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6.1.15 Exterior Communications: Signs, Banners, Plaques, Temporary Signs, and Other Exterior Displays


Illinois State University manages the use of signs, banners, plaques, temporary signs, and other exterior displays in an effort to provide effective communications, promotions, and acknowledgements, while preserving the visual beauty and function of all outdoor spaces, and advancing the University’s campus identity objectives to continually enhance the institution’s image.


Responsibilities for management of exterior communication policy are shared among the offices of Facilities Planning, University Marketing and Communications, Facilities Management-Grounds Services, Parking and Transportation, Conference Services, and Dean of Students Office.

Facilities Planning is responsible for administering the exterior communication policy including determining best directional and wayfinding plans; approving the design, location and acquisition; and a shared participation in the messages for all permanent exterior communications.

University Marketing and Communications is responsible for the approval of all messages conveyed on permanent exterior communications, the management of institutional promotional campaigns, including banners, and a shared participation in the design and location of permanent exterior communications.

Facilities Management-Grounds Services is responsible for the installation, maintenance, repair, replacement, and cleaning of exterior communications, the storage of institutional promotional materials, the shared management of acknowledgement communications, and a shared participation in the locations for exterior communications.

Parking and Transportation is responsible for the management of all temporary roadway directional and parking signage and all permanent parking signs.

Dean of Students Office is responsible for the management of temporary communications requested by Registered Student Organizations within the guidelines of this policy.

Conference Services is responsible for the management of temporary signs for all other University and non-University activities.


a. Campus exterior signs:

The University will manage campus exterior signs to provide direction and wayfinding to campus facilities and services. Facilities Planning will manage this program. University Marketing and Communications and Facilities Planning will approve all messages.

A standard design concept shall be established for all permanent directional and wayfinding signs. The design concept will allow for variation in size and construction to accommodate a variety of directional and wayfinding needs.

As a general rule, signs for buildings will include only the name of the building. Exceptions may be allowed for buildings that house significant special facilities that require exterior identification.

Parking and Transportation in cooperation with Facilities Planning will manage the permanent parking sign program on campus.

b. Exterior banners:

The University will manage the placement of informational and promotional banners on campus. Proposals for exterior banner campaigns for special events and non-university events must be submitted to the office of University Marketing and Communications for approval of messages and determination of size, number, locations, and durations of banner placements. University Marketing and Communications will maintain a schedule for institutional banner campaigns that will take precedent over all special event banner campaigns. Special event banner campaigns generally will not be installed earlier than four weeks prior to an event and must be removed within five working days after an event. The University reserves the right to deny banner placements for events that are not considered appropriately aligned with the University’s mission and policies. No banners or other messages shall be affixed to University buildings, exterior facilities, or other permanent structures without Presidential approval.

c. Exterior plaques and monuments:

Exterior plaques and monuments are used on a limited basis to acknowledge the significance of special areas or features of the campus and special contributions to the campus. Standards for exterior plaques have been established to ensure uniform communications and to accommodate associated maintenance issues. Proposals for exterior plaques must be submitted to University Marketing and Communications and Facilities Planning for message and design approval. Proposed designs, acquisition, location, and installation must be coordinated with Facilities Planning and Facilities Management-Grounds Services.

d. Exterior temporary signs:

Special events, both University sponsored (i.e., Athletics events, residence hall move-in, conferences, meetings, celebrations) and non-University sponsored (i.e., Special Olympics, conferences, high school tournaments) often require the use of temporary signs that provide communications that are not a part of the permanent campus exterior sign program. Such signs include directions to parking and drop-off areas, bus parking, recommended routes to specific locations, directions to specific facilities, and event promotions.

All special event signage must conform to standards established by Facilities Planning for type of sign structure, locations, method of messaging, and message content. All University-related temporary signage should include appropriate institutional identity, the identification of the event or purpose, and should be designed in alignment with the University’s visual identity standards and campus exterior signs design standards.

Temporary signs shall not be placed in such a way as to hinder or influence the normal path of travel or safe sight-lines.

Temporary signs should only be used during the times of the related activities on campus and should be removed immediately after such activities are completed. Temporary signs used for promotional or informational purposes may be displayed for periods up to fourteen days. Extending the time for the display of promotional or informational temporary signs must be obtained from Facilities Planning.

Registered Student Organizations (RSO) must use the sign structures available from the Dean of Students Office. Advance reservations should be made and clearance obtained for the method of messaging and message content.

University sponsored events (other than RSO events) and non-University events must use sign structures available through Conference Services. University events shall take precedence over non-University events.

Temporary roadway directions and parking signs must be reserved through Parking and Transportation Services who will determine best locations for such temporary signs.

e. Other exterior displays (including postings and chalking):

The University shall maintain selected locations and kiosk structures for the placement of other campus messages. These locations shall include: Old Main Plaza, Watterson Plaza, Bone Student Center parking lot, and West Campus Mall. All placements in these areas must conform to University policies including institutional identity, sponsorship, advertising, and alcohol.

Washable chalk is allowed only on ground level horizontal concrete surfaces that are easily cleaned and not protected by building overhangs, porches or the canopy over Milner Plaza. No chalking will be permitted on vertical surfaces.

Ornament, paint, adhesives, tape, duct tape, and other defacing materials are prohibited.

All displays placed without permission or otherwise in conflict with University policy will be immediately removed. All groups or individuals responsible for the placement of inappropriate displays may be subject to fines, the costs of removal, clean-up, repair, and other University sanctions.


For information about campus exterior communications contact:

Facilities Planning
Campus Box 3390

For information about banners, messaging, and visual identity contact:

University Marketing and Communications
Campus Box 3420

For information about sign maintenance contact:

Facilities Management-Grounds Services
Campus Box 9100

For information about temporary roadway and parking signs, and the permanent parking sign program contact:

Parking and Transportation
Campus Box 9250

For information about RSO or other Student Affairs temporary signs, contact:

Office of Student Life
Campus Box 2700

For information about other University or non-University temporary signs, contact:

Conference Services
Campus Box 8610


Initiating body: Division of Finance and Planning

Contact: Director of Facilities Planning (309-438-2143)

Revised on: 04/2005

2018-12-07T11:08:22.619-06:00 2018