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## Section 3: Arrangement of Components

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### Introduction (Texas MUTCD, Section 2D.29)

Conventional guide sign assemblies are created by combining the various components described in the previous section. These components are used in a particular manner and arrangement to ensure uniformity for the driver. This section concentrates on illustrating how guide signs, particularly route signs, are to be arranged in different assemblies so that different classes of highways and/or directions of travel are consistent.

The following terminology is used in describing the arrangement of guide sign components:

• Component: The individual signs that are attached to a post or sign.
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• Unit: A collection of components that present the information related to travel on a specific highway. A unit consists of a route sign and the auxiliary signs (if used) above and below the route sign. The typical unit consists of (from top to bottom): a cardinal direction sign, a route sign, and a directional arrow sign.
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• Assembly: A collection of units that present information related to travel on all highways at or near a specific intersection.
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### Guide Sign Units

The first step in arranging guide sign components is to identify the individual units that must be presented at a given location. This is accomplished by identifying the route signs applicable to a given location and selecting the signs that should be used above and below the route sign. Signs with the same information (such as the same cardinal direction or arrow) should also be identified so that they might be combined within the assembly. Table 3-2 identifies the components that can be used in the upper and lower positions of a unit. Figure 3-15 provides examples of guide sign units.

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### Arrangement Hierarchy

Once the units have been identified, hierarchal relationships are used to determine the position of the units within the assembly. The following steps are used to determine placement:

Anchor: #i1011062Table 3-2: Components of a Guide Sign Unit

Position

Possible Components

Upper

Cardinal Direction, Junction, Business, To, Alternate, End, Truck, By-Pass, Temporary, Begin

Middle

Route Sign

Lower

Directional Arrow, Advance Turn Arrow, Lane Use

Figure 3-15. Examples of a Guide Sign Unit

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### Arrangement Pattern

Guide sign units may be arranged so that all units are side-by-side (horizontal), top-to-bottom (vertical), or a combination of both. Figure 3-16 illustrates some of the combinations of arrangements that can be found when up to three units are displayed in an assembly.

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• Horizontal Arrangement - In a horizontal arrangement, all units are side-by-side. The horizontal arrangement is the best arrangement from a driver information standpoint, as the units are arranged in a manner that relates to the directions that a driver must turn (that is, a unit requiring a left turn is on the left side). Figure 3-17 provides examples of horizontal guide sign unit arrangements.
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• Vertical Arrangement - In a vertical arrangement, all units are top-to-bottom. Vertical arrangements may be used when the available width for an assembly is restricted. When units are arranged vertically, additional space should be provided between units to help the driver distinguish between directions (see Layout Dimensions for Assemblies, page 3-27). For route signs of the same color, directional arrows and cardinal direction plaques are omitted when redundant. For example, if a left turn heads in the same cardinal direction for 2 highways, only 1 cardinal direction and 1 directional arrow are needed for the 2 route signs. Figure 3-18 provides examples of vertical guide sign unit arrangements.
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• Combination of Horizontal and Vertical Arrangements - When there are three or more units, the assembly may be arranged in a manner that includes both side-by-side and top-to-bottom arrangements. To the extent possible, units should be arranged horizontally by direction. Units that share a common direction should be arranged vertically. In some cases, it may be necessary to include multiple directions in a single vertical stack. Figure 3-19 illustrates different possibilities for combination arrangements involving 3 or 4 units.

Figure 3-16. Arrangements of Guide Sign Units

Figure 3-17. Horizontal Arrangement

Figure 3-18. Vertical Arrangement

Figure 3-19. Combination Arrangement

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### Arrangement by Direction

The initial grouping of units is by direction. This requirement applies regardless of class of highway or route number. Highway routes with a common direction may be combined with a single directional arrow sign.

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• Directional Hierarchy for Horizontal Arrangement (left to right): Left, Double Arrow, Through, Right.
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• Directional Hierarchy for Vertical Arrangement (top to bottom): Through, Double Arrow, Left, Right.
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### Arrangement by Class of Highway

Within a given direction, route signs are arranged by highway classification. The higher class highway should be at the top or left. The following list indicates the hierarchy of highway classes, from the highest to the lowest.

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### Arrangement by Highway Number

Within a direction and highway class, route signs are arranged by number. Lower numbers should be at the top or left.

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### Examples of Assembly Arrangements

Figures 3-20, 3-21, and 3-22 illustrate arrangements of route sign assemblies for intersections with 2, 3, and 4 route signs, respectively. When an Option A or Option B is presented in the figures, Option A is the correct arrangement to be used provided all of the conditions under 'Double Arrow Sign' are met (see page 3-12). Option A will require fewer route marker signs. When arranging route marker assemblies, the arrangement hierarchy is always determined first by direction, then highway class, and then highway number as described above under 'Arrangement Hierarchy' (see page 3-17). Horizontal arrangements are preferred if sufficient right-of-way width is available.

Figure 3-20. Route Sign Assembly for Intersection with Two Route Signs

Figure 3-21. Route Sign Assembly for Intersection with Three Route Signs

Figure 3-22. Route Sign Assembly for Intersection with Four Route Signs

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### Layout Dimensions for Assemblies

The following dimensions should be used for the layout of the individual components and units in an assembly. These dimensions are illustrated in Figure 3-23.

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• The space between the individual components of a unit should be approximately 1 inch.
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• There should be approximately 4 inches between individual units arranged vertically in an assembly.

Figure 3-23. Layout Dimensions for Assemblies