Identity Markers Go Up Around Montrose

By | February 7, 2017

If you’ve driven through Montrose recently, you’ve probably noticed them: the 13-foot-high sturdy metal signposts that have arisen at major commercial intersections around the district. Surmounted by a stylish silver sign featuring the Montrose District’s art deco logo, the 13 so-called identity markers are intended to better designate neighborhood boundaries and “brand” the district within the larger city.

“The locations for the signs were strategically chosen so that you see them as you’re coming in or leaving the area,” explained Travis Triola, a project manager at the landscape architecture firm Kudela & Weinheimer, which designed the signs. “The design itself mimics what we’re doing with the esplanades in Montrose, as far as using the chevron pattern.”

Work on the identity markers has been underway for several years, said Don Huml, the project’s construction manager. “Each sign is basically a work of art—they were all handcrafted individually,” Huml said. “So the first big challenge was the fabrication of the signs. They’re very customized, and were time-consuming to get designed and built.”

Because the signs will be lit at night, each one had to be connected to the city’s electrical grid. “We had to get power to each of the signs, so we had to bore underneath all the intersections,” Huml said. “There were a lot of unforeseen obstacles and challenges that we had to work around in order to get power to each location.”

For the time being, the signs are bathed in white light from dusk until dawn every night, but they’re capable of a much broader range of colors and light cues. Each sign is equipped with a cell card, allowing all 13 to be controlled from a single laptop in the Montrose Management District’s office, which sends out wireless signals over the existing telecommunications network. The new lights on the seven bridges over Highway 59 will be synced up with the identity markers, allowing uniform lighting throughout Montrose.

“If the Texans win, the lighting could cycle through red, white and blue; if the Dynamo win, it could be orange; for Pride Week, it could cycle through the rainbow,” Triola said. “The idea is to pull the whole district together visually, and give it an identity,” said Kudela & Weinheimer project architect Austin Taphorn. “The major gateways to the district will tell you, ‘You’re in Montrose.’”

To learn more about the Montrose District, please visit montrosedistrict.org.

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