The City of Toronto has developed a new street name sign to follow Council’s intention to provide a high quality, coordinated and well designed public realm for the citizens of Toronto and its visitors. Street name signs have a vital role in that context as they are an important and integral component of the urban landscape.
The new signs are manufactured of extruded aluminum and have three components. The central component is common to all signs and is covered on highly reflective blue sheeting, with upper and lower case reflective white lettering. The upper “blade” provides an area on which to brand the identification of Business Improvement Areas, neighbourhoods and communities. The lower “blade” is used to show the closest address number to the intersection. A common mechanism to attach the signs to the large variety of existing poles is also used.
The larger sign of 96.5 cm (38 in.) in length will be used on arterial roads, where multilane cross-sections and higher speeds require higher visibility. On local streets, signs of 76 cm (30 in.) in length will be used.
That the upper and lower blades of the signs to be used on local streets will be white in colour with blue lettering, while the blades of the signs to be specifically branded will be finished in brushed aluminum.
The City of Toronto’s Transportation Division will sell decommissioned street name signs to the public. These are signs that have been replaced by newer, easier to read signs.
The signs will be available via an on-line auction through Platinum Liquidations. They will be displayed for 60 days and sold separately with a starting bid price of $30.
Currently, the City has about 1,750 signs in its inventory that can be purchased.
In 2007, Toronto Council adopted a program to replace damaged signs with the new signs which are larger and easier to read than the old signs. Every year, the City replaces about 1,800 street name signs due to age or damage to the existing sign.
Not all signs that are removed from city streets will be available for purchase. Signs that are completely unreadable or are in extremely poor condition will be recycled instead of being offered for sale.
The street name sign proposal was presented to the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas (TABIA), the Mayor’s Roundtable on a Beautiful City and to four public meetings held throughout the City.
The project was led by staff from the Urban Design and the Transportation Divisions of the City with Kramer Design Associates Ltd. as the consulting team.