Wrong Orientation For Flag Poles?

Discussion in 'Flag Poles' started by FlagAdvocate, Feb 4, 2017.

  1. FlagAdvocate

    FlagAdvocate Member

    YMCA Parking Lot.jpg
    Recently a new YMCA was constructed in my home town with a 3 flag pole memorial to honor our local Korean War Veterans (See photo attached). As viewed from the parking lot, the taller center pole now flies the U.S. flag, the lower left pole flies the Korean War Veterans flag, and the lower right pole flies the YMCA flag.

    The orientation of this flag pole array caught my attention as unusual. Usually, the orientation of a multi-flag pole array is installed parallel to the front of the host building, so that an observer on approach via the main access street (in the photo to the far left) would see the left and right lower flags in the same position, whether the observer approaches from the left or right. The orientation of these flag poles suggest that the intent was to view this memorial flag display only from the parking lot, disregarding the opposing views on approach to the property. In other words, if approached from the direction opposite the parking lot (from the street lights in the background), the Korean War Veterans flag would be seen as subordinate to the YMCA flag which would not be consistent with the Order of Precedence for flags.

    The reason I am bringing this issue to the attention of the forum is to ask if anyone knows of any published guidance on the web which deals with the orientation of a multi-flag pole array in relation to the host property or building. I have contacted a multitude of companies which sell flag poles, but the only guidance they typically offer their customers are instructions for installing the flag pole base sleeves and assembling the poles. I didn't find any company which broached the subject of orientation.
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2018
  2. FlagAdvocate

    FlagAdvocate Member

    Y flags.jpg
    This is what the flag display looked like recently during a half-staff event.
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2017
  3. Robin Hickman

    Robin Hickman Well-Known Member

    They look "OK" to me, Bill.

    I say that because, while they will theoretically be "viewed" from a number of different angles, they will mostly be viewed (up close & personal) from the parking lot by the people coming and going from the building.

    Having said that, I think it would have been preferable to have the flagpoles situated so that they were parallel to the building rather than perpendicular to it. Unfortunately, I do not know how the whole YMCA property is laid-out and arranged, so it's possible that their arrangement was the "best" one available to them. I don't remember your "hometown", so I wasn't able to see if there was a satellite photo available.

    Incidentally, The Korean War Veterans' Flag (displayed on the left-hand flagpole) is a Flag designed by the "Korean War Veterans Memorial Dedication Foundation" to commemorate the Korean War Veterans Memorial which was dedicated on July 27th, 1995 in Washington D.C.

  4. FlagAdvocate

    FlagAdvocate Member

    YMCA Flag Poles.jpg
    Robin...This photo was taken from the street running parallel to the building, and looking toward the building entrance which is near the "Y" sign at the end of the sidewalk. The address is 641 Walnut Street in Williamsport, Pa. 17701
    This is an areal view from Google Maps:
    Aerial YMCA.jpg

    Thank you for the info on the flag. I learned something again from you! I appreciate you sharing your knowledge with me and all who read this thread.

    In my original post, I asked if anyone knows where one can find advice on the web concerning the preferable orientation of a multi-flag pole array with respect to the host property. Any thoughts?
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2017
    Ms. Cindy You likes this.
  5. Robin Hickman

    Robin Hickman Well-Known Member

    Hi, Bill!

    Thank you for providing additional photos! I used the address to check out the location on Google Maps. The "3D" option was VERY helpful!

    The only other spot to put the three flagpoles might be (might have been) in front of the main building, to the right of the front door, between the bldg. & sidewalk. I'm not sure if the roof eaves were high enough to NOT be a hazard to the Flags. If for any reason that spot would not "work" for the flagpoles, then I think where they put them is an acceptable 2nd choice. Just my opinion, of course.

    I, personally, do NOT know of any written "guidelines" for multiple flagpole placements. There may be one or more "sets" of them "out there" somewhere, but I don't recall seeing any, nor have I gone looking for them.

    Here in the Eugene-Springfield area there are more than a few businesses that have multiple flagpoles set up in front of there buildings. Mostly two poles, but sometimes three. Almost all of them have their flagpoles placed in a somewhat parallel orientation to the fronts of their main buildings. There are a couple businesses (maybe more) that placed their poles perpendicular to the building. One that comes to mind has two poles that are of the same height, and the U.S. Flag is flying on the "outboard" flagpole (closest to the street) and the Oregon Flag is on the "inboard" pole (closest to the bldg.). Because the poles are near the west-side property line, the Flags look like they're on the wrong poles (U.S. on right & Oregon on left) when viewed from the parking lot on the east-side and from the west-bound traffic lanes. When I first saw them I thought that they had been accidently reversed. Before going into the building to "help" them correct the situation, I thought I'd wait a couple of days to see if they caught their own "mistake". In the meantime, I found (and read) something somewhere (probably somewhere in these Forums!) to the effect that the "outboard" pole is where the U.S. Flag was supposed to be! I am SO glad that I decided to wait a couple of days before going in to be "helpful"!

    Robin Hickman
    "Your Friendly Neighborhood Flag Man"
    Eugene, Oregon, USA.
  6. FlagAdvocate

    FlagAdvocate Member

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