Appendix A. Downtown Design Guidelines
Appendix A
Downtown Design Guidelines
Appendix A. Downtown Design Guidelines
I.
Introduction ...................................................................................................... 43
II.
Site Organization & Orientation.......................................................................... 44
Orientation................................................................................................................................................................ 44
Street Edge................................................................................................................................................................ 44
Public Spaces ............................................................................................................................................................ 45
Public Art.................................................................................................................................................................. 46
III. Building Design & Architecture........................................................................... 46
Mass and Scale.......................................................................................................................................................... 47
Architectural Elements/Materials ......................................................................................................................... 48
Alterations — Restoration & Remodeling .......................................................................................................... 51
Equipment & Utilities............................................................................................................................................. 53
IV. Landscape Design.............................................................................................. 54
V. Signs ................................................................................................................... 55
Sign Materials ........................................................................................................................................................... 55
Sign Lighting............................................................................................................................................................. 55
Window Displays ..................................................................................................................................................... 55
Window Graphics Design ...................................................................................................................................... 55
Appendix A
Downtown Design Guidelines
Appendix A. Downtown Design Guidelines
I.
Introduction
These design guidelines are intended to:
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assist in the revitalization of downtown Atascadero
provide for infill commercial development of high architectural quality that is compatible with
existing attractive buildings,
promote the conservation and reuse of existing buildings with preferred design quality.
In general, preservation and rehabilitation efforts should aim toward protecting the essential architectural
features of a commercial building that help to identify its individual style and thereby further its contribution
to the character of the Downtown.
The design guidelines in this Chapter will be applied as part of the review of downtown projects (additions,
remodeling, relocation, and construction) through the Design Review process or a discretionary land use
permit. The design elements of each project (including site design, architecture, landscaping, signs, and
parking design) will be reviewed.
The review authority may interpret these design guidelines with some flexibility in their application to specific
projects, as not all design criteria may be workable or appropriate for each project. In some circumstances,
one guideline may be relaxed to help comply with another guideline determined by the review authority to be
more important in the particular case. The overall objective is that the intent and spirit of the design
guidelines are followed.
Crawford Multari Clark & Mohr.
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II.
Site Organization & Orientation
The organization and orientation of downtown buildings and spaces is crucial in ensuring that downtown
streets are welcoming and friendly to pedestrians. Active public spaces and streets that are heavily used by
pedestrians are vital to the success of the downtown. High levels of pedestrian activity — shopping, eating,
“people watching,” exercising, strolling, relaxing, walking from place to place — are valued and encouraged
throughout the downtown. These activities create interest, provide a sense of safety on the street, and add to
community image and identity. The following guidelines provide a framework for site layout for new
projects.
Orientation
1. Building facades, including storefronts, should be
designed to orient to the street frontage, with the
primary building entry also oriented toward the
street.
2. Buildings on corners should include storefront
design features for at least 50 percent of the wall area
on the side street elevation.
3. Long, blank, unarticulated street wall facades are
strongly discouraged unless unavoidable because of
specific site circumstances. Monolithic street wall
facades should be "broken" by vertical and
horizontal articulation, characterized by:
•
Sculpted, carved or penetrated wall surfaces
defined by recesses and reveals);
Storefront Proportions.
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• Breaks (reveals, recesses);
• Window and door openings; or
• Balconies, awnings and canopies.
4. Large unbroken facade surfaces should be avoided at the storefront level. This can be achieved in a
number of ways including:
•
•
Dividing the facade into a series of display windows with smaller panes of glass;
Constructing the facade with small human scale materials such as brick or decorative tile along
bulkheads;
• Providing traditional recessed entries;
• Careful sizing, placement and overall design of signage; and
• Providing consistent door and window reveals.
5. Buildings along the creek should be designed to relate to the creek
with decks, doors and windows facing the creek rather than blank
walls.
Street Edge
1. The first floor of new buildings should be placed directly at the
front property line — abutting the sidewalk — unless variations
are permitted by the City for plazas, public art, to retain existing
trees, or other pedestrian-oriented purpose.
2. Canopies, trellises and other accessory structures that are
relatively open and do not restrict pedestrian or vehicular
movement may project over the right-of-way with City approval.
3. Any building located at a corner intersection should incorporate
architectural features at the ground floor that emphasize the
Awnings add pedestrian comfort.
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importance of pedestrian movement. These may include building cut-offs, walk-through covered
arcades, trellis structures and other elements that focus visual interest on the corners.
