Archive for Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Paxico marks the spot for new city signs

May 2, 2007

Driving into town from either the south or east on U.S. Highway 24-40, you may notice new signs welcoming residents and visitors to Tonganoxie.

But if you look closely, you might think you're just west of Topeka.

Two new $15,200 granite signs at the edges of town were installed Friday, replacing the old worn-down wooden signs. The signs, designed by Eagle Memorial of Tonganoxie, are in the shape of the state of Kansas. They have the city's logo, its founding date -- and a red star in the upper right quadrant.

According to Mike Yanez, city administrator, the star is a "visual representation of where you find Tongie on the map."

But when a map of the state is overlaid on top of the sign, the star is somewhere around Paxico. The town of about 220 people is 58 miles west of Tonganoxie as the crow flies.

"It's not to scale," Yanez said of the Tonganoxie locator star. "It might be a little left. I don't know."

New Mayor Mike Vestal said he wasn't a part of the planning for the new signs, so he wasn't sure about the design. But he said he was concerned about any misinterpretation.

"If that star is supposed to represent Tonganoxie, I don't care if that's done to scale or not, that's wrong," Vestal said.

On Aug. 14, 2006, City Council was asked to vote on three different designs for the new highway signs. Two designs came from Star Signs and Graphics Inc., a Lawrence based company, and the third design came from Eagle Memorials. In a tie-breaking vote then-Mayor Dave Taylor agreed with Council members Jim Truesdell and Ron Cranor to accept Eagle Memorial's design.

The design was for two 48-inch tall, 72-inch wide rectangular signs made of 4-inch thick grey granite stone. The design given to the council was not originally in the shape of Kansas and did not include a star.

Bill Jones, owner of Eagle Memorial, said he worked out all of the details for the new signs with Taylor and Yanez after the council vote. Those details included changing the rectangle to an outline of Kansas and adding the red star to "indicate Tonganoxie."

Jones still maintains the star isn't too far west.

"Not if you measure the whole rock and laid it all out. It's to scale," he said.

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