TR025 Sign Replacement Program

Project Details:

Project Start Date: 1/2/2022

Ongoing Program: Y/N

Submitting Department: Public Works

Contact Person: Steve Mosing

Level of Need: Significant

Estimated Project Completion Date: 12/30/2026

Department Priority: 13 of 62

Contact Phone Number: (612) 673-5746

Website: TBD

Project Location:

Address: Various locations throughout the City

City Sector: Citywide

Affected Neighborhoods: Citywide

Affected Wards: All

Project Description:

In 2005, the State of Minnesota published requirements for minimum levels of retro-reflectivity for roadway signs and mandated dates for compliance with the new standard. This language was based on the Federal requirements contained in the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD). In 2010, the Federal Highway Administration decided to reconsider the original language and began the process of amending the language contained in the 2005 MUTCD. The proposed language that was offered for public comment essentially eliminated specific compliance dates but still retained the retro-reflectivity requirements. The comment period portion of the rulemaking process has passed and the adapted revised language includes:

Regulatory and Warning Signs

Federal Register/Vol. 77, no. 93 / Monday May 14, 2012 / Rules and Regulation

• Implementation and continued use of an assessment or management method that is designed to maintain regulatory and warning sign reflectivity at or above established minimum levels.

• An assessment or management method must be established within 2 years of date of the above revision.

The City of Minneapolis has chosen the Blanket Replacement Method where all signs in an area/corridor, or of a given type, should be replaced at specified intervals (10 to 15 years). The interval level will be based on expected sign life. The City recognizes the value of maintaining the visibility of roadway signs and in 2010 began planning the implementation of a program that will ensure adequate retro-reflectivity system wide. The program was originally funded under TR022. Beginning in 2015, the sign replacement program has been given its own project under TR025.

Purpose and Justification:

These funds are requested to allow Public Works Traffic Operations to proceed with the plan for assuring compliance with federal and state standards for minimum levels of retro-reflectivity for roadway signs.

Project Visuals and Map:

Project Cost Breakdown

Department Funding Request


Have Grants for this Project been secured?


Describe status and timing details of secured or applied for grants or other non-City funding sources:

Not Applicable

Describe any collaborative arrangements with outside project partners, including who they are and what their role is with the project:

The City has established a partnership with the State to help replace signs on State Trunk Highways and City streets. This effort is in response to the new federal standards for sign reflectivity.


State Law Chapter 462.356 (Subd. 2) requires review of all capital improvements for compliance with the comprehensive municipal plan. Chapter 13, Section 4 of the City Charter requires Location and Design Review for the purpose of approving the sale of bonds for these projects.

Transportation: Minneapolis will build, maintain and enhance access to multi-modal transportation options for residents and businesses through a balanced system of transportation modes that supports the City’s land use vision, reduces adverse transportation impacts, decreases the overall dependency on automobiles, and reflects the city’s pivotal role as the center of the regional transportation network. This project is consistent with planning and policy guidelines set forth in the City’s comprehensive plan Minneapolis 2040.

Provide the date that Location and Design Review was conducted for the project, the outcome of that analysis and the date formal action was taken by the Planning Commission:

Location & Design Review has not been completed for this project.

Economic Development

Will the project contribute to growth in the city’s tax base?

Maintains existing tax base

Describe the economic development impact of the project:

Not Applicable

Does the project support redevelopment opportunity that without the project would be infeasible?

Not Applicable


Is the proposed project on an existing or planned transitway, transit route, or high-volume pedestrian corridor? If yes, provide details on how the project will improve the transit and/or pedestrian experience.

Not Applicable

Does the proposed project anticipate multi-modal enhancements (sidewalks, bicycle or transit facilities)? Provide details.

Not Applicable

Is the right-of-way constrained and do you anticipate that modes of travel will be competing for space? Provide details, is there potential for innovative design options? Provide details

Not Applicable

Operating Impacts

Operations & Capital Asset Maintenance:

Is this request for new or existing infrastructure? Existing

What is the expected useful life of the project/Improvement? 10 - 15 Years

Year that Operating Incr/(Decr) will take effect? Year 1

What is the estimated annual operating cost increase or (decrease) for this project? $0

Any Prior Year Remaining Bond Authorizations? Yes

Prior Year Remaining Bond Authorizations: $0

Describe how operating cost increases or decreases were determined and include details such as personnel costs, materials, contracts, energy savings, etc:

Not Applicable

If new infrastructure, discuss how the department/agency will pay for the increased annual operating costs:

Not Applicable

For new infrastructure, describe the estimated timing and dollar amount of future capital investment required to realize the full expected useful life of the project:

Not Applicable

Project Coordination

Describe completion status for ongoing projects and how and when the department/agency plans to use the prior year remaining bond authorizations:

The 2019 sign reflectivity appropriation was intended to carry over to 2020 as no new appropriation was programmed. Crews are on track with the planned pace of installing signs and will spend the prior year appropriation by the end of 2020.

If this is a new project, describe the major project phases and timing anticipated for completing the project:

Not Applicable

Scalability/Funding Allocation Flexibility – discuss any flexibility to increase or decrease funding among the years in the five-year plan and the most that could be spent in a given year:

There is flexibility to increase/decrease funds used, but this would result in a shorter/longer installation timeline.

Minneapolis Goals and Strategic Direction

Minneapolis is a growing and vibrant world-class city with a flourishing economy and a pristine environment, where all people are safe, healthy and have equitable opportunities for success and happiness.Below is a description of how this project meets each of the City's Goals. Below is a description of how this project meets each of the City's Goals.

Below is a description of how this project meets each of the City's Goals.

Public Safety

Collaborative and community-inclusive strategies to ensure safety for all members of our community:

Increase accessibility of public infrastructure and public amenities.

Use design principles that ensure a safe and welcoming environment when designing all projects that impact the public realm.

Prioritize safety investments in line with the Complete Streets Policy.

Improve safety for pedestrians, and prioritize pedestrians over other road users, especially at street intersections; focus on signals, crosswalks, lighting, signage, visibility and lowering vehicular speeds through street design and other measures.

Public Health

The City has declared racism a public health emergency, noting that “racism in all its forms causes persistent discrimination and disparate outcomes in many areas of life”. Public Works recognizes the impact of racism in transportation systems and this program seeks to promote transportation equity and justice in accordance with the goals of the Strategic & Racial Equity Action Plan 2019-2022 by providing equitable access to multimodal transportation in all parts of the City through thoughtful planning and design.

Additional Information

Add any additional information you feel is important for the CLIC committee, Mayor, City Council members or the general public to know about this potential project and why it should be approved:

The project started in 2012. In the first two years of the program, City staff completed an inventory and condition rating of the over 80,000 signs within the City. This was a necessary first step before embarking on the full installation program that will use the remaining project funding. Sign replacement began in 2014, and is continuing each year. More than half the signs still need to be replaced.