Have you ever wondered which state has the most billboards? A recent statistics report counts 341.61 thousand billboards in the United States between local, state roads and highways.
The federal government tracks the number of billboards through each state. This is part of the Highway Beautification Act (HBA) of 1965. Each state reports their outdoor advertising statistics differently. Oftentimes different legislation at a state level impacts the number and concentration of billboards.
One thing is for sure- there are four states that will never make it onto this list! That’s because Hawaii, Alaska, Maine, and Vermont have banned billboards. This is because of their fame as a scenic landscape, where billboards might interrupt the natural beauty and affect tourism.
In contrast, the southeast corner of America has a high concentration of billboards. This encompasses Florida, Georgia, Mississipi and Alabama to name a few. One of these states holds the most– read on to find out which state has the most billboards in 2018.
Florida leads the pack with a whopping 11,109 active permits on file for billboards throughout the entire state.
Orange County, Florida comes in first with 801 billboards in the county alone. Outfront Media leads the pack on 3,532 billboards in the state, with Clear Channel Outdoor coming in second -946. The state has several lobby groups and organizations to promote the interests of the outdoor advertising world in Florida, including the FOAA, or the Florida Outdoor Advertising Association.
Peaches aren’t the only thing that plentiful in Georgia! Georgia is just behind Florida with 9,871 billboards throughout the state.
Bartow County, which is just northwest of Atlanta holds a few hundred of these billboards alone. Generally, Georgia city centers and long stretches of interstate highways make up for a bulk of the nearly 10,000 outdoor advertising elements in the state. Travelers going west to Alabama, east to South Carolina, north to Tennessee or south to Georgia are sure to see a few hundred on their way.
Surprisingly, California only holds just over 8,700 billboards. This may seem like a lot until you consider how much land mass California has as it takes up a huge percentage of the West Coast!
This number means the billboards are more evenly distributed throughout the state, with respect to the natural beauty of the coast, national parks, mountains, and valleys. This is in contrast to several other states on this list that are packed full of billboards!
For being such as small state, New Jersey has an impressive amount of billboard permits on file. In fact, New Jersey is just behind California with over 8500 between all its counties.
Clear Channel holds the bulk of billboards in the area. If you consider the long and winding byways of California condensed into smaller New Jersey, it’s hard to imagine moving more than a few feet without seeing a billboard.
Largely considered a travel-through state, it only makes sense that Missouri had nearly 2,100 billboards.
These billboard permits on file on controlled routes are as of January 2018. St. Joseph has one of the highest concentrations of billboards in the northwest corner. The same goes for Kansas City to the west, St. Louis area to the est, and around Springfield and Columbia city centers. This catches the attention of motorists crossing state lines on road trips and alerts them about what Missouri has to offer.
Utah has recently passed billboard-friendly legislation that makes this is a prime location for billboards all over the state. As a result, billboards have begun flooding the main routes through the state.
The highest concentration is along the I-15N that runs from Las Vegas to Salt Lake City, with a large majority just inside the “corner” of Utah from Nevada and another thick concentration by SLC. The I-70W also sees a bulk of the over 1,660 billboards that hold a permit with UDOT. This number is forecasted to climb, and by this time next year it’s entirely possible that Utah will climb higher on this list.