Group seeks smaller sign outside new Fountain City Chick-Fil-A

Group seeks smaller sign outside new Fountain City Chick-Fil-A

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Opponents say they want to move away from large signs in the area. Opponents say they want to move away from large signs in the area.
"It just clutters up the scenery and it makes it feel like the businesses are crushing in on them," said Margot Kline from Scenic Knoxville. "It just clutters up the scenery and it makes it feel like the businesses are crushing in on them," said Margot Kline from Scenic Knoxville.
"So, it's tall," said Fountain City resident Aggie French. "They ought to be lucky that something's coming in and we're not going to have to look at a bunch of empty buildings sitting down there." "So, it's tall," said Fountain City resident Aggie French. "They ought to be lucky that something's coming in and we're not going to have to look at a bunch of empty buildings sitting down there."

By SAMANTHA MANNING
6 News Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - A local group is urging a fast-food chain to shrink the size of its super-sized sign.

The new sign is outside the soon-to-open Chick-Fil-A on Broadway in Fountain City. Neighbors say the sign hurts the beauty and charm of the community.

The new sign stands about forty feet tall, and on Broadway it's hardly the only major sign around. Just across the street sits an even bigger McDonald's sign, which has been around for about 15 years.

Some opponents say that's exactly the thing they're trying to stop, saying those signs make the community look more like an interstate.

"It just clutters up the scenery and it makes it feel like the businesses are crushing in on them," said Margot Kline from Scenic Knoxville.

Kline said she's urged Chick-Fil-A to reduce the size of its sign in Fountain City, even writing an email to Chick-Fil-A's president.

She says within the last two years, cutting down on the size of signs has become a trend in the area.

"Many businesses have voluntarily or with the urging from some neighborhoods decided to put in the smaller signage," Kline said.

In fact, she says in Bearden, the chicken franchise agreed to put up a 12-foot sign instead. But in Fountain City, they've had no such luck.

Barbara Long has lived in Fountain City her whole life, more than seventy years. She says the large fast-food sign hurts the charm of the North Knoxville neighborhood.

"Kinda hate to see it look that way," Long said. "Fountain City has always been a nice, quaint little neighborhood and we've kind of prided ourselves in that."

Members of the Knoxville City Council's Sign Ordinance Task Force said they are working on amending the ordinance to restrict the size of permittable signs, but in the meantime the sign is legal, and they say the ball is in Chick-Fil-A's court.

6 News spoke with some Fountain City residents who say they don't seem to mind either way.

"So, it's tall," said Fountain City resident Aggie French. "They ought to be lucky that something's coming in and we're not going to have to look at a bunch of empty buildings sitting down there."

That revised ordinance is still in the works, but task force members in charge with coming up with the changes say they're confident the new version won't allow a sign so big to be put up once it's passed.

6 News reached out to Chick-Fil-A for a comment, but our messages weren't returned.

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