Section 18: Historic Routes

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Historical route signs are installed on highways that have been confirmed eligible by the Texas Historical Commission (THC). Signs are reflective and have a brown background and white legend. For more details on signing standards, see “Sign Placement and Standards” later in this section.

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Legal Basis for Naming and Signing

Under Chapter 442, Texas Government Code, Section 442.025, the THC shall cooperate with the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) in establishing historic routes. Title 13, Texas Administrative Code, Chapter 21, Subchapter E, provides a list of officially designated historic routes and rules for implementation.

TxDOT is specifically prohibited from naming or otherwise designating a highway, street, or bridge with any name or symbol other than the regular highway number.

NOTE: Texas Transportation Code, Chapter 225, Subchapter A, establishes a separate process for designating historical routes by application from a county historical commission. Title 43, Texas Administrative Code, Section 25.9, provides the rules for implementing Chapter 225 of the Texas Transportation Code.

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Records Management

Historic routes are recorded and tracked by the TxDOT Traffic Operations Division (TRF).

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Agreement with County

Once a historical route has been established by the State Legislature under Chapter 442 of the Texas Government Code, the district and TRF will review and approve sign designs and proposed locations, and then the district will execute a Texas Historic Roads and Highways Program Sign Agreement with the county.


Sign Placement and Standards

TxDOT forces do not fabricate, install, or maintain these signs; therefore, each TxDOT district should retain the services of a contractor to fabricate and install the signs. The county may not install the signs on state right-of-way as per Chapter 311 of the Texas Transportation Code.

Sign Placement. Historic route signs must be mounted independently in accordance with TxDOT installation procedures and at an agreed upon location. The signs must not be installed on an access controlled facility, but may be installed on frontage roads. The signs must not be mounted on the same support with other traffic control signs.

Sign Standards. Historic route signs must be reflective and fabricated in accordance with TxDOT specifications and procedures. The sign must have a brown background with a white border and white, 4-inch, Clearview letters. Figure 7-11 shows a sample sign layout.

Typical Historic Route Sign (click in image to see full-size image) Anchor: #VOADRVXDgrtop

Figure 7-11. Typical Historic Route Sign

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