roof.
SIDEWALK SIGN
A movable, freestanding sign, such as but not limited to an A-frame type of support.
SIGN
Any device, fixture, placard or structure that uses any color, form, graphic, illumination, symbol or writing to advertise, announce the purpose of or identify the purpose of a person or entity or to communicate information of any kind to the public.
TEMPORARY BUSINESS SIGN
Any sign that is used for a limited time and is not permanently mounted.
WARNING SIGN
A sgn erected by a governmental agency or by a public utility for the purpose of warning the public of an existing danger or a danger associated with a structure or a use in the area.
WINDOW GLASS SIGN
Any permanent business sign visible from the exterior that is painted on, affixed to or hung behind a window.
For purposes of administering this article, sign dimensions and area shall be calculated as set forth below:
A. 
The dimensions of a sign shall be construed to include the sign message and any background to such message. Excluded from the foregoing calculation shall be any base, frame, minor decorative elements or similar structures, provided such features are used only for supporting the sign and are not used as a sign background or for attracting attention.
B. 
The terms "area" or "display area" as used in this article shall be construed to include the sign message and any background to such message. The area of signs shall be calculated as follows:
(1) 
In cases where a sign has a clearly defined border or edge, the area shall be calculated as the plane surface within such border or edge.
(2) 
In cases where a sign does not have a clearly defined border or edge, the area shall be calculated by multiplying the greatest vertical dimension of the sign by the greatest horizontal dimension of the sign.
(3) 
In cases other than set forth in Subsection B(1) or (2) above, the area shall be calculated by the Zoning Officer, who shall determine the area based upon the visual effect of the sign.
(4) 
If a sign contains two sides as permitted herein, only one side shall be used in the calculation of sign area.
C. 
The term "height" as used in this article refers to the distance between the highest elevation of any part of the sign structure or message and normal grade at the base of said sign, whereas the term "vertical dimension" refers to the distance between the highest and lowest elevations of a portion of the sign, such as the sign background, sign panel, sign letters, numbers and symbols, all as indicated in the respective provisions.
D. 
The setback of a sign shall be measured to the nearest part of the sign, including any base, frame, or decorative elements.
Where permitted by this article, freestanding signs shall be subject to the following regulations, in addition to any other applicable requirements:
A. 
No freestanding sign shall be located or designed so as to interfere with adequate sight distance at street intersections, driveway entrances and exits at the street, or at the intersection of internal driveways and access aisles.
B. 
Freestanding signs shall be located so as to not block the view of other freestanding signs on the subject property or on other properties in the vicinity. The Board shall make this determination as part of the required site plan review for the freestanding sign.
C. 
No freestanding sign shall contain more than two display faces. If a sign has two display faces, the angle of intersection of the two faces shall not exceed 30° and the design of each face shall be identical.
Where permitted by this article, signs attached to walls shall be subject to the following regulations, in addition to any other applicable requirements:
A. 
Wall signs installed at a height of seven feet or more shall not project more than eight inches from the building wall to which it is affixed. Wall signs installed at a height of below seven feet shall not project more than two inches from the building wall to which it is affixed.
B. 
No wall sign shall be placed or oriented with the display face perpendicular to the wall to which it is affixed; signs shall be placed flat against the wall.
C. 
Wall signs shall not project above the top or beyond the ends of the wall surface upon which they are placed, nor shall wall signs be placed on a parapet or similar architectural device such that the sign would project above the elevation of the roof behind such parapet or other device. No sign shall be placed on the lower slope of a mansard roof.
D. 
Signs attached to the same building must be of similar shape, size, color and height.
E. 
Signs shall be attached in a manner that minimizes damage to facades, such as installing attachments at grout or mortar lines.
F. 
Signs located within the confines of a building or structure shall be subject to the requirements of this article in the same manner as exterior wall signs if both of the following conditions exist:
(1) 
The signs are located so as to be visible from outside the building through a window or door; and
(2) 
The signs are located within 12 feet of said window or door.
All permitted exterior signs may be illuminated only by an external light source, unless otherwise provided herein. The following requirements shall apply:
A. 
Internally illuminated signs of any kind, whether freestanding or wall-mounted, shall be prohibited unless specifically permitted herein. The foregoing shall not be construed to prohibit "halo" signs utilizing a hidden light source which illuminates only the wall or other background to the sign message but not the face of the sign message.
B. 
The light source of illuminated signs shall be shielded so that the light source shall not be visible.
C. 
