Builder's 53-foot sign disappears in Surprise


The Arizona Republic -- Scottsdale-based builder Michael Ripson was shocked Sunday to find a 53-foot-wide sign advertising his upcoming Surprise development had gone missing.

Just before 2 p.m. Sunday the chief executive of Ripson Homes went to 163rd Avenue and Asante Boulevard in Surprise to show his public relations director the $2,800 banner that sported the slogan "Size Matters."

But the eight-foot-tall billboard promoting the Sonoran Acres development's one-acre lots and homes in the mid-$200,000 range was gone.

Ripson called police and the manufacturer. A Surprise police officer wrote a report.

The manufacturer told Ripson someone likely took the sign down. He showed Ripson tool marks on the trailer on which the advertisement had been mounted.

Though Surprise spokeswoman Diane Arthur confirmed Tuesday that the banner's location was in violation of the city's sign code, she said city code enforcement officers did not remove it.

The sign had been posted March 20, Ripson said.

Ripson said he hopes someone will come forward and return the sign.

"We just want the sign back and we want to launch our project," the homebuilder said.

Ripson Homes' development will be located near Grand Avenue and Patton Road.

Anyone with information about the missing sign should contact Surprise police at 623-222-4000. 

The Arizona Republic

Link to story on AZ Central Website
Reported by: Lisa Halverstadt
Last Update: Apr. 1, 2009 09:35 AM