Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of City and Regional Planning




Chris Clark, JD



The City of Morro Bay, California – Sign Ordinance Update and Embarcadero District

Tourism-Oriented Directional Sign Plan

Erik Berg-Johansen

This report includes a Draft Sign Ordinance, a Tourism-Oriented Directional Sign Plan, and a background report for each product. The final products were created thought a process involving extensive research, community outreach, and detailed discussions among City of Morro Bay staff.

The Sign Ordinance

It was discovered that signs are important to business owners and residents due to their effect on both economic and aesthetic issues in communities. This report documents research of scholarly articles, case studies, and community outreach efforts. This report includes survey results and analysis that reveal the opinions of Morro Bay business owners, and also their ideas in regards to the sign ordinance update. According to many business owners, the current sign ordinance is convoluted, virtually unenforced, and unfairly applied. It was the goal of this project to hear what the community desires, and then apply this knowledge to a proposal that residents and business owners in Morro Bay approve of. The proposed sign ordinance aims to be fair and user-friendly, while ultimately enhancing community character and aesthetic quality in the future.

Tourism-Oriented Directional Sign Plan

The Tourism-Oriented Directional Sign Plan was created to promote tourism in the City of Morro Bay and negate the need for A-frame sign use in the Embarcadero District. The plan includes three alternatives that are intended to spur discussion among the Planning Commission when the proposal is presented. The background report associated with this plan is intended to provide the reasoning behind the proposals, and give readers of the plan background knowledge on directional signs in general. Similar to the sign ordinance background report, this report documents research of scholarly articles, case studies, and community outreach efforts.