No illuminated sign shall be of such a color or located in such a manner as to be confused with or to diminish or detract in any way from the effectiveness of any traffic signal or similar official safety or warning device.
D. 
No sign illumination or other illumination shall be used or designed for use as an attraction device in itself, but shall be used and designed for use solely to illuminate the sign to which it is accessory. The foregoing shall be construed to prohibit light bulbs, singly or in combination, used as an attraction device; strobe lights; black (i.e., ultraviolet) lights; string lights; flashing or moving lights of any kind; and similar uses of illumination as attraction devices.
Signs for schools and houses of worship are as follows:
A. 
Identification signs, provided that such signs shall identify such entity by name or initials only, and provided further that:
(1) 
Only one such sign shall be permitted on each street frontage of the premises.
(2) 
No such sign shall exceed 12 square feet in area.
(3) 
Such sign, unless affixed to the principal building, shall be set back from the property line a distance of not less than 10 feet and shall not be higher than six feet from the ground at its highest point.
B. 
Signs announcing programs or activities, provided that:
(1) 
Only one sign shall be permitted.
(2) 
No such sign shall exceed 12 square feet in area.
(3) 
Such sign, unless affixed to the principal building, shall be set back from the property line a distance of not less than 10 feet and shall not be higher than six feet from the ground at its highest point.
Signs for motor vehicle service stations are as follows:
A. 
Wall-mounted business signs, subject to the regulations contained in § 347-110.1 of this chapter. If a retail building is located on the site, a wall-mounted business sign shall also be permitted identifying that use, subject to the same regulations.
B. 
Canopy structures over pump islands shall have a maximum sign area equal to 30% of the permitted sign text for the wall-mounted business sign identifying the service station.
C. 
Window glass signs, subject to the regulations contained in § 347-110.2 of this chapter.
D. 
"Price," "Full Service" and "Diesel" signs shall be permitted on the dispensing pumps or canopy structure supports only. "Air" and "Water" signs mounted on the building or a freestanding pole no higher than four feet shall be permitted.
E. 
A single, nonilluminated credit card sign not exceeding four square feet in size shall be permitted on or near the pump.
F. 
One wall-mounted sign advertising rental vehicles shall be permitted having a maximum sign area of eight square feet.
G. 
Pole or pylon business signs shall not be permitted.
Flags of the United States, New Jersey, the Township of Montclair, foreign nations, other flags adopted or sanctioned by an elective legislative body of competent jurisdiction and flags flown in conjunction with the flag of the United States are permitted in all districts pursuant to the following:
A. 
Such flag does not exceed 20 square feet in area and is not flown from a pole in excess of 40 feet in height.
B. 
Not more than three flags may be flown from any one pole.
C. 
The statutory requirements associated with flags and generally accepted standards of flag display etiquette shall be observed.
All signs not specifically listed as permitted signs are prohibited. Prohibited signs include but are not limited to the following:
A. 
Advertising signs.
B. 
Flashing or moving signs, including time-and-temperature signs.
C. 
Internally illuminated signs.
D. 
Neon framing, paper or fabric framing, tubing and bare-bulb illumination. This does not include neon wall-mounted signs containing the name of the business and/or the business logo.
E. 
Roof signs.
F. 
Pennants and banners, except as provided under Montclair Code § 347-110.6A.
G. 
Any sign in the public right-of-way, except as provided under §§ 277-1 and 347-110.4 of the Code of the Township of Montclair.
H. 
Any sign using exposed light-emitting diodes (LEDs), other than price signs associated with gasoline service stations.
I. 
Signs affixed to trees, fences or utility poles without approval from the Township Council.
The following signs shall be permitted in all zones:
A. 
Historic markers shall be post-mounted or applied to solid walls. It is preferred that historic markers be pole-mounted where front yard area is adequate.
B. 
Historic markers shall not be mounted lower than four feet above grade or higher than six feet above grade.
C. 
Wall-mounted historic markers shall project no more than two inches from the facade.
D. 
Historic markers shall be limited to two square feet in area.
E. 
Historic markers shall not be erected on any wall of a building unless such wall fronts on and is immediately adjacent to a public street, public parking lot or parking lot servicing the building on which it is placed.
F. 
Historic markers shall not be illuminated.
G. 
Historic markers shall be of a permanent material, e.g., bronze, aluminum, or steel.
H. 
Materials and design of historic marker signs shall conform to applicable local, county, state, and federal regulations and standards concerning historical markers as may be required.
I. 
