From the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)
Special Route Definitions
In connection with the U.S. numbering plan, as evolved and perfected, it has been found necessary and expedient to recognize and establish "Business Routes," "By-Pass," "Alternate Routes" and "Temporary Routes," which have been defined as follows:
A "Business Route" is a route principally within the corporate limits of a city which provides the traveling public an opportunity to travel through that city, passing through the business part of the city; while the regular number is used to obviate passing through the congested part of the city. This "Business Route" connects with the regular numbered route at the opposite side of the city limits.
"Business Route" numbering on US numbered highways shall be established by the placing of a standard strip carrying the words "Business Route" on the staff above the U.S. shield.
A "By-Pass Route" or a "Relief Route" is a route which is established for the purpose of designating a route which entirely by-passes a city or congested area and joins in with the regular numbered route beyond the city or congested area.
This enables the regular number to be carried both through the city and around the city without either designation carrying any other sign or lettering showing a preference.
The "By-Pass Route" or "Relief Route" shall be designated by the erection of a standard strip on the staff carrying the U.S. shield, on which are the words "By- Pass" or "Relief Route," as local preference may dictate.
An "Alternate Route" shall be considered a route which starts at a point where it branches off from the main numbered route, may pass through certain cities and towns, and then connect back with the regular route some miles distant. Since it is the purpose of the U.S. numbered system to mark the best and shortest route available, an alternate route should be designated only where both routes are needed to accommodate the traffic demand, and when the alternate route has substantially the same geometric and structural design standards of the main marked routing.
It is recommended that in case an alternate route is marked, that the shorter and better constructed route be given the regular number and the other section designated as the "Alternate Route". It is further recommended that the Highway Department erect signs at the junction points of the regular and alternate routes giving the distance between the cities or points concerned.
The State Highway Departments involved in the establishment of "Alternate" routes shall adopt the same procedure with the Executive Committee of the Association as applied to the creation of a new route.
The "Alternate Route" shall be marked by the erection of signs bearing the same U.S. number as the regular route and above the shield shall carry a standard strip with the word "Alternate".
In no instance should an alternate routing be used for the purpose of keeping an obsolete section on the U.S. numbered system after a new routing has been constructed and available to traffic.
In the erection of signs for numbering routes, it is necessary in some cases to carry a number temporarily over a road that ultimately will not be the permanent location of that number. Great care should be taken by the State Highway Departments in seeing that when numbers of this character are permitted, that a standard strip carrying the words "Temporary" shall be placed on the staff above the number. This will obviate much hard feeling when it is necessary to change a number to the permanently established route.
Return to M1 Series Signs
Return to Richard C. Moeur's Traffic Stuff
Return to Manual of Traffic Signs Main Page
Richard C. Moeur's Home Page
Updated 15 September 2010 (coding)
Scripting: Richard C. Moeur
Sign images ©1996-2005 Richard C. Moeur.
All rights reserved. Unauthorized use of images is
strictly prohibited. Refer to
Standard Use Agreement