Barstow, California, soon will have classic car-themed Route 66 signs installed.
The city council this week approved a $42,860 contract with Turner Signs and Graphics for the new signs. Councilors also approved a $111,360 budget for the overall sign project.
According to the Desert Dispatch newspaper:
The monument signs that will be placed along the Route 66 corridor incorporate different vehicles popular on Route 66 during the 1950s through the 1970s and will be placed on a masonry base. Each sign will have the Route 66 logo as well as Barstow identification. The signs will light up using solar energy.
One city official noted the cars are on the top of a seven-foot pedestal, making it harder to commit vandalism.
The council also approved a specific plan for Barstow’s Route 66 corridor — including1950s-era color schemes — along the Route 66 corridor in Barstow, despite some skepticism from councilors.
City officials said the plan — conceived by MIG Consulting — offers guidelines, not requirements for businesses. The guidelines are there to encourage entrepreneurs to make their businesses more attractive to Route 66 tourists.
Colors in the plan include specific 1950s-era hues such as aqua blue, grass green, hot-rod red, lemon yellow, dusk blue, flamingo pink, sunset orange, toast brown, turquoise, avocado green and stone gray. The plan encourages historic preservation where applicable.
It suggests retro-themed new signs, Googie architecture, old-school facades, more public art, and drought-tolerant trees to bring shade for pedestrians.
The entire report may be read here, starting at page 15 (warning: the file is huge).
My take: The plan is a good one, but it’s very, very long-term in its horizon — assuming Barstow businesses even embrace its recommendations.
(Image of the Barstow Route 66 signs via the city of Barstow)