Desirable design features for street corner buildings.
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Crawford Multari Clark & Mohr.
Public Spaces
Public space associated with buildings in the Downtown should provide an attractive transition from the
outside to the inside of buildings, should be complementary to the buildings and should be supportive of
pedestrian activity. These spaces should be designed as extensions of the public space of the sidewalk (e.g.,
by providing pedestrian amenities such as benches and fountains, and by continuing the pavement treatment
of the sidewalk), to indicate that the space is available to all pedestrians.
Courtyards and Plazas
a. Plazas should be designed to supplement, rather than detract from street activity.
b. Plazas should be fronted by retail shops, restaurants, offices or other activity-generating uses; blank walls
should be minimized adjacent to pedestrian spaces.
c. Plazas should be designed with unimpeded lines-of-sight to and from the public sidewalk. Security
fences, walls, and entry gates shall not block the sidewalk edge of the plaza or views into the plaza. At
least 15 feet of building frontage should be transparent or visually penetrable to provide entry to and
views into the plaza.
d. Entries to the plaza, and storefront entries within the plaza, should be designed and lit so they do not
create hiding places.
e. Plazas should incorporate visual features such as public art or a fountain, to attract pedestrians.
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f.
Shade trees or other elements providing relief from the sun should be incorporated within plazas, in a
manner that does not impair pedestrian movement.
g. Most of the plaza should have access to sunlight for the duration of daylight hours. A mix of direct
sunlight and shade should be provided. No more than 30 percent of a plaza should be covered with a
roof. Canopies, awnings, cantilevered overhangs, or balconies may project over the ground floor.
h. Paving and furniture used in private plazas should complement streetscape elements used in the public
right-of-way.
i. Plazas, including all entrances and exits, should be fully illuminated one-half hour after sunset to one-half
hour before sunrise to facilitate natural surveillance opportunities and to discourage undesirable activities.
Lighting should be designed to help define, order and further develop the design concept of the space in
a manner that appears welcoming to pedestrians.
j. Signage or other mechanisms should identify that the plaza is available for public use during business
hours.
k. Landscaping for the plazas should provide special interest through plant materials with special foliage
color, seasonal changes in plant habitat, scent, or floral display.
Public Art
The City was founded as California’s first planned community in 1913 by E.G. Lewis who was inspired by the
City Beautiful Movement. The City encourages the placement of public art in new and existing buildings,
parks, streets and other development projects for the enjoyment of its citizens and visitors to further the
development and public awareness of, and interest in, the visual arts and fine crafts to increase employment
opportunities in the arts, and to encourage the integration of art into the architecture of the Downtown. The
City’s collection of art including sculptures, fountains, objects and murals will be a museum with no walls, no
fees and no hours posted, accessible to everyone every day. New buildings are encouraged to include exterior
art works that invite participation and interaction, reveal local culture or history, and capture or reinforce the
unique character of the City, the downtown, or the site.
III.
Building Design & Architecture
Interrelationships between individual buildings in the Downtown contribute to community identity, levels of
pedestrian activity, and economic vitality. When architectural features (for example, entry spacing, window
lines, and signs) of downtown buildings are complementary, the larger district image becomes more positive
and unified. Building facades, in particular, influence cohesiveness, legibility and aesthetic pride; likewise,
storefront design can encourage shopping, increase a sense of security, and generate pedestrian activity.
Where commercial buildings are neighbors to residential buildings, consideration of scale, detail, and materials
are even more important.
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Mass and Scale
Building scale and massing can enhance the unique character
and pedestrian-orientation of the Downtown. Smaller-scale
buildings, or buildings perceived to be of small-scale, are most
suitable to creating the desired atmosphere. Human-scaled
buildings are comfortable and create a friendly atmosphere that
enhances the marketability of downtowns. To this end,
buildings—and their parts—should impart a sense of human
scale and assume a reinforcing relationship with the sidewalk,
street, and pedestrian activity. The relationship of the building
elements to the overall building should create a clear set of
meaningful relationships between the building and the elements
and the elements to each other. The elements of the building
should not appear as random or unrelated to each other.
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The height and scale of new infill structures and alterations to
existing structures should complement existing buildings and
provide human scale and proportion. Infill structures should
provide storefront windows, doors, entries, transoms, awnings,
cornice treatments and other architectural features that
complement existing structures, without duplicating a particular
architectural style. The following are guidelines for building
mass and scale.
