City of Coppell discusses new mural regulations for Old Town Coppell


Laura Amador-Toro

Sarah Carrick, owner of the store Jacaranda Gift Shop located in Old Town Coppell, recently approached city development coordinator Matt Steer about creating a mural beside her shop to bring in customers. The City of Coppell is considering a mural ordinance that would regulate murals in Old Town Coppell, since currently murals are not allowed anywhere in Coppell.

Neha Desaraju, Staff Writer

One of the main reasons Jacaranda Gift Shop owner Sarah Carrick wants a mural on the building is to draw attention.

Carrick said she has a basic idea for the mural since last January but did not want to be very specific so that the final idea would still follow the city’s new mural regulations. The idea drew inspiration from wildflowers and contain paintings of a variety of Texas flowers.

“We really wanted it to be Instagram-worthy,” Carrick said.

Since the City of Coppell does not regulate murals, she approached city development coordinator Matt Steer with her idea. Soon, Steer had drafted an ordinance that would mend the city’s current signage laws.

“We really wanted to celebrate the art of the historical district,” Steer said. “It already has a lot of art, and this would be a way to beautify the community.”

To draft the ordinance, mural laws in neighboring cities such as Irving, Carrollton and Grapevine were referenced.

According to the council memo from Feb. 26, prohibiting the murals would “take away one of the potential opportunities for promoting the area – through the use of ‘Instagram Murals’.”

There is a public hearing for the ordinance on April 23, after which the ordinance will be amended and ratified. The hearing would allow residents of Coppell to express their concerns for the ordinance.

Regulations for murals include how much of a building’s facade an art piece can occupy. Currently, this number is 75 percent. Murals also cannot contain any advertising, or they would be governed under Coppell’s signage laws and would not be allowed as paintings on  buildings. They also must be kept up regularly and currently, are only regulated in the historical district.

At the Feb. 26 city council meeting, the City of Coppell developmental services coordinator Matt Steer proposed the addition to Coppell’s sign ordinance that included regulations for murals in Old Town Coppell, which were discussed previously at the Jan. 8 city council meeting.

Carrick contacted Steer regarding a mural on the side of the building.

“We had the idea in January of last year,” Carrick said. “We wanted to submit a request for the mural but [Coppell] didn’t know how to deal with that.”

Currently, Coppell’s sign ordinance does not include any mentions of murals, which automatically means murals are not allowed, according to Steer. With regulations, murals would be allowed in Coppell’s historical district.

“We really wanted to develop that whole artsy [aesthetic],” Carrick said. “It would match our shop, too, since we have the little garden and all.”

City councilman Gary Roden seconds the proposal for the mural ordinance.

“I like that we’ve got a process. It’s a very reasonable suggestion,” Roden said during the meeting.

The draft was also discussed at the city council meeting on Jan. 8, where a draft and more details were requested.


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