Media company sues hotel owner claiming sign blocks billboard

Kelly Holleran Oct. 13, 2011, 3:50am

An example of a DDI Media billboard

An Illinois advertising company says a sign at an Alton hotel is blocking one of its billboards and wants the hotel to remove it.

Drury Displays Inc., doing business as DDI Media, filed a lawsuit Sept. 30 in Madison County Circuit Court against Shivam Hotel LLC, Impella Investment LLC and Lowery Hotel LLC.

DDI Media entered into an agreement with the Alton Hospitality Group in April 2003 which allowed the company to erect a billboard on the company's property, according to court documents. When the hotel owner's lender began foreclosure proceedings in 2009, DDI claims it entered into a non-disturbance agreement with the lender -- an agreement recorded in Madison County in April of that year.

The agreement allegedly provided the advertising company with the same rights as it had under the previous lease and said those rights "shall not be disturbed." DDI Media says the contract required any succeeding tenant to be held to the same provisions.

In August 2009, the defendants took over the property in question.

Shortly after that, DDI alleges, the new owners put up a sign for the hotel that directly blocked the line of sight of DDI's billboard. DDI says the company advertised on the billboard has since cancelled its contract with the company.

DDI asks for an injunction to remove the hotel sign and a judgement of more than $50,000 in damages plus court costs.

Attorney Harry J. Sterling, of Fairview Heights, is representing DDI Media.

Madison County Circuit Court Case No. 11-L-985.

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