General Design Principles
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a. New buildings and alterations to existing buildings should
be designed with consideration of the characteristic proportions (relationship of height to width) of
existing adjacent facades, as well as the rhythm, proportion and spacing of their existing door and
window openings
b. An infill building that is proposed to be much "wider" than the existing characteristic facades on the
street should be designed with its facade divided into a series of appropriately proportioned "structural
bays" or components, defined by a series of columns or masonry piers that frame windows, doors and
bulkheads. Creating and reinforcing a facade rhythm helps tie the commercial street together visually and
provides pedestrians with a standard measurement of their progress.
c. The buildings in downtown Atascadero are mostly onestory, with some two-story. Two and three story
buildings are preferred.
Building Proportions
Maintain a clear visual distinction between upper story
openings and street level storefront openings (windows and
doors). There is usually a greater window area (70%) at the
storefront level for pedestrians to have a better view of the
merchandise displayed behind as opposed to upper stories
with smaller window openings (40%).
Infill construction should be similar to existing buildings in
height, width, and rhythm of openings
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Architectural Features
a. Features such as balconies, open and enclosed turrets, finials and bay windows that help give human scale
and interest to buildings are encouraged.
b. Decorative ornamentation and the decorative use of color and integral color materials are encouraged.
Architectural composition that employs ornamentation either abstract or representational, to help order
the facade or emphasize the relative importance of different building elements is encouraged.
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Architectural Elements/Materials
The types of materials and architectural elements
incorporated into commercial buildings contribute to
visual interest, community image, business identity and
The following guidelines are
architectural quality.
intended to provide a framework for creating a
cohesive commercial character while providing
flexibility and promoting unique architectural features.
Entries and Doorways
a. The main entry to a building should emphasize the
point of arrival in one or more of the following
ways:
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•
•
•
•
placement of art or decorative detailing,
New storefront should maintain same proportions as the
turret or balcony over the entrance,
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original
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change of material or detailing,
greater concentration of ornaments,
flanked columns, decorative fixtures or other details,
recesses within a larger arched or cased decorative opening,
a portico (formal porch) projecting from or set
into the building face,
changes in roofline, a tower, or a break in the
surface of the subject wall, and/or
architectural features above it,
Doors and Windows
a. Doors to retail shops should contain a high
percentage of glass in order to view the retail
contents or be decorative.
b. When windows are added or changed, it is
important that the design be compatible with the
facade theme of the block (streetscape).
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c. Use of clear glass (at least 88 percent light
transmission) on the first floor is recommended.
d. Storefront windows should be as large as possible and no closer than 18 inches from the ground
(bulkhead height). By limiting the bulkhead height, the visibility to the storefront displays and retail
interior is maximized. Maximum bulkhead heights for infill construction should be 36 inches.
e. Introducing or changing the location or size of windows or other openings that alter the architectural
rhythm or character of the original building is discouraged.
f. Permanent, fixed security grates or grilles in front of windows are not permitted. Any necessary security
grilles should be placed inside, behind the window display area.
g. Traditional storefront transom windows should be retained whenever feasible. If the ceiling inside the
structure has been lowered, the ceiling should be stepped up to meet the transom so that light will
penetrate the interior of the building.
Awnings and Canopies
a. Where the facade of a commercial building is divided into distinct structural bays (sections defined by
vertical architectural elements, such as masonry piers), awnings should be placed within the vertical
elements rather than overlapping them. The awning design should respond to the scale, proportion and
rhythm created by these structural bay elements and nestle into the space created by the structural bay.
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b. Awning shape should relate to the window or door opening. Barrel-shaped awnings should be used to
complement arched windows while square awnings should be used on rectangular windows.
c. Awnings may not be internally illuminated.
Roofs
Roof materials and colors are important aspects of the overall building design. Materials and colors should be
consistent with the architectural character of the building. Roof materials such as brightly colored roofing
tiles or unfinished metal panel roofing should not be used.
Flat or gable roofs with parapets are preferred. Long, unbroken, horizontal rooflines are discouraged except
when consistent with a particular historical style. Roof details, including dormers, towers, chimneys, and
clerestory windows are encouraged. Exposed structural elements (beams, trusses, frames, rafter “tails,” etc.)
are encouraged. Elements such as parapet caps, projecting cornices and corner details should be used to
define the edge of flat roofs.
Grillwork/Metalwork and Other Details
There are a number of details, often thought of as mundane,
which may be incorporated into the design to add a degree of
visual richness and interest while meeting functional needs. Such
details include the following items:
a.
