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I received a notice that says I need to register my sign due to the highway now being part of the National Highway System (NHS) but the street where my sign is located is a local street. Why then am I required to register the sign with the State?

The Federal Highway Beautification Act requires that the State Department of Transportation regulate outdoor advertising along all Interstate and NHS highways. The National Highway System (NHS) includes highways important to the nation’s economy, mobility and defense. The Federal Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (ISTEA) required the creation of the NHS and identified certain strategic routes to be part of the network. Over the next several years additional routes were added with the corporation of state transportation departments, metropolitan planning organizations and other local partners. In 1995 Congress approved the approximate 160,000 mile nationwide NHS, with Illinois’ portion of about 5,600 miles. Congress developed the concept of the NHS as a way for states to focus federal resources on the nation’s most important roads. The NHS consists of a combination of State, Toll Way, and local jurisdiction miles. The 2012 Federal legislation, Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21), expanded the miles of NHS by creating an enhanced NHS network. On October 1, 2012 the NHS was expanded to about 230,000 miles nationwide. This expansion added about 2,100 miles to Illinois’ existing NHS network, for a total of 7,885 miles statewide. Currently Illinois has about 7,852 miles of NHS; of this mileage 7,083 miles are under the jurisdiction of IDOT, but IDOT is required to regulate outdoor advertising along all of the 7,885 miles. Additional information regarding the National Highway System can be found on the Federal Highway Administration’s NHS website:

I have received a letter indicating I may have an undocumented sign, what do I do?

If you currently have a permit or registration from IDOT for the indicated sign, please reply by returning the letter with a copy of the permit or registration to IDOT, Attn: Bureau of Land Acquisition, Outdoor Advertising

If the indicated sign is advertising a business or activity other than that of the property you may be eligible for a Business Area Interstate permit. Please submit the Business Area Sign: Interstate Highway (LA9002) application.

How do I advertise on the IDOT Interstate Blue Logo Signs?

Visit Business Logo Program for information.

How do I get the GPS coordinate?

If your proposed sign is over 150 sq. ft. you will need to submit a drawing by a licensed land surveyor. Your professional land surveyor should be able to provide you with the GPS coordinate. You can also obtain coordinates by using Google Maps.

How do I get a Special Recognition Sign?

For Special Recognition signs, DUI Memorial, and Tourist Oriented Directional signs (TODS). Contact the IDOT District pertaining to sign placement by navigating to the Controlled Routes tab of this site.

How do I determine Right-of-Way (ROW)?

Contact the IDOT District pertaining to sign placement by navigating to the Controlled Routes tab of this site.

How do I obtain a Certificate Of Good Corporate Standing?

If the business applying for a sign permit is incorporated or an LLC registered in the state of Illinois then we require that the applicant submit a copy of a Certificate of Good Corporate Standing from the Secretary of State’s office. A copy of the Certificate can be found on the IL Secretary of State website.

How do I identify Scenic Byways?

View IDOT's Scenic Byways webpage or visit the U.S. Department of Transportation's Byway webpage for information on byways.