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Author Topic: Rectangular Virginia Route Markers  (Read 6576 times)

deathtopumpkins

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Rectangular Virginia Route Markers
« on: May 29, 2010, 10:06:03 PM »

I'm kinda fond of them and wish they were used more often. They're typically mounted below street signs or even stop signs at rural intersections, rather than using a full shield assembly, and don't distinguish between US, state, and secondary routes.

Around Hampton Roads they're still pretty prominent in rural parts York and Isle of Wight Counties (and logically farther-out ones that I don't frequent), but are disappearing rapidly in more suburban areas.

They seem to be a pretty old standard too, at least based on this one I found in Yorktown recently coming off one of the Battlefield Tour Roads:

Anyone have idea how old it is?

froggie

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Re: Rectangular Virginia Route Markers
« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2010, 08:18:21 AM »

Without looking at both sides of the sign, it's hard to say.  But overall, they've been used for decades.
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Mapmikey

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Re: Rectangular Virginia Route Markers
« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2010, 03:32:47 PM »

Many rectangle signs have a date sticker on the back...

This size rectangle goes back to the late 60s at least (Summa pics in Fairfax County go back that far).  The font and arrow sizes were different than the one in the SR 704 pic above.  One standing recently still in Belle Haven - http://www.vahighways.com/oldsigns/oldsr2002.jpg.  Also, older ones fade to a tan color (example at http://www.vahighways.com/oldsigns/old9932.jpg)

Smaller rectangles go back to at least 1950 (official map shows how they're posted) and mini white shields appeared by 1956 (again from official map).  The oldest picture I've seen with any kind of SR posting in Virginia is from the 1950s (mini white border shield) shown below:


Some mini-rectangles were made of wood (Appalachia, VA):



Some have clearly been in place a really long time (Port Richmond, VA):


The mini rectangles have always been more rounded (old VA 16 at NC Line):


New mini rectangles are common only in district 8 today

I do not know how SR routes were posted in the early days or if either of the two older secondary route systems (1922-32; 1932-33) were posted in the field at all.

Mapmikey

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deathtopumpkins

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Re: Rectangular Virginia Route Markers
« Reply #3 on: May 31, 2010, 10:04:57 PM »

Next time I'm up there I'll check the back. I didn't really have a chance to stop when I took that picture. I'm thinking now that it may possibly have been posted by the NPS though, as it looks rather old but is clearly different from any of the examples mapmikey posted.

I think they're still posting new ones here in District 5 though... as a lot of the recent developments (early 2000s) off VA 134 in York County have them, as do a number of the even more recent ones along US 17 in Isle of Wight County.

And I love the old pics, by the way.  :)

froggie

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Re: Rectangular Virginia Route Markers
« Reply #4 on: June 01, 2010, 06:44:50 AM »

I doubt it.  Up on this side of the Rappahannock, NPS doesn't post any white rectangular shields...only VDOT.
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Mapmikey

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Re: Rectangular Virginia Route Markers
« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2010, 12:38:52 PM »


I think they're still posting new ones here in District 5 though... as a lot of the recent developments (early 2000s) off VA 134 in York County have them, as do a number of the even more recent ones along US 17 in Isle of Wight County.

To clarify, new normal sized rectangles are going up everywhere.  I mean new miniature rectangles like this size


If the NPS posts any SR rectangles, they would be brown.  I am aware of a Nat'l Forest brown 650 rectangle on unpaved SR 650 in Smyth County (old US 58).  The Blue Ridge Pkwy also appears to have tiny rectanlgles for SR markers on stop signs in Carroll County but I can't tell from street view if they are brown, white, or rusted because they are so old.  Looks like I need to take a field trip...

Mapmikey
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deathtopumpkins

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Re: Rectangular Virginia Route Markers
« Reply #6 on: June 01, 2010, 10:55:23 PM »

Ahh. The scale is a little hard to tell from pictures.

Why would the NPS-erected ones necessarily be brown? They post regular US, state, and interstate shields.

Mapmikey

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Re: Rectangular Virginia Route Markers
« Reply #7 on: June 02, 2010, 08:11:14 PM »

I'll concede it is largely conjecture...however the scorecard is 1 brown example and 0 white ones so far.

Since the forest service posts their own routes with similar brown rectangles I figure that's their method...
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