Pittsburgh Contends Pennsylvania's Commonwealth Court Erred in Upholding a Ruling That a Controversial Sign atop Mt. Washington Owned by Lamar Advertising Can Remain [Derived Headline]

By Bauder, Bob | Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, November 27, 2019 | Go to article overview

Pittsburgh Contends Pennsylvania's Commonwealth Court Erred in Upholding a Ruling That a Controversial Sign atop Mt. Washington Owned by Lamar Advertising Can Remain [Derived Headline]


Bauder, Bob, Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review


Pittsburgh contends Pennsylvania's Commonwealth Court erred in upholding a ruling that a controversial sign atop Mt. Washington owned by Lamar Advertising can remain.

The city has appealed the ruling to the state Supreme Court, arguing that Commonwealth Court contradicted previous case law involving Lamar signs in Monroeville and violated a Supreme Court precedent by substituting its own facts for those established by the Pittsburgh Zoning Board of Appeals.

The Supreme Court can accept or refuse to hear the appeal.

Dan Gilman, Mayor Bill Peduto's chief of staff, on Wednesday declined comment. Attorney Jonathan Kamin, who represents Lamar, could not be reached for comment.

"Only by ignoring this court's decision in Lamar v. Monroeville - and the distinction between electronic signs and static, vinyl signs - was the panel in Lamar v Pittsburgh able to reach its conclusion..." the city wrote in the appeal.

The city and Lamar have battled in court for years over the landmark billboard that has featured advertising since the 1920s for such local brands as Iron City Beer, Bayer and Alcoa.

Pittsburgh contends the billboard has violated city zoning regulations since 2016 when Lamar placed a vinyl sign for Sprint on top of existing neon lettering. The sign currently features advertising for the National Flag Foundation.

Lamar alleges the city violated its due process, property and free speech rights by preventing the company from modernizing the billboard with LED lighting. …

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