What also bothers me is NYSDOT's practice of providing a "TO" banner with every shield. "TO (shield shield shield)" on one line should be sufficient, especially if the information is placed beneath the primary information and above the directional arrow.Except "TO" shields in NY aren't placed beneath the primary information - they're placed in line with the other shields. Region 2 over-uses the word though - I suspect they don't know what a freeway is and treat the ramps as regular one-way roads.
I agree that a TO for each marker is overkill. Outside of Region 2 I've seen a mixed bag of the placement of the word "To", but usually it's to the left of the marker AFTER the primary route.
(690) WEST To (90) (Thruway)
That sort of thing.
The MUD Project in the late 80s (rebuilding of Interstate 790, etc.) had the "To" routes placed in the same way that the other NYSDOT regions (and the rest of the country) do it, but it changed with sign rehabs in the mid 1990s. Apparently, the engineer that makes these decisions was hired in the mid 90s and has never traveled outside of Region 2.
When I interviewed with NYSDOT a few years ago I was careful not to criticize the practices in R2, but I did mention where I thought I could contribute enhancements to the area. I guess that's why I wasn't brought on board.