Richmond to finally remove old Hilltop advertising sign

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Richmond aims to remove old Hilltop Mall advertising sign
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Nearly 12 years after an inspection revealed “significant structural deficiencies,” Richmond is set to remove the aging Hilltop Outdoor Advertising Sign on city-owned property just off of Highway 80.

On Tuesday, City Council approved a $35,000 contract with YESCO to expedite removal of the sign “due to the existing damaged condition of the sign.”

On Aug. 26, 2010, Certus Consulting Inc. performed a structural inspection on the sign that revealed deficiencies and that recommended replacement of the sign “relatively soon,” according to city documents. “The sign has deterioriated” and is “a major safety concern,” officials said.

While a past development proposal for the defunct Hilltop Mall property had included plans to replace the sign, the development failed to come to fruition, the city said. Community members debated over the years whether to renovate the sign into a digital sign or to simply tear it down.

Prior to the pandemic, developer LBG Real Estate Cos. had planned to modernize the shopping center and build housing, office space and a hotel, among other amenities. Those plans were scrapped at the onset of the pandemic. Last year, Prologis, a logistics company, acquired the 77-acre mall property and intends on proposing a mixed-use development that could include homes, retail (including a grocery store) and logistics sites. All that is left at the mall site now is Walmart, which Prologis indicated last year would remain due to its longterm lease.