The Vermont Statutes Online
§ 490. Types and arrangement of signs
(a) The Travel Information Council shall regulate the size, shape, color, lighting, manner of display, and lettering of official business directional signs. Distinctive symbols shall be established to the extent considered practicable by the Council for each type of service or facility, different from those for other types; and appropriate signs shall be provided for each eligible applicant within a given category. When appropriate because of the number of signs at one location, the signs shall be replaced or substituted with an information plaza on which applicants may purchase advertising plaques.
(b) Subject to traffic safety regulations specifically adopted by the Agency of Transportation for the purposes of this chapter, locations of official business directional signs shall conform to the following:
(1) Official business directional signs shall be located in the same town as the applicant business unless one or more of the following conditions are present:
(A) The location of the sign must be in a town other than that of the applicant business in order to satisfy the traffic safety regulations. In such case, the sign shall be located as close to the turnoff for the business as possible;
(B) The business is located on an unnumbered highway, the turnoff from the numbered highway is in another town and this turnoff is the only access point for the business from the nearest numbered highway;
(C) The absence of highway destination signs directing travelers to the town in which the business is located; and
(D) The absence of an official business directional sign creates a safety hazard for the traveling public.
(2) Official business directional signs shall be located in those vicinities where the traveler must change direction from one highway to another highway to reach the business or point of interest, provided the sign is not on the same highway as the business or its on-premises sign unless the sign is needed to alleviate a safety hazard or to eliminate an unsafe situation as described in this section; and provided a travel information directional sign is not located at that point and travel to that information source will cause neither undue inconvenience to the traveler nor traffic congestion. Signs may be approved on the same highway as the business, or its legal on-premises signing only when, in the opinion of the Travel Information Council or its district committees, the traveling public is placed in an unsafe situation without one or more official business directional signs. For the purposes of this chapter, an unsafe situation shall exist when there is insufficient visibility of a business' on-premises signing that cannot be improved by the applicant business. Adequate visibility shall be determined by the Travel Information Council in consultation with the Agency of Transportation.
(c) When the signs at one location are too numerous, or when highway safety requires for other reasons, as determined by the Travel Information Council, the signs may be removed and the applicant business given the option to purchase advertising plaques on information plazas, located and designed so that drivers of motor vehicles may leave the main traffic lanes and inspect them. Information plazas may contain maps and other information, depending on space availability, and may have telephone and other information facilities attached to them. Sign plazas shall include the international symbol to indicate that gasoline service is available to people with disabilities. The Agency of Commerce and Community Development shall be responsible for the costs of installing new information plazas and for the installation of advertising plaques on State-owned information plazas, provided that the Secretary of Commerce and Community Development or designee gives prior approval for such costs and installation. If it is not practical to install information plazas or individual official business directional signs at any given location, because of the number of signs or because of traffic conditions, the Travel Information Council may in its discretion adopt some alternative method for providing information conveniently for travelers, including directions to zones or other geographic areas, and locally operated information booths and offices or multi-facility official business directional signs, or both.
(d) If an official business directional sign cannot be sited in conformity with the traffic safety rules adopted by the Agency of Transportation, a person who believes that he or she is eligible under section 489 of this title for such a sign may request the Secretary of Transportation to grant a variance from the rules, setting forth in the request the physical circumstances or conditions that make it impossible to locate an official business directional sign in strict conformity with the traffic safety rules. The request shall show that variance, if authorized, will not be detrimental to the public welfare or safety and will represent the minimum variance that will afford relief and will represent the least deviation possible from the traffic safety rules. The Secretary's denial of a variance request under this subsection may be appealed to the Transportation Board within 30 days of the denial. The Board's determination of such an appeal shall be final. (Added 1995, No. 46, § 41; amended 1995, No. 190 (Adj. Sess.), § 1(a), (b); 2013, No. 96 (Adj. Sess.), § 33.)