Category:140 Encroachments and Items Permitted on MoDOT’s Right of Way

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140.1 Right of Way Encroachments, Maintenance Policy RDS(D1)

State law allows the Commission to prohibit encroachments on state right of way. Right of way encroachment is defined as the placement and/or maintenance of unauthorized items, or the performance of unauthorized activities, on or extending over onto state right of way. Unauthorized items and activities include but are not limited to:

Forms
Notice of Encroachment RDS(D1)A

Removal Notice RDS(D1)B

Flier
Unauthorized Items off Roadsides Flier

Items:

- Signs (political, garage sale, etc.)
- Display materials (streamers, balloons, banners)
- Trash containers
- Fences

Activities:

- Vehicle parking in restricted areas
- Vending
- Excavation
- Construction

All encroachments that pose a safety hazard to MoDOT personnel or the traveling public shall be addressed immediately. If the encroachment posing a safety hazard is an unauthorized item or activity and can be removed, it shall be removed immediately.

Unauthorized encroachment items removed from the right of way should be stored at the nearest maintenance facility; unclaimed items may be properly disposed of after 30 days.

For permanent encroachments involving construction on the right of way, a written notice shall be sent to the owner by the district engineer. If the encroachment is not removed in a timely manner, a Notice to Remove Encroachment, including a deadline for removal, shall be sent to the owner by the district engineer. If the encroachment is not removed by the specified deadline, the district engineer shall refer the matter to the Chief Counsel’s Office for legal action. Sample encroachment notice letters and encroachment removal letters are available from the State Maintenance Engineer.

Permanent encroachments where the owner can not be identified shall be removed as soon as possible.

Encroachments that do not pose an immediate safety hazard to MoDOT personnel or the traveling public shall be removed prior to beginning a maintenance activity on the route. However, encroachments may be removed more frequently at the discretion of the Area Engineer. Encroachment removals can be coordinated with litter pickup and other maintenance work such as mowing, edge-rut repairs, crack sealing, etc.

Single-use items generally made of paper and cardboard can be immediately disposed without notice. Professionally made or reusable items should be stored at the nearest maintenance facility; unclaimed items may be properly disposed after 30 days.

Any holiday decorations placed on or across the state right of way must have a permit signed by personnel designated by the district engineer.

All actions regarding encroachments should be timely and fair.

Placement of markers and tablets requires approval. Additional information is available from the Roadside Section of the Maintenance Division.

140.2 Monuments, Maintenance Policy RDS(D2)

MoDOT permits approved organizations (State Historical Society of Missouri, Federated Garden Clubs of Missouri and the Daughter's of the American Revolution) to place markers at approved locations along highways within the bounds of rest areas, roadside parks or turnouts. These markers are located for the purpose of honoring service men and women who served in a particular war or to designate points of historical interest.

Placement of markers and tablets requires Commission approval.

140.2.1 Blue Star Markers

The Blue Star Memorial Highway is a plan conceived by the National Council of State Garden Clubs to create a living tribute to the men and women who served in the Armed Forces during World War II. Blue Star Memorial Highways are sponsored by the Federation of Garden Clubs in cooperation with MODOT.

Routes 36, 50, 6 and interstates 44 and 70 have been designated by Commission action as routes on which Blue Star Markers may be installed.

1) Markers are furnished by the Federated Garden Clubs of Missouri, Inc.
2) Markers may be installed in roadside parks or interstate rest areas, but not on operating right of way.
3) Markers are to be erected by MoDOT
4) MoDOT will provide maintenance for small problems associated with these markers
5) Major repairs items are the responsibility of the Federated Garden Clubs of Missouri, Inc.

140.2.2 State Historical Society Markers

On November 1952, the Commission entered into an agreement with the Missouri Historical Society for the erection of markers along the highways of Missouri at points of great historic interest. The signs are generally located in a rest area, roadside park or at a specific location of historical interest.

The signs state “Erected by State Historical Society of Missouri and the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission” at the bottom of the sign. The signs are to be provided by the State Historical Society.

Maintenance Responsibilities

Both signs on the right of way and off the right of way are to be maintained by the department. District Maintenance forces are responsible for the installation, inspection and maintenance of Sate Historical Markers. The signs should be regularly inspected for any needed repair or maintenance. Minor maintenance and cleaning should be performed as needed. If the sign and/or posts are beyond repair and need replacement, the district shall contact the State Historical Society of Missouri. The society should be informed of the situation and what materials need to be replaced. It will be their responsibility to decide if the repairs will be made or if the monument should be removed.

The State Historical Society is also responsible for any major repair items such as replacement of the sign, post or pedestal. This will include supplying the materials needed for the repair.

140.2.3 Daughters of the American Revolution

The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) has placed various markers along highways throughout the state to designate the Boone’s Lick Trail, Sante Fe Trail and other historical events. MoDOT will routinely maintain the markers and will repair and replace them with the necessary parts provided by others. The local chapter of DAR should be contacted if extraordinary maintenance or relocation of the marker becomes necessary. A list of DAR markers in place is available from the Roadside Section of the MoDOT Maintenance Division.

140.3 Guidelines for Installation of Banners on Lighting Poles

Banners may be allowed on MoDOT right of way if the following conditions are met:

  • All requests shall come from a city or a county
  • The city or county shall be responsible for installing and maintaining the banners by MoDOT permit
  • The requestor of the banners shall certify with a structural analysis, stamped by a Missouri Professional Engineer, that banners installed on MoDOT light poles will not be overstressed according to the latest AASHTO specifications
  • A structural analysis shall be performed for each MoDOT light pole type that the banners will be attached to
  • If a banner is to be installed on a pole that is not owned or maintained by MoDOT, a letter shall be required from the owner of the pole (i.e. the utility company) stating it is okay to install the banner
  • The banners shall not contain advertisements of any kind
  • Sponsorships are restricted to city or county names and/or logo only. Other sponsorships may be allowed with a Growing Together agreement
  • The banner message shall comply with all state and federal laws and be devoid of any website address
  • Electrified displays shall not be allowed on banners or light poles, and
  • The requester shall remove the banners once the banners begin to deteriorate or look bad, as deemed by MoDOT.

Banners shall not be installed on:

  • Traffic signal heads and supports
  • Any regulatory, guide or warning sign
  • Changeable message signs
  • Traffic control device posts or structures
  • Any site where the banner would obscure the ability of a driver to detect and understand existing traffic control devices, or
  • Poles located on the interstate system.
Growing Together banners must be attached to a street light pole
Growing Together banners must be attached to a street light pole

Any banners that are not in compliant with this policy shall be removed either by the owner of the banner or by MoDOT. If the owner of the banner is working with MoDOT to get the banners in compliance, the non-compliant banners may be left in place until a structural analysis or a Growing Together agreement is completed.

As stated above, banners shall not contain advertisements. However, sponsorships other than city or county names or logos may be allowed. In order for a banner program to be able to include other sponsorships, the banner requestor shall enter into a Growing Together program agreement with MoDOT. With this program, MoDOT will allow banners with sponsorships as an alternative to the standard GROWING TOGETHER sign in return for a beautification project or other benefit to the highway system. Projects may include mowing, planting of flowers/shrubs, snow plowing, building of sidewalks, etc. or any combination of these. Each sponsor shall only be allowed one banner or pair of banners per direction of travel. The sponsorship shall be devoid of logos, slogans or directions and will all use a standard font. The Growing Together logo shall also be incorporated into the banner. For more information about the Growing Together program, contact the Roadsides section of the MoDOT Maintenance Division. Refer to EPG 141.8 Sponsorship Programs for more information on MoDOT's Sponsorship Policy.

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