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Interpretation Letter 2-564(I)-Orientation of Airport Symbol

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U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration

400 Seventh St., S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20590

May 25, 2005

Refer to: HOTO-1

Mr. Paul Porell
Traffic Engineering Director
City of Scottsdale
7447 East Indian School Road, Suite 205
Scottsdale, AZ 85251

Thank you for your April 15 letter requesting an official interpretation of the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) regarding the orientation of the Airport sign (1-5) when used as a trailblazer sign on the arterial approaches to the Scottsdale Airport.

In MUTCD Section 2A.06, the MUTCD provides the flexibility for State and local agencies to change the orientation of symbols or the layout of word messages. The Airport symbol may be rotated 90 degrees clockwise for a right turn or 90 degrees counterclockwise for a left turn. The orientation of the airport symbol in the direction of the turn may be used in addition to the supplemental arrow plaques that are currently being used for trailblazing.

We appreciate the opportunity to provide this clarification and hope that it helps explain the MUTCD provisions. If you have additional questions, please contact Ms. Linda L. Brown of my staff at 202-366-2192. For recordkeeping purposes, we have assigned the following official ruling number to this interpretation: "2-564(I)-Orientation of Airport Symbol." Please refer to this number in future correspondence.

Sincerely yours,

/s/ Regina S. McElroy

Regina S. McElroy
Director, Office of Transportation Operations

City of Scottsdale

Transportation Department

7447 E. Indian School Rd., Suite 205
Scottsdale. AZ 85251

Phone 480-312-7696
Fax 480-312-4000

April 15, 2005

Federal Highway Administration
Office of Transportation Operations (HOTO)
400 7th Street SW
Washington, DC 20590

Dear Sir or Madam:

The City of Scottsdale respectfully requests an official interpretation of the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices.

The question we have concerns the installation of the Airport general information sign (1-5) and its use as a trailblazer sign on the arterial approaches to Scottsdale Airport. Members of the Scottsdale Airport Advisory Commission have reqluested that at those locations along the routes to the airport where either a left or right turn is required, that the 1-5 sign be rotated either 90 degrees clockwise or 90 degrees counterclockwise. It is their feeling that the direction of the airplane on the sign will irnprove driver recognition of the need to turn either left or right.

Currently sign installations have been made with the sign oriented as shown in the MUTCD and with the installation of supplemental arrow signs below the sign. Other than comments from the Scottsdale Airport Advisory Commission members, the Traffic Engineering Department has received no citizen complaints about the current sign installations.

Your assistance in this matter is greatly appreciated so that we may continue to provide the users of Scottsdale Airport clear and concise guidance on how to get to the airport.


Paul Porell, PE, PTOE
City of Scottsdale
Traffic Engineering Director