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Wednesday, February 26, 2014

From the ADOT Archives: Communicating with the Public



Back in May of 1980, ADOT marked National Transportation Week with this outstanding exhibit, displayed inside Phoenix's Central Library.
The top, left panel includes information on ADOT’s current innovations (well, current in 1980). A portion of the panel states, “Faced with rapidly rising costs of materials and shortages, the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) has been recognized nationally for research to stretch construction dollars and supplies.”
From the three-dimensional freeway models behind glass to those nifty pennants up top, we think this thing is pretty impressive even three decades later.

But beyond appearances, the display really seems to be getting a message across.

With headings like “ADOT: A National Leader in Research” and “ADOT: Constructing Roads While Fighting Inflation,” the exhibit boards are helping tell ADOT’s story to those library patrons.

Since this blog is helping to tell ADOT’s story today, we find it particularly interesting to learn what was being communicated to the public a long time ago in a era far, far away (“The Empire Strikes Back” would be released just nine days after these photos were taken!).

So, we broke out our magnifying glass to see what is written on that top right panel. Here’s what we were able to decipher:

ADOT Constructing Roads While Fighting Inflation
Embracing terrain ranging from living desert to breathtaking vistas of Arizona’s Northland, the 6,000 mile State Highway System leads motorists through some of the most gorgeous scenery in America.

The roads that all of us take for granted, however have become more expensive to build and maintain in the face of double digit inflation. A Five-Year Transportation Construction Program updated annually helps the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) meet the basic needs of one of the fastest growing states in the nation.

The 1,660-mile Interstate System in Arizona is now 97% complete, progress continues on the Superstition Freeway in the Mesa area and projects are identified for improvements statewide – funds permitting.

Every aspect of Arizona’s present and future depends on the efficient movement of people and products. Indeed, transportation is the state’s “lifeline” –contributing to our collective growth and happiness.

Surprisingly, the words don’t sound too outdated. It makes us wonder what ADOT’s message will be in the year 2048!

It’s safe to say things have changed since 1912 when the Arizona Highway Department was first established. But you don’t just have to take our word … we’ve got plenty of pictures to prove it. We combed through our archives and decided to periodically post these photos from the past in a blog series we’re calling, “From the ADOT Archives.”
Posted by Angela DeWelles   |  Labels:  Communication, From-the-Archives, Transportation-Week
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