Materials and design of historic marker signs shall complement the building's architecture and shall not cover or intrude upon any specific architectural feature of the building.
J. 
Historic marker sign attachments shall not damage historic architectural materials.
K. 
One historic marker sign shall be permitted per property.
A. 
The owner of any property on which a government-sponsored or government-funded project is under construction shall, during construction of the project, post and maintain on the property a sign which complies with the following requirements:
(1) 
The sign shall have dimensions of six feet by eight feet, with a height of eight feet above grade.
(2) 
The sign shall be located in the front yard of the property and shall be set back a minimum of 10 feet and a maximum of 25 feet from property lines.
(3) 
The sign design and location shall be depicted on plans submitted in support of applications for construction permits.
(4) 
The sign shall be erected no later than the start of construction.
(5) 
The sign shall contain the title of the project, the name and telephone number of the project sponsor, the total cost of the project, the name of the governmental or public entity or agency sponsoring or funding any part of the project, the architect's name and telephone number, the general contractor's name and telephone number, and the estimated project completion date.
B. 
This section shall only apply to government-sponsored or government-funded capital projects in excess of $100,000.
Temporary signs are permitted as follows:
A. 
Signs announcing that the premises on which the signs are located is available for sale or rent, provided that:
(1) 
Only one sign shall be permitted for each street frontage of the premises, except that, if under condominium or cooperative ownership, one sign is permitted for each realtor.
(2) 
Such sign, unless affixed to a principal building, shall be set back from the front property line a distance of not less than 10 feet and shall not be higher than six feet from the ground at its highest point.
(3) 
No artificial illumination shall be used.
(4) 
No such sign shall exceed four square feet in area.
(5) 
Such sign shall be displayed only for as long as such premises is in fact available for sale or rental. "Sold," "Too Late," "Under Contract" or similarly worded signs shall not be permitted.
(6) 
In addition to "For Sale" signs and subject to the same number, height, setback and size restrictions, "Open House" signs shall be permitted during the time period of the open house.
B. 
Signs identifying architects, builders or contractors on premises on which a principal or accessory building is being constructed, altered, repaired, refurbished or demolished, provided that:
(1) 
No such sign shall be displayed on any one premises for a period exceeding the time required for such construction, alteration, repair, refurbishing or demolition or one year, whichever is less.
(2) 
No such sign shall exceed six square feet in area.
(3) 
Such sign, unless affixed to a principal building, shall be set back from the property line a distance of not less than 10 feet and shall not be higher than six feet from the ground at its highest point.
(4) 
No artificial illumination shall be used.
C. 
Signs identifying a real estate development involving the construction of single-family dwellings in a subdivision, a multifamily development of more than four units or a nonresidential building, provided that:
(1) 
Only one sign shall be permitted on each street frontage of the premises.
(2) 
No such sign shall exceed 24 square feet in area.
(3) 
Such sign, unless affixed to a principal building, shall be set back from the property line a distance of not less than 10 feet and shall have a height of not more than six feet.
(4) 
No artificial illumination shall be used.
(5) 
Such sign shall be displayed only for such period of time as there are any homes, apartments, nonresidential space or lots remaining unsold or unrented but such period of time shall in no event exceed two years from the start of construction.
D. 
Signs erected by a governmental agency or by a public utility or pursuant to statute for the purpose of warning the public of an existing danger or a danger associated with a structure or a use in the area.
E. 
Political signs in conformity with the following regulations:
(1) 
Such signs shall be affixed to a principal building on the property or set back at least 10 feet from all property lines and shall not be higher than six feet from the ground at its highest point.
(2) 
Political signs shall not exceed four square feet in area.
(3) 
No political sign shall be erected or displayed on public property, including public rights-of-way and the area extending from the street line or nub to a public sidewalk.
(4) 
Political signs shall not be artificially illuminated.
Other signs are permitted as follows:
A. 
Directional signs at driveway entrances and within a parking area to regulate traffic flow within the boundaries of a lot, provided that such signs shall not exceed three square feet in area and three feet in height.
B. 
Identification signs for apartments, condominium and cooperative buildings, charitable institutions and nursing homes, provided that:
(1) 
Only one such sign shall be permitted for each street frontage of such premises.
(2) 
No such sign shall exceed six square feet in area.
(3) 
Such sign, unless affixed to a principal building, shall be set back from the property line a distance of not less than 10 feet and shall not be higher than six feet from the ground at its highest point.
The following signs are permitted in nonresidential zone districts:
A. 
