Portsmouth to hold public forum on community banner initiative

PORTSMOUTH, R.I. — Due to the interest in the proposed Community Banner Program, the town of Portsmouth will hold a public forum.

The forum will be held Thursday, Jan. 17, from 5 to 6:30 p.m. at Town Hall, 2200 East Main Road.

The program that the town is considering proposes to install banners, as part of a Pilot Community Banner Program, on utility poles in selected areas of town to enhance civic pride, boost community identity and support local businesses.

The banner program is being proposed by CGI Communications, the same firm that has provided the “Video Tour of Portsmouth” videos that are available on the home page of the Portsmouth town web site. Like the videos, the banner program is offered at no cost to the town.

The town is considering a pilot program for the banners in selected areas of the town.  The agreement would only obligate the town for a minimum of 25 banners for a period on one year.

Some nearby communities have adopted the program. Both Fall River and North Providence have had success with the banner program.

The program consists of installing banners that would be about five feet by two and a half feet, designed to town specifications, with the bottom thirty percent of the banner used for local business advertising.

CGI will bear all the costs of the program and will provide all the necessary installation and maintenance including liaison and permitting with town, state and utility authorities.

The Portsmouth Economic Development Committee recently voted to endorse the banner pilot program.

Rich Talipsky, Portsmouth Director of Business Development, said, “Even if we are skeptical of the merits of the program, something that has the potential to enhance community pride, while supporting local businesses at no financial cost to the town, deserves a try.”

Areas being considered include those that have a concentration of businesses.  A proposal is expected to be presented to the Town Council where a decision would be made on whether or not to go forward with the pilot program.

Citizens are encouraged to learn more about the program and express their views. They can visit the Town Web Site Community Banner Program page ( ) or contact the Town Director of Business Development (, 401-643-0382 ).

A sample banner is also available for viewing at the Town Hall.

An online survey is also available at

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