Light fixtures, wall mounted or hung with decorative metal
brackets.
b. Metal grillwork, at vent openings or as decorative features at
windows, doorways or gates.
c. Decorative scuppers, catches and down-spouts, preferably of
copper.
d. Balconies, rails, finials, corbels, plaques, etc.
e. Flag or banner pole brackets.
Exterior Walls and Materials
The exterior wall design elements of commercial buildings involve
two aspects — color and texture. Materials with integral color
such as hard smooth troweled plaster, brick, tile and stone are
encouraged. If the building's exterior design is complicated, with
many design features, the wall texture should be simple and
subdued. However, if the building design is simple (perhaps more
monolithic), a finely textured material, such as patterned masonry,
can greatly enrich the building's overall character.
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Storefront materials should complement the materials used on
significant adjacent buildings. The following materials are
considered appropriate for commercial buildings within Atascadero. The number of different wall materials
used on any one building should be kept to a minimum.
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•
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clear glass
glass block (transom)
exterior plaster
new or used face-brick
cut stone, rusticated block (cast stone)
ceramic tiles (bulkhead)
clapboard (where appropriate)
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The following exterior building materials are
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considered inappropriate in Downtown Atascadero commercial areas and are discouraged:
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Mirror glass and heavily tinted glass. (see Zoning Ordinance for restrictions)
Windows with false divisions (i.e., a window where the glass continues uninterrupted behind a
surface mounted mullion)
Vinyl and aluminum siding
Painted or baked enamel metal awnings
Rough “Spanish lace” stucco finish
Unpainted plywood
Corrugated sheet metal
Corrugated fiberglass
Exposed concrete block without integral color
A coordinated color scheme that responds to the style of the structure should be developed for each building.
Painted trim colors should complement base colors. The colors of signing, awnings, planters, accent
materials and primary façade colors should all be considered.
Lighting
a. Lighting should be designed as an integral part of the overall site and
building design. It should contribute to and help define the character
and the spaces created by the building and its site development. The
design should have a conscious purpose of helping to strengthen the
constituent elements of the design through means such as highlighting
areas of the site that are more important or by picking out areas of the
site that have a different character from the rest of the site. Lighting
should complement architectural elements, changes in material of the
ground plane and landscaping. The intensity, color placement of the
light and the placement and design of the light fixtures should be part
of this effort.
b. Lighting should be used to provide illumination for the security and
safety of on-site areas such as entrances, exits, parking, loading,
pathways, and working areas.
c. Lighting should be provided for the pedestrian to create a sense of
welcoming on the public sidewalk, that the pedestrian is literally being
accompanied by light. Providing a greater number of softer light
sources is strongly encouraged over having only a few very bright lights.
d. The design of light fixtures and their structural supports should be architecturally compatible with the
main buildings on the site. Illuminators should be integrated within the architectural design for the
buildings.
e. As a security device, lighting should be adequate but not overly bright. Building entrances should be well
lighted. The lighting should be designed so that the lighting is an attractive element in its own right,
acting as a public amenity.
f. All lighting should be shielded to confine light spread within the site boundaries. Lighting should be
provided from one-half hour after sunset to one-half hour before sunrise at all exits, entrances, loading
areas, parking lots, plazas, and alleys. An average of one foot candle evenly distributed across the site is a
suggested minimum; with up to two foot candles at entrances, exits and loading areas.
g. The following lighting fixtures and lamps are considered inappropriate in Downtown Atascadero
commercial areas and are discouraged:
• Mercury vapor lights (metal halide or high-pressure sodium lamps are preferable for most
applications)
• Fluorescent light tubes that are exposed without filtering lenses
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•
Fluorescent lamps without non-color corrected bulbs (color correction may also be accomplished by
a color-correcting lens)
h. Focus light downward. A good rule of thumb is to make sure that direct light shines a minimum of 20
degrees below a horizontal plane and in no case above the horizontal plane.
i. Test installations for glare. After installation, check to make sure that glare will not be a problem for
neighbors, pedestrians, or motorists.
j. Illuminate signs from above, not below.
k. Avoid reflective surfaces beneath down-lit signs.
Rear Entrances
Rear entrance design should consider a number of issues. In
general, the rear entrance must respond to the same needs as the
storefront, but at a reduced scale. It must also meet the functional
service needs of the business, including providing a loading area.
Since these two functions are often in conflict, the design of the
rear entrance must be carefully planned. A particular concern is
the storage and disposal of refuse. All trash cans, dumpsters, and
other containers must be hidden and screened from public view.
