Fairfax County, VA reached out to ISA in October 2023 seeking feedback on their plans for revising their sign code. Their sign code limited EMC brightness to 100 nits, while recent research has supported a higher level of brightness.
ISA’s Kenny Peskin provided a detailed analysis on recommended levels of sign lighting effectiveness, content-neutral sign regulations and other important issues. Kenny shared best practices and studies from the Sign Research Foundation, including EMC Night-time Brightness Recommendations and On-Premise Digital Signs & Traffic Safety.
ISA staff testified in-person at two Planning Commission hearings and the subsequent Board of Supervisors meeting, where the final vote established the new EMC lighting levels of 300 nits.
The higher EMC lighting levels (from 100 nits to 300 nits) will improve sign visibility at night, help the County with enforcement, and make these kinds of innovative signs more appealing to end users in the County.