New billboard along U.S. 50 points the way again to Hillsboro

US50sign36.jpg
US50sign36.jpg

City workers and others erect the new ?Hillsboro? sign along U.S. 50 at Indigo Road on Mon?day. Jason Plett and Todd Helmer manned the bucket trucks that aided in the process. Courtesy photo

It took almost a year but as of Monday, Hillsboro has a new billboard along U.S. Highway 50 inviting guests to come to town via the 13-mile Indigo Road.

A year ago this summer the old billboard was damaged by a windstorm. Christy Wolf, director of the Hillsboro Cham?ber of Commerce at the time, worked on getting the sign replaced but found the company holding the lease difficult to work with. Little progress was made.

Following Wolf?s resignation in May, Clint Seibel, director of Hillsboro Development Corp. and Hillsboro Ventures Inc., offered his assistance.

?The owners of the land on which our sign is placed have been very cooperative in giving a lease to HDC, eliminating the involvement of the sign company altogether,? Seibel said.

A new application for a billboard permit had to be filed with the Kansas Department of Trans?portation before construction could begin.

?We couldn?t have completed this project without the help of the City of Hillsboro,? Seibel said.

?They had some used highline poles that were donated to the project. The guys from the electric department did a great job setting the poles and helping to get the billboard up.?

?We also hired local contractor Don Arnold to do the carpentry work,? Seibel said. ?We had a great team put together. The vinyl flex-face came in last week and we completed the project on Monday morning.?

Seibel said he has heard a lot of stories in the intervening months about people missing the turnoff from U.S. 50 onto Indigo while the billboard was gone.

?I recently had some folks from Andover interested in some of the things we are doing in economic development call for an appointment,? he said. ?About the time they were planning to arrive in Hillsboro, I got a call from them saying, ?How do you get to Hillsboro from Florence!??

David Baker, Chamber president, redesigned the billboard in an effort to make the sign easier to read. Tabor College and Marion Reservoir are the only two attractions listed on the new sign.

?Many people coming to the college from the south have trouble finding the Hillsboro turnoff,? Seibel said. ?We also want to see Marion Reservoir traffic come through Hillsboro as well.?

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