Wall-mounted business signs are permitted, provided that:
(1) 
Such signs meet the general requirements set forth in § 347-107.3.
(2) 
Such signs shall not extend beyond the portion of the building occupied by the referenced business.
(3) 
Such signs shall be mounted flat on the building facade facing a street or municipal parking lot. The painting of a sign directly on a building shall not be permitted.
(4) 
The aggregate sign area for a first-floor business on any one store/office front shall not exceed one square foot for each foot of width of the respective store/office front.
(5) 
Such sign shall not exceed 24 inches in height. The portion of a wall sign containing logos and similar graphics shall not exceed 30 inches in height.
(6) 
Such sign shall be placed within the building sign location band and shall not extend beyond the boundaries of the sign location band. If the building does not have a sign location band, then the top of the sign shall not exceed the height of the ground floor, or 12 feet, whichever is greater.
(7) 
Sign materials and design shall complement the building's architecture and shall not cover or intrude upon any specific architectural feature of the building. Multitenant buildings shall have complementary wall signage.
(8) 
Only one wall-mounted sign shall be permitted per business unless the business has two frontages on a public street, public parking lot or parking lot servicing the building on which it is placed, in which case a sign is permitted on each frontage.
(9) 
A wall sign must not be erected on any wall of a building unless such wall fronts on and is immediately adjacent to a public street, public parking lot or parking lot servicing the building on which it is placed.
B. 
Wall-mounted plaque signs shall be permitted where a typical sign band does not exist, provided that:
(1) 
Wall-mounted plaque signs shall be applied to solid walls. Such signs shall not be mounted lower than four feet above grade or higher than seven feet above grade.
(2) 
Wall-mounted plaque signs shall project no more than two inches from the facade.
(3) 
Wall-mounted plaque signs shall be limited to four square feet in area.
(4) 
Wall-mounted plaque signs shall not be erected on any wall of a building unless such wall fronts on and is immediately adjacent to a public street, public parking lot or parking lot servicing the building on which it is placed. One sign shall be permitted per business.
(5) 
Materials and design of wall-mounted plaque signs shall complement the building's architecture and shall not cover or intrude upon any specific architectural feature of the building.
(6) 
Wall-mounted plaque signs attachments shall not damage architectural materials.
(7) 
One wall-mounted plaque sign shall be permitted per business.
C. 
Wall-mounted business directory signs, provided that:
(1) 
Only one sign shall be permitted for each principal building entrance.
(2) 
The maximum sign area shall be six square feet.
(3) 
All listings shall be of a relatively uniform size and design.
Window-glass signs are permitted, provided that:
A. 
Such signs shall not extend beyond the portion of the building occupied by the referenced business.
B. 
Such signs shall be placed only in windows facing a street or municipal parking lot.
C. 
The maximum permitted sign area shall be 20% of the area of each window.
D. 
Neon signs are subject to the same requirements as window glass signs.
E. 
In addition to the sign permitted in Subsection B, a business hours sign, painted on the glass storefront or affixed to the door and inscribed in a polygon no larger than 18 inches by 24 inches, shall be permitted.
(1) 
All windows must be transparent and may not be covered by opaque material, with the exception of the area containing the window sign.
In place of wall-mounted and window-glass signs, as regulated in §§ 347-110.1 and 347-110.2 above, freestanding signs are permitted in front yard areas, provided that:
A. 
The maximum sign area shall be 12 square feet and the maximum sign height shall be six feet.
[Amended 4-23-2019 by Ord. No. O-19-012]
B. 
Only one such sign shall be permitted for each principal building.
C. 
The principal building has a front yard setback of at least 15 feet.
D. 
Such sign shall be set back at least five feet from the closest property line.
E. 
The maximum sign area shall be 12 square feet, and the maximum sign height shall be 12 feet.
Sidewalk signs are permitted, provided that the following requirements are met:
A. 
All sidewalk signs must receive a sign permit from the Zoning Officer before installation.
B. 
No more than one sidewalk sign is permitted per business.
C. 
All signs shall be of an A-frame design and shall be no more than two feet wide and three feet high.
D. 
The sign must be placed so that a five-foot-wide, unobstructed path shall be maintained at all times on the sidewalk.
E. 
The sign must be constructed from durable materials compatible with the materials of the building served. Wood, metal and chalkboard signs are traditional, recommended materials. Plastic is not recommended. "Reader board" signs with removable slide-in letters and stenciled or spray-painted signs are unacceptable.
F. 
