Some Jenks Homeowners Oppose LED Billboard Off Creek Turnpike
By Caitlin Alexander
Some Jenks homeowners are voicing concern over an incoming LED billboard off the Creek Turnpike.The Jenks City Council voted 4-3 recently to approve the plan. The land near 108th and Elwood will be commercially zoned to become a club for dogs. City councilor Mike Sharp said billboard companies are subject to many restrictions. However, they may put up signs on commercial properties.This site is next to Jenks' Brookwood neighborhood. Josh Miller with the homeowners association said many residents there are concerned the billboard will lessen property values. He said many live there for its pastoral setting and a large billboard might impede that."Right out my door, there's going to be a giant eye sore. So, I'm not a huge fan of that," agreed homeowner Gant NewsomCouncilor Sharp said he understands residents' concerns but voted in favor of the plan."If you determine that it's reasonable to make it a commercially zoned piece of property, then you have to allow the use. Otherwise, it's a simple matter. They go to district court and they will overturn our decision," Sharp said.The Brookwood neighborhood falls in Councilor Joshua Wedman's ward. He said the billboard will not benefit the city of Jenks. He said it would do more than lessen property value."This is a tremendous public safety issue. It'll be our police and our fire guys every time there's a car accident because of the distraction," Wedman said.Both councilors Channel 8 spoke with agreed that the city council made important provisions in the plan. The billboard must be turned off between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. It will sit a greater distance away from the turnpike than is legally required. The developer will plant trees between the sign and the subdivision as a buffer. Also, Sharp described the sign as "v-shaped," so it will point at drivers, not the subdivision. He said studies indicate the light from the sign might be less noticeable than the lights from the turnpike.Lamar, the billboard company, said it followed the proper processes for the project. It meets state and city requirements.Wedman said the specifics of the plan are still in negotiations. Miller said the neighborhood will continue to monitor the progress of what the billboard company and land developers do next.Councilors said this would be the first LED billboard along the turnpike in Jenks.
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