Exterior utilities must be screened. Regular maintenance is
extremely important.
The design of a rear entrance should be appropriate to its
surroundings. The visual character of rear facades, alleys, and
parking lots is relatively casual and utilitarian, especially when
compared to formal street facades. In this context, a refined or
grand design can look out of place. The design should instead be
pleasantly inviting, and architecturally compatible with the front,
but very simple in detail.
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a. An awning can soften a rear facade and provide a pleasant protected space.
b. The rear entry door should be wood and glass similar to the front door. Special security glass (i.e. wire
imbedded) is allowed.
c. Security lighting should be modest and should focus on the rear entry door.
d. Selective use of tree plantings, potted plants and other landscaping can subtly improve a rear facade.
e. Refuse containers and service facilities must be screened from view by solid walls according to the
Zoning Ordinance. Use landscaping (shrubs and vines) to screen walls and help deter graffiti.
Alterations — Restoration & Remodeling
Renovating or remodeling downtown buildings provides an excellent means of maintaining and reinforcing
the character and image desired in Atascadero. Renovation and expansion not only increases property values
in the area but also serves as an inspiration to other property owners and designers to make similar efforts.
When an existing structure is to be renovated or added to, care should be taken to complete the work in a
manner that respects the original design character of the structure. The following design guidelines are to be
implemented where appropriate and whenever a structure is to be renovated or expanded.
In addition, restoration and remodeling of commercial structures of historic significance in the City should
follow The Secretary of the Interior's Standards for Rehabilitation and Guidelines for Rehabilitating Historic Buildings,
published by the U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service.
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Unacceptable approach - Rooftop equipment, utility meters, and trash disposal areas unscreened and visible.
Preferred approach - Rooftop equipment, utility meters, and trash storage areas are properly screened
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Traditional Features & Decoration
a. Sensitive response to existing materials, details, proportions, as well as patterns of materials and openings
is required when any such work will affect the appearance of an existing building's exterior.
b. Storefront remodeling often retains original decorative details only as visual "leftovers" or simply covers
them. If a building is to be refurbished, these forgotten details should not be wasted. If enough of them
remain, they can be restored as part of the original design. If
only a few remain, they can be incorporated as design features
in a new storefront. In either case, the design of any
improvements should grow out of the remaining traditional
details and create a harmonious background which
emphasizes them.
Removal of Elements Inconsistent with Original Facade
Existing building elements incompatible with the original facade
design should be removed. These include: excessive use of
exterior embellishments and "modernized" elements (metal grilles,
oversized molding cornices or rusticated materials, etc.). Buildings
are often altered over time by owners or shopkeepers to "keep up
with changing times" or to "remake a tired image."
Unfortunately, such changes are often done in a "tack on" manner
and result in gradual but severe erosion of original character and
cohesion of the commercial area.
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Storefront Renovation
a. Where the original storefront remains (little or no remodeling
has occurred), it should be preserved and repaired with as
little alteration as possible.
b. Where only part of the original storefront remains (limited
remodeling has occurred), the storefront should be repaired,
maintaining historic materials where possible, including the
replacement of extensively deteriorated or missing parts with
new parts based upon surviving examples of transoms,
bulkheads, pilasters, signs, etc.
c. Where the original storefront is completely missing (extensive
remodeling has occurred), the first priority is to reconstruct
the storefront based upon historical, pictorial and physical
documentation. If that is not practical, the design of the new
storefront should be compatible with the size, scale,
proportion, material and color of the existing structure.
Additions to Existing Structures
a. The design of a proposed addition should follow the general
scale, proportion, massing and detailing of the original
structure and should result in a harmonious—rather than
stark—contrast.
b. Additions should be interpretations of the existing buildings,
with the main characteristics of the existing structure
incorporated using modern construction methods. This may include: the extension of architectural lines
from the existing structure to the addition; repetition of window and entrance spacing; use of
harmonizing colors and materials; and the inclusion of similar, yet distinct, architectural details (i.e.,
window and door trim, lighting fixtures, tile or brick decoration, etc.).
c. Additions should be designed so that if the addition were to be removed in the future, the essential form
and integrity of the original structure would be unimpaired.
Seismic Retrofitting
Where structural improvements for seismic retrofitting affect the building exterior, such improvements
should be done with care and consideration for the impact on appearance of the building. Where possible,
such work should be concealed. Where this is not possible, the improvements should be planned to carefully
integrate into the existing building design.
