Town Facilities Naming Policy

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Policy Statement 171

Town Facilities Naming Policy

Prepared by: Laura L. Cove, Director – Facilities Design and Transportation Services

Adopted by council:  3/27/2014

Effective:  3/27/2014


The purpose of this policy is to establish a consistent policy and guidelines for the naming of Town of Cary owned facilities. Facilities may include Town-owned assets such as buildings, structures, recreation and open areas, and park sites. This policy is designed to provide flexible guidance on facility naming. 


The naming of Town facilities shall be the function of the Town Council.  The Town Council may name and rename any facility in its discretion, consistent with contractual and other legal considerations.  This Policy should also be considered when naming rights are requested as part of an offer of sponsorship pursuant to Policy Statement 156, “Sponsorships.”

General Principles

In considering proposals for the naming or renaming of a facility, the following general principles should be taken into consideration either collectively or individually. When naming a facility, the proposed name should:

·         Have a strong positive image and should stand the test of time 

·         Have appropriate regard to the facility’s location, geography, natural land feature, and/or history

·         Commemorate places, people or events that are of continued importance to the town, region, state, and/or nation

·         Have broad public support 

·         Recognize outstanding accomplishments by an individual for the good of the community. Quality of the contribution should be considered along with the length of service by the individual.

·         Not result in the undue commercialization of the facility if it accompanies a corporate gift or sponsorship

Temporary Naming

In the case of a new project, a generic temporary name and/or number will be designated by the Town staff for identification purposes during acquisition and/or development of the facility.  

Permanent Naming

A permanent name should be identified prior to bid award for the initial phase of construction. Town Staff will make naming recommendations to the Town Council for consideration.  

Facility Renaming

While renaming of an existing facility is discouraged, there are times when renaming may be necessary or desired. Critical examination should be conducted to ensure that renaming the facility will not diminish the original justification for the name or the prior contributors. Renaming may follow the same procedures as naming the facility.  Renaming may be appropriate for: facilities temporarily named or named for geographic location, outstanding feature or subdivisions or for facilities named after individuals or entities or if the name is likely to bring notoriety, ill fame, discredit or controversy to the Town or is otherwise not be in the best interest of the Town or the community.  A renaming of a facility named after an individual may also be appropriate when the original facility name, or a significant portion of the original name, is incorporated into the new name. 

Naming for Major Donations

From time to time, a significant donation may be made to the Town that may add considerable value to the Town’s facilities.  On such occasions, recognition of this donation by naming or renaming a facility in honor of or at the request of the donor should be considered consistent with other Town policies, including the Sponsorship Policy (P.S. 156) as amended from time to time.  Such recognition may be appropriate if the donor:

·         Deeds land for the facility to the Town.

·         Contributes capital construction costs associated with developing the facility.

·         Provides an endowment for the continued maintenance and/or programming of the facility.

In all instances above, to be considered for facility naming, the value of the contribution (land value, cash, or endowment) should be commensurate with current market value of a naming rights sponsorship for the given facility, as determined by current naming rights sponsorship standards.

Other Considerations

Nothing in this policy is intended to override anything in the sponsorship policy (Policy  156) and this policy should be interpreted to be consistent with that policy. 

This policy is not intended to address the naming of individual rooms within Town facilities.

Related Policies, Procedures and Forms

Policy Statement 156: Sponsorships