By Julie Caler, Code Enforcement Supervisor
Have you ever had a problem finding an unfamiliar home or business?
Even with the prevalence of GPS on our smartphones, locating some places remains difficult if the building isn’t identifiable from the street. That can create serious problems not only for visitors, deliveries and service calls but also for first responders in an emergency.
That’s why almost all cities, including College Station, have ordinances that require clearly displayed address numbers for homes and businesses.
In College Station, the address number for houses must be at least two inches high on both sides of a mailbox near the curb, or at least four inches high on the house or a prominently displayed sign.
For businesses, the numbers must be at least four inches high and have at least a half-inch stroke width in the main body. They should also be made of a durable material.
The color of the numbers should also provide a contrast with the background. For example, brass or black numbers on a dark background are hard to see from the street, especially at night.
In addition, be sure your numbers won’t be obstructed by bushes and shrubs as they grow. If it’s behind a bush and can’t be seen from the street, you’re violating the ordinance.
Does the curb count?
You may occasionally find a flyer on your door from a business that paints address numbers on curbs. The flyers sometimes claim that if you don’t have your address on the curb, you’re violating city ordinance.
While it’s certainly not a bad idea to display your house number on the curb, our ordinance only requires it to be on your house, mailbox or a prominent sign on your property.
Code Enforcement Supervisor Julie Caler has been with the City of College Station for 17 years.
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Editor’s Note (Sept. 6): This blog was posted before the agenda for the Sept. 11 city council meeting was finalized. The council will now consider an ordinance amendment that prohibits the sale of e-cigarettes to minors and the possession of the devices by minors, but does not restrict where e-cigarettes may be used in public. The original amended ordinance would have prohibited e-cigarettes where tobacco products are already banned. Staff will continue to research provisions related to public use for future consideration.
By Blanche Brick, Place 1 City Councilmember
On the same day the College Station City Council discussed adding e-cigarettes and vapor devices to the present ban on smoking in designated public spaces, the World Health Organization released this statement:
World Health Organization Press Release (Aug. 26)
(Newser) – More support for those who think it’s too early to jump on the e-cigarette bandwagon: The vapor-producing devices may still pose a threat to users’ and bystanders’ health, says WHO, which suggests stronger regulations on the relatively new industry in a report released today, reports Reuters. The health organization also asks for a ban on puffing away on the battery-driven units indoors, as well as on advertising and flavored e-cigs that could lure underage users. Although e-cigs “are likely less toxic than conventional ones,” writes Stephanie Nebehay at Reuters, WHO researchers say that nicotine and other chemicals emitted by e-cigs are still a health hazard, especially for teens and pregnant women. Those chemicals can include formaldehyde, aluminum, and silicate particles, reports the Telegraph.
The WHO report is lobbying against e-cig vending machines and says manufacturers shouldn’t be able to tout their products as “smoking cessation aids” until more research is completed to back that claim up. The main debate right now seems to be between those who think that e-cigs can help cut down on tobacco-related deaths and those who argue that using e-cigs could lead to the real thing for youngsters—especially with flavors such as bacon, bubble gum, and even Thin Mint. “Many public health experts are concerned that the advertising of electronic cigarettes could make it seem normal again to think smoking is glamorous,” a health official tells the Telegraph. (The FDA proposes a ban on sales to minors, but hasn’t moved against flavors.)
The city council agreed that there should be a ban on the sale of these devices to minors but could not agree on adding these products to the existing no smoking ordinance, which bans the use of tobacco products in designated public places. The council deferred a decision on the proposed amendment until a future council meeting.
Moving to a new town to continue your education at a major university — and everything that comes along with that exciting journey — can be overwhelming. The last things on your mind right now are city ordinances, but not knowing basic ordinances could result in costly citations.
As one of America’s top college towns, we want to help you avoid these simple mistakes so you can concentrate on more important things – like Aggie football!
“Texas A&M (is) now the coolest school in the state.”
FoxSportsSouthwest.com (Feb. 6, 2013)
The buzz around Texas A&M has never been greater, and a preseason top 10 national ranking for the Aggie football team has only added to the excitement. As College Station’s population approaches 100,000, we’re rushing to keep up with new development that supports our newfound coolness and accommodates thousands of Southeastern Conference fans.
It’s no surprise that Aggie football nearly doubles College Station’s population on game weekends. Existing hotels — and even the new ones nearing completion — were booked as soon as the 2013 schedule was announced. Those who couldn’t reserve a hotel room are searching near and far for a place to stay.