The sidewalk sign shall only be located in front of the building on which the retail establishment is located.
G. 
The sidewalk sign must be taken indoors at the close of business each day.
H. 
No permit shall be issued unless the applicant has posted in advance a certificate of insurance listing the Township as an additional insured.
Other signs are permitted as follows:
A. 
Awning and canopy signs, provided that:
(1) 
Awnings and canopies conform to Montclair Code Chapter 297, Article V.
(2) 
Sign text shall be painted on the area of the lowest 12 inches of an awning or canopy, and such text shall not be higher than six inches.
(3) 
No illumination shall be directed on the awning sign.
B. 
Marquee signs, provided that:
(1) 
Only one sign per principal building is permitted.
(2) 
Such sign shall be located over the principal entrance to a theater or group of theaters, and the sign area for each side shall not exceed 100 square feet.
C. 
Flags, provided that:
(1) 
Only one flag shall be permitted for each business.
(2) 
Such flag shall have maximum dimensions of four feet by six feet.
(3) 
Such flag shall be mounted so as not to constitute a safety hazard.
D. 
Projecting signs, provided that:
(1) 
One projecting sign is permitted for each retail business per facade.
(2) 
All parts of such signs shall be located at least eight feet above the road or sidewalk surface.
(3) 
Such signs shall not extend more than three feet from the building facade and may not exceed 12 square feet in area.
(4) 
No part of the sign or the installation hardware shall extend above the height of the building wall.
(5) 
Such signs do not interfere with any pedestrian, vehicular, utility, or municipal use of the public right-of-way.
(6) 
Sign materials and design shall complement the building's architecture and shall not cover or intrude upon any specific architectural feature of the building.
Temporary signs are permitted as follows:
A. 
Banner signs. Banner signs, as defined in § 347-106, shall meet the following requirements:
(1) 
Prior to installing a banner sign, a signage permit must be obtained from the Montclair Township Zoning Officer.
(2) 
Banner signs may be displayed for up to 30 days.
(3) 
One thirty-day extension is allowed.
(4) 
The maximum size of the banner sign shall not exceed the maximum sign area permitted on the premises for a permanent sign.
B. 
"Grand Opening" signs. A temporary sign advertising the opening of a new establishment shall meet the following requirements:
(1) 
A permit must be obtained from the Montclair Township Zoning Officer prior to installing the "Grand Opening" sign.
(2) 
The signs shall be located entirely on the subject premises and shall not be connected to anything in the public right-of-way.
(3) 
The "Grand Opening" sign shall be displayed for no more than 14 days.
(4) 
The maximum size of the "Grand Opening" sign shall not exceed the maximum sign area permitted on the premises for a permanent sign.
(5) 
Large inflatable objects suspended in the air, metallic reflective glitter, search lights or beacons shall not be permitted.
(6) 
Balloons, streamers, banners and pin wheels will be allowed as part of the "Grand Opening" sign but must be removed when the "Grand Opening" sign is removed.
C. 
Signs affixed to the interior of windows referencing sales and services, provided that:
(1) 
Such signs shall not extend beyond the portion of the building occupied by the referenced business.
(2) 
Such signs shall be placed only in windows facing a street or municipal parking lot.
(3) 
The total sign area in any one window shall not exceed 20% of the window's area.
(4) 
Temporary signs shall be removed within 30 days of the date of placement, and the message of such signs shall not be replaced for a period of at least 30 days.
All signs are subject to the following general requirements:
A. 
Sign permits. It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to erect, paint, alter, locate or relocate, reconstruct or change in any manner, by rewording or otherwise, any permanent sign or sign structure without first having obtained a sign permit from the Zoning Officer.
B. 
Sign permit exemptions. Exemptions shall not be construed as relieving the owner of such signs from the responsibility of complying with applicable provisions of this chapter. The exemption shall apply to the requirement for a sign permit only. No sign permit shall be required for the following signs:
(1) 
Any public notice or warning required by a valid and applicable federal, state, county or local law, regulation or ordinance.
(2) 
Holiday lights and decorations with no commercial message, excluding holiday inflatable decorations.
(3) 
Traffic control signs on private property, the face of which meets the Department of Transportation standard, and which contain no commercial message of any sort.
(4) 
Flags of the United States, New Jersey, the Township of Montclair, foreign nations, other flags adopted or sanctioned by an elective legislative body of competent jurisdiction, and flags flown in conjunction with the flag of the United States.
