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Section 10: Relocation

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Overview

A commercial sign that has been timely removed from a TxDOT construction project site may be relocated if the sign is legally erected and maintained and will be within the highway right of way as a result of a highway construction project or, under exceptional circumstances as determined by the executive director or the executive director's deputy if the sign is legally erected and maintained and the relocation will further the intended purposes of the Highway Beautification Act of 1965.

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Permit

When a sign within the proposed highway right of way is to be impacted to accommodate a transportation project, TxDOT may issue a permit for the new sign location if the location meets the following requirements.

To receive a new permit to relocate a sign under this section, the permit holder must submit a new permit application to the Right of Way Division through EPS that identifies that the application is for the relocation of an existing sign due to a highway construction project. The new location must meet all local codes, ordinances, and applicable laws.

If the sign is relocated to a county that is not covered by the existing license and bond, the license must be amended to include that county prior to obtaining approval of TxDOT. No fee is required to amend a license.

The relocated sign must be within a zoned commercial or industrial area or an unzoned commercial or industrial area, except that an unzoned commercial or industrial area may include only one recognized commercial or industrial activity.

Notwithstanding other provisions of this section, if only a part of a sign will be located within the highway right of way as a result of the construction project, the sign owner may apply to amend the existing permit for the sign to authorize:

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  1. the adjustment of the sign face on a monopole sign that would overhang the proposed right of way and the required five foot setback from that location to the land on which the sign's pole is located, including adding a second pole if required to support the adjustment for a legal non-conforming monopole sign;
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  3. the relocation of the poles and sign face of a multiple sign structure that is located in the proposed right of way from the proposed right of way and the required five-foot setback to the land on which the other poles of the sign structure are located; or
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  5. a reduction in the size of a sign structure that is located partially in the proposed right of way and the required five-foot setback so that the sign structure and sign face are removed from the proposed right of way and the required five-foot setback.

A permit application for the relocation of a sign must be submitted within 48 months after the earlier of the date the original sign was removed or the date the original sign was required to move. The sign owner is required to continue to renew the sign permit and pay the permit renewal fee for the sign to remain eligible for relocation.

To replace an issued and active relocation permit, an operator first must cancel the permit, then must reapply, pay the fee prescribed, and obtain approval for the new permit in accordance with this section. The relocation process must be completed within the time requirements of subsection.

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Spacing

The relocated sign location must meet the following spacing criteria:

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  • The sign may not be placed where it is likely to cause a driver to be unduly distracted in any way or where it will obscure or otherwise interfere with the effectiveness of an official traffic sign, signal, or device, or obstruct or interfere with the driver's view of approaching, merging, or intersecting traffic, whether the intersection be of two or more highways or the intersection of a highway with a railroad.
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  • The sign may not be placed within 500 feet of a public space that is adjacent to a regulated highway. This prohibition applies on either side of the highway on a nonfreeway primary system; and on the side of the highway adjacent to the public space on an interstate or freeway primary system.
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  • If the sign is to be placed outside an incorporated municipality along an interstate or freeway highway, the sign may not be located in areas adjacent to or within 500 feet of:
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    • interchanges, intersections at grade and rest areas; or
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    • ramps, their acceleration and deceleration lanes. (Such distances shall be measured along the highway from the nearest point of beginning or ending of pavement widening at the exit from, or entrance to, the main-traveled way).
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  • The sign may not be erected along the interstate and freeway primary systems closer than 500 feet apart on the same side of the highway.
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  • The sign may not be erected along the nonfreeway primary system located outside of municipalities closer than 300 feet apart on the same side of the highway.
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  • The sign may not be erected along the nonfreeway primary system in municipalities closer than 100 feet apart on the same side of the highway.
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  • The sign may not be erected within five feet of any highway right of way line.
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  • A sign may not be relocated from a regulated rural road.
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  • A relocated sign may not be erected or maintained in a location that violates Health and Safety Code, Chapter 752.
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Size, Configuration and Construction

The size, configuration and construction of the relocated sign must conform to the following provisions:

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  • The maximum area for any one sign face shall be 672 square feet, with a maximum height of 25 feet and a maximum length of 60 feet.
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  • The maximum size limitations shall apply to each sign face visible to approaching traffic.
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  • The area shall be measured by the smallest square, rectangle, triangle, circle, or combination thereof which will encompass the entire sign.
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  • Sign faces may be placed back-to-back, side-by-side, stacked, or in "V" type construction with not more than two faces presented in each direction. The sign structure and faces shall be considered one sign.
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  • Two faces which together exceed 700 square feet in area may not face in the same direction.

The spacing requirements set forth above do not apply to signs separated by buildings, natural surroundings, or other obstructions which cause only one sign located within the specified spacing to be visible at any one time; or directional or official signs, nor shall measurements be made from these signs.

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Cessation of Activities

When a commercial or industrial activity ceases, and a sign is located within 800 feet of at least one recognized commercial or industrial activity located on the same side of the highway as the sign, the sign will be considered nonconforming.

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Relocation within a Certified City

If a displaced sign is subject to the jurisdiction of a municipality certified to control commercial signs pursuant to 43TAC Section 21.200 relating to Local Control, and the sign will be relocated within that municipality, permission to relocate the sign must be obtained only from the certified municipality, in accordance with the municipality's sign and zoning ordinances. A separate permit from TxDOT is not required and the specific requirements for a relocation permit need not be met.

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