I am a resident of Knowlton a concern of mine, which I am sure is a shared by many residents of Knowlton the decrepit state of many of Knowlton's business signs and storefronts.
Have you looked at the state of some of the signs in Knowlton recently? There are signs that are in such a state of disrepair that it almost seems fairer to put a torch to them and put them out of their misery. Arriving into Knowlton on the highway from Cowansville looks like a mix of garage sales and ghost town remnants! Stores with hand drawn signs on bright colored poster board, warped and leaning signs made out of pressed lumber painted in what looks like cheap paint hanging by rusted chains, colored flags, faded and tattered, looking like an abandoned used car lot. The list is long and these signs are not hard to spot!
Dear me, even the Duck Farm sign is barely legible and is peeling, not to mention the old IGA parking lot with one crooked SAQ fluorescent sign and two abandoned metal sign posts...how tragic!
This doesn’t seem to phase city hall one bit. Actually, while visiting one local business I was shocked to over-hear that city hall was extremely upset with their sign. What sign is this you may ask? Is it one of the signs that is falling apart, chipped paint, crooked, rusted and causing an eyesore to visitors? No...it is a brand new sign, probably costing several thousand dollars, that has raised the ire of Knowlton's officials. Speaking with an employee of the pond store confirmed that, indeed, city hall wanted to pull the plug on their brand new sign. Most people have probably not even seen it as it is only visible when you are in front of the building. I'm talking about a new sign that is now on the Esso Gas station building on the corner or Knowlton Road and Victoria.
Now how could these elected officials seriously have a problem with this sign and yet be blind to the fact that right across the street from this sign there is a ramshackle wooden sign practically falling over with peeling paint and bright pink paper with handwritten letters as a window display? Is this the sort of signage that Knowlton City Hall prefers for the image of Knowlton? Apparently yes because they seem to ignore these examples of tumble-down signs…even their own fire department has a sign that has literally fallen apart! Our brave fire-fighters deserve more respect than their current sign offers!
I can’t comprehend the logic! Is there some law against nice new signs? When I look around at other signs in Knowlton of all different styles and in various states of decay it seems strange that there is this one new sign that is deserving of such attention and if it isn’t because someone at city hall has an axe to grind I can’t see how else city hall can find the time to want to complain about a new, modern, stylish and discreet sign when there are some many examples of similar signs and even worse, decrepit and derelict signs without an ounce of attractiveness or charm?
It is understandable that a town wants to have a vision and maintain a theme but some of the signs along the road into Knowlton look like they were painted 20 years ago and haven't been touched since! What must visitors think when they seem peeling paint and dirty overhanging canvas and flags drooping in town? Even the municipal fire department sign, while in wood, is half missing and looking like a broken down western movie set prop! The signage right beside the tourist info-center, in the heart of the village, is listing to the side and looks like it has been attacked by a knife...the paint is chipped and faded...what a poor image to project. Why isn’t city hall pro-actively concerned about this? What about the Mill Pond? What about our roads and water supply?
I'm not too happy to see elected officials use their powers on such minutiae as a nice new sign when, my goodness, some of the signs in Knowlton are so sad that tourists must ask why is this town being rated as one of the most beautiful villages of Quebec? We deserve to know that our elected officials are trying to work with the community to make it a better place. Why not work with businesses who want to make Knowlton their home instead of working against them? Have you seen how many stores are for rent and for sale in Knowlton? City Hall would better spend their time, and our money, fostering a spirit of community.