PHOENIX – Signs that inform drivers about what kind of services are available at exits along freeways are becoming a more common sight in the Valley.
The big blue signs, commonly see along rural highways, are part of a multi-year program by the Arizona Department of Transportation to generate some revenue and keep drivers informed.
Recently signs have been popping up along State Route 51 in Phoenix.
“The build out will be completed on the 51 by July 1 or so of this year and then we have more to do, we have other freeways that we will focus on,” said ADOT Spokeswoman Laura Douglas.
Additional freeways in the Valley that will receive signs include U.S. 60, I-10, I-17, Loop 101 and others, Douglas said.
After work in the Valley is complete, Douglas said the signs will be installed in other urban areas of the state as well.
“It’s really a multi-year process and these logo signs are going in first in the Phoenix metropolitan area and they will extend to Tucson, Flagstaff and Yuma,” she said.
Besides keeping drivers informed, Douglas said the signs also help bring in revenue for the department because businesses bid to have their logos put on them.
“The minimum bid has been established at $3,200 a year,” Douglas said.
Each sign has six logo spaces and to keep things fair, ADOT uses a bidding system where the second highest bid is the one that prevails, Douglas said.
“The highest bidder will pay the second highest bid and the second highest bidder will pay the third highest bid and so forth,” she said. “This is really designed to keep it fair for all businesses and prevent any one single business for overbidding or muscling their way in.”
At a time when ADOT’s budget is facing uncertainty due to shrinking revenue from the state’s gas tax, Douglas said the extra funds are very helpful.