Equipment & Utilities
1. All mechanical or utility equipment, whether on the
roof, ground or side of building must be screened
from view, above or below. The method of
screening should be architecturally integrated with
the structure in terms of materials, color, shape and
size. The design of the screening should be done in
concert with and as a part of the design of the
building, rather than as an afterthought.
2. Roof mounted mechanical or utility equipment must
be screened according to the Zoning Ordinance. The
method of screening should be architecturally
integrated with the structure in terms of materials,
color, shape and size. It is preferable to screen
equipment with solid building elements (e.g. parapet
wall) instead of after-the-fact add-on screening (e.g.
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wood or metal slats).
3. Air conditioning units placed in individual windows and window transom areas are strongly discouraged.
IV.
Landscape Design
1. While the City is interested in all areas meeting the
minimum requirements stated here, locations with high
public visibility or which are developed for public use are
more stringently regulated.
2. The design of all landscapes and irrigation systems should
be of professional quality.
3. Focal points, such as gateways, project entries, street
corners and prominent intersections, and architectural
entries should be highlighted by specimen trees, special
paving, and other upgraded landscape materials.
4. Initial project layout and design should recognize the
desirability of preserving healthy mature trees.
RRM Design Group
5. Landscaped areas should be a major component of any parking area.
6. Landscaping shall be placed to enhance landscape vistas to hills, recreation areas and open space.
7. Landscaping shall be selected and placed so as to maximize resource conscious design such as reducing
ambient temperatures, providing shade and conserving water.
8. Street and pathway plantings shall provide visual linkage and continuity to the Downtown through the
repetitious use of plant materials and walls. Plant materials, in this way, lend an organizing character to
the pathways they serve providing repetition of hardscape and plant materials to promote the
development of a coherent integrated and unified Downtown.
9. The character of planted areas near Atascadero Creek shall respect this context. “Transition” areas shall
be planted between ornamental and indigenous plant communities.
10. Fencing and accessory structures visible from the public street shall be compatible with the architecture.
The following materials are unacceptable:
•
•
•
•
Chain link fence
Chicken wire
Corrugated plastic or fiberglass panels
Plastic webbing, reeded or straw-like materials
11. Redesign or alteration of an existing approved project may require modification of an existing landscape
due to hardscape deterioration, too many or too few plant materials, etc.
12. Areas that do not contribute to the enhancement of a project should be screened. Trash collection and
storage areas shall be located with minimum public visibility or shall be screened with plant materials.
Landscaping shall also be used to screen the following: backflow prevention devices, irrigation
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controllers, parking areas, loading and service areas, public utility service equipment, and other
mechanical equipment.
13. Street trees should be planted to enhance the areas image, and create a strong sense of identity and unity
regardless of the architectural condition or variance.
V. Signs
Sign Materials
1. Traditionally, downtown signs were often individual gold-leafed wooden letters. This sign type would be
equally appropriate today on many of Downtown Atascadero=s buildings, as would many other sign
materials such as enameled metal, neon tubing, painted wood, cast bronzed or colored fabric. With such
as wide variety of materials to choose from, businesses are discouraged from using plastic signs which
appear mass produced, and are encouraged to use more original interesting materials which enhance the
unique quality of downtown.
2. Paper signs are not allowed, except as temporary notices.
3. Fabric signs are not allowed, except for awning signs and decorative pennants.
4. Sign materials should be carefully chosen to complement the character of the business identified and the
buildings they are mounted on.
5. Every sign should be carefully designed and conscientiously maintained for its lifetime.
Sign Lighting
Merchants are encouraged to light their signs in the evening. Light will not only make identification of
businesses easier but will add vitality to the area. Externally illuminated signs are encouraged. Internally
illuminated signs are discouraged except for those of neon or for individual letters.
Window Displays
Merchandise and other displays within storefront windows are another means of attracting attention to the
interior of a store, and although they do not constitute a sign in the sense of identifying a name, they do give
the passing pedestrian an image of the business inside. Like any other sign, window displays should be
carefully designed to show a business off to its best advantage.
Window Graphics Design
Window graphics provide an opportunity to produce creative signage that draws attention toward the interior
of a business and provides useful information concerning the business (e.g., services, product lines, store
hours). Commonly, window graphics depict a business name or logo in gold letters. White or light color
lettering also works well as it contrasts with the windows that normally appear dark. For the same reason
dark colored lettering is often difficult to read.
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