Typhoon season is on and to ensure public safety against the danger posed by billboards, the government of Makati will evaluate existing and proposed non-mobile billboards and signages in the city.
The newly adopted Billboard and Signage Ordinance of Makati took effect early this week and the evaluation will be done according to the provisions and guidelines on dimensions, height, illumination and location, among others.
Makati Mayor Jejomar Erwin Binay said City Ordinance 2013-A-044 provides regulations covering all billboards and signages in the city as well as the legal basis for the city government to order the removal of billboards and signages that pose danger to city residents and the general public.
“The new Billboard and Signage Ordinance of Makati will be strictly enforced by the city government primarily to ensure public safety. It is also intended to address concerns about visual blight and clutter and improve the city skyline and its environment,” Binay said.
The mayor, however, clarified that the moratorium on the construction and installation of new billboards in the city, declared by City Ordinance 2004-A-028, still remains in effect until it is lifted through the enactment of a separate ordinance.
Binay said the new ordinance sets specific billboard dimensions and spacing between billboards at designated locations identified on the Billboard Location Map, which are classified as Area 1 (along major roads), Area 2 (along secondary roads), and Area 3 (special development zones).
Major roads categorized under Area 1 include EDSA, the South Superhighway, Magallanes Avenue, Sen. Gil Puyat Avenue and Ayala Avenue.
Billboards or electronic displays in Area 1 must comply with the maximum allowable surface or display area in proportion to the width of the road. Billboards along roads more than 45 meters (147.6 feet) wide shall have a maximum surface area of 162 square meters (1,743.8 square feet); for road widths from 20 to 45 meters (65.6 to 147.6 feet), maximum surface area shall be 81 square meters (871.9 square feet); for roads less than 20 meters wide (<65.6 feet), surface area shall be not more than 40 square meters (430.6 square feet).
Also in Area 1, a freestanding billboard or electronic display must not exceed 22.5 meters (73.8 feet) in height, which is to be measured from the average elevation of the surface of the natural ground or existing sidewalk or carriageway level (whichever is higher), up to the highest point of the billboard or any of its components.
The spacing requirements between billboards in Area 1 are also in proportion to the road width, as follows: 150 meters (492 feet) spacing for road width of 45 meters (147.6 feet); 100 meters (328 feet) for road width from 20 to 45 meters (65.6 feet to 147.6 feet); and 50 meters (164 feet) for road width of less than 20 meters (<65.6 feet).
Meanwhile, the maximum height of a building-mounted billboard in Area 1 must conform with the building height limit (BHL) requirements, non-obstruction of doors and windows, building code and zoning ordinance requirements, among others.
In its report to the mayor, the Zoning Administration Division of the Urban Development Department (ZAD-UDD) has now prioritized the updating of its inventory of current billboards or electronic displays in the city. Inspection teams are being deployed to inspect existing billboards and check their conformity to the new guidelines, starting with major thoroughfares like EDSA and the South Superhighway. The results of the evaluations will be the basis for the preparation of notifications to concerned billboard owners and advertisers.
Billboard owners and advertisers with existing materials in the city are also being urged to volunteer for evaluation and submit pertinent documents to the ZAD. They may submit the current building permit, approved plan, picture of the billboard, and complete address to the ZAD office at 2/F, old City Hall building on J.P. Rizal St., Poblacion, Makati.
Billboards found to be illegal and non-compliant during the inspections, on the other hand, will be recommended by the zoning office to the Office of the Building Official for dismantling.
Last year, public hearings were held by the city government to present the Billboards and Signage Masterplan to stakeholders, who were also allowed to submit their proposals.
The public may access the full text of the ordinance through the official website of the Makati city government, www.makati.gov.ph. It can be found among downloadable documents in the subheading “Publications” under “The City” in the homepage.