This request asks for a continuation to experiment using the "R V Friendly" symbol that was tested during the summer of 2003. The Oregon Travel Information Council (TIC) conducted an experiment using "RV Friendly" symbols on logo signs along a 45 mile portion of Interstate 5 from June through August 2003. The strong and positive reactions of motorists and business managers to the first experiment using the "RV Friendly" symbol supports making this new request to the Federal Highway Administration for a continuation of the experiment over a larger area and over an extended period of time.For reference and details of this first experiment, copies of the original Request to Experiment (April, 2003) and the Report on Experiment (November, 2003) are attached as Exhibits A and B.
Early development of the "RV Friendly" symbol is detailed in Exhibit A. The symbol tested during the summer of 2003 was a 12" yellow circle with black 8" RV letters. The use of the "RV Friendly" symbol deviates from the standard supplemental message sign used under logo plaques in that it is a symbol sign that is a part of the logo plaque versus a text message that is placed below the plaque. The symbol is placed on the lower right comer of the logo plaque.
The use of the symbol is an improvement over the supplemental text messages because it is far more visible and recognizable. At a long distance, the placement and color of the round shape is easily discernable. As motorists approach the sign, the letters RV are recognizable and the motorists are able to focus their attention on the name and location of the associated business, rather than trying the read multiple text messages arrayed under various logo plaques.
Illustrations are attached as Exhibit C .
Details of how the "RV Friendly" symbol was developed and tried are found in Exhibits A and B. The symbol tested on Interstate 5 was a 12" yellow circle with black 8" R V letters. Results from the initial test showed that the symbol had good visibility and was easily recognizable. The symbol had good proportion in comparison to the logo plaques and complimented, rather than distracted from, the information displayed on the logo board.Some additional testing of the symbol is anticipated for use on lower speed secondary highways where smaller sized logo plaques are used. There is also interest in testing the symbol on Tourist Oriented Directional (TOD) signs.
All work done in this experiment for the design of the RV Friendly symbol has been preformed by TIC and the ODOT, both of which are state agencies who operate within the public domain and do not seek a patent or copyright of this sign.
The time period of the experiment would occur from June 2004 through December, 2007. Testing would be expanded to include most of Interstate 5 in Oregon and additional highways in western Oregon between the Pacific coast and the Cascade Mountains that lie within ODOT District's 3, 4, 5, 7, and 8 (see Exhibit D). This expanded area includes such highways as US 101, US 20, OR 18, OR 22, OR 126, and OR 99.
TIC customers in the study area with GAS, FOOD, LODGING and TOURIST ATTRACTION logo signing and TOD signing will be notified about the experiment If they are interested in participating in the experiment, they will be sent an application form that lists the qualifying criteria required for participation. Volunteers from FMCA and other RV groups may visit the applying businesses to confirm the facilities R V Friendly qualifications.
Qualifying standards to be RV Friendly include the following. For all facilities, roadway access and egress must be hard surface, tree of potholes, and need lane widths 12' wide, and never less than II' wide with a minimum swing radius of 50' to enter and exit the facility itself For facilities that require short-term parking, such as restaurants and tourist attractions, the facility must have two or more spaces that are 12' wide and 65 'long with a swing radius of 50' at both ends to enter and exit the spaces. For fueling facilities, canopies must have a minimum 14' clearance and those selling diesel fuel to RVs must have noncommercial nozzles on pumps.
If qualified, TIC will install RV Friendly symbols on the business' logo plaques and provide the business with follow up RV Friendly symbols to guide RV motorists to the location of their RV Friendly services, such as parking spaces, or diesel fuel pumps with non-commercial nozzles. Instructions will be issued with the on-premise RV Friendly symbols advising the facilities where the on-premise symbols should be displayed.
The Travel Information Council will develop a marketing and public information campaign for the expanded experiment. The purpose of this campaign will be to educate and inform R V motorists and the public as to the meaning and purpose of the RV Friendly symbol. The RV market will be targeted through industry publications and Internet websites while a broader media campaign will be directed toward the general public.
A select group of participating businesses will be recruited to collect data and provide feedback for the length of the experiment. As a follow up to the information gathered during the first test, these selected businesses will be asked to annually administer a short customer questionnaire to measure changes in customer awareness and knowledge of the symbol over time. From this same group of businesses, the managers will be asked to provide information about their experiences and impressions about the benefits of the symbol and the results of the test.
It is agreed that all RV Friendly symbols will be removed from logo signs and onsite locations at participating businesses by March 31, 2008. This agreement also provides that ODOT will terminate the experiment at any time that it determines significant safety concerns are directly or indirectly attributable to the experimentation.
1. Agreement to provide semiannual progress reports for the duration of the experimentation, and an agreement to provide a copy of the final results of the experimentation to FHW A within three months following completion of the experimentation.It is agreed that TIC will provide semiannual progress reports to FHW A for the duration of the experiment. It is also agreed that a copy of the final results will be provided to the FHW A's Office of Transportation Operations within three months of the scheduled completion of the experimentation (copy by March 31,2008).
|Subject:||RE:REQUEST TO CONTINUE EXPERIMENT USING "RV FRIENDLY" SYMBOL||Date:|
Department of Transportation
Shelley J. Row, P.E.
Dear Ms. Row:
The Oregon Travel Information Council (TIC), a state agency separate from the Oregon Department of Transportation that administers the Interstate Logo and Tourist Oriented
Destination sign programs in our state, conducted a limited test of an "RV Friendly" symbol on logo signs during the summer of 2003. The positive results of that test support making a new request to FHWA for a continuation of the experiment over a larger area and over an extended period of time.
The previous experiment demonstrated the acceptance and potential of using advance symbol signing that would alert RV motorists of facilities that catered to the special needs of large vehicles. These "RV Friendly" symbols were attached to the Logo signs of qualified facilities so that motorists would know with confidence that those businesses would provide them with an easily accessible and maneuverable destination.
Enclosed for your review and approval is a more detailed description of the proposed experiment using the format given in the MUTCD. Also enclosed are reference documents from the prior experiment, photos of the symbol, and a map of the proposed test area. As before, the TIC will be responsible for completing the evaluation. If you need any additional information or have any revision to the proposed experiment or evaluation plan, please contact me at 503-986-3606, or Mr. Jim Renner of the TIC at 503-373-0870.
Edward L. Fische, P.E.
State Traffic Engineer
Cc with Enclosures:
Jim Renner, TIC
Nick Forte, Salem. FHWA Division Office JMjlbm