(5) 
Signs or banners advertising public or quasi-public events that are posted with the permission of the Township Council or of any person to whom the Township Council has delegated this authority according to guidelines set by the Township Council.
(6) 
Pump-mounted fuel price informational signs, subject to the following:
(a) 
Only one fuel price informational sign shall be permitted per fuel pump.
(b) 
Fuel price informational signs shall be limited in size to an area of 216 square inches in accordance with state and federal regulations.
(c) 
Each fuel price informational sign shall be affixed directly and firmly to a fuel pump and shall be stationary.
(d) 
Nothing herein shall be construed to prohibit the advertisement of fuel prices on any other sign meeting the requirements of this section.
(7) 
United States postal regulation mailboxes.
C. 
Permit procedure. No sign except those exempted by Subsection B above shall be placed, constructed, erected or modified unless a sign permit shall have been obtained from the Zoning Officer and, where required by the New Jersey Uniform Construction Code, a building permit shall have been obtained from the Construction Official and, if in the Historic District, been approved by the Historic Preservation Commission. Signs which are not specifically allowed by this subsection shall be prohibited.
D. 
Master signage plan.
(1) 
A master signage plan shall accompany:
(a) 
Any application for a sign permit; or
(b) 
Any application for development filed with the Planning Board or the Zoning Board of Adjustment which involves installation or modification of any sign.
(2) 
The master signage plan shall contain the following information for each existing and proposed sign:
(a) 
Size (i.e., length, height, area, thickness, number of faces).
(b) 
Letter style and size.
(c) 
Illumination.
(d) 
Colors (letter, background, trim), including PMS color samples.
(e) 
Construction materials, structural integrity and installation details.
(f) 
Window size (if applicable).
(g) 
Location (i.e., height above grade, distance from roofline, building width, location from sides).
(3) 
The master signage plan graphically depicting the sign shall be prepared by the applicant or a sign professional. The master signage plan application shall include a sketch or photograph showing the dimensions of each facade, window and canopy of the building to which a sign is to be attached, in sufficient detail to clearly indicate the location, dimension and area of all existing and proposed permanent signs affixed to the walls, windows and canopies of the building. These dimensions shall either be shown on the sketch or photograph or on an attached table. Samples of construction materials shall be submitted.
(4) 
In the case of a freestanding sign, a minor site plan shall be required as part of the master signage plan, showing the location of buildings, parking lots, driveways, landscaped areas and all other existing and proposed signs.
(5) 
The applicant shall provide any additional information which may be deemed necessary to determine whether the signage plan complies with the purpose of the sign regulations.
E. 
When installation or modification of a sign has been approved by the Planning Board or Zoning Board of Adjustment as part of a development application, the Zoning Officer shall issue a sign permit only if the proposed sign is consistent with the reviewing board's approval.
F. 
Maintenance. All signs, together with all their supports, shall be of substantial and sturdy construction, shall be kept in good repair and shall be painted, repainted or cleaned as often as necessary to maintain a clean, neat, legible, safe and orderly appearance. When lighting is provided, all lighting elements shall be kept in good working order. The area surrounding freestanding signs must be kept neat and clean. The owner of the property upon which a sign is located shall be responsible for maintaining the sign and the condition of the surrounding area.
G. 
Safety.
(1) 
All signs shall conform to the requirements of the New Jersey Uniform Construction Code.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 121, Construction Codes, Uniform.
(2) 
Applicants are solely responsible for providing proper foundations, anchorage, attachments and other structural support of signs, sign structures and awnings. Such installations are subject to Building Department review and may require the submission of signed and sealed plans and/or details and/or calculations from a professional engineer, based on such review.
(3) 
Applicants whose signs, sign structures and awnings extend over/into the public right-of-way must include the Township of Montclair as an additional insured under their insurance policy and maintain such insurance for the life of the installation. A copy of the current certificate of insurance shall be provided to the Township on an annual basis.
H. 
Nonconforming signs. No nonconforming sign may be enlarged or altered in a way which would increase its nonconformity. Existing nonconforming permanent signs may continue to exist; however, when the sign is modified either in shape, size, illumination or structure, the sign shall be altered to conform to the provisions of this section.
I. 
Damaged signs. Any sign damaged, destroyed or deteriorated in any condition whatsoever shall be removed or reconstructed in accordance with the provisions in this article.
J. 
Abandoned signs. At the termination of any professional, commercial or industrial use of any premises, the permission to display signs associated with that use shall forthwith terminate, and all such signs shall be removed from the premises within 30 days from the date of termination of such use.