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State of the Bay

Bright Lights, Big City: Who Benefits From Billboard Deals?

Some safety advocates have called those bright, changing digital billboards on the freeway “television on a stick," which -- in addition to texting -- give drivers one more reason to take their eyes off the road. 

There's a plan in the works to put five digital billboards near the base of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge as part of the Oakland Army Base development project.
Critics of the plan also cite blight; city officials argue that the massive roadside ads will be an important source of revenue for the project  and for some Oakland communities.
What are the issues around safety for drivers, environmental racism, property value decreases for nearby communities, and free speech?

Next week, City Visions talks about just who stands to gain from the sale and commercialization of this public airspace.

Listen to Joseph Pace and guests:

  • Jerry Wachtel, researcher on digital billboards and a consultant both to the billboard industry and to government agencies wrestling with billboard issues.
  • Karen Hester, community activist and co-founder of Make Oakland Beautiful.
  • Milo Hanke, past president of San Francisco Beautiful who has fought billboard proliferation in his city for the past decade.
  • Randy Morrison, San Diego-based attorney who specializes in land uses that invoke first amendment and free speech concerns, especially regarding signs and billboards.







 Report: Clustering of unhealthy advertisements around child-serving institutions: A comparison of three cities:  http://www.med.upenn.edu/beat/docs/Hillier_HAP.pdf


https://mail.google.com/mail/?ui=2&view=bsp&ver=ohhl4rw8mbn4 : Report on the Safety Impacts of the Emerging DigitalDisplay Technology for Outdoor Advertising Signs