by Dennis Dalman
The Sartell City Council unanimously approved a new city sign that will be installed on a roundabout at 35th Street N. by the new high school now under construction.
At a meeting late last year, the city council approved the style of the sign, similar to the “Daybreak” welcoming sign by the Daybreak neighborhood in the city.
At the council’s last meeting, Sartell City Engineer Jon Halter presented details about the sign. It will, he said, be comprised of metal letters that spell out “Sartell” on the north side of the roundabout so motorists entering the city from the north will see it. The tallest letter will be the “S” at 3 feet. The following letters will each be 2-feet tall. The length of the sign will be 13.5 feet, and it will be curved to mimic the curve of the roundabout. The letters will be secured to a concrete pad and will be illuminated by lights at night by ground-mounted lighting.
The metal letters, Halter explained, will be treated with a chemical solution so, over time, they will acquire a kind of rust-colored patina.
The total cost for the sign and its installation will be $3,500.
Council members asked several questions about the sign. Member David Peterson asked Halter if the sign’s lighting would spread beyond the roundabout. Halter said no, that the lights will shine on the sign only and that the berm behind it will serve as a backdrop for the lights.
For safety reasons, the letters – if hit by a vehicle – will just fall over. That is why, Halter said, brick walls and other forms of solid signs are not recommended for roundabouts.
Won’t the letters be damaged during snow-plowing? Public-Works Director John Kothenbeutel said that will not be a problem as snow is never pushed onto a roundabout.
Some on the council suggested similar signs could be placed on the other roundabouts at road entrances to Sartell. All of the members said they like the look of the new sign, but one asked about Sartell’s other style of welcome sign, the one showing the city’s stylized logo of a sun and river. Some on the council like that style of sign (Peterson and Pat Lynch); the other members not so much, with Mayor Sarah Jane Nicoll saying she has never liked that particular logo sign.
Finally, the council decided to wait until the sign is installed before making a decision to put similar signs on other roundabouts. It’s expected to be installed this fall.