A stationary digital billboard in Surrey. (Photo: kramer-design.com)

A stationary digital billboard in Surrey. (Photo: kramer-design.com)

Surrey council denies request to allow digital billboards on moving vehicles

Staff say such advertisements would be distracting and ‘potentially pose a hazard to drivers, cyclists and pedestrians’

After receiving a delegation asking the city to allow digital LED advertising on trucks, Surrey council has said no.

Paramjit Dhadda spoke before council on Nov. 19, seeking support to operate a mobile digital billboard vehicle business in Surrey.

After evaluating the request, staff recommended council not support the proposal, saying it would be “distracting and could potentially pose a hazard to drivers, cyclists and pedestrians.”

Last Monday night (Dec. 3), council agreed.

“Most mobile billboard vehicles are dedicated, customized trucks with displays on the side and back panels. Some advertising operations offer external sound systems, advanced video displays, and interactive displays featuring props and performers,” wrote Engineering Manager Fraser Smith in his report to council. “The example presented to Council by Mr. Dhadda was a large cube van with digital billboard displays on 3 sides.”

City staff confirmed that digital billboards similar to those proposed are in operation in other cities around the world but are “limited.”

Vancouver’s sign bylaw currently prohibits such signs, Surrey staff determined.

The City of Toronto has a program in operation that allows such signs, wrote Smith, but noted that city “has contemplated regulation on several occasions after concerns over distracted driving were raised.”

“Mobile digital billboard vehicles are permitted in other cities outside of Canada, such as Los Angeles, New York and Las Vegas where the digital ad trucks operate in highly urbanized and lower speed environments that may be more compatible with the service than in Surrey,” the report stated.

Smith wrote that the Motor Vehicle Act “does not permit signs or advertisements to be erected on or over provincial roads, except where approved by the Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. The MVA also prohibits signs on or over municipal roads, except where permitted by municipal bylaws. Therefore, if the city prohibits signage, electronic or otherwise, on or over municipal roads, the prohibition would be consistent with provincial legislation.”

The act permits illuminated signs, provided they are located on the roof of the vehicle and meet specific size, location, content, lighting, and brightness criteria, however Smith wrote that the mobile digital billboard proposed by the delegation “does not meet the criteria of the MVA Regulations.”

The City of Surrey says it operates seven stationary digital billboards throughout the city.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

B.C.’s parliament buildings in Victoria. (Photo: Tom Fletcher)
Surrey gets two cabinet ministers, a parliamentary secretary and government whip

Premier John Horgan’s NDP MLAs were sworn in on Tuesday and the cabinet was revealed Thursday afternoon

After twice have their wedding plans altered due to COVID-19 restrictions, Suzanne Schmidt and Andrew Sturgess got married in Bakerview Park last weekend, with the only guests being their two daughters, Zoey (foreground) and Tessa. (Darren Ripka photo)
From New Zealand to Bakerview Park, South Surrey couple weds in ‘backyard’

Twice scaled-down wedding ‘proof that good things still happen during bad times’

Steve ‘Elvis’ Elliott performs for residents of Amica White Rock. Exercise-to-music programs that led to a threat of city fines due to a noise complaint are to resume next week. (Contributed file photo)
COVID-19 outbreak declared at Amica White Rock

Peace Portal Seniors Village outbreak declared over

Wickson Pier in Crescent Beach is closed to the public, as work to replace and repair piles continues. (Susan Richards de Wit photo)
PHOTOS: Repairs to Crescent Beach pier complete

$180,000 Wickson Pier project included pile replacement, says City of Surrey parks manager

Surrey city Councillor Brenda Locke. (File photo)
Brenda Locke trying to breathe life into Surrey’s defunct Public Safety Committee

Surrey councillor’s motion will be up for debate at a future council meeting

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry update the COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Nov. 23, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C. sets another COVID-19 record with 887 new cases

Another 13 deaths, ties the highest three days ago

Arthur Topham has been sentenced to one month of house arrest and three years of probation after breaching the terms of his probation. Topham was convicted of promoting hate against Jewish people in 2015. (Photo submitted)
Quesnel man convicted for anti-Semitic website sentenced to house arrest for probation breach

Arthur Topham was convicted of breaching probation following his 2017 sentence for promoting hatred

Langley School District's board office. (Langley Advance Times files)
‘Sick Out’ aims to pressure B.C. schools over masks, class sizes

Parents from Langley and Surrey are worried about COVID safety in classrooms

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

The baby boy born to Gillian and Dave McIntosh of Abbotsford was released from hospital on Wednesday (Nov. 25) while Gillian continues to fight for her life after being diagnosed with COVID-19.
B.C. mom with COVID-19 still fighting for life while newborn baby now at home

Son was delivered Nov. 10 while Gillian McIntosh was in an induced coma

B.C. Premier John Horgan, a Star Trek fan, can’t resist a Vulcan salute as he takes the oath of office for a second term in Victoria, Nov. 26, 2020. (B.C. government)
Horgan names 20-member cabinet with same pandemic team

New faces in education, finance, economic recovery

A new ‘soft reporting’ room is opening inside the Ann Davis Transition Society offices on Dec. 1, 2020 which is thought to be the first of its kind in B.C. (Ann Davis Transitional Society/ Facebook)
New ‘trauma-informed’ reporting room opening next week in Chilliwack

It’s a space for reporting domestic violence, sexual assault, or gender-based violence to police

Most Read