Jeff Cranson is the Director of Communications at the Department of Transportation.
M-DOT recently out a request for a so-called leader, someone he said, who would manage a sponsorship and advertising program of the rest areas and welcome centers around Michigan.
“We’re taking a look at opportunities for sponsorships to maybe generate some revenue that would at least go toward the maintenance and operations of our welcome centers and rest areas in the state,” Cranson said. “Some other states have done these kinds of things. State and federal law really provides pretty narrow opportunities for this because the Commission for the Blind is charged with the operating the food and vending services of the rest areas.”
Cranson said the state is not looking for food or drink vendors. He said the program is a way for businesses to get their name out at the same time as helping with costs of rest areas.
“Under federal law or what’s called Map-21 which is the last federal reauthorization it loosened up some of those guidelines of existing laws for what kind of advertising you could have in rest areas,” Cranson said, “So because of that other states are looking at this and Michigan is too. It’s not going to generate a whole lot of revenue especially when we’re looking at a $1.2 billion additional need. But it could generate some revenue and it could be good for businesses that see this as a chance for exposure.”
Cranson says while the program does not specifically aim to alter physical appearance of areas, further beautification could be a side effect of more sponsor attention.
A mandatory preview meeting is scheduled for July 10 At the Horatio S. Earle Learning Center, 7575 Crowner Dr., Diamondale, MI (Eaton county) to discuss the bidding for people or businesses interested in the program.
ON THE WEB:
MDOT Sponsorship Program Request for Proposal:
application page” target=”_blank”>www.michigan.gov/documents/mdot/MDOT_RFP_SS_Michigan_Advertising_and_Sponsorship_RFP_REQ1535_posted_WO_RID_460065_7.pdf”>application page