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A billboard battle is brewing on the Sunset Strip

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The drama was sparked by plans for a tall billboard above the Rainbow

The Sunset Strip is turning into a battleground for two opposing billboard companies.
F. Velasco // Curbed LA Flickr Pool

Bored with debating the March 7 mayoral election? You’re in luck. There’s a new conflict brewing on the Sunset Strip. According to WeHoville, two billboard companies are locked in battle over a tall billboard that would be erected above Rainbow Bar and Grill.

Earlier this month, the West Hollywood City Council gave approval to Ace Outdoor Advertising to install a new, 48-foot tall billboard above the Rainbow that would exceed the city’s 60 foot height limit by 29 feet. The zoning amendment for the unusually tall billboard was contingent on its creative design and financial benefit to the city. (West Hollywood expects to bring in about $200,000 a year in fees from the tall billboard.)

Enter competing billboard company Regency Outdoor Advertising. It’s pushing a petition urging the City Council to reverse its vote. Why Regency is picking a fight with Ace isn’t totally clear. When asked by the Beverly Press about it, Regency offered no comment.

But WeHoville spoke with one Regency signature gatherer outside of a Starbucks who “focused his pitch on the height of the Ace Billboard.” If Regency can gather signatures from 10 percent of West Hollywood voters, the City Council will have to revisit the issue.

So, how are Ace and the Rainbow fighting Regency’s billboard petition? With a petition of their own, of course. According to WeHoville, a signature gatherer working on behalf of Ace says it’s all about saving the Rainbow Room, because, the signature gatherer said, business is hurting.

Ace and the Rainbow are circulating a petition to gather signatures from people who previously signed the Regency petition. The Ace petition states that signers of the Regency petition were unaware of what they were signing and want their names removed from Regency’s list.

Things are getting so heated on the Sunset Strip that both sides are accusing each other of being (gasp) Republicans.

The signature gathers might turn out to be the winners of the whole debacle. One petition worker from San Diego told WeHoville he makes $15 a signature, plus room and board. Where do we sign up?