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HZC approves restoration of illuminated Fraley's sign
Fraley's sign approved2.jpg
The old Fraley’s sign on Morford Street is slated for improvement. While it is located within the Historic District, an area that discourages internally lit signs, this one was placed before the current policy and is exempt from those guidelines. - photo by Lisa Hobbs

A massive restoration project of the old Fraley’s building will include an internally lit sign located on Morford Street.

The McMinnville Historic Zoning Commission met Tuesday to consider a proposed renovation to Fraley’s illuminated sign, a request made by current property owner Ken Roberts.

“It is my understanding that the sign has been there for quite a few years,” said Historic Zoning member Tom Ward.

Roberts replied, “I don’t know the exact date of the sign. I would guess it was placed about 50 years ago.” 

While the Historic Zoning Commission’s current policy discourages internally lit signs within the Historic Zoning District, and members are considering a change in policy that would ban them altogether, the one at Fraley’s pre-dates those guidelines and is exempt from the existing policy. This is commonly known as being grandfathered in.

“So, it will stay the same?” asked HZC member Rachel Kirby. “It will just have black letters on it and be illuminated from the inside out like it has been. No digital.”

Raven Young, HZC member and granddaughter to Roberts, confirmed there would be no digital messaging, just names of the businesses located within the building. 

“It’s not digital,” Young said. “The sign has six spaces on each side. Each tenant would be given one of those to place their business name. All the letters might not be black. Begonias might want red. We don’t know.”

HZC members unanimously approved the sign’s renovation.

Other business considered Tuesday was replacement of windows at Magness Library.

“We are right now replacing windows in the basement, the full metal casement windows,” said Steve Harvey. “A few of those have rusted out. We are replacing them with a clad window, which is metal on the outside and wood on the inside. It will give you, basically, the same grid pattern as what’s in there right now.”

Ward asked community planner Katie Kemezis about the change.

She said, “While the wood is a new material on these windows, it will be on the inside. And, it’s a treated wood to protect against water damage and insects. The metal on the outside will stay similar to the original window that was in there. So, we don’t have any issues with this request.”

Historic Zoning Commission members unanimously approved window replacement at Magness Library.