Mar 01, 2012

Give Us a Sign

A mysterious construction project popped up in my neighborhood this unseasonably warm Midwestern December. Every day, usually several times per day, I walked and drove past the site, straining my neck to sneak a peek.

For two weeks I tried making sense of the torn up sidewalk, orange barrels and periodic equipment and worker sightings. Finally, curiosity got the best of me, and I asked an idle worker what the mess was all about. Turns out it was the site of a dual-purpose streetlight and sidewalk improvement project.

“That’s fantastic,” I said. “Why not post an information sign letting passers-by know?” I soon after wondered.
American Recovery and Reinvestment Act-funded project sites consistently feature signs identifying them as such. I have taken note of many across the country, and perhaps you have too. These posts are not in vain: Informational signage is a minor investment that can yield major results.

We live and breathe storm water and erosion control in our line of work. The general public, naturally, tends to be less conscious of these important topics. Including easy-to-see and -comprehend informational signage on storm water and erosion control sites is a simple way to increase awareness of related issues. It also marks a community’s commitment to addressing them in the interest of public health and safety.

Signs serve as a courtesy to residents and commuters, letting them know what is taking place on their stomping grounds, and to taxpayers, letting them know how their hard-earned dollars are being put to work.

An effective at-work sign might include the name of the project; a brief description; the parties involved; how it was funded; a scheduled timeline; the benefits it will offer; a computer-generated “after shot;” or a fitting combination thereof.

Do your project teams post information signs on active storm water and erosion control sites? Please share your thoughts—and postings and sightings—with Storm Water Solutions at [email protected] and on our social media pages.

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