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Temporary Signage Policy

This policy applies to university administrative and academic units and their staff and faculty, as well as registered student organizations, for university-affiliated activities. Non-university or outside organizations, businesses, or individuals are not allowed to place signs on university property. Signage will not be approved or disapproved based on the sign’s message or content.

This policy does not include the distribution of posters, fliers, or handbills on campus. Students, faculty, and staff should reference the “Literature Distribution” policy in Hilltopics for more information.

Image from the temporary signage guide

Download the full signage policy and guide (pdf)

GENERAL GUIDELINES

  • The Signage Request Form must be submitted and approval received before placing temporary signage on campus. Requests will be reviewed by the Office of Communications and Marketing (OCM) and Facilities Services (FS). Requests for temporary signage on the Ag Campus will be reviewed by UTIA’s Marketing and Communications office (UTIA M&C). A decision to approve, deny or modify the request will be returned to the requester within three business days.
  • The Signage Request Form can be found at brand.utk.edu/signagerequest.
  • The Signage Request Form should be completed at least two weeks prior to event for all types of signs except pole banners. Pole banners must be requested at least four weeks prior to preferred installation date.
  • Signage must promote or support a specific event, series of events, or initiative.
  • Signage may not be displayed on, or attached to, building exteriors, structures, railings, or handrails (except by express permission from OCM, FS or UTIA M&C).
  • Signage that requires placing a spike, post or base in the ground (including bow banners, feather flags) must be installed by FS to avoid damage to underground utilities. Pole banners must also be installed by FS. All other approved temporary signage (including yard signs) may be placed by staff, faculty, or students following approval, following the guidelines within this policy.
  • Signage may be displayed no earlier than two weeks before the start of the event, and must be removed within 24 hours after the event (or the next business day).
  • Signage installed by FS will be removed by FS following the event.
  • Signage promoting recurring events or ongoing initiatives may request standing approval. Extended display schedules will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
  • Approval may be revoked if any of the guidelines within this policy are not met.

BASIC CRITERIA FOR APPROVAL

OCM and FS will consider the following conditions of each temporary signage request to determine whether or not the request will be approved. Signage will not be approved or disapproved based on the sign’s message or content.

  • Adherence to general guidelines (above)
  • Location requested (see “No-Signage Zones” below)
  • Number of other requests in the same vicinity
  • Timeframe requested
  • Adherence to university brand guidelines (academic and administrative departments only)

ADDITIONAL GUIDELINES

(MUST ALSO MEET ALL GENERAL GUIDELINES ABOVE)

Yard Signs, Bow Banners, and Feather Flags

  • Must be placed in landscape beds where possible. Turf areas are maintained regularly and removal may be necessary.
  • Must be placed at least 36 inches away from sidewalks and curbs to avoid damage to irrigation systems. If damage occurs, responsible unit will be responsible for repair costs.
  • Signage that requires placing a spike, post or base in the ground (including bow banners, feather flags) must be installed by FS to avoid damage to underground utilities.
  • Yard signs may be placed by the requestor.

Sandwich Boards/A-Frames

  • May not be placed in locations that will impede pedestrian traffic or vehicle visibility.
  • Must allow five feet of clearance around any sandwich board in an open paved area or sidewalk.
  • May not be placed in landscape beds or turf areas.
  • May only be secured with self-contained weighting systems.
  • May not be chained or cable locked to University property (including, but not limited to trees, bollards, railings, street or lamp posts, and buildings).

Sidewalk Stickers

  • Must have textured surface to be slip-resistant.
  • MUST be removed immediately after event by requesting unit or installer.
  • May not be placed on steps or stairs due to visibility and ADA issues.

Pole Banners

  • The size of banners that can be accommodated varies across campus depending upon the hardware on the poles. Banners must be sized to fit existing hardware and banner material must meet certain minimum requirements. Contact OCM (865-974-2225) for details.
  • The exact dates when banners are put up and taken down depends on the availability of appropriate staff from FS.
  • There may be a fee charged by FS for putting up and taking down the banners.

“NO-SIGNAGE” ZONES

Temporary signage may not be placed in the following campus locations:

(Exceptions may be allowed under special circumstances, but only with express permission from OCM and FS or UTIA M&C)

  • Torchbearer Plaza
  • Circle Park Lawn
  • Ayres Hall lawn
  • Pat Summitt Plaza
  • Campus gateway entrances (Neyland Dr/Lake Loudoun Blvd, Neyland Dr/Joe Johnson, Neyland Dr/Kingston Pk, and Cumberland Ave/Estabrook Rd)
  • Seal on Johnson-Ward Pedestrian Walkway
  • Engraved “Torch” on the pedestrian mall by Haslam College of Business
  • Blueberry Falls
  • Student Union (north side along Cumberland Ave)
  • Median on Volunteer Boulevard
  • UT Gardens (except by the UT Gardens staff)
  • Native American Interpretive Garden (burial mound)

 


Download the Temporary Signage Policy (pdf)